The Toadstools, also known as Hoodoo's or Paria Rimrocks, are unique rock formations where a boulder is perched atop a column or pedestal rock. According to a sign posted at the start of the trail, toadstools are formed when boulders of the Dakota Formation fall down-slope onto softer Estrada Sandstone, sheltering the rock directly below from erosion. The area surrounding the Toadstools is full of cryptobiotic or biological soil crusts that appear as tiny bumps in the sand. These bumps consist of living organisms such as lichen, fungi and moss, and take years to create a crust. These crusts help plants by absorbing water, providing nutrients and stabilizing the soil allowing plants to grow. Due to the extremely fragile environment, it is imperative that you stick to the trails and sandy washes to avoid damaging the cryptobiotic crusts or rock formations. Remember to Leave No Trace!!!
The trail to the Toadstools is an easy out-and-back trail starting from the parking lot located between mile posts 19 and 20 on Highway 89 in Utah. The trail is easy to follow because it runs along and sometimes through a sandy wash. There are many trail markers and signs pointing the way and reminding people to stick to the trails. About a half mile into the hike you will see your first toadstool. There are many side trails in this area leading to different rock formations. The main attraction is straight ahead on the main trail. The trail will end at a cliff face, but the entire area is full of amazing layers of color and rock formations. Feel free to venture around the area, but please do not climb on these delicate rock formations as it can cause considerable damage. The trail is rather exposed for the entire hike, so be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen, especially in the summer months.