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Moab Off Road Trail Spotlight: Gold Bar Rim

When we at Dixie 4 Wheel Drive aren’t in our Moab shop working on custom truck builds, we’re out on the trail, wheeling our rigs. We love testing our latest builds against the tough trails, surfaces, and rocks found here in Moab. There’s no better way to spend a day or even an afternoon than going out and enjoying the amazing trail rides that Southern Utah has to offer. We like it so much that we organize trail riding events and encourage both experienced and novice off-roaders to come to have fun, gain confidence, and work on their trail riding skills.

Speaking of great ways to spend an afternoon, how about checking out one trail that guarantees a short, fun trip just outside Moab. This is the trail that leads to Gold Bar Rim.

Gold Bar Rim Trail Overview

Gold Bar Rim is a cliff rim with an altitude of 1200 feet. It’s found on the southern edge of Moab Canyon, above Highway 191. Getting to the rim will give you an outstanding 360-degree vista of the surrounding area. The trail ascends the cliff in different stages, starting with angling up to Little Canyon then gradually climbing to Gold Bar Canyon before following the slope of the Wingate Sandstone layer to the rim.

The trail runs for about 47 miles in total, 25 miles being off-highway. The ride is mostly of medium difficulty and the 6 rating is thanks to a huge rock obstacle towards the end, near the rim. Your rig needs to be outfitted with tires that are at least 35 inches tall as well as sufficient ground clearance to avoid snagging on that last obstacle. You’ll also need both front and rear lockers.

Trail Scenery and Surface of Gold Bar Rim

Going up to the rim gives you awesome views of the local country and the best seasons to visit are spring and fall. The higher you climb, the better the view, with breathtaking vistas of the La Sal Mountains in the distance, the Book Cliffs, and parts of the Colorado River Canyon.

Most of the trail surface is sandy with some slickrock near the Gold Bar Rim. There’s also some rocky wash bottom in Bull Canyon and a little blow sand at the bottom of Little Canyon.

Trail Obstacles and Gold Bar Rim Details

As mentioned earlier, the trail isn’t full of obstacles like so many others. However, you still need to drive carefully. The toughest section you’ll encounter is when crossing the Gold Bar Canyon as you climb to the rim. Some people prefer walking the last 100ft instead of using their rigs. There’s a particularly treacherous big rock ledge dubbed “The Waterfall” that has overcome many rigs with several needing assistance to get over it.

The spectacular views from the rim edge are worth it though. This area often gets really hot so remember to carry plenty of water and sunscreen and to stick to the marked route.

 

 


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