December 14, 2017

bartlett wash mountain bike trailCommonly referred to as the Mountain Bike capital of the World, Moab is home to a huge network of trails that are suitable for a wide range of skills. Although the majority of trails are well signed, some of the more advanced trails are not well marked. Due to the remoteness of their location, and efforts to leave no trace behind,  it can be easy to have the time of your life riding into the vast wilderness of Moab, and forget just how to find your vehicle.

Bartlett Wash, a huge slickrock formation filled with naturally formed half-pipes, jumps and steps, and awesome views. This is also a pretty remote trail, with a meandering approach that can leave one baffled. Bartlett Wash can be hard to navigate to and through, enough so that even the most advanced rider might want to hire a guide for the first trip. There are a number of companies to choose from, and having a guide will open up a whole world of features for the avid mountain biker.

To get to Bartlett Wash, head North of Moab on US 191, and turn west onto Blue Hills Road 0.9 miles south of the airport. Go 2.4 miles, then turn left (the electric pole makes a handy landmark). Keep left, and then turn right after 1.3 miles. The parking area is located about a mile later in a wash near a fence, with a stand of Cottonwoods.  Go through the gate and up the wash, keeping an eye out to your right for the way up the rocks.

Now that you are on top, welcome to the best natural playground in the world!! There are bowls galore, due to the fine grain of the Entrada sandstone of the formation. Bartlett Wash is a very close in nature to the Slickrock Trail, which is composed primarily of Navajo Sandstone. Because of this, the formation has fewer fins than Slickrock. Imagine waves upon waves of sandstone, perfect for free riding. Half pipes are everywhere, with a few bowls in particular worth mentioning, such as the “Chute of Doom” and the “Super Bowl”. If you love Moab, have a solid set of skills, and want something like Slickrock but with fewer people and no trail lines to follow – this is worth a visit. Just try not to turn in Moses out there.


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