Moab has a wide variety of hiking opportunity, both within and outside of the two national parks which surround it. Everyone knows about Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park. These are hiking destinations in their own right, but there’s much more.
Let’s start with Arches National Park and consider what it has to offer. We first began to explore Arches for its numerous photographic opportunities before we started hiking. A list of Moab hikes is provided in our Adventure Guide.
Everyone that visits Arches will want to take the hike to Delicate Arch. It’s an awesome sight and not to be missed. There are lots of shorter, easier hikes to some of the best features and arches within the park and you take the time to enjoy these short journeys. Devils Garden and the ranger lead Fiery Furnace hike should be on everyone’s list.
The Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park is a hiking destination that is easily accessible from Moab. There are many shorter hikes that are doable and offer scenic views such as Mesa Arch and Crater Overlook. Murphy Hogback, and Upheaval Canyon are longer and more challenging hikes. The hike in Dead Horse Point State Park provides stunning views.
Don’t limit yourself just to the National Parks as there is an impressive list of hiking opportunities outside the park boundaries. We’ll give you a more complete list, but here are a few to consider. Fisher Towers is a great hike with amazing views of the monoliths. Other favorites include Corona Arch, Grandstaff Trail (formerly known as Negro Bill Canyon), Hunter Canyon, and Behind the Rocks.
We think Moab is best visited in late autumn, late winter, and early spring. The crowds are not as intense, and the weather is cooler making hiking more pleasant. An advantage with Moab is there are lots of motels, restaurants, and other amenities that are not available in the more remote hiking and adventure destinations.
It is also possible to access the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park which is a 77 mile drive. We prefer to stay in Monticello which about 25 miles closer and more cost effective accommodations.
We plan all our own hikes and adventures. However, Moab has a number of outfitters and guides that can assist those who might want a little more help with their hikes.
Getting to Moab is relatively easy as it is located on Highway 191 which accesses Interstate 70. Highway 191 also connects to southern destinations such as Monument Valley and Bears Ear National Monument. Salt Lake City is 240 miles north of Moab and offers a wide variety of air travel options. Grand Junction, Colorado is another option located 115 miles from Moab with easy travel on Interstate 70 and then south on Highway 191.