Thursday, December 5, 2013

Ski Moab? Winter Mountain Biking

Moab Winter – Skiing, Hiking and Travel
The Visitor Center at the Island in the Sky, Arches National Park, Dead Horse Point State Park, downtown Moab and the Thompson Springs Welcome Center off of Interstate 70 are open seven days a week in winter. There is winter backcountry use in the La Sal Mountains. Ski trail information is detailed on DiscoverMoab. . The 2014 Southeastern Utah winter has started out strong with a few earlier snowfalls than ordinary. Traveling to Moab this Winter? Here are some travel tips.
Currently Rim Cyclery will rent cross country ski equipment and snowshoes. The store, Gearheads, rents snowshoes. The bike company DreamRides is prepared to lead cross-country skiing in the La Sal Mountains. The bigger draw, even in winter, are Moab’s nearby parks. The snow in Arches National Parks has been melting more readily than Canyonlands National Park’s Island in the Sky District. The Island in the Sky is higher than Arches National Park by approximately 1500 ft elevation. Keeping feet warm and dry is an important reminder and tip. Having along ample socks to change out of wet socks will increase comfort, if a visit coincides with a winter snow day in and around Moab Utah.
Over the Thanksgiving holiday in Moab (2013) there were snow conditions. Some hiking trails required holding hands to steady hikers in spots. As conditions warmed up, 4x4 and bike trails became soft and muddy. Please be advised motoring or biking on soft, muddy trails causes significant trail damage. With the advance of colder conditions, trails will be solid and out door use resumes. Carry sufficient supplies in the event of delays in the backcountry.
When winter has not blanketed the Moab Valley, winter will certainly be aloft in the La Sal Mountains and the surrounding passes used to travel to Moab. Using’s website, scroll down the page to find the History & Almanac box. Use this tool to research dates of prior years for the most informed understanding of winter driving conditions. Coming from the west along Interstate 70, research Salida, Utah; approach from the north research Price, Utah; from the east look into Vail, Colorado; then from the south check the conditions of Monticello, Utah. These locations are at elevation and experience more winter conditions than in Moab.
Ski Resort visitation does not decline with winter driving conditions. So daring drivers, consider blazing to a new destination this winter. Experience two amazing National Parks and a state park that is equally breathtaking and use modern technology to help source a travel plan. Remember to bring boots!

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