Spectacular Scenery & Recreation at Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah - WanderWisdom - Travel
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Spectacular Scenery & Recreation at Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah

Utah is a fantastic state filled with natural wonders, including many beautiful state and national parks. We loved vacationing there!

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah

Amazing Site!

When we first saw the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah from the air, we could hardly believe our eyes! Not only is this state park a recreational paradise, but its sand is brilliantly colored the most vivid shade of pink imaginable.

My mother, niece, and I were overlooking Bryce Canyon National Park and parts of Zion National Park on a small airplane ride when we spotted this vivid area of pink sand and inquired of our pilot as to the significance.

Being informed that this was the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park and understanding that it was very close to a portion of Zion National Park which was on our agenda to visit, we made a mental note to also check out this intriguing state park from the ground when we would be in that area.

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah

Playing in Sand

Have you ever played in sand? As a child did you ever play in a sandbox?

Did you ever build sand castles while on a beach only to watch as the incoming waves made them disappear?

Many of us have had similar experiences in life with regard to playing in sand.

When we saw these brightly colored sand dunes it brought back memories of fun times in the past as well as presenting ideas for pleasure in the here and now.

My niece climbing up one of the coral pink sand dunes

My niece climbing up one of the coral pink sand dunes

Climbing to the top of one of these pink sand dunes is not as easy as one might think. The grains of sand move and footprints fill in rapidly as one tries to attempt reaching the top of the dune. But with perseverance and determination that is one of the first things that we accomplished.

The picture below shows my niece successfully sitting on the top of the hill.

Sitting on top of a pink world at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah.

Sitting on top of a pink world at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah.

Some Information About the Park

Established in 1963 this Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park consists of 3,730 acres.

Of that over 1,000 acres consist of a giant playground containing some of the following:

  • Hundreds of miles of trails
  • Nature walks
  • Camp grounds
  • Off highway vehicle riding
  • Great photography opportunities
  • Viewing plant and wildlife

Elevation is at 6,000 feet.

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park Utah

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park Utah

Coral Pink Sands

What caused this sand to be so colorful?

The nearby red cliffs of Navajo Sandstone gradually eroded giving the grains of sand this bright hue and prevailing winds blew these small particles into the undulating mounds of sand seen there today.

These crimson colored sand dunes are 10,000 to 15,000 years old!

There is constant movement of these dunes. Movement of fifty feet a year is not unusual!

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park Utah

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park Utah

Wildlife in the Park

Besides rodents, if one is lucky one might spot some of the following:

  • Coyotes
  • Jackrabbits
  • Kit Fox
  • and Mule Deer.

A conservation area has been set aside within the park.

A Coral Pink Beetle that lives no where else in the world except for here is being protected in the following manner:

An area of 265 acres is set aside prohibiting any motorized vehicles from entering in order to form a protective barrier of sorts around these rare beetles. That accounts for only about 10% of the park being off limits.

In other areas of the park motorized vehicles are permitted. People seem to have a lot of fun riding dune buggies in this park.

Campsites

For some fun scenes watching an off road motorized vehicle cavorting among the salmon colored sand dunes, be sure to watch the video above.

It starts out at a camp site and the action really starts about 40 seconds into the video.

There are twenty-two campsites set up in the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park. Included are restrooms, showers, waste disposal sites, etc.

Anything from motor homes to tents can be accommodated.

Camping fees are are very reasonable and accommodate RVs as well as those with tents. Day use fees are also extremely inexpensive.

Contact information: P.O. Box 95, Kanab, Utah 84741-0095 Telephone: (435) 648-2800.

Having some fun at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah.

Having some fun at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah.

While my mother, niece and I just took a quick look at this most interesting park with its undulating salmon colored pink sand dunes, other people obviously stay longer and have more time to play.

We were limited by our two week time frame and our main focus for this vacation was to visit the five national parks in Utah. Had we not viewed this amazing park from the air we would probably have driven right past this area and not become better acquainted with this unusual spectacle of beauty.

