Moab Area Hiking Trails
Our national parks offer exceptional hiking trails through a wide variety of terrain. Arches National Park offers a diverse selection of hikes, from short 10 minute walks that go right up to several of the arches (suitable for all ages), to 7 mile hikes through some of the more remote sections of the park. The Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park offers trails ranging from 30 minute walks on the mesa top, to overnight treks all the way down to the Colorado River. Great hiking, however, doesn’t end with our national parks.
The Moab area contains a large number of pet friendly trails on public lands to suit any experience level. From cool stream-side hikes to spectacular sandstone arches, the Moab area is full of exciting day-hikes suitable for the entire family. What follows is just a taste of what Moab has to offer.
The day-hikes described on this page are all located within a one-half
hour drive of Moab. The closest trailhead to town is about 2 miles from
downtown, while the farthest away is 23 miles. All of the trails are suitable
for half-day outings. The Hidden Valley and Moab Rim Trails can be combined
for a longer one-way hike. Hiking times described represent the number
of hours needed to complete a leisurely round trip hike.
|| Portal Overlook
||Fisher Towers Trail
|| Negro Bill Canyon
|| Moab Rim
|| Hidden Valley
|| Hunter Canyon
1. Portal Overlook Trail
Panoramic views of the Moab Valley, the La Sal Mountains, the Colorado
River, and the south portal.
2.0 miles to Portal Overlook; allow 3 hours round trip
At JayCee Park Recreation Site on Utah Scenic Byway 279, 4.2 miles west
of the Utah 279/U.S. 191 junction.
From JayCee Park, follow the hiking trail up the Colorado towards the river "portal. " From
the trailside visitor register box, the trail begins its climb to the viewpoint.
After several switchbacks, the trail follows a cairned route up "ramps" of
Kayenta sandstone to the overlook. Be cautious around the overlook as there
are no safety fences. This trail is frequently used by mountain bikers
riding down from the mesa top.
Note: During late afternoons in the summer, this trail is largely in the
shade of higher cliffs.
2. Corona Arch Trail
Corona Arch (140 by 105 foot opening) and adjacent Bow Tie Arch;
also views of the Colorado River and a large slickrock canyon.
1.5 miles to Corona Arch; allow 2 hours round trip.
On Utah Scenic Byway 279, 10 miles west of the Utah 279/U.S.
From the parking lot on the north side of the highway follow
the trial up to the visitor register box near the railroad; please register.
Cross the railroad track and follow an old road bed up through a gap in
the rim. From the gap, follow the cairns up the wash for about 100 yards
where the trail swings to the left.
Follow the trail and cairns over a low sandy pass and then down towards
the base of a large cliffs. Continue along the base of the cliff to the
first safety cable and around to the second cable where steps have been
cut into the slickrock. Corona Arch is visible from this point. From the
top of the second cable climb up over a short ledge and follow the cairns
up to the top of the large bench. From this point, it is an easy walk along
the broad slickrock bench to the base of Corona Arch.
3. Fisher Towers Trail
Close up views of the Fisher Towers and Onion Creek area. Distant
views include the Colorado River, Castle Valley, Fisher Mesa, and the Book
2.2 miles one-way to ridge at trail's end; allow 4 hours
Off Utah Scenic Byway 128. At 21 miles east of the Utah 128/US
191 junction, turn right and go 2.2 miles on an improved dirt road to a
From the parking lot (please sign in at register box), the
trail goes down a short set of steps and then runs to the left out onto
a small slickrock-covered ridge. Follow the ridge away from the main cliffs
until just after it narrows and then go left down into the ravine through
a small cut on the left side of the ridge. From the bottom of the ravine
the trail, heads steeply up and then begins to wind directly beneath the
Fisher Towers. After swinging around the largest tower, The Titan, the
trail ascends and ends on a ridge with a panoramic view.
The Fisher Towers are composed of Moenkopi and Cutler sandstones, and
have eroded into many fantastical shapes. Climbers occasionally scale these
mudstone towers (be cautious of hiking directly below a climber!).
Note: This trail has a western exposure and can be exceptionally hot on
summer afternoons. Mountain bikes are not allowed on this trail.
4. Negro Bill Canyon
Perennial clear stream in scenic canyon and Morning Glory Natural Bridge,
which is 243 feet long and the sixth-longest natural rock span in the
2 miles to Morning Glory Bridge; allow 4 hours round trip.
On Utah Scenic Byway 128, three miles east of junction with U.S. 191.
From the parking area next to Utah 128, follow the trail that starts on
the left side of the stream. Keep going upstream for about 1.5 miles.
Morning Glory Natural Bridge is located at the end of the second side
canyon on the right. Follow the trail to where it crosses the stream
at the mouth of the side canyon. Cross the stream, then follow the trial
up a steep slope into the side canyon. Morning Glory Bridge is located
at the end of the trail about 0.5 miles up the canyon from the stream.
