The new Pipe Dream Trail in Moab, a fantastic singletrack that starts in downtown Moab
Last year October this trail did not exist, and I was pleasantly surprised to have a +10 mile singletrack at my doorstep. I did the Pipe Dream all the way, from Hidden Valley to Aspen Street and back. Having the smell of Burger King follow me all the way was not easy, knowing that it would only be a 5 min detour to add Burger King or McDonalds to the trail. This time I did not give in to temptation, but it was very difficult.
New trail, so not yet listed in any books, the below is a description based on my opinion.
The Pipe Dream is a nice moderately technical singletrack that can be started at numerous places. The full Pipe Dream runs from Moab [ Aspen Street ] to the Hidden Valley Trailhead. The trail is well marked, it’s definitely not a fast trail, but it is definitely a trail that should be on the list of anyone riding the Moab Trails.
For the past 5 years I have spent the whole month of October in Moab, I always stay at the Moab Rim Campark. As many know, the Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim Trail is one of my favorite Moab rides. Moab Rim Campark is literally just 10 min. ride to the Hidden Valley Trailhead, following the “Under the Wires” trail.
I was pleasantly surprised this year to find a new trail starting ( or finishing) at the Hidden Valley Trailhead.. The Pipe Dream.
The Pipe Dream was officially opened on June 17th 2011, so it really is a brand new Trail.
The trail is very well built, and runs the whole length at the foot of the Hidden Valley and Moab Rim. The trail is far from being flat, and is no means a fast flowing trail. I started the ride directly from Moab Rim Campark at about 10 am on a Monday. I was pretty surprised at the number of riders already on the trail, it is clear that the Pipe Dream is already a very popular trail.
The ride from Hidden Valley to Moab Aspen Street, is a lot easier than from Aspen Street to Hidden Valley. Technically both directions are moderately technical, however physically the ride to Hidden Valley is a lot more strenuous, due to more climbing.
The people that built the Pipe Dream did a fantastic job, the singletrack winds itself around, under and over some unbelievable rocky terrain. It’s a great slow and moderately technical trail, that offers a lot of options. Out and Back from downtown Moab, but for the real “grinderz” among us, it can form a fantastic loop with Hidden Valley and Moab Rim.
It’s already clear that the Pipe Dream is a huge success, and is becoming very popular, very quick.
Traffic on Trail : For a weekday, It was moderately busy
Wild Life : a snake
Scenery : Really nice scenery.
Other : Have not done it myself, but the Pipe Dream can be a great option to loop the Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim. Physically extremely demanding, but it would make a hell of a loop none the less.
My Trail Rating : 7 / 10
This Pipe Dream Trail review is proudly sponsored by :
Moab Rim Campark
At Moab Rim Campark mountain bikers will definitely feel at home among other mountain bikers at this Mountain Biker Friendly Campgroud. Bike wash, grassy shaded tent sites with stunning views, Full hook ups, semi hook ups, cabins, group shelters, sheltered areas to tinker on the bikes, and lots more. The Pipe Dream Trail starts from your campsite. Moab Rim Campsite has been recommended by “Mountain Bike Mayhem” 4 years running. Mountain Bikers get 10% discount, just bring your bike(s) and mention MOUNTAIN BIKE MAYHEM For more info vist : Moab Rim Campark
The Poison Spider Mesa Trail and the Gold Bar Rim Trail, 2 of Moab's greatest rides
The Poison Spider Mesa Trail combined with the Gold Bar Rim trail is one heck of a mountain biking epic not to be missed.
This combination offers the experienced Mountain biker hours and hours of fun, scenic, fast, scary, and technical mayhem under the Moab sun.
Trail Stats & Information
Nearby Town: Moab Length: I clocked 22.14 miles Trail Type: P2P [ Point 2 Point ] Skill Level: [what the books say] no info Skill Level: [My Opinion] Technically moderate to challenging. Physically challenging. Navigating Gold Bar Rim can be quite a challenging Duration: It took me 8.50 hours, but can be done in 6 hours Trailhead Elev: Poison Spider = 4,037 ft – Gold Bar = 4,576 ft Top Elev: 5,446 feet
POISON SPIDER :
This technically and physically difficult ride can be done as a loop or as an out-and-back, with a turnaround point at a beautiful arch or at the rim overlooking Moab Valley a few more miles to the north. The trek starts with a relentless climb over little babyheads, leads through areas of deep sand and technical bedrock, then eventually flattens out into a ledgy romp. After some sandy curves and a bit of confusing route finding you are presented with some outrageously steep slickrock knobs that are a blast to ride for advanced cyclists. Once on the slickrock the ride can be free formed by those with good navigating skills, or you can follow the trail markings that appear as little jeeps. Keeping the jeeps oriented in the same direction is the secret to following the trail out to the rim. At any point you may also simply turn around and go back the way you came in. Trail Surface: 4WD doubletrack, slickrock, and extremely technical and dangerous singletrack, if you choose to take the Portal Trail option. Loose rock, stream worn rocks up to the size of babyheads, deep sand, slickrock, hardpack to loose sedimentary soil, and bedrock ledges on a classic technical 4WD track.
