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Poison Spider Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 3.3 (3)

A Moab classic with slickrock, sand, Jeeps, and some of the finest scenery around.


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Map Key

8.2

Miles

13.1

KM

Point to Point

5,039' 1,536 m

High

4,022' 1,226 m

Low

1,271' 387 m

Up

254' 77 m

Down

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

18%

Max Grade (10°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Views

Description

Poison Spider is seemingly on everyone's bucket list, but it's not for everyone. It's not too difficult, but the deep sand makes the miles feel long. This trail is very popular with Jeeps, so avoid Jeep Jamboree weekends especially (weekdays are pretty empty). However, there's a lot of fun slickrock, and the scenery is just incredible.

From the parking lot (first take a look at the dinosaur tracks on the east end), start up the dirt road, which is impassible for normal cars but popular with Jeeps. It's not overly steep or technical, though near the top there's a short section with lots of large, loose rocks.

Once you reach the plateau in about two miles, the trail becomes much less steep but there are now many ledges and long sandy spots over the next mile. The edge of the trail, the path continues to widen, and is over 50' wide in places!

After the sand pits, the slickrock fun begins. You hike and up and down many domes, generally trending uphill. There are several ledges that are high steps down. After about 3.5 miles, you are now high on the plateau and the scenery gets awesome. Rock fin formations, the city of Moab, and the La Sal mountains spread out before you.

At mile 5.5 there is a 100 yard trail to view "Little Arch". This is a popular place to turn around if you're getting tired, though the trail is actually better from here to the end, so stick with it if you have the energy!

When you hit the fork in the road that says "PS" and has arrows pointing in both directions, go RIGHT. The left option is for Jeeps doing a loop.

The final couple of miles have quite a bit of climbing up steep slickrock. It's amazing what you can stick to though; you'll be on top soon. It's a really fun section.

At trail's end, you hit the Portal trail at the edge of the plateau. You now have three options:
  1. Turn around and return the way you came (which is how this trail is mapped).
  2. Turn left and loop around the Golden Spike, which reunites with Poison Spider about halfway back.
  3. Turn right and descend the treacherous Portal trail. Recommended for experts only.

Contacts

Shared By:

Nick Wilder

Trail Ratings

  3.3 from 3 votes

#24474

Overall
  3.3 from 3 votes
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Trail Rankings

#803

in Utah

#24,474

Overall
9 Views Last Month
1,197 Since Oct 4, 2017
Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

Andrean & Matt Olding end the race with a victory BEER!
Feb 26, 2017 near Moab, UT

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Mar 12, 2019
Sammy Vasalani
Aug 1, 2018
Jamie JD