The town of Moab and its surrounding vast red rock landscape is Utah’s ultimate adventure playground. What other place can you visit multiple national parks, mountain bike unbelievable singletrack, rock climb slickrock, slide through narrow canyons, and raft down the infamous Colorado river through high red rock walls ‘â€œ all within a few miles from town? Moab is one of the best adventure destinations in the entire world. Its red rock landscape boasts over 800 miles of biking trails, the mighty Colorado River, a maze of canyons and sandstone towers for climbing, and 2 of Utah’s most infamous National Parks – Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park.
Beyond Moab’s towering rock formations and canyons are the Colorado River and Green River – two major destinations for river activities in the Moab area. Both rivers have sections that cater to challenging whitewater rafting adventures as well as calm, relaxing river trips and SUP, kayaking, and packrafting tours. Exploring the Colorado and Green rivers is a great way to discover the gems of Moab via the water.
The section of the Colorado nicknamed Moab Daily is a famous section of the river for rafting and inflatable kayaking. The 13-mile stretch alternates between several sets of Class I through III rapids and flat water. Moab Daily meanders through gorgeous red rock scenery with views of the Fisher Towers, Castle Valley, LaSal Mountains, and Arches National Park. The full 13-miles trip makes for a great beginner and family-friendly rafting trip. It requires a shuttle, and starts 23 miles up highway 128 after the junction with 191, and ends 10 miles up at the well signed Take Out beach. For a shorter trip, there are many other put ins and camping areas along the highway. For flatwater kayaks or SUPs, the 8-mile section of water from Big Bend campground to the 191 bridge takeout offers a great, mostly calm water day trip, with a few smaller rapids depending on the time of year.
Westwater Canyon takes it up a notch with Class III and IV rapids, and is best done as a guided rafting trip. It is often compared to the Grand Canyon due to it’s unique geological formations and rapids. Day trips and multi-day trips are available for Westwater Canyon.
Moab river activities can range from a day trip to mult-day paddling and camping adventures. Day trips call for the usual essentials like sunblock and quick-drying clothes. For multi-day activities, adherence to Leave No Trace policies are a must, including packing out everything you bring in – including human waste.
After experiencing the water, don’t miss Moab’s biking trails. Considered one of the best biking locations in the world, Moab is home to more than 181 miles of unique, flowing singletrack through slickrock and out of this world scenery.
The best time to visit Moab is in spring and fall. The months of February through early May and September to November are best weather in Moab. Early spring and late fall are the best times to avoid Moab’s influx of tourists.
TripOutside features the best local rental shops and guided tour providers for Moab rafting, biking, rock climbing, canyoneering, packrafting, kayaking, SUP and more!