Monitor Merrimac

 15 votes
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Featured Ride
Trail

5.5 Miles 8.9 Kilometers


85%

Singletrack

628' 191 m

Ascent

-627' -191 m

Descent

5,005' 1,525 m

High

4,496' 1,370 m

Low

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

27%

Max Grade (15°)

Minor Issues

10 days agoUpdate

A great beginner/intermediate introduction to Moab slickrock.

Nick Wilder

Overview

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.

Description

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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3.7 from 15 votes


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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Nov 11, 2016
Justin Wright
Nov 11, 2016
Jenn Hunsicker
Nov 7, 2016
Jennifer Atwood
Best intro slickrock (shhh, nobody on the trail)
Oct 28, 2016
Daniel Godshall
Very sandy in portions 5.5mi
Oct 6, 2016
Steve Yslas
Sep 3, 2016
Justin Yousey
Lots of sand on the single track with washouts but still a good warm up for Moab's finer trails.
Aug 28, 2016
Dominick Riccio
Great introductory on Slickrock! — 1h 30m
Aug 25, 2016
Sean Christopher

Trail Ratings

  3.7 from 15 votes

#926

Overall
  3.7 from 15 votes
1 Star
7%
2 Star
7%
3 Star
13%
4 Star
60%
5 Star
13%
Rankings

#46

in Utah

#926

Overall
248 Views Last Month
5,128 Since May 1, 2013
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

9%
73%
18%
0%
0%
0%

Conditions


Minor Issues 10 days ago
Some Mud - We had a heck of a time finding the trailhead from the driving directions. Heading north on 191 out of Moab, turn left on Mill Canyon Ro...
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