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Shafer Trail

MODERATE 115 reviews
#7 of 77 trails in

Shafer Trail is a 19.2 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Moab, Utah that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for mountain biking and scenic driving and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 19.2 miles Elevation Gain: 3,116 feet Route Type: Point to Point

mountain biking

scenic driving

views

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

This is an off-road driving route that can be done in either direction. This route offers incredible views of Dead Horse Point and Canyonlands National Park. The portion of this road that leads to the Canyonlands Visitor Center is closed during winter.

off road driving
20 days ago

FYI, No OHV allowed on Shafer Trail, we had rented a Yamaha Wolverine but were not allowed to drive out on this trail :-(

off road driving
1 month ago

I don't like heights. The edges are very close to the car and it is hard to pass other drivers with only a few pull off points. My driver was confident and skilled but other novice drivers stopping in terrible spots that we had to pass made me so nervous.

off road driving
1 month ago

I highly recommend taking this trail when you are you looking to fit several trails in a day. We took it after Gemini bridges and Long Canyon road and it was the perfect end to the day. The views are spectacular! Make sure your camera batteries are charged with plenty of space on your memory card. It's a very photogenic trail. It's easy enough for most vehicles.

2 months ago

Completed this drive upwards in a stock Honda CRV. No issues though do not attempt if you are uncomfortable with heights. Saw a bighorn sheep at the start. Great views and fun way to start off a trip to Canyonlands.

off road driving
bugs
2 months ago

Views are beyond excellent!!! Go up the Moab (city) side to save some money. Just about anything with AWD can do this! Careful going through the salt company's property. If you're going up during bug season (as we did) remember to take repellent (we didn't). Would recommend airing down as the washboard is pretty annoying. Dropping to 20PSI would have been much better for us, and its close enough to get back into town and air back up at the gas station if you don't have on board air. After completing the trail I had more mosquito bites than pictures - but the picture I took were spectacular.

off road driving
2 months ago

Awesome fun drive for a stock 4 wheel drive or better vehicle. We started out of Moab so we could drive up the Shafer Switchback section - easier than coming down! Some great vistas, particularly at Thelma & Louise Lookout point. If you are lucky you will get to see some desert bighorn sheep along the drive!

off road driving
rocky
scramble
2 months ago

blast of a trail.

off road driving
3 months ago

Amazingly beautiful scenery; it's spoiled for me the paved, touristy overlooks at some of my favorite parks. The trail itself is not difficult our technical in a lifted Wrangler. The steep incline towards the end of the trail is fun with amazing overlooks.

off road driving
3 months ago

Easy trail in a RZR1000. No challenges or obstacles. Beautiful views of the Potash ponds and Dead Horse. You will find yourself right across the river of Dead Horse Point. A gravel road with a few rocky bumps.

off road driving
4 months ago

Absolutely beautiful and amazing views. We had so much fun just enjoying the natural views of UTAH.

off road driving
4 months ago

A lot of highlights in Moab and this is one of them. We started on 279 out of Moab and through Potash road on to Shafers Trial up to Island in the Sky. We stopped off at Corona Arch / Pinto Arch (versus going to Arches NP with crowds and crowds of people). The trail starts off rough but ok for my lifted 4x4 Jeep. Used low-gear for a couple of inclines but didn't necessarily have too,,,,but I wouldn't want to be there without 4-wheel drive. After the Potash area the road smooth's out a little and is a little better. We took a couple of side trails and stopped off at the base of the Deadhorse Point park at the Colorado River. We had the doors off the Jeep and that's what really made the ride fun. The 'fear of height's' wife in the front seat struggled for a while (she didn't know what we were getting into) but came to terms with a few peeks and glances as we climbed up the canyon wall road. Absolutely gorgeous drive and ride up to the top. Didn't do the top down ride but really can't think of it being better. I would suggest if you have a 4x4 or rent a 4x4, take 279 route out of Moab and go up the trail to Island in the Sky.

off road driving
4 months ago

Very easy drive, drove it from Canyonlands towards the Colorado River in a stock 2016 Ram 1500. Trail is very easy. The first half doing the switchbacks and being down in the canyon was great. The drive did get a bit exhausting towards the end by the evap pools (but it was our 4th day of off-roading) - maybe stop for lunch half-way through. Would do again.

off road driving
4 months ago

Fun, easy drive. There a couple areas where ground clearance helps but if you're looking for an easy drive, this is you're drive. Very scenic!

