Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Rough Riding on the Slickrock Trail in Moab and in Canyonlands National Park

In May, 2003 I joined an epic trip organized by Dan Dominy, the adventure video cameraman extraordinaire who shoots the Badwater Ultramarathon and Furnace Creek 508 every year. He's also a Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4 fanatic who organizes an annual trip to the Moab, Utah and Canyonlands National Park area for fantastic off-road cycling, hiking, and exploration. Each trip is supported by Land Cruiser, however nobody is the designated SAG driver. Instead, each trip participant takes a turn driving the Cruiser one day and also contributes and prepares a meal. It's a great way to get out there for little cost and with great camaraderie.

This trip in 2003 was, and still is, easily one of the best and most memorable trips I've ever undertaken. It was visually breath-taking every single day. The cycling was fantastic. The hiking was peaceful and otherworldly. The campsites were spectcular. The natural curiousities were everywhere and innumerable. The pictographs were beyond words. I'd enjoy visiting this area every year. It would never get boring and there would always be new things to see and experience.

I was the only participant that didn't have a mountain bike with suspension. I rode my Rivendell All-Rounder with rigid fork, a 34/48 double crank, Ritchey Z-Max 1.9" knobby tyres, and moustache handlebars. My low gear was a 34x27, which did the trick nicely. The itinerary and basic route is below, with links to further information about this fascinating area. Be sure to check out the full slideshow. A picture tells a thousand words.

- Chris Kostman

To see a full slideshow with 50 images from this trip, click here.

May 11: Poison Spider Mesa Trail and Slickrock Trail, Moab
May 12: Drive to Canyonlands National Park, hike and camp in Horsehoe Canyon; visit The Great Gallery
May 13: Flint Trail Overlook and camp at The Teapot
May 14: Land of Standing Rocks; camp at The Dollhouse
May 15: Ride around The Dollhouse and The Wall; camp at The Dollhouse
May 16: The Wall, Flint Trail, Golden Stairs hike; camp at Maze Overlook
May 17: Maze Overlook, Harvest Scene, hike in the Maze; camp at Maze Overlook
May 18: Maze Overlook, Flint Trail, Hans Flat

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