Poison Spider Mesa

Moab, Utah

3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars
3 Reviews
3 out of 5
Few Moab-area rides are as visually rewarding and physically demanding as Poison Spider Mesa. The route affords astonishing vistas of Behind the Rocks, where an entourage of sandstone fins march in echelon toward the idyllically emplaced La Sal Mountains. From the rimmed-side viewing deck at Little Arch, the route’s goal, you toe the edge of the Portal where the nourishing Colorado River leaves Moab and slips between confining 600-foot-tall cliffs. In the distance, Arches National Park displays a wonderment of nature’s architectural talent. Poison Spider is renowned for its technical sections that will challenge the most resolute trail rider. A half dozen rock staircases require brute strength and unfaltering skills to master. Near the turnaround, you can “rock out” to your heart’s delight on a ramp of naked Navajo Sandstone that will satisfy any slickrock purist. Although the route follows paint-on-rock markers, a short lapse of attentiveness may prompt an anxious voyage across nondescript lands rimmed by unscalable cliffs. Poison Spider Mesa is described here as a 12-mile, out-and-back route geared for strong intermediate riders. But expert riders can pursue a 12.7-mile loop by descending the infamous Portal Trail—a precarious path scratched into a 600-foot cliff.
Mountain Biking Utah

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Mountain Biking Utah

by Gregg Bromka (Falcon Guides)

Few Moab-area rides are as visually rewarding and physically demanding as Poison Spider Mesa. The route affords astonishing vistas of Behind the Rocks, where an entourage of sandstone fins march in echelon toward the idyllically emplaced La Sal Mountains. From the rimmed-side viewing deck at Little Arch, the route’s goal, you toe the edge of the Portal where the nourishing Colorado River leaves Moab and slips between confining 600-foot-tall cliffs. In the distance, Arches National Park displays a wonderment of nature’s architectural talent. Poison Spider is renowned for its technical sections that will challenge the most resolute trail rider. A half dozen rock staircases require brute strength and unfaltering skills to master.

Near the turnaround, you can “rock out” to your heart’s delight on a ramp of naked Navajo Sandstone that will satisfy any slickrock purist. Although the route follows paint-on-rock markers, a short lapse of attentiveness may prompt an anxious voyage across nondescript lands rimmed by unscalable cliffs. Poison Spider Mesa is described here as a 12-mile, out-and-back route geared for strong intermediate riders. But expert riders can pursue a 12.7-mile loop by descending the infamous Portal Trail—a precarious path scratched into a 600-foot cliff.

©  Gregg Bromka/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Moab
Distance: 12
Elevation Gain: 800 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Technical Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Physical Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Season: Spring (March into June) and Fall (September into November)
Trailhead Elevation: 4,000 feet
Top Elevation: 4,800 feet
Local Contacts: Bureau of Land Management, Moab Field Office, 435-259-2100
Local Maps: USGS: Gold Bar Canyon and Moab
Driving Directions: Directions to Poison Spider Mesa

Recent Trail Reviews

4/30/2004
0

This is a fantastic ride. The jeep road that leads to the mesa is fun and challenging at times. The mesa at the top includes some really fun slickrock sections. You can do this ride as an out and back or as a loop by desending the Portal Trail. Much of the Portal Trail is not ridable, so I highly recommend doing this as an out and back. Use the rim as your turn around point, if if you want to get a sense of what the Portal Trail is like, ride the first half mile or so, then turn around and ride back the same way you came.


5/8/2000
0

This trail is lame!! Nothing but sand, sand, and more sand. Then once you're through all the sand there is a big long jeep rd to get to a the slick rock. The slick rock is fun and all but not worth all the effort to get there. All so this trail leads out to a cliff that over looks the Colorado River and then there is a trail that heads down the cliff. This trail, all though it looks like fun, is the worst!! You'll end up walking the whole thing...Just head back the way you came. (OR DON'T GO AT ALL)


3/22/2000
0

Sure, it's a long climb, but challenging. The reward is at the top and down the Portal Trail. Don't call yourself an "expert" if you have to walk most of it down. This is the way "also" is spelled if you don't know how.



Trail Photos

Activity Feed

Apr 2018