GOLD BAR RIM :
This is the deep end of the pool, the brink of mountain biking, the pinnacle of the sport, a ride only fit for the strong, smart and skilled–a place where others can qualify for the Darwin Awards. The surface is the most varied possible. The only missing ingredients are mud and water crossings. There are ledges, deep sand, loose rock, hardpack, slickrock, gigantic rock rubble, and every combination of these you can imagine. This ride is extremely dangerous! Despite the inherent danger of the exposed cliff, the Portal Trail is the emergency hatch to and from Poison Spider Mesa and the Gold Bar Rim in case of a storm or accident. Two deaths almost closed the trail in 1998. If we are to believe the BLM, one more is all it is going to take. This is the most challenging, beautiful, and awe inspiring mountain bike ride on earth. Treat it like it’s sacred. Respect it. Love it. Care for it. Most of all, fear it.
The Poison Spider Mesa Trail is one of my favorite Moab rides, but I always loop it with the Portal Trail.
The Gold Bar Rim Trail is listed in my “Best 15 mtb trails in the USA” but I have only ever come up the Gold Bar Rim and down Portal as a P2P.
I was really stoked about combining these two fantastic trails and riding them as a P2P.
I knew from experience it was going to be a long day, but I didn’t realize just how long it was going to take me. Luckily I had a very early start, at the crack of dawn, I was on the Poison Spider, I knew I would easily clear the Poison before anyone else even started on the trail.. Great, I was all alone on the Poison, this gave me plenty of time to take pics, shoot vids, and to just relax and enjoy the the trail. The sun was still on the horizon, so the temp. on the Poison was very comfortable, I was on top form, and so was my loyal steed. We cleared the Poison incl. a side trip to the Arch in under 3 hours.
Once at the top of Poison, on the “Rim” I relaxed and prepared for the long and tricky Gold Bar Rim. For some reason I thought it was gonna be all downhill from this point, I was wrong in a big way, it was a lot of up’s and down’s, and by now the sun was high enough for the Rim to start heating up.
I veered off the Gold Bar Rim and took the extremely technical “Blue Bar” Trail. I will not say much about this trail, except that it is an Illegal Trail, closed to protect the Big Horn Sheep. I did not know this at the time, and going down Gold Bar Rim it is not at all clear that this trail is illegal, however coming “up” Gold Bar Rim it is clearly stenciled in the Rock. I will add that the “Blue Bar Trail” is extremely technical, and certain areas are VERY Dangerous, certain sections on this trail makes the “Portal Trail” seem like a walk in the Park.
Please respect the Laws of the Trails, and stay on the Gold Bar Rim
If you have never done the Gold Bar Rim Trail before, it can be very tricky to navigate, at one point you will be following the “Gold Spike Trail” and then it will be the “Gold Bar Trail” you should not attempt this trail without a good map.
The Gold Bar offers some fantastic technical sections, I was happy to have cleared a few, but most of them were too tricky for me.
Remember, this is a long and very remote trail, do not take any risks on this trail, if anything goes wrong, you are a long way from anywhere, and it could be days before you see someone else.
Well, I have to be honest, we are talking about two of Moab’s greatest trails, no matter how you approach them, you are going to be guaranteed a ride of your life. The Poison is scenic, fun and moderately technical, and can be done as an Out and Back, or looped with the Portal Trail, or as a P2P with the Gold Bar. As a P2P with Gold Bar, this becomes a technical and remote trail. 24 remote miles of Moab splendor, don’t under estimate the Gold Bar Rim, it’s a tricky trail, and a LOT can go wrong on this Trail.
For everyone that like myself likes a bit of a challenge and remote rides, then this combination of coming up the Poison Spider, and down the Gold Bar Rim could be the best mountain biking experience you could wish for.
This combination is NOT suited for anyone without some navigation skills, the remoteness is your best friend, or your worst enemy on this trail.
And as the guide book states : Treat it like it’s sacred. Respect it. Love it. Care for it. Most of all, fear it.
Traffic on Trail : 3 moto crossers, that were seriously lost, and needed my help 3 times to get back to the main road. Wild Life : none Scenery : Absolutely Fantastic Moab Scenery Other : This is a very remote ride, carry ALL your spare parts in case anything happens. Carry a good Map, and know how to use it. and carry as much fluids as you can. If you get lost, head back up to the “Rim” and follow it back towards Moab and head down the Portal or back down the Poison Spider.