That is my mother down there at the bottom of the sand dune waving at me.

That is my mother down there at the bottom of the sand dune waving at me.

Were we ever to return, renting a dune buggy would provide endless hours of entertainment and excitement. Just walking the trails would also be pleasurable.

Coral Pink Sand Dunes is a State Park in Utah that can provide hours or even days of fun and recreation!

My niece striking a pose on the coral pink sand.

My niece striking a pose on the coral pink sand.

For additional information regarding this park be sure to watch the video below.

© 2009 Peggy Woods

Comments

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 11, 2012:

Hi Deborah,

You won't be very far away from the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park if you are visiting Zion National Park. Hope your planned trip materializes and that you get to see many of the fabulous parks in Utah. Each and every one is different and unique and well worth visiting from what we got to see and enjoy. I would love to go back and spend more time there someday. Thanks for your comment.

Deborah Neyens from Iowa on December 11, 2012:

Your photos are amazing. My husband and I keep talking about flying into Las Vegas and renting a car to get to all of these places in Utah, like Bryce Canyon and Zion. We'll have to add this park to the list, too!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 24, 2011:

Hello craftybegonia,

Having first seen the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park from an airplane, we just had to get a closer look. The colors are amazing both near and from a distance. Thanks for your comment.

craftybegonia from Southwestern, United States on October 24, 2011:

Amazing color in those dunes! Thanks for sharing!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 23, 2011:

Hi acc12,

New vacation...or just expand upon your wonderful trips to all of the places you have visited like you did with the Lincoln's Springfield, Illinois hub.

The interesting thing about traveling is that even if another person has visited the same exact spot, their focus and interest might have been in another direction. Linking them together with other hubs on the same subject adds to the enjoyment of readers who may wish to plan a trip or "trip" down memory lane.

Let's think about that in the future!

acc12 on October 23, 2011:

Peggy,

So glad you enjoyed it. I love traveling to new places and am enjoying reading your hubs on places I have and haven't been. My first try at a hub, Visiting Lincoln's Springfield, Illinois, was based on a trip from my website. I did have to change it up to use it. Perhaps I just need a new vacation!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 23, 2011:

Hi acc12,

Your website is eye-catching and amazing! You obviously enjoy traveling as I do and road trips are the best! It would make for some great hubs to write more about the sand dunes you have visited. Just be sure to make it a bit different so that it is not picked up as "duplicate content."

acc12 on October 23, 2011:

Hi Peggy,

I wrote about the Michigan and Indiana dunes on my travel website, TheRoadTraveler.com when I documented our Great Lakes road trip to Niagara Falls. Perhaps I could expand on the dunes further in a hub. They were a lot of fun.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 22, 2011:

Hello acc12,

It sounds as if you have had fun in different sand dunes elsewhere. Enjoy the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park on your next visit to Utah and if you wish to see the whitest exposed gypsum sand dunes anywhere, visit White Sands in New Mexico. Those are also dazzling! See my hub on those for pictures if you are interested. Have you written about the ones you have visited? Thanks for your comment.

acc12 on October 22, 2011:

We enjoyed climbing sand dunes at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park in Michigan and Indiana Dunes National Park outside of Chicago. Didn't have time to see Utah's pink dunes when we went to Zion, but judging by your great photos, we'll have to carve out time for this side trip next time we're in Utah. Thanks!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 22, 2011:

Hi leahlefler,

We got to see Park City one summer as we were exploring the area near Salt Lake. It was pretty at that time of year also but must be gorgeous in winter! I never learned to ski, unfortunately. Looks like fun!

