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Navajo Rocks Chaco Loop

 4.5 (178)

17.6 Miles 28.3 Kilometers


95%

Singletrack

1,467' 447 m

Ascent

-1,448' -441 m

Descent

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

19%

Max Grade (11°)

5,607' 1,709 m

High

4,970' 1,515 m

Low

Conditions


All Clear 2 days ago
Dry History

Getting forecast...

A little bit of everything from flowy to technical. Very scenic and fun riding.

Scotty "Chaco" Vinas

Dogs Unknown

Features -none-

KEEP SINGLETRACK SINGLE! Moab's dirt is alive and very fragile! The desert dirt is made of fragile biological soil crust that ranges in color from black at its most mature to light brown as it begins forming. Tiny tendrils of crust hold particles of sand in place and help keep moisture in the soil, allowing plants to survive. Soil crusts prevent erosion and without the crust holding in the soil, wind storms are more likely and erosion occurs.

Overview

This trail system that has some great flow and technical riding. No matter which way you do this ride, you'll be surprised by how energy sapping the consistent ups and downs are. The trail is all singletrack as you head back to your car with a few little tiny straight up climbs....don't feel bad if you walk 25 yards up the steep sections....everyone does it :)
SCENIC FUN!!!

Need to Know

Just when you think you have enough water, BRING MORE. It's a long ride, and you'll be having so much fun that you'll forget how much water you need to be drinking! No camping along the trail...BUT...Dubinky Well Road is just west of the trailhead on Hwy 313 and has some great dispersed camping.

Description

This is a unique ride. It uses several linked trails starting with Rocky Tops then Coney Island then Big Lonely to Big Mesa and the "grand finale" Ramblin'. You start on Rocky Tops, which is a nice warm-up. Its climbs are quick and painless while the legs tune up for the large ride. It's tighter riding around desert juniper bush/trees mixed with sand, slick rock and pack clay. As you get towards the end the views start to open up and bring you closer to the beauty of Big Mesa.

Rocky Tops is not bad, but you need to leave a little energy in the bucket for the incredible grand finale. You'll see people coming up from the other side, and they look in anguish. This is a painful climb from the other side! Just don't do it! Rocky Tops is a unique trail in that it seems as if a non-mountain biker designed it....which might be the case. But there are two little climbs that make you think..."Hmmm...this 6' jump onto the rock doesn't seem ride-able, but I'm sure there are talented people out there that have ridden it." Anyway, this section of trail undulates quite a bit but has some truly amazing views. Juniper berry trees, sand, cactus etc. quickly become your high-speed obstacles on the descent with some technical slick rock.

Then you come to Coney Island trail, which is a brutal, lonely climb. However, once it's done, this is where speeds increase, and it gets "buttery" or some would say flowy and fun. In this area, it starts to be more open singletrack grassland riding mixed with the occasional slick rock. Then this brings us to Big Lonely. You're finally feeling some nice relaxing, but techy downhill. Some of it's on old doubletrack that has been decommissioned.

Next is the Big Mesa trail which is the jewel of the Nile of this ride. Take your time, stop to take pictures, go slower, and LOOK UP! Enjoy the scenery of this incredible ride. Sure the trail is awesome and real buttery, but take your time and enjoy this one. There is a cool little rebar bridge which I would think some would find "interesting" especially if you are on foot. Truth be told.....I can see how some would find it intimidating as the re-bar welded slats on this bridge are separated by about 6". Ride across it without any issue..uhhhh hmmm....don't stop on the bridge!! If you're on foot....you'll have a bit more of a challenge. This shouldn't keep you from this trail, however.

This is a loop that if you don't race it....and take your time to stop and smell the roses....can be MAGICAL!

History & Background

This is a trail that was collectively created by Moab Trail Mix, BLM-Moab and Moab Trails Alliance. This trail was created in 2014.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Sep 15, 2018
Robert Stephenson
Horsethief c.g. to Navajo loop via Chisholm. Completed Navajo loop. Returned to Horsethief c.g. via Chisholm.
Sep 14, 2018
jlr327
17.6mi
Sep 13, 2018
Daniela Eisenmesser
PURE FUN!! 20mi
Sep 13, 2018
jlr327
9mi
Sep 13, 2018
Trevor Downey
Sep 1, 2018
Heidi Fund
Aug 22, 2018
Chas Semon
Aug 17, 2018
Matthew G
18.5mi

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 178 votes

#1

in 7-Up

#11

Overall
  4.5 from 178 votes
5 Star
61%
4 Star
30%
3 Star
6%
2 Star
2%
1 Star
2%
Rankings

#1

in 7-Up

#5

in Utah

#11

Overall
2,892 Views Last Month
76,206 Since Sep 27, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

0%
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34%
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Photos

Best ridden as a figure eight -Big Mesa to Big Lonely to Coney Island back over to Ramblin and then back up Rocky Tops to where you started May 10, 2018
Pleasant enough ride. Big Mesa holds some of the most stunning MTB scenery in Moab. But the trail overall feels forced and artificial. Someone even put slabs in the very few drainage spots where you might have a (slightly) hard transition. I understand that not everyone has the skill to actually--you know--ride the terrain, but this kind of over-engineered trail becomes dull very quickly. There need to be a few spots that force you to be/get better, or what's the point? Folks just go to the next town next year. May 22, 2018
Joel Larner
Fort Collins, CO
Joel Larner   Fort Collins, CO
Very fun loop with nice scenery. Not nearly as technical or demanding as expected from the description. Never found a 6' drop, nothing that wasn't climbable (no 25' that had to be walked), and the bridge is wood slat with no gaps. Not to say it is an easy ride, it has some unique technical challenges like side-sloped slickrock with tight turns, steep climbs, some technical climb pieces but they are all short and manageable by walking for those not comfortable riding them. A nice flowy set of trails to enjoy a change of pace from some of the Moab classic high technical stuff. 2 days ago

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