My Trail Rating : 10 / 10 with a GOLD Star
Poison Spider – Gold Bar Rim Trail review is proudly sponsored by :
Moab Rim Campark
At Moab Rim Campark mountain bikers will definitely feel at home among other mountain bikers at this Mountain Biker Friendly Camp groud. Bike wash, grassy shaded tent sites with stunning views, Full hook ups, semi hook ups, cabins, group shelters, sheltered areas to tinker on the bikes, and lots more.
The Poison Spider – Gold bar Rim Trail is just 20 min. drive from your campsite Moab Rim Campsite has been recommended by “Mountain Bike Mayhem” 5 years running.
Mountain Bikers get 10% discount, just bring your bike(s) and mention MOUNTAIN BIKE MAYHEM
https://highonmountainbiking.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/hmb.png00Rip3dhttps://highonmountainbiking.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/hmb.pngRip3d2011-10-16 21:05:032011-10-16 21:08:37Poison Spider Mesa and the Gold Bar Rim Trail 2011
Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim - View before heading down the Moab Rim
The Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim is one of my Moab favorites. This trail offers fantastic scenery, a very remote feeling without being remote ( if anything goes wrong, it’s no more than a 1.5 hour walk to civilization). The Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim trail offers everything the big trails offer, such as Porcupine. The trail can be looped, or as an out and back. This trail offers the longest and steepest slickrock downhill section, almost a mile of solid mental 22 percent downhill.
Trail Stats & Information
Nearby Town: Moab Length: about 13 miles (14.3 miles if you visit the Moab Rim View Point) Trail Type: Loop or Out & Back Skill Level: [what the books say] Technically extremely difficult to downright abusive. Physically difficult Skill Level: [My Opinion] Technically moderate – difficult. Physically moderate [ if done from Hidden Valley ] Duration: 2-4 hours Trailhead Elev: 4000 feet Top Elev: 5400 feet
If you are not a skilled mountain biker do not attempt this ride. Be sure to take lots of water. This trail can be ridden from Moab, as a loop or as a shuttled trip, in either direction. It has a brutal climb at the head and an equally brutal downhill at the tail anyway you slice it. The ride up from the northern end on the massive rock slab to the rim is one of the most difficult climbs I know of. The southern end is so technical that you are going to be walking the bike. The northern end can be ridden in its entirety, if you are very fit and very skilled. Trail Surface: Extremely rugged 4WD trail and a very technical singletrack that is only suitable for hiking–portage or risk bone damage. Huge ledges, sand, loose rock, and hardpack. Kayenta slab rock, Navajo sandstone.
I have lost count on how many times I have done this trail, and I still love it as much as I did the first time. The scenery is great, the trail is exciting and has an adventurous feel to it. As always the 40 min. portage is a grunt, but once on Hidden Valley, the grunt was well worth it, and is soon forgotten about. The side trip up to the Moab Rim View point is very strenuous, and even though it might not look very technical, it has the potential of destroying you and your bike if you loose control at very high speed.
This is still one of my favorite trails, it’s more like an adventure than a “ride” . Last year I wrote that the singletrack that cuts through Hidden Valley was in really bad shape, and it was becoming almost impossible to ride because they were so deep. The good news is, the trails for whatever reason in excellent shape again.
Traffic on Trail : about 5 hikers Wild Life : a Bull Snake Scenery : Absolutely Fantastic 360 degree 3D Scenery Other : Be WELL prepared for punctures, carry spare tubes and a repair kit. This advice is for ALL Moab rides, not just this one. DO NOT attempt this trail if you are not experienced riding on extremely rocky trails and very steep drops.
My Trail Rating : 10 / 10
This Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim Trail review is proudly sponsored by :
Moab Rim Campark
At Moab Rim Campark mountain bikers will definitely feel at home among other mountain bikers at this Mountain Biker Friendly Campgroud. Bike wash, grassy shaded tent sites with stunning views, Full hook ups, semi hook ups, cabins, group shelters, sheltered areas to tinker on the bikes, and lots more.
The Hidden Valley onto Moab Rim Trail starts from your campsite. Moab Rim Campsite has been recommended by “Mountain Bike Mayhem” 5 years running.
Mountain Bikers get 10% discount, just bring your bike(s) and mention MOUNTAIN BIKE MAYHEM
In the past I have received emails from people that call me crazy ‘cos of the way I rate this trail, a lot of people call this trail “extremely difficult to very dangerous ” So let me explain how I rate a trail.
I myself would put me in the “Intermediate MTB’er” category, and far from being Advanced. So on a trail like this, where there is a 40 min. portage, that is IMPOSSIBLE to ride both up or down, I do not consider this section Mountain Biking.. If I did, this trail would be “Suicidal”
All the trails I rate are based on my opinion, and on how “comfortable” I was while riding it.
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