Living and Riding in Moab, UT

Discussion in 'The Rockies – It's all downhill from here...' started by Antics, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. Antics

    Antics I do what I want

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    Utah has sunk its claws into me--I just got back from my second real trip to Moab and I'm hooked. Awesome area to ride in with trails on all sides of town that offer a variety of riding surfaces and endless possibility. Or at least that's my impression!

    Anyways, I'd like to get more trail riding in and I'm thinking Moab would be a great home base for me to do this. But here's my question: Is year-round riding possible?

    Looking at some weather records it looks like December and January might get a little chilly, but layering up for some short mid-day, trail rides seems doable, no?

    On that note, is there anywhere else (in the southwest) that offer's as much riding (in a similar setting/climate as Moab) that CAN be ridden year-round?

    I've got the freedom to spend winters pretty much wherever I want and am liking the desert but am open to suggestions.
    #1
  2. MountainsandRivers

    MountainsandRivers loves dirty things!

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    send a pm to Mylsmkj. He lived there for several years and got a lot of riding in. Generally better than the mountains for temps, but not always. You will want a second smaller more dirt oriented bike to compliment your Transalp.
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  3. enduro-ince

    enduro-ince dirtslave

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    It depends on wether its an inversion winter or not. It was consistently colder in Moab than it was in Telluride (8750ft) last winter. Some winters are mild and you can pretty much ride year round, but they seem to be more rare these days. I hear St George has pretty mild winters and some good riding but I have no experience other than a couple mid winter climbing trips to the area, both times it was quite pleasant.


    Oh and black ice on a stretch of slickrock can really get the adrenaline going!
    #3
  4. Signal

    Signal Cynical Idealist

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    LOTS of shade in teh canyons can lead to cool temps with low winter sun angles-
    Most trails COULD be done year round, but gonna have some days you'd be better in a jeep

    A big question would be employment potential- can be tough to find in the Moab area, particularly off season
    #4
  5. DADODIRT

    DADODIRT Long timer

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    I'd go further south.
    I've been exploring around Tucson for a week or so the past few winters. Stays pretty warm down there all year. Been exploring on the KTM 950 and the 1150GS before that. I know there are all sorts of trails for smaller bikes, though.
    #5
  6. FatChance

    FatChance Road Captain

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    Are you thick skinned enough to survive on the margins of the dominant religious culture?
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  7. Antics

    Antics I do what I want

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    Definitely adding a smaller, dirt oriented machine to the arsenal.

    I've heard the same, but I'm thinking it's just too big of a city compared to Moab.

    Honestly, I hear this everywhere I've ever chosen to live (except AK) and it's never stopped me in the past.

    Is there as much variation as Moab?

    Haha-- Well I've only hung out in Moab a few times but, at least in the circles I tend to associate with, it didn't strike me as that big of an issue in those parts. Well, not compared to say, Salt Lake. Either way, it doesn't usually bother me--I know why I'm there and it's not too seek the religious fanatics approval, if you know what I mean.
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  8. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    st george, UT is warmer in the winter.
    page, az
    mesquite, nv
    gallup, nm

    hell dude, just live in baja on the beach and ride off-road everyday.
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  9. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    i'd say that moab and park city are the 2 places in UT where the influence is lower.
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  10. DADODIRT

    DADODIRT Long timer

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    Southern AZ is different than Utah. More desert. Probably not as varied as Utah. There is a good bit of elevation toward Mt Lemon and the area to the north east of the city is public land. Also, public land down closer to the border - Patagonia, etc.
    Maybe post over in the west regional forum. I bet someone there could clue you in to the off road tracks.
    #10
  11. Antics

    Antics I do what I want

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    Baja is great and I'd be lying if I said I hadn't considered it before--I've gone so far as to check a few places out last time I was down there--but I don't think it's what I'm looking for right now.
    #11
  12. RedRockRider

