White Rim Trail Bike Trip

Starting From


Number of days


Start Location

Head of the Shafer Trail

End Location

Mineral Canyon

Group Size




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A must in any biker's rites of passage is riding the White Rim Trail mountain bike tour in Canyonlands National Park. Riding on a sandstone bench through a land called "Island in the Sky" you will pass Musselman Arch, Monument Basin, Turks head, Candlestick Tower, and White Crack, a perch 1000 feet above the confluence of the Green and Colorado rivers in the center of Canyonlands... some believe the center of the universe. If you only had time for one Moab area bike trip in your life, the White Rim Trail mountain biking tour in Canyonlands should be the one. The White Rim Trail trail mountain bike trip can also be combined with the Colorado River through Cataract Canyon for the ultimate multi-sport adventure vacation.

Operated by:

Holiday River Expeditions

For over 50 years Holiday River Expeditions has methodically grown its Utah river rafting trips operation with quality staff and gear to all of the best escapes across the ...

Additional Information

One of the advantages of a bike trip is the flexibility of the daily itinerary.  It can vary widely from one trip to the next based on group desires, Mother Nature, and courtesy for other groups in the area.  This typical itinerary illustrates a bike trip through the Island in the Sky District.  The White Rim itinerary will vary with the time of season, weather conditions on the trip, and scheduling of campsites.

Day 1:  Meet group at Holiday River Expeditions headquarters (7:00 a.m., Mountain Time), we will issue your bags.  You can buy any last minute items from our accessories store at this time (see our packing checklist for a list of items you can find at our store).  Before leaving our headquarters, each guest along with a Holiday guide will perform a pre-trip inspection of your bikes.  If you are providing your own bike, please make sure that it is in good repair, we recommend a complete service by a professional shop prior to the trip.  Guests with bikes’ that fail our inspection will be asked to rent a Holiday bike for $160.00/person. A two-hour van ride to the head of the Shafer Trail marks the start of the trip.  The first day's ride will take the group down the switchbacks of the Shafer trail before cutting back south toward Musselman Arch. The trail continues to wind southward as it follows the meandering course of the Colorado River.  Camp on this evening is made at (or near) Gooseberry Canyon.

Day 2:  Our ride will take us over undulating roads past the white, sandstone-capped monoliths of Monument and Twin basins.  Then in the afternoon, up to Murphy's Hogback, the first of this trips’ two challenging uphill stretches. After conquering the hill we will set camp for the night.

Day 3: By the morning of this day the trail has turned back north and is following the contours of the Green River.  We ride around the labyrinths of Soda Springs Basin and by Candlestick Tower before reaching Potato bottom, where we camp for the night.

Day 4:  This morning we will tackle the challenging Hardscrabble incline and visit prehistoric Indian ruins at a lookout point above Fort Bottom.  After descending from Hardscrabble Ridge to river bottom, we will follow the Green River to Mineral Canyon. Our vans will meet us for a 2-hour drive back to Green River. Our expected time of arrival back at our headquarters is 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.

As mentioned earlier, this is a sample itinerary and should not be thought of as the trip you will experience.  It is intended to give an idea of what the trip will be like. It could also be exactly what you do.  Keep an open mind, be flexible, go with the flow, and enjoy!

***The Bicycling:  The White Rim bike route is a technically challenging route.  This undeveloped dirt road has steep downhills, loose rocks, sand, and ruts.  Riders who have no off-road bicycling experience, or who are not athletic will most likely find this trip too challenging.  All riders should prepare for the trip by riding their bike on a regular basis prior to the trip.


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