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Moab

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Overview

Moab has several attributes that make it an incredibly popular destination. First, the climate in Moab complements that of Salt Lake City, the Utah mountains, and Colorado front range and mountainous areas in that it's generally dry with mild temperatures when Utah and Colorado locations are too cold, muddy, or snowy.

Moab has focused a ton of effort and resources over the past several years into creating more trails and making the area more friendly for a range of activities. There are now more beginner-friendly trails than ever, and plenty of trails to keep everyone entertained for a long weekend or more.

For those reasons, people come from all over Utah and from Colorado's front range, and many other places, driving 5 or more hours to take advantage of trails. It's worth a trip to experience scenery like you've never seen before.

Other user groups frequent Moab as well - notably offroad Jeep and motorcycle enthusiasts. It's definitely a motorhead town - the wide open landscape and lax restrictions on land use make it a mecca for all types of offroad vehicles. The different user groups seem to play fairly well together though - it's rare to be annoyed when you're out on the trail, and it can be nice to have company in the raw desert conditions that define Moab.

The town itself is not flashy. It started out as a uranium mining town and has stayed very close to its working class mining roots over time. There are plenty of great bike shops, and all the necessities, including several good, but not great options for places to eat.

Discover Moab seems to have good information about the area.

Visiting Tips

The sweet spots for Moab are spring and fall, when the temperatures are cooler, and other destinations within driving distance are inaccessible due to mud or snow. Because it's the desert, early spring is very doable here - it's quite cold at night (often below freezing) but easily rises to mid-60's during the day.

The most crowded season seems to be early spring through mid-April. These are times when the mountains of Colorado are no longer skiable. It's also when the offroad crowd emerges from their garages after a winter of tinkering with their machines. It's a great time to come, but can be difficult to find camping on the weekends, unless you can take Friday off and arrive Thursday evening.

Generally, avoid mid-summer unless you're very experienced, or willing to head out in the early mornings or late evenings. It's simply too hot in the summer to be safe in the middle of the day.

Camping & Lodging

There's plenty of camping, and it's probably the most common sleeping arrangement for many people who visit the area. The largest and most common place to camp is up at Sand Flats, a 10-minute drive up above town. Sand Flats road is the home of the Slickrock trail, and Porcupine Rim, two of the most popular trails in Moab. Sand Flats has over 120 campsites up and down the dirt road that runs through the recreation area. Campsites have pit toilets but no water. There's a fee to use the recreation area, and you pay at an entrance gate as you drive into the area.

The town of Moab is camper-friendly, with all the supplies you'd need, including a pharmacy and full grocery store. There are also several places to take showers, including some of the local bike shops.

There are also a number of commercial campgrounds in the area, and RV areas with full facilities. Some are right in the middle of town, making it convenient for families.

There are hotels and motels as well, and many condos available for rent through VRBO or other sources. Nothing is particularly fancy here, so don't come expecting the Four Seasons! That said, it can be a family-friendly town, and there are plenty of nice spots you can find for a weekend that's a bit more civilized than a typical guys' weekend.

Food & Drink

Don't go expecting a culinary experience - expect pubs and pizza places you can wear your camping clothes to. There's a central main street that is packed every evening, and you can simply drive up and down until you find a place you want to stop.

Places like Eddie McStiff's, the Moab Brewery and the Moab Diner are popular. Pasta Jay's offers a basic Italian dinner with huge portions if that's what you're in the mood for.

Other Activities

Moab is nearby to some incredible attractions. Definitely check out Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park on your rest days.

There are also a couple of wineries, museums, climbing destinations, and tons of great hikes in the area.

Gems in Moab - 11

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gem Favorite Moon with Delicate Arch

Delicate Arch

(106) Moab, UT
gem Favorite Double Arch at the terminus of the Double Arch Trail

Double Arch

(53) Moab, UT
gem Favorite Landscape Arch looking impossibly thin

Landscape Arch

(46) Moab, UT
gem Favorite Mesa Arch

Mesa Arch

(35) Moab, UT
gem Favorite Ashley takes in the dramatic view that surrounds the Fiery Furnace.

