Hovenweep

Blanding, Utah

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Even if no bike ride or prehistoric ruins awaited, the drive to Hovenweep National Momument from points west would be worth doing: flood plains chock-full of Navajo frame houses and hogans, sitting beneath slickrock hills spotted with junipers. Absolutely beautiful. The ride, quite easy both aerobically and technically, follows remote roads of chipseal, gravel, and sand surfaces, with a bit of ledge rock thrown in for good measure. A loop of 10.5 miles connects two spurs, combining for a total mileage of 21.5. Rather like New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon National Historical Park, another park created to preserve Anasazi ruins, Hovenweep National Monument is way out there and consequently relatively rarely visited. When the wind’s not blowing, there might not be a quieter place on earth—just the occasional gargling raven, screeching jay, or chortling squirrel. The quiet fits, permitting you not only to see the past but to hear the ghosts of prehistoric times. General location: Straddling the Utah - Colorado border some 45 miles southeast of Blanding.
Mountain Bike! Southern Utah

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Mountain Bike! Southern Utah

by Michael McCoy (Menasha Ridge Press)

Even if no bike ride or prehistoric ruins awaited, the drive to Hovenweep National Momument from points west would be worth doing: flood plains chock-full of Navajo frame houses and hogans, sitting beneath slickrock hills spotted with junipers. Absolutely beautiful. The ride, quite easy both aerobically and technically, follows remote roads of chipseal, gravel, and sand surfaces, with a bit of ledge rock thrown in for good measure.

A loop of 10.5 miles connects two spurs, combining for a total mileage of 21.5. Rather like New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon National Historical Park, another park created to preserve Anasazi ruins, Hovenweep National Monument is way out there and consequently relatively rarely visited. When the wind’s not blowing, there might not be a quieter place on earth—just the occasional gargling raven, screeching jay, or chortling squirrel. The quiet fits, permitting you not only to see the past but to hear the ghosts of prehistoric times. General location: Straddling the Utah - Colorado border some 45 miles southeast of Blanding.

©  Michael McCoy/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Blanding
Distance: 21.5
Elevation Gain: 700 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Technical Difficulty: Easy
Physical Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Season: March through May; September through November
Local Contacts: Hovenweep National Monument, 970-749-0510
Local Maps: Route map - "Tour Two: Holly-Hackberry-Corral Loop", available at Visitor Center
Driving Directions: Directions to Hovenweep

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Apr 2018