Lathrop Canyon Trail is a 10.6 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Moab, Utah that offers scenic views and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.
off road driving
Directions from Island in the Sky Visitor Center: Travel southward along Utah 313 2 miles to the Lathrop Trailhead on the eastern side of the road.
This trail was so hard! I'm pretty sure I didn't even make it the whole way. I did this hike in late July, so heat was a pretty serious factor. The first part of the hike is through a meadow. Eventually you reach the edges of the canyon. You hike along the lip for a bit. The trail pretty suddenly drops over a rock scree and you really can't tell where it is more than 10ft ahead. You must rely on the cairns to guide you for a lot of it. Poles were a lifesaver (almost literally) on the way into and back out of the canyon.
I got to the bottom of the canyon after an hour or two and it seemed that it continued further into a dry riverbed. I didn't feel the need to go down in elevation any longer, mainly because of the heat. So I turned around and went back up again. I think coming back out may have actually gone a bit faster than going down. All in all, it was really hard and the views were breathtaking.
In order to get to the trail head of Lathrop Canyon, we followed Potash road about 22 miles from Moab, to the junction of Shafer abd White Rim Trails. We took the White Rim Trail for abour 11 miles to the trail head. Now it was another 4.0 miles down Lathrop Canyon Trail to the Colorado River. This portion of the trip was fairly difficult, the trail was eroded, filled with huge ruts that were tough to negotiate. After we had lunch we returned back to the junction and took the Shafer Trail up to the top of Dead Horse Point, and following Long Canyon Trail, made our way back to Moab. What a exciting day of Jeeping!