    RedRockRider Long timer

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    Lots of options for living and riding in and around St. George. I'm biased, but the weather, scenery, and riding are tough to beat. Not a native Utard . . . previously lived in PA, MA, MD, CA, and AK (Anchorage).
    #12
  13. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    the small beach towns north of Puerto Vallarta are another winter option.
    it's 85 degrees everyday / 65 in the eve, no rain for 6 months (nov-may), sweet beaches and bikinis, mountains right next to the ocean w/ elevations from 0 to 8000' in 2 hours time, dirt roads and tracks everywhere, ripping twisty paved roads...plus it's close to PV so plenty of culture, food and events. Baja can be barren. PV is a season jungle so trees, plants and fruit/veggies everywhere.

    did i mention 85 degrees and no rain in the winter :evil
    i've surfed in the am, rode sweet dirt in the pine forest mountains in the afternoon, jumped in for late afternoon swim, & then had dinner and drinks (for $10 :clap) on the beach in the eve.

    hell a winter day does NOT get any getter than that!
    not in the US atleast.
    #13
  14. enduro-ince

    enduro-ince dirtslave

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    My band plays in Moab several times a year and our sax player lives there. I don't get the mormo vibe at all there and there are some wildly fun folks who always come to our shows. Was just there Saturday and we played the brewery. That place was PACKED full of crazy kids. After parties galore,...
    I think Moab is the safe place in Utah for the gay/lesbian crowd which adds a certain flavor you wouldn't expect. Seems like there is a wide variety of folks living there which I would personally really enjoy. BAsically my point is, as someone who's been riding and playing there for 30 years, I enjoy it much more for the people I've met than for the riding. The BLM office there completely caters to the mtn bike crowd and could care less about improving motorized use areas. If you want to ride singletrack you'll get real tired of the Sovereign trail in a hurry. But there is a lot of ST within an hours drive in all directions AND the San Juans are only a couple hours away for those mid summer heat wave escapes! If by winter you mean Oct 1st thru the end of April it would be much better. I wouldn't pull the trigger if you are talking Nov thru the first of March, cuz then you are missing the two prime seasons.
    #14
  15. dieselcruiserhead

    dieselcruiserhead Long timer

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    it's true that around mid Nov to about Feb-March it can get winterish and limit riding, and there is limited work in the off season. Bars are horrible too if that's your thing. Other than that it's epic and great local culture. Especially surrounding the local radio station if you can get hooked into those folks. All sorts of walks of life and instant way to know a lot of great local folks. Every time I've been down to Moab in the last 5 years probably 9 or of the 10 times have been 'epic' if it helps. There is just so much terrain and spirit in the people and the area...
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  16. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    i have friends in the park city area and they talk about how strong the homebrew culture is there. basicly alot of non-mormons moved in for the area and dealt with the weak beer issue by brewing there own.

    i would imagine it's the same in moab, but being closer to colorado i'm sure plenty just have a 2nd fridge and stock up or even better have a kegarator of your fav. plus a well stocked bar of hootch. the moab brewery is always there if you want to grab a beer just to BS with the locals.

    there were 2 solid mining towns in utah's history that grew up with looser laws & people: moab and park city.

    st george, on the other hand, is much more mormon influenced. there is a solid mtb community influence in that area that is non-mormon and has moved in. in the winter alot of RVrs move in from all over, but they may keep to themself. overall the party good times vibe is less there than PC or Moab. there is also a college - dixie state, but it's mormon one so a wild night is passing cookies between moving cars, unlike most every other college in the country where you have jello shots, beer bongs, smoking fatties and twerking. my buddy did tell me about a crazy story from talking with this younger mormon chick. they can't have sex till they're married, but i guess that the back door doesn't count in the church rule/law so...
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  17. Rogue_Ryder

    Rogue_Ryder

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    I absolutely love Moab, weather is definitely variable. Last year in late September it was cold and windy, but during Thanksgiving the days were perfect mid 60s+.

    The recreational possibilities there are endless, I think you could hit a different trail everyday for a year and not see half of what's there.

    Do you need to work? If so, there's not much in the way of industry in Moab. Mostly hospitality, retail and maybe a few Bicycle and Jeep mechanic jobs. If you telecommute or are retired you're golden.

    Although I'm not 100% convinced I could live IN Moab UT, I think the place might lose some of its' magic if I were there all the time. You could easily live on the Western Slope of Colorado and enjoy Moab at it's best in Spring and Fall, while having cooler Summers in CO and participate in some snow sports in the winter.
    #17