Whether it’s barreling down a rushing river atop a white water raft, shooting down the rugged terrain of level 4 mountain bike trails, or repelling from one of the nearby scenic 14,000 foot summits, Moab has a bit of everything for thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies. But travelers looking for a more relaxing, laid back adventure will find plenty of breathtaking scenery, picturesque mountains and untouched natural wonder just beyond the city limits. Moab’s three scenic byways offer visitors easy access to some of the state’s best archeological, cultural, historic and recreational highlights, as well as the best views of Red Rock Landscapes and mountain peaks.
The two-hour journey along the Upper Colorado River Scenic Byway (U-128) wanders along the Colorado River Gorge, where sandstone cliffs, river viewpoints and overlooks across Negro Bill Canyon prove some of the top attractions. Visitors can stretch their legs and hike along the Morning Glory Natural Bridge before heading off towards Castle and Professor Valleys. The iconic red rocks visible along this scenic pass have served as the backdrop to dozens of old westerns, as well as plenty of memorable snapshots from family trips to Moab.
The Postash-Lower Colorado River Scenic Byway (U-279) offers a slightly shorter journey that passes by ancient petroglyphs rock art and the famous Dinosaur Tracks archeological site. It’s one of the best byways for history buffs and hikers, as well as those who want to take in the red rocks scenery, but also want to get out of the car and explore on foot, too.
The third scenic byway, Dead Horse Point Mesa (U-313), winds through state and national parks and provides iconic views of Moab’s red rocks landscape. Visitors can loop through Dead Horse Point—one of the most photographed landscapes in the entire state. Travelers then head through Canyonlands National Park and Grandview Point, where a 1500-foot mesa offers the best red rocks vantage point in Utah.