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With the snow severely lacking and the temps creeping close to 50 last week, we decided to put the skis away for a few days and pull the bikes back out.  We knew from friends that everything was pretty much dry in Moab (except high trails like Mag 7 and the Intrepid trails), so we planned to check out two trail systems that were new to us: The North Klonzo Trails and the Navajo Rocks trails.

The North Klonzo trail system was added in 2012 and can be found on Willow Springs Road east of the Sovereign trailhead and parking area.  It’s not a large trail system, but if you piece together all the loops and ride certain parts more than once, you can get up to 14 miles of riding in. We created a ride that included Dunestone, Boondocks, Secret Passage, Cross Canyon, Wahoo, and Gravitron.

A rider cruises on the Boondocks trail at the North Klonzo trail system in Moab.

A rider cruises on the Boondocks trail at the North Klonzo trail system in Moab.

Terrain

The terrain here is a mix of dirt and slickrock.  Some of the more advanced trails had built-in rock features, but mostly the trail just undulated over and around rock sections, through washes, and across ridge tops.

The area is well-marked.  Even if you ended up out here without a map (which I don’t recommend) I don’t think you could get lost.  Each intersection has a map with a smiley face “you are here” marker.

Difficulty:

These trails are mostly easy intermediate riding.  There are a few trickier sections but they’re short and easily walked.  This, along with the South Klonzo trails nearby, is a great area for beginner and intermediate riders.  I don’t think it’s a very busy area, so if early intermediate riders want to practice skills in an environment that offers more solitude than the Brand Trails, this is probably a good spot.

The good thing about this trail system’s location is that it’s right next to the Sovereign trail.  So if you’ve got a mixed group of riders it would be easy for the advanced riders to check out Sovereign while the less advanced rode at the North Klonzo area.

Switchback practice opportunities are easy to find at the Klonzo trails.

Switchback practice opportunities are easy to find at the Klonzo trails.

Our ride:

It seemed like we did a lot of climbing.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it had been at least six weeks since I’d ridden and all that climbing took its toll! We did find some fun downhill riding on Wahoo, Dunestone, and Gravitron, and if I were recommending any trails out here for more advanced riders, it would be those three.  Gravitron initially wasn’t part of our plan because it wasn’t on our map.  However, once we saw that it was labeled advanced and was a “one way” trail, we decided to check it out.

Gravitron has more fun and interesting features than other trails at the North Klonzo system.

Gravitron has more fun human-constructed features than other trails at the North Klonzo system.

Our first mile on Gravitron consisted of several rock features like this one.  The terrain on this trail was more undulating than the other trails, with lots of quick curves and more rock features. Still, it’s most likely only labeled advanced because it’s slightly more difficult than the other trails at this trail system. Compared to other advanced trails in Moab this one is truly more of an intermediate trail.

Honestly this probably isn’t a trail system I would choose as my first option in Moab. But if your ride group includes early intermediate riders and you’ve exhausted your options at the Brand and Intrepid Trails, this is a great area to check out.  The views of the La Sals from here are stunning, and early intermediate riders will gain lots of confidence out here.

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# Comments

  • John Fisch

    We hit Klonzo on our last Moab trip just to do something new; four advanced riders and we all had a great time. While Gravitron was the most “advanced” segment, we all agreed that Dunestone was the most fun, the way if flowed from feature to feature. It’s not high on our “gotta’ do that again next time” list, but we’re glad we did it that once.

    Still haven’t been to Navajo Rocks–looking forward to hearing about that one!

    • John Fisch

      Yes he did. Thanks for the reminder. I thought you might have something to add having ridden it more recently. However, if his description still stands, I’ll go by that.

    • Julie Hughey

      Nope. Even though they’ve added new trails, we rode the same route he did because that’s what was recommended to us. I thought the views were spectacular though! And the ride was fun. Nothing super technical but enough interesting features to keep you going. Worth doing, for sure!

  • Greg Heil

    I rode Klonzo last fall, and agree with your assessment. I’m not sure if you mentioned it, but I think one of the things that makes this place ideal for intermediates or almost complete beginners is how short the loops are. Seriously, you can ride a less-than-a-mile loop from the parking lot if you like. And it’s easy to tack on a little more, and a little more, without ever being a long way from the car. So often the difficulty I see with getting some riders out on the trails is the minimum mileage required to do a loop, and the boringness of doing a simple out-and-back. Here you can do a loop, figure 8, or some such non-out and back ride of almost any small distance you want!

  • ironhead700

    yea but I’d be scared of running into some ‘guy’ wearing knee highs. (1st pic)

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