Fun things to do in Moab

  • Things to Do
    by blueskyjohn
  • Things to Do
    by blueskyjohn
  • Things to Do
    by blueskyjohn

Most Viewed Things to Do in Moab

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    Putter on the Parkway

    by goodfish Written Nov 11, 2011

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    We were having a post-hike brew at Woody's and noticed a creek just below the patio with a paved trail running alongside; hmmm, let's take a look? Turns out it was a stretch of several-mile Mill Creek Parkway: a local beautification/recreation project that provides a traffic-free route from various point A's to point B's around town. Families with wee tots can use the trail to get to the musical playground/picnic area at Rotary Park or for a safe, low-key pedal on a bike from one of the rentals around Moab. It's also nice for blading, jogging, dog-walking or an after-dinner stroll.

    Campers at cool, shady Up The Creek Campground (seasonal - small tents only) can jump on the the parkway for a short amble to downtown restaurants and shopping, and several hotels and inns border the creek as well.

    The website lists all the fun stuff to see along the way. It's a work in progress so expect more paving (some sections are still dirt) and activities as they raise the $$ to make that happen.

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    "Rock Art" Road Tour: Jug Handle Arch

    by goodfish Written Nov 10, 2011

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    I'll give this one a mention 'cause it's a cheap and easy way for non-hikers or people not visiting the national park to see an arch. It's on a dirt road spur off of Potash Road on the tour (see link for the brochure below) and there's a small panel of petroglyphs below and to the left of the jug handle. To see them well without binoculars you have to make the climb or look with the zoom function of your camera.

    Jug Handle Arch
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    "Rock Art" Road Tour

    by goodfish Written Nov 9, 2011

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    Ancient hunter-gatherers and later indigenous peoples carved (pertroglyph) or painted (pictograph) images of animals, people and mystical shapes into desert-varnished rock faces and sheltered alcoves in this area. They are too often referred to as "rock art"; a term I find misleading as archeologists believe they are far from purely decorative.

    Some think they were a form of worship while others believe they could be records of important historical or astronomical events. Or all of the above. So while none of them really know for sure what the squiggles, footprints, animals and otherworldly anthropomorphic (human) forms mean, they have a rough idea how old they are and which groups of people carved them by the age of other artifacts found nearby and specific attributes of the images themselves. For instance, bows and arrows first appeared in this region around 500 A.D, and horses not until after the Spanish brought them in the mid 1500's. Sometimes the age of the surface they've been etched into is a clue, and older figures are darker than more recent additions. More recent images are sometimes superimposed over older ones, too.

    Moab has a number of these which don't involve long hikes to see, and a nice road tour of where to find them. While not all of them will be accessible to folks unwilling or unable to make a climb, others are located right beside a road or just a short, easy stroll away. You can download the brochure for the tour from the link below, and I'll cover a couple of my favorites in separate tips.

    Potash Road Potash Road Golf Course/Westwater Drive Kane Creek Blvd. Kane Creek Blvd.
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    Where to start

    by goodfish Written Nov 9, 2011

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    Moab has a terrific info center where you can get the skinny on road conditions, hotels, restaurants, trails and park info, and pick up brochures for things to do in the area. It also has a gift shop and interpretive displays. If you're unsure about weather before hitting the trails, this should be your first stop!

    The "Discover Moab" website I'm including here is also a GREAT resource for planning your trip: probably one of the best tourism sites I've seen. It has a ton of well-organized information, and brochures you can download before you go.

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    The Fisher Towers

    by iandsmith Written Oct 3, 2011

    Was there someone named Fisher after whom these were named? Today, nobody knows, but there's a theory a bureaucrat was told to name them "fissure" towers and it was misspelt. It's as good a theory as any.
    The largest one is called the Titan and measures 862ft in height and they're located at the northern end of Professor Valley.

    Fisher Towers with Titan on the extreme right Fisher Towers on left
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    Dead Horse Point State Park

    by windsorgirl Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The main reason to visit this State Park is to enjoy the fabulous view over the canyonlands and the winding Colorado River below. It is 2000 feet down to the river's edge and from this viewpoint you can see the perfect gooseneck that the river forms.

    There are also 10 miles of hiking paths here, including a paved nature trail. There is a campground and visitor center too. Keep an eye out for Hollywood celebrities....Tom Cruise was filmed here in the opening scene of Mission Impossible, as were Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis in the final scene of Thelma and Louise.

    Admission to the park is $7, see my Dead Horse Point pages to read how the park got it's name.

    This State Park is on the way to the Islands in the Sky District of Canyonlands NP and the two parks can easily be seen in the same day.

    the view from Dead Horse Point
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    Newspaper Rock Recreation Area

    by windsorgirl Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    En route to Moab, we stopped briefly at Newspaper Rock to have a look at the ancient petroglyphs left by the Puebloan people hundreds of years ago.

    The sandstone cliff is covered with images of horses with riders, animal pelts, paw prints and human feet with six toes. The engravings were very well preserved and easy to view, it was fascinating to see and well worth the detour, I thought. There is also a primitive campground here amongst the large cottonwood trees.

