Abajo Mountains

Monticello, Utah 84535

Abajo Mountains

Abajo Mountains Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Like the La Sal and Henry mountains, the Abajos (a.k.a. Blue
Mountains) are igneous laccolithic mountains that tower above the Colorado Plateau’s sandstone expanse. They began as magma (molten rock) pushing up through faults and layers of sedimentary rock. The upper sedimentary layers formed a dome as the rising magma pressed against it, but the magma cooled before breaking through, and over eons the sedimentary layers were eroded away, exposing the igneous rock beneath. Abajo is Spanish for down, below or underneath.

This is a beautiful summer-to-fall mountain drive off U.S. 191 that returns you to the highway after climbing to about 10,500 feet. You will travel through pine forest, grassy slopes and dramatic mountains on a road that at times is a mountainside ledge. It provides a fine view of the southern Utah desert as well."

More Abajo Mountains Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

"The Abajo Mountains Challenge is a 43.2-mile loop that begins with a long mountain climb and descent and concludes with a series of rolling hills and long, false flats. With the exception of a few city streets in Monticello, the entire ride is on national forest roads and state highways; thus, the pavement is generally smooth. The elevation varies from 5,991 feet near Church Rock, well north of Monticello, to 8,843 feet high in the Abajos—be prepared for some thin air. Also, be aware of the potential for wintry weather between November and March."
Backcountry Ski and Snowboard Routes: Utah (The Mountaineers Books)
Jared Hargrave
View more trails from this guide book
"Abajo Peak is the tallest mountain in the range and has some of the most eye-catching ski and snowboard terrain in southeastern Utah. Huge bowls on her southeast face are perfect for corn tours in the spring when the snowpack calms down, and the evergreen and aspen forests on north aspects hold good powder and glade skiing all winter long. While the approaches from North Creek or the Old Blue Mountain Ski Resort are long, and the gigantic communication towers on the summit ruin the solitary backcountry experience, Abajo Peak’s ample ski terrain is totally worth the effort. From the parking area, skin up snow-covered CR 101 for 0.25 mile to CR 285. Go left, pass an open metal gate with a ROAD CLOSED sign on it, and enter North Canyon. From the turnoff, continue skinning up the road, which will probably be packed down by snowmobile tracks, for 3.4 miles."
"Abajo Peak, 11,360 feet, is the highest in the Abajo Mountains, which are also known as the Blue Mountains due to the bluish hue they have when viewed from a distance. The Abajo Mountains were named by the Spanish in the 1700s (abajo means lower). Abajo Peak provides an outstanding panoramic view of southeastern Utah, Colorado, and the Four Corners region where Utah, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico meet. Another route through these mountains is the one detailed in. Fall is a great time to visit because of the aspens’ changing colors."

Abajo Mountains Trip Reports

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We just got back from a VERY wonderful trip. We went up into the mountains ...dirt roads, deer, wild turkeys, grouse, alpine meadows, gorgeous views of Canyon Lands Park, and NO ONE else was there. We went about 118 miles on mountain roads.

What looked like a single/simple mountain road turned out to be as complicated as trying to find your way around Seattle using Aurora as the main street.....well almost! We found that there was only one map (the Forest Service Map) that was able to give us specific directions, and we found that map while in Natural Arches after we had wandered in the mountains the day before.

Your site gave very good general information about all the sites you helped me with.

Abajo Mountains Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
1 hour
Best summer and fall
Snowmobiling, Camping
Additional Use
Moab and Monticello Ranger District, Monticello Office
Local Contacts
DeLorme Utah Atlas and Gazeteer; Manti - La Sal National Forest's Moab and Monticello Ranger Districts; Trails Illustrated No. 703 (Manti - La Sal National Forest)
Local Maps