Leah Lefler from Western New York on October 22, 2011:

We've been to parts of Utah recently - but only for skiing (we traveled with my husband's parents). We used to live in California and our family is out there, so we went to Brian Head to ski in 2007 and then to Park City in 2011. We didn't get to see any of the national parks during our visits, though, and I regret it! One of these times we're going to get there in the non-ski season!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 21, 2011:

Hi leahlefler,

Perhaps you will head back that way someday and get to see Zion National Park and also the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah. The temperatures must have been brutal that year! If you have time...see all the national parks in Utah. Well worth it as each are different plus as many state parks as you can fit in to your vacation plans. We loved what we got to see of Utah. Thanks for your comemnt.

Leah Lefler from Western New York on October 21, 2011:

Wow, I have never heard of this state park! The sand is gorgeous! We were going to camp in Zion once on the way home from Yellowstone, but the nighttime temperature was going to be 110 degrees so we decided to drive to a hotel in Vegas. I still wish I had seen Zion, though! And the pink sand dunes, too!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 10, 2011:

Hello Charlinex,

Hope that you enjoy the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in Utah as much as we did. Thanks for your comment.

Charlinex on March 10, 2011:

This park looks wonderful! I may go to SLC again in the summer and thank you for your insights!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 05, 2009:

Hello agusfanani,

The nearby red toned Navajo sandstone that became eroded over time caused all of those pink sand dunes. It certainly does make for a unique recreational state park in Utah.

agusfanani from Indonesia on October 05, 2009:

It's indeed a unique pink park, what makes pink color in that sand Peggy ?

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 03, 2009:

Hi Ethel,

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is definitely that as are the National Parks in the vicinity. As a matter of fact, much of the entire State of Utah is set aside and protected from development for the enjoyment of the masses. Wonderful place to visit for those that like majesty and the outdoors. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on October 03, 2009:

Looks lovely and unspoilt.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 01, 2009:

Hi Jess Killmenow,

Glad that I could introduce the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park to you. If you visit there, let me know what you think. Thanks!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 01, 2009:

Greetings Paul in Russia,

Very happy that you liked this hub about the Utah State Park. Intend to head on over to your hubs to see what you are writing. Thanks!

Jess Killmenow from Nowheresville, Eastern United States on October 01, 2009:

What fun! If I'm out that way, I will definitely want to go here. Thank you

Paul In Russia from Belgorod, Russia on October 01, 2009:

Hi Peggy, I enjoyed reading your hub. Great photos!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 30, 2009:

Hello vanderhaven,

Hope you get to vacation in Utah and see this Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park. 5 National Parks are also there along with other state parks. It is a virtual playground in much of Utah! I'd go back in a minute! Need anyone to carry your bags? (LOL) Glad you enjoyed this and thanks for leaving a comment.

vanderhaven on September 30, 2009:

I have GOT to plan a trip to Utah, I have always thought about it but now that I see this pink sand, I really need to go!! :)

My husband has been to Utah but I never have. Visiting state parks is such fun and I can visit places through you on hub pages so that is cool. I love your way of showing us what's there and your photos are clear and nice. :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 30, 2009:

Greetings Isabellas,

We also love the Gatlinburg area with the Great Smokey Mountains. Spent our 1st wedding anniversary there.

All of these State and National Parks are so different and each has its own type of beauty. Glad that you took a look at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes. If you are ever tempted to go west...you will have your choice of so many wonderful parks that it will be quite a decision to make as to which one or ones you want to see. At least you will have an idea of what is out there! Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 30, 2009:

Hello CMHypno,

Yes...had we not spotted it from the air we would surely have bypassed this State Park while on our way to other National Parks in Utah. So glad we DID see it and explore it a bit further. Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 30, 2009:

Hello loveroflife,

Yes...who knew? Utah and gigantic coral pink sand dunes! Nature is surely beautiful as you stated. Thanks!

Isabellas from Ohio on September 30, 2009:

Looks like a lovely place to travel to! I actually prefer Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains, but the desert would be a nice change of pace!