4 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

dry 2018 Ford f150 4x4, 5.5 bed

5 months ago

I've driven this trail three times, twice in a long bed crew cab 4x4 pickup, and now in a Jeep Cherokee. It was much easier and more comfortable in the Cherokee, though we made it ok in the pickup with some backing and filling around the switchbacks. The road is in great shape and does not require any significant off-road capability. A little extra ground clearance is handy in a few places but even there if you take it slow you're ok. Take folding chairs and a picnic lunch to enjoy at the beautiful overlook of the Colorado river. Great road, fun day!

off road driving
5 months ago

Great time driving up this morning. Stock Jeep with no problems. Many Geocaches along the way. Two lane road with easy passing all the way.

mountain biking
6 months ago

The first several miles wind through the Utah salt mine industrial stuff which is a little off putting but once you are past that it is really beautiful. It is a good road as far as not a ton of traffic with jeeps and motorcycles since it is not a hard 4x4 road. The dirt road is rocky in section but not very rocky, nothing for a mountain bike but I was trying to access how I would do on my cross bike. I think it would be fine. I met a gentleman fro Holland who rented a skinny tire electric bike with bags and he had to walk a few sections but seemed to do ok. Great ride for exercise and views for riders who don’t want the harder tech stuff that Moab has to offer. I loved that you can see the trail from Deadhorse point, as I have been going there for years and always wondered how you get to the rode below. Don’t let my miles fool you, I just rode back to town on Potash road after, great ride.

6 months ago

really pretty scenery, easy jeeping.

off road driving
6 months ago

Had a great trip today, got on the trail at Potash Rd, then to White Rim to Lathrop Rd and then back tracked up the switch-backs and out, amazing drive and not as bad as I had been told ...

off road driving
6 months ago

Beautiful viewpoints. It’s not as scary as people made it out to be if the switchbacks are dry, and the turns are actually pretty wide. We managed going down the switchbacks and completed the trail in a Kia Sportage. It was awesome!!

off road driving
7 months ago

Trail met expectations. Some beautiful viewpoints of the Colorado River. Very few obstacles. After doing long canyon road, this was a BREEZE. Completed in a completely stock 2013 Nissan Xterra. Used 4WD on 5-10% of trail. Made it out and back to the split between Canyonlands and white rim trail in 2-2.5 hrs. Trail is well-marked and can be done by off-roading novices in stock vehicles with sufficient clearance (4 runner, Tacoma, Xterra, FJ, etc.). ROAD TO CANYONLANDS VISITOR'S CENTER CLOSED IN WINTER. You will not be able to complete the trail as shown on AllTrails. Must go out and back.

off road driving
10 months ago

Great scenery! Easy drive.

off road driving
10 months ago

My family loved this way of getting to know Canyonlands NP. We did not have any trouble with our Subaru Outback. Really worth it, but I would be really hesitant to drive it if the weather is not forgiving

off road driving
11 months ago

Who is the jeep and start off our day on this trail I had a great time! Great views and easy 4 x 4 driving

off road driving
Thursday, September 20, 2018

Very cool trail to start with when visiting Moab.

off road driving
Thursday, September 20, 2018

We went to visit Canyonlands and stopped at the visitors center because I was interested in some off road trails. The ranger suggested this trail, I have a stock 2010 4Runner, I would recommend a high clearance vehicle even though I can only remember maybe 3-4 spots that required good tire placement to keep your vehicle from bottoming out. Even though all the over looks in the park where awesome, nothing matched up to driving this trail. Family friendly (will be bumpy), took about 2 hours but you’ll want to give yourself more because your going to be stopping a lot. I would consider this an off the grid type trail so be prepared for anything.

off road driving
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

If you really want to see Canyonlands and have a high clearance vehicle I definitely recommend this trail. Went with my girlfriend in my pro4x frontier. I want to make it clear I have no experience off road driving. I wanted an intro trail that I wouldn’t have to be rock crawling on or doing something that would potentially be harmful to my truck (I’m 2,300 miles from home). This trail was perfect. There are many conflicting reviews but if you want an amazing experience and can handle a little adrenaline, do not pass this up. I drove the Beartooth Highway a week ago and this trail ranks up there with it as one of the top highlights of our trip. There are a few rocky parts where my 9” ground clearance def helped but we also passed an old couple in a sedan coming up past the bad parts. Make sure you ask the ranger if there have been any washouts. No permit needed. Enjoy

off road driving
Friday, September 07, 2018

Drove this trail yesterday in an almost stock Wrangler JKU. It’s a very scenic trail, easy in a Jeep, though We did see a 1980’s Chevy van running it as well. The GPS co-ords are wrong for the start of the trail. You need to go to the end of 279 to start.

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