The Moab Rim Trail is one of the top rated trails in the area. Depending who you talk to, it is ranked as about the 3rd most difficult trail that is run during the Easter Jeep Safari. Regardless of where it falls in the 4+ ranking category, it is an awesome trail to drive. The trail head begins right off the highway and climbs to the top of the rim in the 1st mile of trail. This "1st Nasty Mile" can take a toll on your vehicle, and has claimed lives over the years. Rollovers are all to easily done and the close proximity to the cliff edge provides no margin for error. If you want to enjoy the breath taking view, I strongly suggest you do so after safely parking your vehicle.
After the 1st mile, the trail continues to challenge you with a variety of difficult rock ledges and very steep slickrock for both Jeepers and mountain bikers. At the end awaits some very good Indian petroglyphs. A portion of your return trip is via another route, but ultimately, you will return to the top of the rim and you must descend that "1st Nasty Mile". This is when the tipovers most often occur.
Joe is at the top of the "Z turn", found on the first mile of trail, and just getting ready to make a hard left turn (with lockers, you have a tendency to plow forward into the rock rock face. Texas Jack, is negotiating the center section of the same obstacle.
Here is Lady negotiating the "Z turn". Half way through the obstacle, you find yourself in desperate need of being lined up for the next batch of rock ledges, but you are pointing the wrong way. A slip of the tire going up and that big rock just off of the right rear quarter panel will eat the side of your Jeep!
This is a nice shot of Lady and I driving up the steep slickrock dome. If you don't have the low gearing to pull this off (ie., taking it slow and steady), you will get some tire bounce which can lead to problems if you aren't' careful. Can you say steep? Every now and then, the pucker factor picks right up on this trail!
This YJ belongs to Dave, a new found friend that hooked up with us on the trail earlier in the week. He and his wife are from Idaho and were great company on the trail. I hope we can get together again next year at Moab. Dave, Jen, did you catch that? Here is a movie (350KB) of Texas Jack powering up the last portion to the dome.
We played tag with a group of mountain bikers all morning, and caught up with them at the top of this really big slickrock dome. We also provided them with 4 gallons of our spare water, as they were from the northeast and did properly prepare themselves for the Moab climate (ie., the HEAT!).
My buddy Joe Ruby (the guy that doesn't have spandex shorts on) and several of our mountain biker friends. The guy in the rear is getting ready to climb up through a crack in the rock to gain access to the Indian dwelling on the next level up.
Some of the Indian writings that I was able to get close enough to and snap a picture. These are out on the side of the cliff and have no protection from the elements. I was told that they date back about 1200 years, to the Anasazi Indians that lived in this area.
After some tippy spots and more rock ledges on the trail, you are rewarded with the Moab Rim overlook. We stopped here for lunch. In the shade, the temperature was about 75°. A most excellent location to have lunch and discuss the obstacles we all encountered.
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