5 miles
Distance
950 ft
Climb
-950 ft
Descent
01:03:21
Avg time
Trail Supporters, Builders & Maintainers of Slickrock Trail
  • BLM
    BLM
    Land Manager

Slickrock Details

  • Activities
    • Mountain Bike
    • E-Bike
    • Hike
    • Trail Running
  • Riding Area
  • Difficulty Rating
  • Voted Difficulty
    Black Diamond (4 votes)
  • Trail Type
    Singletrack
  • Direction
    Both Directions
  • Dogs Allowed
    Yes
  • eBike Allowed
  • Global Ranking
    #124 in Mountain Biking
  • Local Popularity
    95 in Mountain Biking [+]
    • 85 in E-Biking
    • 5 in Trail Running
    • 5 in Hiking

Why is it called Slickrock? Though incredibly tacky for bike tires, horses with metal shoes do not have the same experience, so settlers in the 1800's named the sand stone "slick rock".

Starting from the largest parking lot ever dedicated to a single trail, head north on easy terrain. You'll come to the Slickrock Practice Loop in .25 miles, which is well worth the detour. It's a good introduction to the main Slickrock loop, slightly easier and adds another fun mile to your ride. It reconnects to this trail half a mile later.

The trail is a never-ending series of short but incredibly steep climbs and descents. The rock provides incredible traction, and after a while, you'll realize that everything here is rideable, even if it appears to be way to steep to ride at first. If this is your first time, walk the steeper ones and work up the difficulties slowly - falling on rock hurts more than dirt.

From the intersection with the Practice Loop, you'll ride a short connection to the main loop. Along this section, you come to a cool view down Abyss Canyon, then wade through a sandy pit, and then intersect with the 4x4 trail called Hell's Revenge (don't follow that trail by accident).

At 2 miles you'll come to the loop part of this lollipop, and the preferred direction is clockwise (though either way is fine), so take a left and ascend along 'swiss cheese ridge' high above Moab. This is a long, generally straight in direction, section of trail. The ups and downs are steep for sure. Along the flatter sections of slickrock, be on the lookout for potholes that cradle prickly pear cactus or want to swallow your tires.

At 3.5 and 5 miles, there are optional spurs (each a couple tenths of a mile) that go to the edge of the cliff for great views and are well worth it. The trail turns to parallel the Colorado River here and begins to descend towards a vast, flatter expanse of slickrock. It's wise to roll up to edges slowly.

The Natural Selection viewpoint at 7 miles is really cool, and a great place for a rest before you head back to the west and south to complete the loop. On the return you'll find more punchy climbs and steep descents with some sand traps mixed in for good measure. This part of the route will pass a couple of different canyons and you'll get some spine tingling views across the red rock landscape.

There's one big climb and descent to tackle before reaching the intersection to head back to the trailhead. Your legs will be tired but keep riding, you're about the complete the world famous Slickrock

More Stats for Slickrock bike trail
  • Altitude min
    4,437 ft
  • Altitude max
    4,799 ft
  • Altitude start
    4,612 ft
  • Altitude end
    4,612 ft
  • Grade max
    -23.171%
  • Grade min
    28.744%
  • Distance climb
    2 miles
  • Distance down
    2 miles
  • Distance flat
    1,343 ft
  • Avg time
    01:03:21
  • Avg reverse time
    00:49:12
  • view trail stats
Status:
on Oct 5, 2019
Very Dry
Avg: 4 (86 votes)

view (1,928)
close
Trail Conditions
  • Unknown
  • Snow Groomed
  • Snow Packed
  • Snow Covered
  • Freeze/thaw Cycle
  • Icy
  • Prevalent Mud
  • Wet
  • Variable
  • Dry
  • Very Dry
Trail Ridden Direction
Trailforks scans users ridelogs to determine the most popular direction each trail is ridden. A good flowing trail network will have most trails flowing in a single direction according to their intension.
The colour categories are based on what percentage of riders are riding a trail in its intended direction.
  • > 96%
  • > 90%
  • > 80%
  • > 70%
  • > 50%
  • < 50%
Trail Last Ridden
Trailforks scans ridelogs to determine the last time a trail was ridden.
  • < 2 days
  • < 1 week
  • < 2 weeks
  • < 1 month
  • < 6 months
  • > 6 months
Trail Ridden Direction
The intended direction a trail should be ridden.
  • Downhill Only
  • Downhill Primary
  • Both Directions
  • Uphill Primary
  • Uphill Only
  • One Direction
ContributeDetails
Colors indicate trail is missing specified detail.
  • Description
  • Photos
  • Description & Photos
  • Videos
Trail Popularity ?
Trailforks scans ridelogs to determine which trails are ridden the most in the last 9 months. Trails are compared with nearby trails in the same city region with a possible 25 colour shades. Think of this as a heatmap, more rides = more kinetic energy = warmer colors.
  • most popular
  • popular
  • less popular
  • not popular

LEGEND
Trail Difficulties
  • Access Road/Trail
  • White
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Black
  • Double Black Diamond

Trail Report Status
  • Clear / Green
  • Minor Issue / Yellow
  • Significant Issue / Amber
  • Closed

