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greenBlue Monitor Merrimac

  3.7 ( 61 ) Favorite

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Trail

5.5 mile 8.9 kilometer loop
85% Singletrack
Easy/Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 628' 191 m
Descent: -627' -191 m
High: 5,005' 1,525 m
Low: 4,496' 1,370 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 27% (15°)

Dogs

Unknown
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Trail shared by Nick Wilder

A great beginner/intermediate introduction to Moab slickrock.

Nick Wilder

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

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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Check-Ins

May 25, 2019
Justin Conrad
Moderate up hill on slickrock with a great slickrock down hill on the other side. The out is in the bottom of mill creek with lots of muddy crossings
May 10, 2019
Katelin E
May 8, 2019
Jeff Weathers
Apr 12, 2019
Verdell Willie
A little moist but good enough to ride 5.5mi
Apr 5, 2019
Andrew Teasdale
5.5mi
Apr 5, 2019
Péter Koncz
sand at the start and at the end. mostly flat slickrock, with slight elevation. beautifull view. 6mi — 2h 00m
Apr 3, 2019
anderson Diaz
Mar 30, 2019
Blaine Wharton
4h 37m

Trail Ratings

  3.7 from 60 votes

#198

Overall
  3.7 from 60 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
40%
3 Star
23%
2 Star
7%
1 Star
5%
Rankings

#24

in Utah

#198

Overall
320 Views Last Month
14,673 Since May 1, 2013
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

10%
79%
12%
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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
Drew Sylvester
Denver, CO
Drew Sylvester   Denver, CO
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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