Utah Canyonlands Maze District ???

Discussion in 'Americas' started by scarysharkface, Mar 2, 2012.

  1. scarysharkface

    scarysharkface Imbecile

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    Anybody ride the Maze District? Might be headed there for several days in a month, so trying to decide whether to take the KLR or the Jeep. I'm assuming I'd probably not have much fun on the KLR if there's much deep sand or it's nothing but baby-head rocks, but if it's easy riding the KLR might be the way to go. I'll be camping with guys driving 4-door Tacos..

    Thanks,
    John
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  2. scarysharkface

    scarysharkface Imbecile

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  3. AdvRonski

    AdvRonski They call me......Ronski

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    Finally made it to Fruita!
    If it was me, I'd take the bike. Especially if someone else can drag the camping gear there for me. Sure, there's a little sand, but the worst piece of trail is the switchbacks of the Flint Trail, and that's no big deal. On the bike you can easily travel twice as fast= see twice as much cool stuff.
    I'm planning on cruising through there on my 950 Adv this June, and my biggest concern is fording the Dirty Devil in Poison Spring Canyon.
    Here's a post from my trip there in 2008- http://www.advrider.com/forums/showpost.php?p=8949610&postcount=41
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  4. scarysharkface

    scarysharkface Imbecile

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    That's beautiful! Not sure I'd want to take the KLR though, since I'd be carrying my own stuff in and out. Thanks for the link and pics.

    John
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  5. WilderRider

    WilderRider Long timer

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    Ron,

    Great report. The Mazes is one of the areas of Canyonlands that I have not explored and do have a real interest in. If you are staying in Moab, how long of a haul is it to get over and around? What is the shortest route to get there? Relatedly, is it realistically possible to go in and explore on a nice light bike while camping somewhere more easily accesible?

    And you may not remember, but we met a few years ago in Moab. My buddy and I just got our butts kicked on the WRT trying on our GSs when the sand was deeper than it had been in a long time. I think you were running around on your 525.
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  6. AdvRonski

    AdvRonski They call me......Ronski

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    Hi again, WilderRider! I do remember you two at the campground in Moab. Glad you're still out there doin' it.
    The Maze district is often referred to as the most remote area in the lower 48 for good reason- it's a long way from anywhere! The 3 main access points are- Green River on the North end- and a long stretch of dirt to the "center" of the Maze, the Flint Trail. The Hite Marina on the South end- and still a long way on generally good dirt roads to the Flint Trail.
    And, on the west side North of Hanksville, is Hans Flat Road, and still over 50 miles of dirt to the Flint Trail.
    I chose to stay at a Hanksville campground, with a restaurant just a few steps away, so I could travel light and fast on the 525, and had an incredible time! You could camp a little closer, and bring your own food, but to camp inside the Park boundaries requires you bring a portable toilet. And the Rangers will check to see you have one before you get a permit.
    Tough to do on a bike. Be prepared to bring extra fuel- my loop ended up being about 250 miles, as I recall, and I didn't even go out to the Dollhouse area. Plus, I took the "shortcut" out the south end down Poison Spring Canyon.
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  7. WilderRider

    WilderRider Long timer

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    Yeah, I think I am just going to plan this section as its own trip sometime. I have the Safari tank on my DR650 so I am not worried about the range, but I would rather have the time to do it right.

    And the more I think about it, I think your posted RR is the same one where we met. Looks like you were having more fun than we were then. I am glad I got a lighter bike since then.
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  8. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junkie

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    We rode the Maze on XR650Rs heading out from Hite marina. There's plenty of great wilderness camping out in the Maze district but Hite had facilities and was a good camping base for the MCs (fuel and water). I'd ride the bike, you'll see much more of the park. Four wheeling it is going to be slow and time consuming. The entire ride was about 165mi total, a good day's ride, it'd take much longer in a 4x4 :cry Let them carry the food and gear and venture out ahead on the bike unladen :clap

    We chose to ride up from Hite, it's scenic as soon as you fire up the bike. This route follows the Colorado River, IMO the best way to enter the Maze District. You'll skip the ranger station and the looong booring dirt roads up on Hans Flat mesa.
    <iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/Ya_eT522Lbc?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    The Dollhouse trail was the most scenic and challenging with some ledges and soft sand out near the end. Well worth the ride. Hear's a vid of it.
    <iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/QdP1x_t7dWA?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Here's the trail out to the Maze overlook. It's an easy out and back that's worth the ride.
    <iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/ceAeCBTY_Dw?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    The Flint Trail switchbacks were a little intimidating but not very difficult technically.
    <iframe width="640" height="480" src="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/EKvBKlpNzzA?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Ether way you do it the place is pretty spectacular :D
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  9. bomose

    bomose Long timer

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    Chris, great videos. What gearing and tires do you use out there? And what camera? I have an XR and plan on coming out there. Thanks.
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  10. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junkie

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    Thanks, it's a great area to ride.

    I'm running 15/48 so I can cruise on the long sections. That's a good all around dirt gearing for me, i drop to a 14 on the front if it's going to be knarly. I'm running a Dunlop 606 on the back (slides nicely and wears well) and a Maxxis Desert IT on the front, the 606 front tires suck for grip. The Desert IT in the back works well too but the Dunlop slides better.


    Here's the RR from that ride

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=690208
    #10