  • Land Owner Overlay
  • Wilderness (typically no bikes in USA)
  • BLM (public)
  • USFS (Wildlife sanctuaries darker than usfs)
  • State land
  • Indigenous
  • Military
Trail Conditions
  • Unknown
  • Snow Groomed
  • Snow Packed
  • Snow Covered
  • Freeze/thaw Cycle
  • Icy
  • Prevalent Mud
  • Wet
  • Variable
  • Dry
  • Very Dry
  • Map Markers
  • trail Trail Head
  • photo Photo
  • place Directory Listing
  • region Riding Area
  • TTF TTF
  • Parking Parking
  • Viewpoint Viewpoint
  • Information Information
  • Warning Warning
  • Directions Directions
  • Sight Sight
  • Restrooms Restrooms
  • eBike Charging Point eBike Charging Point
  • Water Fountain/Source Water Fountain/Source
  • Gate Gate
  • Trail Sign Trail Sign
  • Table or Bench Table or Bench
  • Ladder Ladder
  • Stairs Stairs
  • Bridge Bridge
  • Camping Camping
  • Cabin Cabin
  • Lodge Lodge
  • Bear Cache Bear Cache
  • Dock Dock
  • Ranger Station Ranger Station
  • Summit Summit
  • Other Other
      Directions to slickrock-9016 trailhead (38.591980, -109.536740)

      Recent Ridelog Activity on Trail

      Past Week
      • 35 rides
      • 11 miles avg distance
      6 Months
      • 352 rides
      • 11 miles avg distance
      All
      • 1,801 rides
      •  

      Photos

      more »
      30 |
      Jul 30, 2019 @ 9:36am
      Jul 30, 2019
      31 |
      Jun 24, 2019 @ 7:15am
      Jun 24, 2019
      444 |
      Jan 19, 2018 @ 2:04pm
      Jan 19, 2018
      442 |
      Jun 15, 2016 @ 10:22am
      Jun 15, 2016

      7 Reviews & Comments

      • + 1
      flag JakeAndersonShred (Dec 17, 2014 at 13:55)
       Slickrock is a fun trail that gets a ton of hype and is probably the most well known trail in Moab. It is not very technical on the downhills but some of the uphills can be difficult. It took me just under three hours.Have fun, charge hard, and be safe. Also take a lot of water because it gets very hot out there.
      [Reply]
      • + 1
      flag GTABurnout (Nov 6, 2016 at 8:08)
       Not a very great trail. Its fun the first 2 miles but after that its the same thing over and over. Nothing too technical. Same sandstone trail over and over
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      flag Zachjackson (Mar 24, 2018 at 20:28)
       Fun and unique trail. Nothing quite like it, if you're in the area I recommend riding the trail.
      [Reply]
      • + 1
      flag spdorsey (Sep 15, 2018 at 18:24)
       If Animus in Durango is "Easy", then this is by no means a black diamond trail.There are some sketchy sections, sure, but it's not THAT hard to ride.

      Slickrock is the world famous trail in Moab that was popularized in movies like Tread. It consists of sandstone formations which roll and undulate across the landscape, making for some compelling and smooth rollercoaster rides.

      There is a beginner "practice" loop, and there's the real deal; a 10.5 mile loop that is definitely challenging, but fairly realistic for a mountain biker with moderate skill.

      Watch out, it gets HOT in Moab! Bring PLENTY of water and do not hit the trail any later than 10am in the Summer/Fall months. You do not want to be caught out there without proper fluids.
      [Reply]
      • + 2
      flag XU12XU (Oct 17, 2018 at 13:58)
       I think its become cool to say that SlickRock is passe and boring, but I've had a lot of fun both times I've ridden it and its much more entertaining than some descriptions would have you believe. It is quite physically demanding, the punches punch hard. Can be ridden simply as an XC-esque loop, but there are many opportunities to find side hits, natural lips etc. Makes for a good first ride in Moab to open the lungs.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      flag Bjjbj (Jun 29, 2019 at 19:25)
       Beautiful and fun trail. This is really a loop for advanced riders with strong legs and hearts. Everyone else will be walking a lot. Bring at least 100 ounces fluid and start early, like 7 am. It’s $5 to get in and ride. I suggest you ride less knobby tires, and about 5 to 10 more psi. There are spots where you are on angled rock, and low pressure will roll the tire. Learn to sit way forward on your seat, and clip ins are a definite must if you expect to clear the course without a touch. Don’t commit to the loop unless you are ready for the punishment. Will definitely ride this again, but not when it’s over a 100. Absolute great trail to hone your skills and build those legs.
      [Reply]
      • + 0
      flag BCAndi (Sep 27, 2019 at 21:17)
       How anyone can give The Slickrock Trail any other rating than 5 stars is beyond my comprehension. This is the trail that made Moab. Period. It’s is the world’s most famous bike trail for a reason.
      [Reply]

      Post a Comment



      You must login to Pinkbike.
      Don't have an account? Sign up

      Join Pinkbike  Login

      Videos

      more »
      youtuber The Finish Of The Slickrock Mountain Bike...
      14:29 | 454 | Jan 12, 2018 , Moab
      youtuber ...Maybe Slickrock Bike Trail Is Harder Than I...
      737 | Jan 9, 2018 , Moab
      SlickRock, Moab, UT
      13:17 | 193 | Jan 4, 2019 , Moab
      Slickrock
      14:00 | 125 | Dec 15, 2018 , Moab
      • subscribe
      • flag
      • login to download gpx or kml files.