MTB Project Home Sign in with Facebook
or Login with Email



Consensus:    (details)
 3.8 from 5 votes
  Extremely Difficult from 2 votes
Your Opinion:
Rating: -none- change
Rank: #14 in Moab
#95 in Utah
#2,043 Overall
Trail near ,  
“A dangerous challenge for true experts. A scenic hike-a-bike for mortals.”
Nick Wilder on May 1, 2013
Getting There     GPX File     Print
2.5 Miles Singletrack Type 52’ Ascent -1,100’ Descent 3,977’ Low 5,033’ High
Only rideable downhill.
Usually done as a finish to Poison Spider, this trail drops 1,000' in a mile, with huge exposure next to a 1,300 foot cliff. People have fallen and died here. It's incredibly unique and scenic, but riding it should only be attempted by experts, and intermediates with a great attitude should be willing to walk most of it.

Starting from the end of the Poison Spider trail, the Portal Trail hugs the rim with a nice easy downhill grade and smooth, easy surface at first. This doesn't last long and it's time to wake up when you see the "Dismount Here" sign from the BLM. They mean it. Unless you've done this section before, really know what you're doing, and are prepared to die to do it again, go ahead and dismount. It's not that the moves are all that impossible, but the consequences are all that bad, and several boulders want to push you right off the trail and over the cliff.

Continue for about half a mile right on the edge of the rim. Several sections are ridable by intermediate riders, but most people will dismount for many short sections. Enjoy the amazing views of Moab and the La Sal mountains beyond.

The trail takes a sharp right and is now directly above the Colorado River. It is no longer right on the edge of the cliff, so that danger is mostly past, but now the descent begins in earnest: the next mile loses 1,000' over many drops, ledges, and pinches. Most people will feel more comfortable walking many sections, though about half might be ridable by intermediates.

The trail finishes along the highway, where you'll either ride back to town or to your car at the Poison Spider trailhead.
Crank Brothers - Gem Pump
20% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Giordana - Team Thermosquare Brooklyn Long...
30% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Campagnolo - Super Record 11 Ultra-Shift E...
25% off
at Backcountry
Easton - EA90 RT Road Wheel - Tubeless
20% off
at Competitive Cyclist
De Marchi - Winter Gloves
50% off
at Backcountry
Hincapie Sportswear - Edge Glove
50% off
at Backcountry
Diamondback - Steilacoom RCX Pro Disc Comp...
25% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Cep - Progressive Night Calf Sleeve - Wome...
60% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Columbia - Trail Dash Tank Top - Women's
40% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Easton - EA70 Riser Handlebar 2013
38% off
at Jenson USA
2Xu - Thermal Sub Zero Bib Tights - Men's
50% off
at Competitive Cyclist
Giordana - Tri-Season Glove
50% off
at Backcountry
MTB Project scours dozens of stores to
bring you the best bike deals!
Forecasting the weather...
Recent Conditions
Add a Condition Report | View All »
5.0 (4)
One of the world's great rides, with 7000 ft of descent from the high alpine ...
near Moab, UT
5.0 (1)
The same beautiful scenery as the White Rim Trail, from the other side of the...
near Moab, UT
5.0 (3)
Stunning scenery and great singletrack. One of the very best beginner/interm...
near Moab, UT

Your To-Do List: Not on it   Add it! | Your Full List »
Your Check-Ins:
Add a New Check-In | View All »

Share This Page
Improve This Page
Add Photo or Map Symbol
Edit Description or GPS track

PHOTOS of Portal
 4.3 from 3 votes
The big boulders seem to reach out and want to push you over the cliff! (Moab, UT)
 4.0 from 4 votes
Top of Poison Spider and beginning of Portal Trail. (Moab, UT)
 4.0 from 3 votes
Hard to see how a trail fits on that ledge... or who thought it was a go... (Moab, UT)
 4.0 from 2 votes
The trail eases off a bit near the bottom (Moab, UT)
 4.0 from 2 votes
High over Moab (Moab, UT)
 3.7 from 3 votes
Top of Portal Trail is deceptively easy. (Moab, UT)
 3.5 from 4 votes
Portal trail (Moab, UT)
 3.0 from 2 votes
Typical of the drops that most people walk. (Moab, UT)
 3.0 from 2 votes
One of the more ridable sections (Moab, UT)
 3.0 from 2 votes
You were higher than that formation less than a mile ago! (Moab, UT)
 3.0 from 2 votes
A brief break from the steep drops (Moab, UT)
 3.0 from 2 votes
They're not kidding. (Moab, UT)
© 2014 Adventure Projects, LLC Terms | Privacy | About Us