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JEM Trail

 38 votes

6.9 Miles 11.1 Kilometers


916' 279 m


-64' -19 m


4,320' 1,317 m


3,455' 1,053 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (9°)

Minor Issues

6 days agoUpdate

A great fast and flowy trail.

Kevin Christopherson



This is a great trail when you just want to go fast and easy. It has it all; great views, easy climbing, and a fast flowy downhill. By itself, the JEM is an out-and back trail, but can be combined with Goulds Rim, or the Hurricane Rim trail, to make loops over 20 miles.

The lower trailhead can be a little hard to find, but the MTB Project mobile app should lead you right to it. Traveling east on State Road 9 turn right onto Sheep Bridge Road (just before you enter Virgin, Utah). Cross over the Virgin River on the bridge and take the first right after the cattle guard. Follow the two track about a half mile to the end (this is the trailhead and parking).

There can be 2-way traffic, so keep your eyes open. Most of the time, there is a good line-of-sight making it easy to avoid problems.

The trail starts as you leave the parking lot heading west along the rim above the Virgin River. There are many great views of the river with Zion National Park in the background. The trail is obvious here, but after the trail bends south and leaves the canyon it joins a dirt road and it can be a little confusing (mile 1.3). Go right (west) on the road for about 100 yards until you cross a (usually) dry wash. Turn left after the wash and look for the brown trail sign to get back onto the singletrack.

At mile 1.6, you'll come to the Hurricane Rim trail junction - stay left on the JEM trail. As you continue, you'll cross a few double tracks, but the singletrack is obvious on the other side. At Mile 4.5 the singletrack crosses a well maintained gravel road. If you are doing the JEM as an out-and-back, cross the gravel road and continue on the trail on the other side. Follow the singletrack until you come to a hill that's too steep to climb on your bike. This is the JEM drops. You can turn around here and start the descent back, or hike-a-bike up the hill and continue to the upper parking lot. If you continue on, you'll hit another short hike-a-bike, but then can ride all the way to the upper parking.

Whenever you turn around, that's where the real fun begins. This is a fast and very flowly descent that will have you smiling large and forgetting your breaks all the way back to your car. It can be ridden in both directions, but most prefer to save the downhill for last. Some people do shuttle if for a downhill only run leaving a shuttle vehicle at the lower parking lot and starting the ride at the upper trailhead.


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4.3 from 38 votes

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Dec 30, 2017
Abe Ferraro
You don't notice the 900 ft ascent as its very gradual...much more fun on the way back...easy with very few technical sections. 5.2mi
Sep 16, 2017
Jim McKee
Sep 12, 2017
Jim McKee
Aug 21, 2017
Lacy J
Aug 10, 2017
Justin Cadieux
May 16, 2017
Chris Tieman
Apr 30, 2017
Chris Leo
Apr 28, 2017
Michelle Clark-Conley

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Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 38 votes


  4.3 from 38 votes
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in Utah


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17,095 Since Aug 30, 2013
Intermediate Intermediate



Minor Issues 6 days ago
Muddy, Mostly Dry - Dry enough to ride, though there are a few patches with sticky/slippery mud. Not enough to rut the trail though.
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Did this ride after a delayed flight lasting 35 hours from Oz and the drive from LA so wasnt really at my peak and struggled a bit on the way out into a headwind. This trail is a bit deceptive though. I thought it was relatively flat on the way out and on the way back the mojo kicked back in and I had a blast realising that there was a smooth flowy run in the downhill direction. Great scenery too Aug 23, 2017
This is a horrible description of the trail as the upper section after the road crossing is, and needs to remain, one way. The "Dead Ringer" approach would be a much better choice. Oct 8, 2017
Kevin Christopherson
Washington, UT
Kevin Christopherson   Washington, UT
Dave Diegelman, The change to a downhill only section, and the addition of Dead Ringer (and More Cowbell) happened after I wrote this trail description. I’ll try to update it. Oct 8, 2017

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