Do not touch the poison ivy that grows below the pool under the bridge!
Poison ivy plants have shiny leaves with serrated edges in dusters of
5. Moab Rim Trail
Good views of the Colorado River, the Moab Valley, and the sandstone fins
of the Behind the Rocks area.
3 miles to connection with Hidden Valley Trail.
On Kane Creek Boulevard, 2.6 miles northwest of its intersection with U.S.
Highway 191 in Moab (.1 mile beyond the first cattle-guard).
From the parking area, follow the 4-wheel-drive vehicle route up the slickrock
ramps of Kayenta sandstone. After about 1.4 miles, the route reaches
a viewpoint of the Moab Valley. Follow the vehicle route south and then
down through a slickrock area located between two large domes of Navajo
sandstone. At the base of the slickrock area, the route continues along
a wash bottom and then up a large sand hill (several routes up). From
the top of the sand hill, the route branches twice to the left. The first
spur on the left leads to a viewpoint high above Spanish Valley. The
second spur route ends after 200 yards at another view point. Ahead to
the south, the view is dominated by a long ridge of massive sandstone
fins. From the second spur, the main route drops down into a wash and
then climbs in an easterly direction to its terminus just below the pass
to Hidden Valley.
Good views of the Moab Valley and Behind the Rocks. Trail connects
with the southern end of the Moab Rim four-wheel drive trail.
2 miles to pass at north end of Hid den Valley; allow 3 hours
Drive 3 miles south from Moab on U.S. 191 and turn right
onto Angel Rock Road. After two blocks, turn right onto Rimrock Road and
drive to parking area.
From the parking area, follow the trail up to the base of the
Moab Rim and then ascend a series of steep switchbacks. At the top of the
switchbacks, the trial heads north and enters Hidden Valley - a broad shelf
between the top of the Moab Rim and Spanish Valley. Follow the trail to
a low rise that separates the two halves of Hidden Valley and continue
along through the northern section to a point where the trail swings to
the left and goes over a low pass. At the pass, the hiker will be rewarded
with a view of the large sandstone fins of the Behind the Rocks area. The
trail continues down the west side of the pass for about 1/3 mile where
it meets the Moab Rim four-wheel-drive trail. The hike may be extended
to the Colorado River by following the Moab Rim four-wheel-drive trail
to its starting point.
NOTE: During the late afternoon, in the summer, this trail is largely
in the shade of higher cliffs.
7. Hunter Canyon
Free-flowing stream during spring months with cottonwood trees
and pools. A large arch is located high on the right-hand side of the canyon
about a half mile from the trailhead.
2 miles one-way; allow 4 hours
On Kane Creek Canyon Road 7.5 miles west of its intersection
with U.S. 191 (Canyon is on the left, one mile beyond the switchbacks).
From the parking area at the mouth of the canyon, follow the
hiker-established path about two miles up the canyon until the route gets
blocked by brush.
Download Free Hiking Guide
Once you arrive in Moab, detailed trail maps and guides
are available for sale at the Moab Information
Located in the center of Moab, on Main & Center Street, the MIC staff
is always happy to assist you.
GPS - Moab Info Ctr
38° 34' 22.4" N
109° 33' 0.1" W
Detailed trail maps and guides may also be purchased online from the Canyonlands Natural History Association, the company that stocks the information center. They can be reached on the internet at cnha.org or at 800-840-8978.
Pet Friendly Trails
Pets are allowed on all of the hikes on this page. Please note that Grand County "Animal Care and Control" code does apply:
- All dogs must be kept under restraint.
- No owner shall fail to exercise proper care and control of his or her animals to prevent them from becoming a public nuisance.
In the backcountry a leash is recommended, not required, but dogs do need to be under verbal restraint and not chase or harass wildlife.
These lands are administered by the Bureau of Land Management. If you
have any specific questions about current conditions or regulations,
contact them directly:
Bureau of Land Management
Moab Field Office
82 East Dogwood
Moab, Utah 84532
Essential Equipment Checklist
This is a high desert environment. Bring one gallon per person, per day.
Tennis or running shoes with rubbery soles are adequate for
short slickrock and stream hikes.
Sun hat, sunscreen, and sunglasses
Route map or trail guide
Cool season hikes:
- Long pants
- Sweater and gloves
- Coat and/or gear
If you are looking for something a little different to experience on your next vacation, try canyoneering. "Canyoneering" refers to exploring canyons which occasionally require the use of ropes and basic climbing skills to explore. As a result, canyoneers frequently find themselves in lesser visited canyons that are the hidden gems of southern Utah. Whether you are beginner or expert, Moab's Canyoneering Guides can take you into some of the most beautiful canyons in southern Utah. A complete list of all Moab Canyoneering Guides is included on our Guides & Outfitters page.