Moab Utah, Oasis in the Desert by Paul Badame
Moab Utah, sparks comments like where'n the hell...Well it's in the heart of the most spactacular desert beauty in the world. Adventures like Colorado River rafting trips and jaw dropping hiking in one of 7 surrounding National Parks or State Parks are just the tip of the iceberg for this tiny community start on the heels of uranium mining. Moab has grown out of it's mining days and is finding it's way through the struggle of being a growing adventure tourism destination.
The population of 5-8,000 people range in backgrounds from the ancestors of original pioneers to eclectic artists looking for solitude and peace. River trips, Jeep tours, hiking, mountain biking, and rock climbing have all put this little spot on the international adventure map.
River Trips on the Colorado river and Green River carry over 100,000 visitors a year down the ancient conyons of the area. Currnetly over 20 companies offer river rafting trips on theses two rivers.
Jeeping and 4-wheeling on the desert slickrock is one of the most unique adventures found here. The annual Jeep Safari in April typically brings 40-50,000 people. National rock crawling competitions garner great audiences; and one of the newest additions hummer tours have been a huge hit.
Mountian biking and Climbing both have found international fame as well. It's impossible today to pick up a climbing magazine and not find at least one (if not 20) spectacular photo of someone climbing in or near Moab. Mountian bikers flock here from all over the world to test themselves on the slickrock trails.
For those of us here year-round we get all these desert adventures to ourselves in the winter. Another winter secret of Moab are the La Sal Mountains with some of the most amazing back country skiing to be found in Utah. One road is maintained and plowed all winter taking skiers to an access point at 9,000 feet, which gaurantees starting in great snow. Utah has always been known for the greatest snow on earth, but it's not all in Salt Lake City.
About the Author
Paul is a Fisheries Biologist and resident of Moab Utah. His web site chronicles countless river trips and desert adventures.