MOAB – As the long summer days make their slow march toward autumn, you might be thinking about cooler climates and crisp, colorful foliage. Maybe you want to hone your photography skills or take your off-highway vehicle, all-terrain vehicle, out on a trail. Whatever it is, look no further than the Utah desert region of Moab to satisfy your quest for the outdoors and plan your fall escape.
Whether you are driving a recreational vehicle with toys in tow or hooking up for the creature comforts of home, Moab satisfies a wilderness experience with an amazing diversity of camping conditions.
Moab’s motorized visitors often request assistance for camping close to ATV or four-wheel drive, 4×4 trails to forego hauling a trailer to trailheads.
To ride an OHV out of camp Discover Moab recommends camping in Horsethief Camp, Ledge Camps or in Sand Flats Recreation area or reserve a campsite with Archview Resort or Kane Springs Campground.
If the OHV is street legal, OK RV Park, Spanish Valley Trail RV Park and Ron’s Pack Creek Campground have trails accessible nearby.
Some powersports machines are loud. Be considerate of driving during ‘quiet’ hours which are generally 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. in campgrounds. Adhere to quiet hours in the rural places of Moab as well for the sake of the residents.
For those preferring to travel lighter, Moab has ample outfitters to take you, lead you or rent to you the equipment needed to explore an enormous inventory of public lands and trails.
Finding a campground
Camping is a primary activity for Moab, and campsites in some areas such as Dead Horse Point State Park and Arches and Canyonlands National Parks tend to fill up early. Visit the parks’ websites to secure your camping spot early.
Camping with kids? Select the campground at Ken’s Lake – a Bureau of Land Management campground – for its proximity to water, sure to be a favorite with children. A short trail links the reservoir to the campground and two additional trails are close by for more activity from camp.
Many other family friendly campsites are available throughout the Moab area and can be found by searching for features like pools, arcades, hiking trails and playgrounds.
Moab Area Travel Council has pages of campground listings for Moab in three categories:
- Bureau of Land Management sites
- Commercial campgrounds
- Sites operated by Dead Horse Point State Park, Forest Service and Arches or Canyonlands National Parks
Leave only footprints
Surrounding wildlands are fragile, in order to protect the natural features found in the desert southeast it is important for campers to adhere to the Leave No Trace principles that guide proper outdoor etiquette.
For those camping in primitive sites be mindful that it is required to pack out all human waste and toilet paper from your campsite. Wag Bags – personal refuse systems – are advised for day trips or consider renting an outdoor toilet from Tag-A-Long Expeditions, Canyon Voyages or Moab River Rentals for your overnight excursion into the wilderness.
Alternative options to primitive camping include BLM sites which provide, at the bare minimum, pit toilets, or commercial campsites equipped with flush toilets and sometimes showers.
Take only pictures
Want to channel your inner Ansel Adams? Then not to be overlooked on your Moab retreat are photography tours. The changing light on red rock landscapes is astounding in this region and getting tips from local photographers will help turn those memories into indelible snippets of your visit.
Use the results of your new skills to enter your shot of one of the national parks accessed from Moab – Canyonlands and Arches – to enter a contest.
Share the Experience, is accepting national park images until December 31 for the 2014 photo contest and has added a new category this year for night skies.
Red Rock Astronomy offers tours for gazing into the night sky with a telescope.
Among the Moab area’s other offerings are golf, auto tours and self-guided rock art tours.
For more information visit the Discover Moab website
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