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  1. #1
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    Moab Trail Suggestions During Easter Jeep Safari

    My son and I spend a long weekend every year at the EJS, and this year we're taking our bikes, as he's really getting into mountain biking, and I'm just getting back into it after a 16 year layoff. We're looking for something that's doable in ~half day, and that will suit our skills, which for me is beginner-intermediate, and for my son, he's learning fast, and not afraid, but I would still say he's just entering the intermediate category.

    Some trails that have been suggested are Bar-M (along with the other "Branded" trails), Sovereign, Slickrock. We don't have the time for TWE (I would like to try Porcupine Rim, but.....), and they are likely beyond our skill, or at least mine, as would Captain Ahab be. I'm not ashamed to get down and walk the bike over/through something, so that's not a big deal, but at the same time....would like to compete with the trail.

    Any thoughts?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Brands Trails are great for beginner/intermediate riders as is the trail system at Klondike Bluffs. Personally, I prefer the latter. That would cover your "half-day." (Skip Sovereign and Slickrock is not beginner friendly but you can play on the short "practice loop" if you want to check it out. Venture further if you feel up to it. Very hard, physically.) TWE is nowhere close to open and is advanced. Porcupine Rim is rugged and advanced. I would not call it beginner. Alternative: You could also check out Navajo Rocks, a step up from Brands, and Horse thief Trails. If you want something longer, shuttle to top of Mag 7 and take Getaway down from the top and go out Gemini Bridges Rd. at bottom (skip Gold Bar/Portal). This is a pretty long day if not in shape though.

  3. #3
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    I think that the Mag 7 suggestion is a great one if you have time. Another options is to head over to Amassa Back and use the Hyamassa trail up and come back down the Amassa Back jeep road. A lot of my buddies prefer that down route more than the Captain Ahab route and it is much easier. That ride only takes a couple of hours and is a blast.
    Josh

  4. #4
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    The Klonzo trails are another good option in that same vein. In addition to being physically between Brands and Klondike, they're in the middle in a lot of other ways - a bit more up/down than most of Brands, but less than Klondike; similar difficulty to Brands, easier than some of Klondike. A *lot* of Klonzo is fairly smooth dirt singletrack, as opposed to more "traditional" Moab riding.


    Also worth considering the Navajo Rocks trails off Highway 313. The north trails in particular (Big Mesa and Ramblin) offer a lot of intermediate slickrock riding.

  5. #5
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    Great suggestions so far!! Keep 'em coming! I will be doing a lot of research the next week or so! Youtube videos do a great job of flattening out the trails, so I need to take that into consideration (they really don't do the trails at Angel Fire here in NM any justice with regard to how steep they actually are), but they will still give me an idea. While I'm in town, I will pick up one of the trail books to go along with my Jeep and ATV books.

    Another factor is my truck....I would like something that loops us back to the truck, so that we don't have to ride a long ways on asphalt to the truck. Does that hamper my choices? Or, shuttling to the trailhead, and riding back to town via trail is ok too I suppose. These aren't deal breakers, just bonus factors I guess.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bopApocalypse View Post
    The Klonzo trails are another good option in that same vein. In addition to being physically between Brands and Klondike, they're in the middle in a lot of other ways - a bit more up/down than most of Brands, but less than Klondike; similar difficulty to Brands, easier than some of Klondike. A *lot* of Klonzo is fairly smooth dirt singletrack, as opposed to more "traditional" Moab riding.


    Also worth considering the Navajo Rocks trails off Highway 313. The north trails in particular (Big Mesa and Ramblin) offer a lot of intermediate slickrock riding.
    What this guy said!

  7. #7
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    All the ones I mention in my post are loops except the Mag 7 shuttle. Commercial shuttles leave from the bike shops. You can leave truck at trail tail (ask your shuttle driver the preferred parking spot).

