Moonshine Arch

EASY 60 reviews

Moonshine Arch is a 1.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Vernal, Utah that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

1.4 miles
246 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly



nature trips

off road driving



wild flowers

no shade

Moonshine Arch is a short walk into a sandstone ridge just north of Vernal. Look out for mile marker #359. There will be a dirt road to your left. If you drive about 3/4 of a mile, there will be signs directing you to the hiking area. Look out for green gates. That is where you can park and the trail begins.

5 days ago

8 days ago

Fun hike when you finally get there, Google directions suck. We did it just as the sun was going down.

13 days ago

Hard to find the trail. Heading from Vernal, go past the Steinaker SP about 1/2 mile or so. The exit to the trail is on the curve to your left and it’s very hard to see it. Gravel road for a 3/4 mile or so. On the left you will see a little sign with the trail name. Turn left and go down this for a little bit and you will park to the left and walk to the trail over the green cattle guard thing. The arch will be in the mountains to your front right.
Nice short hike. Be ready for walking in sand for a while. I had to dump my shoes out afterwards...that was my only negative about this hike...but God created it like this so we will roll with it.

18 days ago

Great for kids! Sandy but fun!

24 days ago

This was such an awesome way to finish out a day spent at Dinosaur National Monument. It's a very short drive from Vernal and while the road got bumpy, my Civic made it just fine. you definitely would need a high-clearance AWD vehicle, and some cajones, to drive all the way up to the arch. My 5 y/o loved exploring along the way and we got some amazing photos and views out of this nice short hike.

29 days ago

It is a challenge to find the trailhead. The turnoff to the dirt road off of US 191 is hard to see and easy to miss going freeway speeds. GoogleMaps wants you to take the Steinaker State Park turn, which is wrong. You can find semi-helpful descriptions of how to find the trailhead on the web. If you have the right vehicle, and skills, you can drive right to the arch, and there are the tire tracks to prove it, but I walked from the gate and it was only .9 miles to the arch. The arch and the surrounding area are uniquely beautiful, so it's absolutely worth the effort. You can climb around the arch and into an alcove. I was the only one there today.

1 month ago

Such a fun hike! We had 3 kids ages 4-7 and then did great. Not well marked so make sure you do your research prior. So worth it.

1 month ago

Once you find the turn-off, there are very folksy little metal arrows that will point you the right way. When you get to parking, go through the green gate and go straight, after a few hundred feet look to your right for a footpath that will save you some sandy walking on the two track. Trail from that on is still mostly an OHV trail. If you miss the footpath, you'll eventually run into another dinky little metal sign with an arrow that'll still point you the right way. Great views from the ridge right above the arch, which you can access from the same trail.

1 month ago

Very easy hike with beautiful scenery. Young children and animals should be watched closely and caution used when climbing near the arch. Loose sand can cause some slipping.

1 month ago

This hike was so great with kids. It was easy and the sand under the arch provided lots of entertainment for the littles that were with us.
The directions made us feel a little bit like we were going the wrong direction but it worked out just fine. Recommend a larger vehicle for the road, but cars could do it. Enjoy!

1 month ago

A little hard to find, but look for mile marker #359. There, you will see a off-road dirt road to your left. If you drive about 3/4ths of a mile you will see the sign for the hike in a crossroad. To find the parking area you will have to go left for about 1.5 miles.

2 months ago

short, Sandy, fun arch to climb.

2 months ago

Great hike don’t use google maps takes you to wrong place with a sign that’s says not way to moonshine arch. The correct road is on 191 you go north from vernal to mile marker 359 the 4 illuminator posts there is a road on the left take it then signs from there on to trial head at turn around. We were glad we went.

2 months ago

nice arch. trail is actually an atv/jeep trail. was crowded when we went. lots of people marking the rock with charcoal. the trail head directions linked from here to google maps are wrong. turn off is 1 mile past the stienaker reservior. follow the signs. park at the large green gate

3 months ago

Did this hike over the weekend ,it’s the second time, still as fun and beautiful as the first time. Usually there are other hikers but the trail is wide enough to pass, also the incline killed my husband, he hates hiking but honestly it’s really not that bad. Very easy in and out hike and something fun for the family or by yourself! I recommend it and think you’ll love it just as much as I do!

9 months ago

Amazing!! Road and trail are not well marked, so I uploaded pictures to follow, but wow when you get there it's SOOO worth it! No one else was there, it was private and just incredible. May or may not have encountered a puma...but just keep an eye out while hiking

9 months ago

Great little hike, and road to trailhead is excellent. Easy access with a 2 wheel drive car.

9 months ago

Easy hike that leads to an amazing site!

11 months ago

This is a great hike to start a day! Absolutely beautiful in the morning when the sun is just coming up.
Trailhead and trail are not marked, and can be difficult to find, but that makes this hike great because it is not crowded.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Great hike. Beautiful views. Hard to find trailhead. I recommend bringing insect repellant. By the time we got to the arch the kids were ready to head back because of all the flies and gnats.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Loved it! Really hot and a little steeper than I expected but definately worth the climb. Trail isnt marked well so pay attention.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

This was a good hike with the family. We hiked it on 4/14/17 with two 7 year olds, a 3 year old and a 10 month old in a pack. The trailhead was a bit hard to find, even with really good directions. Once we found it thought we had fun hiking it, even the three year old made it. The arch at the end was neat. I'd recommend it and do it again.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Couldn't find it. Very frustrating for. Tried with posted direction. All private signs. Always been able
To find trails. Oh well

Friday, April 07, 2017

Fabulous hike. Great for families with children. Easily 2 hours or less total. Great views and impressive arch. Hardest part is knowing where to start. The road off 191 is not marked and hard to see from the freeway. Heading north from vernal, it's not quite a mile from the steinaker state park road on the left. It will look like it's just a pull off but there is a dirt road that goes off it. If it is muddy you will need an SUV/four wheel drive but we made it in our small Hyundai on dry roads (although some parts worried me and it could easily change as previous mud and traffic could warp it more) Once you hit the green fence, the trail is straight ahead down the gulch. There are roads going left and right. I do not know where those leads but straight ahead got us there easily:)

Friday, March 24, 2017

Lacking signage, but that's what makes is a "secret"

Saturday, March 18, 2017

We wandered around other parts near the trail after seeing the beautiful arches. Good trail, easy and quick. Good for a season starter or to take the kids! ❤️

Friday, July 22, 2016

Nice trail and beautiful arches.

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Great trail and an easy morning hike.

Monday, April 25, 2016

it was awesome it took us a while to find it because there aren't any signs at the turn off

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Beautiful easy trail.

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