    If you continue west past this site, you will soon arrive at The Needles District of Canyonlands NP.

    ancient petroglyphs
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    Monitor & Merimac Buttes

    by BruceDunning Updated Jan 1, 2010

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    These are pictures from the distant Hwy 313 that leads to Canyonlands and Dead Horse Park. They views are great, and there is a marker sign along the road to designate that location. If you are adventuresome, you can hike in to them from Hwy 313 by going through a wash. Other choice is to take Mill Canyon Rd, but as I mentioned, it is rough and dangerous, in my opinion. These buttes can be seen for many miles in the surrounding terrain and stand out on a peak of a mountain range.

    Merimac Butte Monitor Butte Monument along road to describe
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    Manti-LaSAl Mountains

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 14, 2009

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    They are an impressive 13,000 feet high at the peak. The range stretches for miles along the east side of Hwy 191 for 18 miles. They are located in a national forest region, and around Utah, there are more than one with the name Manti-LaSal. That means salt mountains in Spanish, who first were here as explorers. There is a loop road that can be taken off Hwy 128 north of town, and about 10 miles in. It loops around through the forest and returns back to Hwy 191 to the south of Moab.

    View form the distances Rising peaks on the horizon Rolling peaks in the clouds Great majesty of Nature
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    Moab Views are Why YOu Came Here

    by BruceDunning Written Oct 12, 2009

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    The views are fabulous and make a person feel humble with the aura of the magnificent colors and the buttes/crest surrounding this town. Almost beyond description, but I will try. Sun rises are more pronounced than other places in the US; buttes take on a color in the light that not many other places can rival, and the continual panorama of color on the horizon cannot be matched. See my pics and there must be others better. It give you respect for Nature and it's magnificence.

    Sunset beyond the dream Morning red rock cliffs Eroded buttes stand out in the sky Unbelievable Green in the hills Color keeps running into the sky
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    Mill Creek Swimming Hole

    by BruceDunning Written Oct 12, 2009

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    Think you would like to go swim where the locals go? WELL, right off Mill Creek Dr is this little park that leads to a long trek into the poll and creek areas. I went back in about 1/2 mile and decided the walk was not worth the trek because you were walking along a thin edge of angle rock along the creek. Some spots are right by the parking lot, but some feel the 1-2 mile walk back in to more pools is pristine and quite. Probably so.

    Marqueee for the park area Lovely 20 feet falls of coffer dam Pool to lie by and sun up Colorful green water and looks clean
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    Jug Handle Arch

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 12, 2009

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    Yes-there is another one to see, and it is different form others. It is called jug handle because-guess. The views are from different angles for impact. The sing along the Potash Rd at about mile 13-14 is clear, but you need to look up to find it. The arch is 46 feet tall

    Hard to view in the rocks View in the sky background eroded rock around arch
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    Indian writings-Potash Rd

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 12, 2009

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    Right along the road are a lot of petroglyphs and most stand out very well. They are high up, so as not to be disturbed. The writings tell it all if you can interpret them. These writings are about 5 miles down Potash Rd, and a sign identifies where to see and park. They stretch the road for 100+ feet.

    Symbols etched in the rock Rock art on rock Glazed sandstone to etch out symbols
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    My Hiking Corona Arch-Potash Rd

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 12, 2009

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    This trail hike is 10 miles down Potash Rd off Hwy 191. Potash is 3 miles north of town. The hike is relatively difficult in spots, and not for everyone to take. There are rugged rocks along the creek bed to walk over. Later in the trail there is a steel rope railing to hold on to while going along a steep slickrock, and right after that is another one that is absolutely needed to climb 50 feet on 40% angle up another one. The arch is 140x105 feet.
    Just who and how do they measure these anyway? Maybe climb to the top and drop a plumb line, or use a large yardstick?

    Corona arch close up view Bow Tie arches Hole in rock is the arch Close up view of one bowtie arch Corona arch standing out
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    My hiking-Negro Bill CAnyon-Hwy 128

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 12, 2009

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    Yes-it is called that I guess because he was here. The canyon is about 3 miles down Hwy 128, which is 5 miles north of town on the east side. The hike ended up being a great one, but a bit longer than the 4 miles claimed. I calculated it was a little over 5 miles round trip. The walk is along a creek and it is pristine and the walk is through lush green foliage with little sunlight getting down to the trail. The creek was not flowing real fast during my hike, so that is good because you cross it 6-7 times. If after a rain, I am sure the creek rises and your feet definitely will get wet ankle deep or more. Besides that, another forewarning is it is best to take the hike real early in the morning. I got a start at 9AM, and by coming back out after 11AM it was very humid and getting hot. Some hikers stopped to rest due to the humidity. Too many people also were getting on the single file trail as I was coming back out; so avoid that issue.
    YOu can get lost on the trail if not paying attention. Cairn markers of rock are along a lot of it, but some you need to look closely to find or be going wrong way. The canyon is beautiful to trek through with sheer side walls surrounding you and the creek.
    The payoff is at the end of the trail-even tough it does go further; the Morning Glory arch. It is the largest span arch in the world at 243 feet long and 75 feet high. There is also a spring coming ouyt of the sheer rock face crevice that creates a pool under the arch.

    DO NOT take this trail-it drops off View of arch bridge in rock Looking Up to the bridge 15 feet gap between othe rock
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