  8. #8
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    As others have mentioned, and I'll highlight:

    Navajo Rocks is really great.
    I recommend starting at the West (upper) parking and riding Big Mesa-Big Lonely-Coney Island to Middle Earth-Ramblin-Rocky Tops. It's a figure 8 that flows nicely and is very intermediate with just a couple of challenging sections that you might have to walk.
    https://www.utahmountainbiking.com/t...tLoop-HRes.jpg

    Also, the trail loops in the Getaway/7-up/Mustang Loop/Whirlwind Loop area are not heavily ridden and very intermediate - slightly easier, I think, than Navajo Rocks.
    https://www.utahmountainbiking.com/t...llRun-HRes.jpg

    If you wanted to up the game a bit, Riding down Bull Run and back up Getaway is pretty sweet. It's more advanced intermediate....my wife (who is 64 and has been riding 6 years) did have to walk numerous sections on Bull Run.
    https://www.utahmountainbiking.com/t...llRun-HRes.jpg

    The practice loop at Slickrock is something you should try as well, just to get a flavor of it. It is very short, but if you liked it, you could extend it out.

    You could spend a whole lot of time exploring around in the Klondike Bluffs area.
    Klondike Bluffs Area Trails, Moab Utah

    I'm not a big fan of the Brand Trails, just because they are so heavily ridden.

    My wife wasn't wild about Klonzo. I think she just didn't find that area very interesting. I kind of like the area, especially Gravitron and Vertigo, but I guess those two trails are rated more advanced, though I think they'd be fine for solid intermediates.

  9. #9
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    Mag 7 is NOT AN OPTION for a beginner. Even Mag 5 would push their limits a lot.

  10. #10
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    Moab Trail Maps Explained Series

    I have most of the Moab trail maps explained on YouTube:

    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...rfN5dCJcN85VcQ

    Tomorrow I'll get Whole Enchilada, Amasa, and Klondike Bluffs uploaded but those aren't for you except for the lower part of Klondike.

    The only thing about Jeep Safari is it is impossible to get into a car wash!

    Thursday I head out to UT, AZ, CO for a month MTB road trip and shoot video to mix with the maps. These are temporary, just basic prototypes. Hope they help.
    Last edited by jmpreston; 03-20-2018 at 05:48 PM. Reason: Add sig line
    MTB blog for US West trails: http://jimprestonmtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

  11. #11
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    Dead Horse is a MUST RIDE for a beginner/intermediate rider in Moab. You can also have fun at Klondike. Getaway/7up is also a good call, on the way back from Dead Horse.

    Mag 7
    Amasa Back
    TWE (Porc Rim, etc)

    are not the place to be until more skills are acquired. I don't think these guys saw your skill level context.

  12. #12
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    Thank you everyone!! This is great information....I can't thank you all enough!

  13. #13
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    I would not do Amassa back as there will be heavy vehicle traffic. Klonzo is great for beginners and I donít believe the Horsethief area trails were mentioned? These combined with Deadhorse would make for a great weekend of riding at your level. We regularly take our 10 yr old on the intermediate trails at Horsethief and he does fine, other than complaining on the uphill part

    Lots of ways to loop trails in these areas from one lot with no road riding.

  14. #14
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    Alright! My son and I loved it! Mind you, we didn't have a lot of time, so we didn't do a ton of riding, but it was still awesome!

    We ended up hitting "Ramblin'," "Rocky Tops," and "Middle Earth" out at the Navajo Rocks area. And the next day we made time for a short run, so we hit "EZ," and "Sidewinder" over at the Bar-M area, and then scooted out to slickrock just before sundown and did the practice loop.

    Every trail was very different from the others. Middle Earth, of course, is just a quick little joiner to the pkg lot, but even it had some good stuff going for it! To be honest, my least favorite was Slickrock, but that's only cuz I prefer landing on dirt over landing on rock at my age! We almost chose to do Hyamasa up and back to keep it blue, but my son really wanted to ride the sandstone.

    Can't wait to go back!

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