CMHypno from Other Side of the Sun on September 30, 2009:

What amazing colour sand and what luck that you saw it from the air!

loveroflife on September 29, 2009:

Think Pink. Think Utah. Never, until now. What a beautiful revelation of nature.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi shamelabboush,

Yes, I do believe my niece liked most of these trips in which she joined us when still a youngster. She certainly was here...cartwheeling along the Coral Pink Sand Dunes. I never could do a cartwheel! LOL

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hello Eleven13,

So happy that you liked viewing the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park via this Internet hub. Like you, I also enjoy traveling to other parts of the world via my computer. Thanks for the nod.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi Pete,

That is true...you undoubtedly have some great state parks closer to your end of the country. If you ever decide to travel to Utah...prepare to be amazed! Between the great National Parks and other ones like the Coral Pink Sand Dunes; Goblin Valley State Park, etc., Utah is absolutely filled with wonders! Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Dear Hello, hello,

I agree that there are an endless amount of interesting travel sites in the world. Utah just seems to have a gigantic share of them for one state. Thanks for commenting on this Coral Pink Sand Dunes hub.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi Candie,

Aha! You noticed some of the same coloring in the nearby parks. You'd make a good detective!

Am sure that we moved some of that Coral Pink Sand out of the State Park and into our rental car. Would have been eventually moved to Salt Lake when we returned the car with perhaps grains of it being spread into portions of the rest of Utah as we continued our trip.

Glad that you enjoy these remembrances of some of our travels. And thanks for the compliment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi Frieda Babbley,

I agree that the beaches in Oregon are also beautiful and unusual. As we went up the coastline each beach seemed to have its own and distinctive character. Happy for you that you got to play there.

These Coral Pink Sand Dunes are so different because of location and naturally, the color. Also a great recreation area. Anyone visiting can combine the visit with ones to the wonderful National Parks in Utah...at least the closest ones. This one is knocking at Zion's door.

Thanks for the visit and comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi IslandVoice,

Hope you get your wish fulfilled...that of visiting Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in person someday. And yes...you and your camera will stay very busy while having fun. Thanks for the visit and comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hi Hmrjmr1,

So happy that this hub about this state park in Utah could bring back happy memories for you. Just creating the hub did the same for me. Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 29, 2009:

Hello wrenfrost56,

Another sand castle creator! Welcome! Thanks for reading and commenting on this Coral Pink Sand Dune State Park in Utah. Quite the playground!

shamelabboush on September 29, 2009:

This is really nice! Your niece seems to be enjoying every minute of your wonderful trips! This is a nice resort. Thanks dear.

Eleven13 on September 29, 2009:

What a great virtual visit you've created! Great photos and information. Love the yellow flowers springing out of the sand ~ Thanks!

Pete Maida on September 29, 2009:

The park looks great but that would be a long way to go for me to visit a state park. We have some very nice parks in Maryland.

Hello, hello, from London, UK on September 29, 2009:

That is such an interesting hub. Thank so very much. It is amazing how many interesting sites are in this world.

Candie V from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure! on September 29, 2009:

Wonderful hub Peggy! Looks like the same pink that Bryce Canyon is made of! So pretty you don't mind if it gets in your shoes and tracked into the car! "Hey! It's Pink, bring it in!" LOLOL! You are a great travel guide!

Frieda Babbley from Saint Louis, MO on September 28, 2009:

Fantastic hub, Peggy. I LOVE sand dunes. The most memorable ones were in Oregon off the intercoastal highway. Talk about fun!!! I think we spent the whole day there. We just couldn't get enough. I'd love to visit these as well. Gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous! Thanks for sharing this.

Sylvia Van Velzer from Hawaii on September 28, 2009:

I would love to visit and photograph the place. I always enjoy travel, and your hub brought much pleasure.

Hmrjmr1 from Georgia, USA on September 28, 2009:

Brings back some great memories! Thanks for a great hub!

wrenfrost56 from U.K. on September 28, 2009:

Great hub peggy, it sounds beautiful and the pictures are great. I used to love making sand castles too (I still do!) thank-you I really enjoyed reading that and I would love to see the wildlife there too.