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Monitor Merrimac

 40 votes


5.5 Miles 8.9 Kilometers




628' 191 m


-627' -191 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (15°)

5,005' 1,525 m


4,496' 1,370 m



Minor Issues 53 days ago
Snowy, Icy - lower washes are really snowy/icy but rideable with some effort, upper slick rock is all clear except for some isolated snow patches History

Getting forecast...

A great beginner/intermediate introduction to Moab slickrock.

Nick Wilder


Don't confuse this with the old jeep road that goes by the same name. This trail is mostly singletrack and slickrock and designed for intermediate mountain bikers.

This is a great introduction to Moab riding: the climbs are very gentle, the copious slickrock is smooth and not as ledgy as most areas, and the sand traps are short and easy to walk.


Start at the enormous parking lot ringed with red boulders (there is camping here, but there are better spots on the nearby roads). Follow the main dirt road south (the same one you used to get here) just a short ways and you will come to an intersection with signs indicating "Mill Road" and "Dino Trail" to the right. You will exit this way, so for now, stay left on the main road.

In another tenth of a mile, you'll come to a sign saying "Halfway Stage Station" to the right. Take this right turn on a very sandy, smaller road. You might have to walk it 50 yards. You are now at the historic Halfway Stage House, and the beginning of the singletrack, through a gate straight ahead.

The singletrack starts with a few short sandy spots but quickly changes to slickrock. You climb very gently up remarkably smooth slickrock following white painted markers. Once you reach the end of the enormous bluff you have been hugging to the right, there is a shortcut trail branching to the right. This cuts off the most fun slickrock, so the shortcut not recommended.

Continue riding an enormous expanse of easy slickrock around another huge bluff, and eventually turn back north. You now begin a gradual descent of the mellow slickrock and you can go quite fast. It's very smooth with no surprises, but rock is harder than dirt, so watch it.

The slickrock ends where you intersect with an old jeep road that is also called Monitor Merrimac. Go right and you're soon back on singletrack following a stream bed wash. After a mile or so, you pop out at the end of a road and parking area.

Put down your bike for a minute and take the 150 yard, signposted Dinosaur trail. There really are purple-ish dinosaur fossils and petrified wood (including a cool 2 foot diameter tree trunk!) that you can even touch.

Hop back on your bike for the dirt road ride back to the parking lot, a couple tenths of a mile away.


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Dec 5, 2017
Travis Selland
Nov 26, 2017
Craig Champlin
Saw sandy conditions report. Rode as a lollipop via E leg of loop. Was on slickrock most of the time. Closed loop with cutoff at end of slickrock. 5.6mi — 1h 03m
Nov 24, 2017
m1nd7r1p .
This trail sucks. Sand pits, then uphill on slickrock, then 5-10’ of fun slickrock descent, then sand pits all the way back. 5.6mi
Nov 12, 2017
Sheryl Bower
I did the loop clockwise. It was great climbing up the slick rock but very sandy once I got off of it. Better doing this as an out and back.
Nov 10, 2017
Daniel Franz
Oct 30, 2017
Oct 12, 2017
Mandy Schenkemeyer
Oct 10, 2017
Cory B

Trail Ratings

  3.7 from 40 votes


  3.7 from 40 votes
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in Utah


305 Views Last Month
9,656 Since May 1, 2013
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

There is a LOT of sand on this trail. Unless you have a fat bike, I would recommend taking the trail clockwise until you hit gate on the way back and then turning around and doing the loop again counter clockwise making it an out-n-back. Also, watch carefully for the trail. It is really easy, in the first part, to get of course by going down a dry creek bed instead of the trail. Oct 21, 2017
I don't know how this trail gets rated so highly. As the other commentor stated, there is a LOT of sand. I wish I had ridden up the slickrock, down the fun side of the clockwise loop until hitting sand, then turning around and riding back down the slickrock going counter-clockwise. The sand pits were extraordinarily deep and there was a LOT of walking through them--without a fatbike they're unridable and unpelasant. Dec 4, 2017

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