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Moab Routes for Rookies

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Hello Tim,

Sounds like you guys are going to have a blast! Since you’ve been there on a bicycle, I assume you have an idea what the terrain will be like, huh? You’ll find lots of sand out there this year. The mild winter and dry spring/summer have left a lot of the main roads very sandy. How is the XR200 in the sand? I seem to recall that they have mushy forks – that wouldn’t be too cool in the deep stuff.

Your friends have given you quite a list there. Some are great, others won’t be too cool.

Onion Creek, Klondike Bluffs and Gemini Bridges will be great for beginners – highly recommended.

With the Kane Creek Trail I would be sure you’re on the one marked ‘Over Look.’ (The Kane Creek trail is one of the best out there, but probably over the limits of the XR.) You can get to it from Behind the Rocks. While up there, be advised not to come down Pritchard Canyon – several dicey spots (check out that picture of me searching for fossils :) )

Poison Spider - Your friend was right in saying that it gets harder. There are three real technical spots on an otherwise OK trail. Given your wife is fairly aggressive or you don’t mind lifting the XR a little bit, it’s a wonderful trail. Make time to see the arches and the view from the top of the Portal Trail (don’t go down this way).

If you are going to run Poison Spider, I’d recommend Porcupine Rim (out and back. Don’t try to get down to the highway). At 2.5 miles in, you will have one of the best views in the whole area. It’s an 800 ft cliff overlooking castle valley. A camara is a must.

You should also try the Slickrock bike trail. There is a practice loop right off the parking lot to test your rock worthiness. Keep in mind that it will be covered in bicycles during the day, so we always try to run it last thing in the evening.

Probably the best views are from the White Rim Trail. Since you’ll be trailering, drive your vehicle as far in as you can on the eastern entrance, then unload. Go as far in as a half a tank of gas, then turn back. Bring lots of film – it’s really pretty. While you’re up there, you can also stop by Dead Horse Point. It’s also fun to see. Take a dirt road down off the mesa (sorry I don’t have my map handy) that meets up with the Potash road on the north side of the river. It’s a tough road at one spot but the scenery is worth it.

As far as the Monitor Merrimac Trail goes, expect long straight roads of sand for miles. There are some cool rocks you can play on, but it doesn’t offer that great of views. There are some cool Anasazi ruins back there, but you’ll need a local guide to get you in that deep.

Wish I could be out there with you,


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You guys will have a blast! Keep in mind that 4 days of riding is pretty hard! At least the way we ride!

I just came back from there for our first fall trip and what a blast we had. We have been going every spring for the last 6 years.

I fully agree with what Jake has to say. Keep in mind that the La Sals will be snowed in. Why ride snow when you have Moab to ride and you can stay home and ride in snow!

Have a blast.....


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My name is Tim Buhler and I am heading to Moab for some riding so I thought I'd ask the "experts" for some riding routes. I was wondering if you could give me a Yea or Nea on a couple routes I want to take my wife on. We are coming to MOAB on our dirt bikes over thanksgiving for 4 days. She is a veteran street rider but a rookie dirt rider with an XR200. I am a novice/intermediate dirt rider as well and I'm on a YZ426F. Neither bike is street legal. I have selected the following routes to take her on based on conversations with others here at work and a map recon. What we want are relatively easy routes with great views.

My self proclaimed "experts tell me these are the "one's":

Onion Creek Trail- easy with water crossings

Poison Spider- 1st part is easy and fun but it gets harder

Klondike Bluffs- Marked Blue on the map but it's easy?

Kane Creek trail- really cool views at the canyon rim

Kane Springs Road- nice view

Monitor Merimac Trail- Absolutely must do!

Some others I hear are fairly easy but with great views are

Willow Flats Road

Gemini Bridges

Salt Flats road to Tower Arch & Marching Men

Behind the rocks to Prostitute Butte (I've been here on a bike so I know it's easy and fun)

No one knows any fun routes up in the La Sal's, I really like it up there so I'd love to find somewhere to ride up there as well.

Any tips you can give me on routes would be much appreciated.

Thanks for your time.

Tim Buhler

Golden CO

00 YZ426F

96 CBR900RR

79 TT500 Flat Tracker

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