Fiery Furnace

(26) Moab, UT
gem Favorite View at the top!

Professor Creek/Mary Jane Canyon

(5) Moab, UT

Recommended Routes in Moab - 23

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Favorite Evening light at Arches NP!
Intermediate/Difficult

Devils Garden Full Lollipop

5.0 mi 8.1 km 548' Up 166.97 m Up 554' Down 168.8 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Moon with Delicate Arch
Intermediate

Delicate Arch Trail

3.1 mi 5.0 km 567' Up 172.71 m Up 567' Down 172.85 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Double Arch at the terminus of the Double Arch Trail
Easy

Double Arch Trail

0.5 mi 0.8 km 31' Up 9.41 m Up 31' Down 9.4 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Morning Glory Arch is a nice treat after a hike in Negro Bill Canyon.
Intermediate

Grandstaff Hiking Trail

4.1 mi 6.5 km 314' Up 95.76 m Up 314' Down 95.8 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite First Light on Turret Arch Framed by North Window
Easy/Intermediate

Windows Loop

1.0 mi 1.6 km 162' Up 49.46 m Up 156' Down 47.66 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Corona Arch, Moab Utah.
Intermediate

Corona Arch Trail

2.2 mi 3.6 km 367' Up 112 m Up 367' Down 111.92 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Sunset time near Fisher Towers.
Intermediate/Difficult

Fisher Towers Hiking Trail

4.5 mi 7.2 km 1,813' Up 552.56 m Up 1,812' Down 552.36 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite Balance Rock
Easy

Balanced Rock Trail

0.3 mi 0.5 km 27' Up 8.35 m Up 27' Down 8.19 m Down

Moab, UT
Favorite The First Overlook provides a stunning view of the surrounding rock strata.
Intermediate

Upheaval Dome Overlook Trail

1.4 mi 2.3 km 278' Up 84.69 m Up 278' Down 84.7 m Down

Moab, UT

Moab Hiking

  • 1,657 Miles 2,667 Kilometers of Trail
  • 39 Recommended Routes
  • 11 Gems Gems
  • 54 Easy Trails Easy Trails
  • 125 Intermediate Trails Intermediate Trails
  • 47 Difficult Trails Difficult Trails
Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Share what you know about this area!

Areas Within Moab

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Trails in Moab - 187

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Trails

0.7 mi 1.1 km #1Mesa Arch Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT 67 
2.1 mi 3.4 km #2Devils Garden Main Trail
Intermediate
Moab, UT
Intermediate
Moab, UT 33 
7.9 mi 12.8 km #3Syncline Loop Trail
Difficult
Moab, UT
Difficult
Moab, UT 22 
2.2 mi 3.5 km #4Devils Garden Primitive Loop
Intermediate/Difficult
Moab, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
Moab, UT 20 
5.9 mi 9.5 km #5Lathrop Canyon Trail
Difficult
Moab, UT
Difficult
Moab, UT 13 
0.0 mi 0.1 km #6Landscape Arch Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT 28 
1.6 mi 2.5 km #7Tower Arch Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Moab, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
Moab, UT 16 
4.3 mi 6.9 km #8Murphy Hogback Trail
Difficult
Moab, UT
Difficult
Moab, UT
0.2 mi 0.4 km #9Turret Arch Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT 22 
1.7 mi 2.8 km #10East Rim Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT
Easy/Intermediate
Moab, UT 16 

Photos of Moab - 573

Hiking Project is built by hikers like you. Add Your Photos

First Light on Turret Arch Framed by North Window
Mar 9, 2015 near Moab, UT
Standing in the Eye
Mar 8, 2015 near Moab, UT
Enjoying the supermoon in the Windows area
Mar 9, 2015 near Moab, UT
The La Sal Mountains from Oowah Lake.
Apr 15, 2017 near Moab, UT
Mesa Arch
Dec 30, 2018 near Moab, UT
Moon with Delicate Arch
Nov 2, 2017 near Moab, UT
Washerwoman Arch From the Mesa Arch Trail
Dec 30, 2018 near Moab, UT
Canyonlands National Park
Mar 30, 2020 near Moab, UT