4X4 Routes In Canyonlands National Park

Canyonlands National Park The Shafer Trail provides access to the White Rim Trail and other areas in the Park's Island District.

ATVs are not allowed to operate inside the park. Vehicles must be street legal.

Canyonlands National Park is one of the world's great places for off-road adventure. It offers 4X4 routes ranging from moderate to extremely difficult and technical.

Island in the Sky District

White Rim Road
The 100-mile White Rim Road loops around and below the Island mesa top and provides expansive views of the surrounding area. Trips usually take two to three days by four-wheel-drive vehicle. All vehicles must remain on roads.

Under favorable weather conditions, the White Rim Road is considered moderately difficult for high-clearance, four-wheel-drive vehicles. The steep, exposed sections of the Shafer Trail, Lathrop Canyon Road, Murphy's Hogback, Hardscrabble Hill, and the Mineral Bottom switchbacks make the White Rim loop a challenging mountain bike ride, and require extreme caution for both vehicles and bikes during periods of inclement weather.

Needles District

Colorado River Overlook
This is a moderate road, also good for mountain bikes. There are large rocks and stair-step drops in the last 1.5 miles, which visitors may avoid by parking on the road (leave room for others!) and walking to the overlook. Outstanding views of the Colorado River canyon. Unprotected overlook; use caution. No vehicle camping.

Horse Canyon / Peekaboo
A permit is required for day and overnight use in this area. Roads travel along canyon bottoms where deep sand, deep water and quicksand are common. Too sandy for mountain bikes. At Peekaboo, vehicle campsites are available and prehistoric rock art may be seen. Horse Canyon road leads to several arches and Tower Ruin. The old road to Angel Arch is currently closed to motor vehicles.

Lavender Canyon
A permit is required for day use in this area. Road follows a canyon bottom where deep sand, deep water and quicksand are common. Too sandy for mountain bikes. There are two major creek crossings with steep banks. Many arches and archeological sites may be viewed from the road. No vehicle camping inside the park.

Elephant Hill
One of the most technical four-wheel-drive roads in Utah, Elephant Hill presents drivers with steep grades, loose rock, stair-step drops, tight turns and backing. Over the hill, equally challenging roads lead to various features, as well as to BLM lands south of the park. Vehicle campsites are available but do not offer drinking water.

Maze District

Flint Trail
The Flint Trail is a famous and challenging 4X4 route here. Many other routes offer excellent opportunities for backcountry exploration. This area is extremely remote and rugged, with no services available. Details are beyond the scope of this website.

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