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Tags:
Level: Beginner
Length: 103 mi (165.8 km)
Surface: 4x4 Trail
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +980/637 ft
Total: 58 riders
 

Mountain Biking White Rim Trail

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#9 of 693 mountain bike trails in Utah
#211 in the world

The White Rim Trail is Utah's ultimate multi-day party trail. The trail is a 103-mile loop on jeep road through Canyonlands National Park. Technically, this trail is fairly easy. But the length (and a few stiff climbs) means you need to be in good condition to do the whole thing. The major climbs add up to 4000 vertical feet, but an altimeter or GPS unit that records every little up-and-down will give you about 6000 feet total.

Most riders spend 3 or 4 days to ride this trail, spending the night at campgrounds. (Two days = Monster. One day = Lunatic.) You'll need a support vehicle for food, water, camping gear, and bike parts. (Even though there's little dangerous stuff, the length of this trail -- combined with sand -- means there's a good chance you'll need some on-trail repair.)

You can ride the trail either direction. Most bikers ride clockwise, from the Schafer Trail around to the Green River. This direction tends to be a little nicer, because it puts most of the sand on the downhill slopes. There are four big hills with over 1000 feet elevation gain, but you get to do one of them downhill as you drop into the canyon on the first day. A three-day trip gives you one major climb each day.

First added by Corey Maddocks on May 20, 2009. Last updated Apr 28, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: yes
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
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Getting there
Eastbound on I-70, turn at the Moab exit onto US-191. About 20 miles later, turn right on U-313 towards Canyonlands. Pay the entry fee ($10 in 2005) at the gate and proceed a couple of miles to the Island-in-the-Sky Visitor's Center. Register here.
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White Rim Trail Trail map

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Matt Miller (on Oct 2, 2019)
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Good (on Apr 15, 2018)
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White Rim Trail in Moab
 
White Rim Trail
 
White Rim in Moab,UT
 
White Rim Trail - 2007
 
White Rim TrailMountain Bike Tour
 

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Reviews

  • woodboystudio@gmail.com
    *****

    Did this in November 2016. Great weather, highs in the 40's, lows in the 20's. Very remote. 3 days, 2 nights. Carry all you water, the Green River is not that appealing. Bikepacking.com has you start from the park. Better is to park at the top of the hill of Mineral Bottom so the first day is the long table top before you descend rather than end trying to ride a long stretch of flat at the end. Stay that means you stay at Airport for the first night.
    Riding is straight forward, great scenery. The climb out is heinous. Fair bit of recreational off road vehicles. Did have 6 hours of seeing or hearing no other humans.
    Did this self-supported. A sag wagon allows more beer and steaks.

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  • Peter Ganev
    *****

    We took the 4 day White Rim trail bike ride in November 2016.
    Booking of the trip was so simple but at the same time so informative. We received all the information about the trip including, trip itinerary, map and information about the rental equipment. Everything was done with such a professionalism that it will leave you fully satisfied. The importance for us was that we had a live person to talk to and answer the thousands of questions we had. After all we come from NYC ?
    The beginning of the trip started with a breakfast at Rim Tours office. After introduction to the equipment, the guides and the rest of the group we headed out to the canyons. A short ½ hour bus ride brought us to the starting destination. At this point technically the trip was on...
    For four days we rode our bikes up and down scenic places. It took the nature millions of years to build them and only four days of bike ride to admire them (not enough ?). If you love photography, this is the dream place to be. I can go on and on for the beauty of this place, although you have to see it to believe it.
    The two guides, Mike and Dave were constantly with us. One riding with the group and other driving the truck being the group. The truck had all of our belongings including endless supplies of energy food and fresh water.
    During the trip we would made quick stops from time to time and learn about the history, flora and fauna of this amazing place. I was impressed with the guides knowledge and of course out of curiosity I asked tons of questions; for my surprise Mike and Dave always had the answers.
    Every day we had a gourmet meals, breakfast, lunch and dinner prepared using fresh ingredients by Mike and Dave.
    If you are looking for a biking trip in Moab, Utah, look no further. Definitely Rim Tours is the company to use.
    We are coming back! This was not the end of our journey, this was the beginning of something new.
    Thank you Rim Tours for the best trip ever!!!

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  • wchadwick
    *****

    Road this a few ago in one day. Lost crank bolt 50 miles in. One peddled it for 10 miles until found a washer on trail and used chain breaker bolt to put crank back on. Loved the trail, Beautiful scenery.

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  • Mike Moyer
    *****

    Rode the White Rim in September 2014. Riding and camping out under the stars was truly a great experience. While the trail is not overly technical there is enough variation to make the riding fun. Love the White Rim.

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  • Louisa7
    *****

    Incredible vistas, pretty easy riding except for two uphill sections. Wonderful camp spots. Done it twice now, with people who go every year.

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  • chukt   ✓ supporter
    *****

    A great trip for anyone! Add it to your bucket list.

    I have ridden this several times, in both directions, both multi-day and single-day. 3 or 4 nights seems to ideal and gives you time to explore the desert off the road.

    Note: You need a permit from Canyonlands NP and there is a long wait for them. Buying a guided trip from a tour company short cuts the wait.

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  • david_darling
    *****

    A great multi-day epic or a one day challenge of epic proportions. This is a fantastic ride for the scenery alone besides being one of the most remote rides around. I did this with Rim Tours in '99. The mileage for 4 days averaged 26 miles per day with one day of 17 miles. This left a lot of extra time to explore some of the most fascinating geology on the planet. A great adventure.

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  • jkey6
    *****

    I did this trail with the company Western Spirit and it was incredible. About 80 miles in 4 days it was very leisurely (with a couple scares) but still demanding. This is a great trail and I recommend going with a professional group like I did, it will be a great experience.

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  • tedwaltman
    ****

    Even though there is a washout on the Mineral Canyon switchbacks, one CAN walk/hike through that section--I did it in October with no problem (other than minor inconvenience).

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  • Aussie_Rider
    ****

    Great scenery mixed with the camping make this a worthwhile experience that is both enjoyable and challenging. It is definitely a must do epic ride at least once. I have done this twice and both times took 3 days to do it. If you are in good biking shape then 2 days would be quite doable. I have been tempted to try for 1 day but if sand and wind could make 1 day really challenging. If I do opt to try for a one day I will still use a support vehicle just in case... By the way, this trail for the foreseeable future can't be ridden as a loop because the mineral bottom access road has been washed out. Check out the canyonlands.gov web page for more details.

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  • tedwaltman
    ****

    Great one day ride. Start at the bottom of Shaefer Trail for the long uphill while you're still fresh. Ride the whole loop--don't "cheat" by taking a shuttle from the top of Mineral Canyon hill out to the park road. Take lots of water!

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