Moonscape Overlook in Utah is a place so remote and untouched by tourism, you won’t even find the location on a map. It’s one of those destinations that you’ll want to tell all your friends about but also keep a secret. Once you arrive at the overlook you’ll be mesmerized by a landscape so lunar-like that you’ll wonder if you’ve actually landed on the moon.
Discover everything you need to know about visiting Moonscape Overlook including detailed step-by-step driving instructions, which you’ll definitely need!
What is Moonscape Overlook
Moonscape Overlook is an expansive landscape resembling the surface of the moon and is located in Southern Utah. This unique area is off the typical tourist route and is definitely worth visiting if you are in the area of Capital Reef National Park and nearby Hanksville.
You’ll know you’ve reached the location when you see a vast valley filled with wave and crater-like landscapes in shades of grey, brown & black. As you wander around near the edge you’ll spot a short, narrow walkway with a circular, flat rock in which you can stand if you’re brave enough. The wind is strong so be sure to wear proper footwear if you plan on climbing up to the rock.
Visit Goblin Valley State Park, which is only an hour drive from Moonscape Overlook, on a Utah Road Trip
How to Get to Moonscape Overlook
Moonscape Overlook is located in the same vicinity as Factory Butte and about 16 miles west of Hanksville. To reach this spot, drive along UT State Road 24 until you reach a small dirt road. From here, turn onto Coal Mine Road (or Factory Butte Rd on Google Maps). The road is mostly gravel and dirt, usually requiring a high clearance 4WD vehicle. However, if the roads are dry it can be done in a 2WD vehicle given you drive slowly and avoid any large stones or rocks.
Continue driving along Coal Mine Road for about 6 miles and then turn right on a road with a numbered stick #0913 (Skyline View Road). From there you will continue driving until you reach a fork in the road where you will turn left. Drive just a bit further until you’ve reached another numbered stick #1552 . This is the dirt road that you will drive along to reach Moonscape Overlook. Once you see a small turn off, pull in and walk carefully over to the edge. There, you can see the rock that juts out over the expansive landscape.
There is no hiking required to reach Moonscape Overlook and it is completely free to visit.
Places to Visit Near Moonscape Overlook
Nearby Moonscape Overlook, you’ll find many other incredible locations with unique and jaw-dropping landscapes. Factory Butte is the easiest and closest to visit as you’ll pass it on the way to Moonscape Overlook. Goblin Valley State Park, known for its various shaped hoodoos, is only an hour drive away and definitely worth a visit on a Utah Road Trip.
Only 40 minutes away is the Capitol Reef National Park visitor’s center which is your entry point into the park. Keep in mind, Capitol Reef is a National Park and will require a fee for entry. You can purchase the annual National Park’s pass or pay the daily entrance fee of $20 per vehicle.
Factory Butte and Moonscape Overlook are both located within the Factory Bench Mesa. The large, iconic Factory Butte rock formation can be seen about 10 minutes after turning onto Factory Butte Rd from Utah State Route 24. Whereas, Moonscape Overlook is located a bit farther in along the Skyline Ridge.
Factory Butte seemingly rises almost 1400 feet out of nowhere. The barren landscape that surrounds it is often visited by small herds of mule deer grazing on shrubs and grasses. In the springtime, desert flowers and flowering cacti will bloom in this area bringing more wildlife to this Upper Blue Hills area.
Factory Butte is easy to visit since it’s directly off of the main dirt road which you will take to reach Moonscape Overlook.
Must Read: Utah Road Trip: Tips for Exploring Utah’s National and State Parks in a Camper Van
Capitol Reef National Park
Located in south-central Utah, Capitol Reef National Park covers 60 miles of land filled with red sandstone, towing monoliths and deep canyons. The park is divided into three sections: Fruita, South (Waterpocket) District and North (Cathedral Valley) District.
best hiking trails in capitol reef national park
- Chimney Rock Loop Trail
- Hickman Bridge Trail
- Cassidy Arch Trail
- Capitol Gorge Trail
- Frying Pan
- Rim Overlook
top things to do in capitol reef national park
- Capitol Dome
- Chimney Rock
- Cathedral Valley
- Hickman Bridge
- Loop the Fold
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