Monday, March 27, 2017

Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab

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Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
Jeep Arch, located only 15 minutes from Moab, Utah is one of the many amazing arches this area has to offer hikers. It's neighbor, Corona Arch, sees thousands of people a year yet Jeep Arch is a mere 0.3 miles down the same road and sees way less people. From it's name, you'd think it's a stop along the annual Jeep Safari routes, however no motorized vehicles (nor mountain bikes) are allowed on this trail. The arch got its name for the resemblance of a cut out of a cartoonish Jeep built into the natural sandstone.
The trail is lead by cairns and only two signs. While it's hard to keep from staring at the amazing tall, red rock, slick rock, and peering into Culvert Canyon, keep your eyes on the path so you don't miss the cairns that will lead you to Jeep Arch. 

Dogs are allowed on this trail. There is a sign that says this area is breeding grounds for big horn sheep and that dogs must be leashed. However, nobody does leash their dogs. Keep a leash handy in case you come across wildlife. There is no shade along this trail so bring plenty of water for you and your pup. Even in March we were sweating on this trail, so it's a good idea to start early to beat the heat. If it's too hot, please don't bring your dogs - the slickrock and sand heats up quickly and can burn their paws.
From Moab, head North on HWY 191, then turn left onto Potash Road. Drive 10.3 miles (0.3 miles past the Corona Arch TH) and park at the pull out on your right side. The parking area can fit about 10 cars. There is NO trailhead sign. Here's a driving map.

Distance: 3.8 miles RT
Elevation gain: 870 ft
Time: 1-3 hours
Dog friendly? Yes, off leash
Kid friendly? Yes
Fees/Permits? None
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 The parking area is on the right side (East) of Hwy 279 (Potash Rd). The trail begins by hiking through the tunnel, under the railroad track.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
Though it looks small here, the tunnel is actually about 7-8 feet high, 4-5 feet wide, and roughly 150-200 ft long.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
Having fun posing in the tunnel.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 As soon as you exit the tunnel, you'll see the first and only sign for Jeep Arch - head left and up the short hill. 
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 You'll hike alongside the railroad track and cut through sage brush. You should see a sharp right turn heading up another hill past an old barbed wire fence.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 Enjoying the view of the massive red rock! 
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
As soon as you pass the barbed wire fence, start keeping an eye out for cairns to guide you. The trail is a mix of slick rock, sandstone, and sand.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 Eventually you'll reach another sign that says "Loop" - we chose to hike in a counterclockwise direction. The trail takes you to the right of that spire and around to Jeep Arch.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 Hike up this small rocky area.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 As soon as you turn the corner of that rocky area, you should see Jeep Arch to the left!
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 Charlie looks like he's up to no good here...
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab

Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab

Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
When you are ready to head back, follow the cairns back to the main trail, creating a loop.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
 You should once again pass by the tall spire, this time hiking down right in front of it. Make your way back to the cars the same way you hiked in.
Bear Panel petroglyphs, Moab, UT
 This isn't on the trail to Jeep Arch, but if you have time, stop along Potash Rd to view petroglphys. This is called "Bear Panel", and the paws are the size of my hand! This was near mile marker 6 or 7.
Hiking to Jeep Arch, MoabHiking to Jeep Arch, Moab
My trail stats via Gaia GPS. 

In older books and maps, you make see Jeep Arch labeled as Gold Bar Arch. This was it's original name, as Gold Bar is a large sandbar in the middle of the Colorado River. There is a campground available on a first serve-first come basis, as well as reservable group camp sites.
Jeep Arch, Moab trail map
 Jeep Arch trail map looking NE.
Jeep Arch, Moab trail map
Jeep Arch trail map looking West.

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Hiking to Jeep Arch, Moab

2 comments:

  1. This is a fun hike! Luckily, we had the Jeep all to ourselves for lunch and photos. I love how Charlie always turns around to check on you:)

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    1. Awesome! Yes, he's a good boy and always checks on his mama!

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