It’s Extreme Sports! Moab, Utah April 5-9

What can I say about Moab, Utah, population 5,300 (on a good day)! We stayed at OK RV Resort ($41.65/Day with Good Sam’s) on the outskirts of town. Great resort with great amenities and views. Moab is the mecca for mountain bikers, hikers and off-roaders. I have never seen so many Can-Am, Polaris and jeep vehicles in my life! Oh, and the red dirt. It’s famous!

If you love red dirt, warm weather, and the outdoors you’ll love Moab. The Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, and Dead Horse Point State Park are all nearby and make for great adventuring! The town is eclectic and quaint but busy. Two restaurants we enjoyed were The Moab Diner and Hidden Cuisine. Both reasonably priced with good service and tasty fare.

Our first stop was The Arches National Park. What a great landscape! The Arches has the highest density of natural arches anywhere in the world, about 2,000 of them. The Park is on 76,689 acres on the high desert of the Colorado Plateau. It’s a beautiful place to spend some time. The hiking areas are rated easy to extreme but even on the easier trails water and sunscreen are necessities. We averaged hiking a little over 6 miles in an afternoon. Well worth it. Don’t forget to take your National Park Pass or the entrance fee is $35 per car. How do you choose a photo? It’s difficult.

The park’s terrain appears to be rugged and durable but it is extremely fragile. With more than 1 million visitors each year this ecosystem is threatened by those who think the rules about not climbing (without a permit) and walking off existing trails applies to them. The cyanobacteria, algae, fungi, and lichens can be destroyed for decades with a simple footstep off the trail. There is a $20,000 fine if you are caught. Unfortunately we encountered a few of these folks and we did confront them, only to hear, “I don’t care, Ranger Bob.” Even sadder, they had their school aged kids with them. What are they teaching them?

The next day we headed to Dead Horse Point State Park. They also ask that you stay on marked trails to lessen the impact of your visit. Legend has it that cowboys in the 1800s used the point as a corral to round up wild horses. They would round up the horses and drive them across a 30 foot neck onto the point then close the neck with brush and limbs. One of these roundups was disastrous for the horses as the cowboys picked the good horses and left the “scrubs” to die of thirst on the point. The Colorado River is 2,000 feet below the point. The horses could smell the water but could not get to it. No one knows why the cowboys decided to do this. No matter how I look at it, it’s cruelty in the worst form.

Canyonlands National Park was our last excursion while in Moab. It is another beautiful place in the high desert. Canyonlands is divided into four parts: The Maze, Island in the Sky, the Needles, and the Rivers (where the Green and Colorado Rivers converged. These rivers cut deep creating two canyons. We enjoyed the trails and clocked over 5 miles while in the canyon. More pictures:

Hope you enjoyed reading about this outing. Next up: Torrey, Utah with Capital Reef, Escalante at Grand Staircase, Anasazi Museum and more! Stay tuned.

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