Miatas In Moab VI
“Return of the MX-5’s”
Descriptions of the Suggested Drives for Moab Area
Note: Please bring plenty of water and gas up your Miatas before you leave town as there are no gas stations.
Arches National Park
Arches National Park entrance is located approximately 2 miles north of the Colorado River Bridge in Moab, Utah on highway 191. The park itself encompasses 119 square miles and is known to preserve over 2,000 natural sandstone arches, including the world famous Delicate Arch. The area is administered by the National Park Service. There is an entry fee. Bring your National Park’s Pass or Senior Pass. Once in the park you can choose one of several routes to different arches and other sandstone formations. It is well worth your time to visit the park several times. Advisory: Try to go early in the morning as lines get long later in the day going into the Park.
Dead Horse Point State Park
Dead Horse Point State Park is located 30 miles north of Moab, Utah on highway 191 and state route 313. It is adjacent to Canyonlands National Park. Highway 313 has some fun twists and turns to make the drive interesting. The park features a dramatic overlook of the Colorado River and was so named because of its use as a natural corral by cowboys in the 19th century. The plateau is surrounded by sheer cliffs two thousand feet high and has a narrow neck of land (only 30 yards wide) connecting the mesa to the main plateau. Legend has it that one herd of horses was inadvertently left fenced in and died of thirst thus the Dead Horse Point. This is a picture takers paradise! There is an entry fee. It is a Utah State Park. Senior Pass Discount is available.
Newspaper Rock is located approximately 35 miles south of Moab, Utah (49 miles from Red Cliff’s Lodge) on highway 191 and state route 211. There are literally hundreds of petroglyphs that were carved by Native Americans during both the prehistoric and historic periods on this rock. Some glyphs depict riders on horses. If you want to see the most exquisite example of Native American petroglyphs the ride is a must! No fee here just enjoy.
Castle Valley Road
Castle Valley is located 22 miles east of Moab off highway 128 and just east and across the road from the Red Cliffs Lodge, about one mile. Turn left and look for sign to turn right (east).. The drive up highway 128 along the Colorado River is one of the best Miata drives in the world. When we reach Castle Valley you will be surrounded by massive red rock cliffs towering thousands of feet in the air. One of the most prominent sand stone features in the valley are the rocks called “The Priest and the Nuns” When you see the formation you will realize that this formation is very appropriately named.
Hole in the Rock / Wilson Arch
Hole in the Rock is located approximately 12 miles south of Moab on highway 191. Gift shops and a restaurant are unique carved into the soft sandstone cliff. The proprietor has a gift of making everything you can imagine from welded together nuts, bolts and anything else metal he can find. This is one of the MUST drives to get a cold ice cream on a hot day. Leave there and continue south on highway 191 and you will see Wilson Arch right off to the left of the main highway. You can take photos from your car in the small parking lot and take a very short hike to the arch.
La Sal Mountain Loop
The journey starts by driving through Castle Valley with views of rock spires called Castleton Tower and The Rectory, and a volcano chimney. The journey then continues up the mountain on an exciting, fairly steep and twisty La Sal Mountain Loop road. This is where the journey begins for drivers that enjoy twisties. The road passes by gravel access to the La Sal Mountains back country. Several peaks in these mountains are over 12,000 ft. On the north end of the range is Mineral Basin, named for its content of various minerals, including gold. Although there aren’t many places to pull over, there are a couple of overlooks that can be utilized. Bring your camera for some breath taking landscape photography. The journey continues back down via a challenging descent to Spanish Valley Road, then on to Moab.
Potash Road follows the Colorado River west from Moab to the potash plant. It is a windy road that will be a lot of fun in a Miata. On one side you have the Colorado River and on the other sandstone cliffs tower two thousand feet into the air. There are Petroglyphs on the sides of the rock right on the road. Signs indicate where they are. This is a short ride but one you may want to take several times.
Highway 128 to Interstate 70: Dewey Bridge
This drive takes you east of Moab along highway 128 and past the Red Cliff Lodge all the way to Interstate 70. It is a twisty/windy road that is a lot of fun in a Miata. You will be taking the lower half of this drive several times to and from the Red Cliffs Lodge but the upper half has some great scenery and the road is equally as fun with twists and turns.
Bedrock Colorado Store
If you have ever wanted to pick up a treasure at an original old western country store, then the Bedrock Colorado Store is the one for you. Nope, this Bedrock is not the home of Fred and Wilma Flintstone! Bedrock is located about 60 miles southeast of Moab so the drive will be about 2 ½ hours long, depending on how long you want to spend in the store. This is a beautiful drive going from the red rock of the Moab area past the south end of the Manti LaSal Mountains and then into the Cedar country in western Colorado. The scenery is spectacular and the store is a true delight. You can take a “potty” break and pick up drinks and snacks at the store. Note: Store may be closed for repairs so double check on this before heading out. If nothing else, it is a nice scenic drive!
Slick Rock Road
Slick Rock Road begins in Moab City and extends in an easterly direction to the world famous Slick Rock Bike Trail. It is a short ride but well worth the time. The word “Slickrock” was derived from early settlers whose metal-shod horses found the expanses of barren rock slick to cross. When you reach the bike trail you will be surrounded by beautiful red sandstone rocks with the massive snow caped Manti LaSal Mountains to the east. Please take the time to enjoy a sunset in this area. No fee area.