Rides in SE Utah

Discussion in 'rec.bicycles.rides archive' started by e-howard, Jun 9, 2003.

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  1. e-howard

    e-howard Guest

    I plan to tour in SE Utah for two weeks in middle Sept. I plan to stay one week in Moab area as a
    camp base while I explore national parks around Moab. Is it worthwhile to ride bicycle on paved road
    and easy/moderate dirt road down there? Any book recommendations for bike rides/map in the area. I
    am considering day hikes. That is another subject. Thank in advance for your help.

    e-howard
     
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  2. Raptor

    Raptor Guest

    [email protected] wrote:
    > I plan to tour in SE Utah for two weeks in middle Sept. I plan to stay one week in Moab area as a
    > camp base while I explore national parks around Moab. Is it worthwhile to ride bicycle on paved
    > road and easy/moderate dirt road down there? Any book recommendations for bike rides/map in the
    > area. I am considering day hikes. That is another subject. Thank in advance for your help.
    >
    > e-howard
    >

    No, there's no worthwhile bike riding to be had around Moab. :)

    You didn't say mtb or road. If you don't own a mtb, bring some cash to rent one from one of the
    dozen or so bike shops in Moab. If you aren't already an expert mtb rider, you will be after two
    weeks in that part of the country.

    The Slickrock Trail is a must. The sign says 4-5 hours, but I (a near race-conditioned, reasonably
    skilled but cautious mtber) did it in just over 2 last week. It's real in-your-face though, so be
    prepared to walk/push over a lot of little sections. Unless you're an expert who loves challenges.

    I lived in Utah for nearly 20 years before doing the Porcupine Rim trail. Big mistake! Not quite as
    challenge-loaded as Slickrock, but more variety and a few Mind-F-in-Blowing views. I did the 30-mile
    loop from town. I was well-baked by the end. It took me 6 hours at a casual pace.

    Amasa Back is next on your list. More whoa-there's aplenty, plenty of 2-4 foot steps.

    Road biking is quite worthy, though I say that only through hearsay. Moab is mtbing country in my
    book. Arches NP looks like a very nice RR, and Kane Creek Canyon and the Potash road should be nice
    at bicycle speeds too. You should be able to see more of the hidden treasures along those roads at
    bike speeds, especially if you cruise tourist style versus flying racer style.

    I love Canyonlands (Island in the Sky), but it doesn't strike me as that interesting from a road
    bike. The roads there and on Deadhorse Point are designed for tourons in motor vehicles. They hide
    the unparalleled views until the last instant. But the White Rim Trail (4wd track that circles
    Island In The Sky, 100-ish miles) is an Epic Ride in anyone's book.

    There's only one surface road in the Needles District IIRC, and the Maze is both on the other side
    of the rivers AND very remote and undeveloped. Needles is a great place for day hikes (don't put
    your hand under any large boulders - google "Aron Ralston").

    The LaSal Mountains are the popular escape for Summer. They touch 12000 feet I think. But I've never
    found my way there. They shore look purdy from the desert.

    September is quite hot (100's most days), and the air is quite dry. Build your water carrying
    capacity to the max, and have plenty of sunscreen. And come prepared for long, frequent climbs.

    Search Amazon.com for books. "Canyon Country Trails" should be a good keyword start.

    --
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