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Destination Showcase - Greater Zion, UT

Jan 6, 2022
by Tory Powers  


GREATER ZION, UT
Wild Riding of the West
Photo & Words: Tory Powers
Riders: Kaylee Gibbs, Ryan Rodriguez, Chelsea Kimball
Presented by Greater Zion


Our biological instinct to want to explore is something that is rooted deep within us - something that the trail builders of the Greater Zion area in Southwestern Utah made sure to implore in their construction of this entire area. Every trail feels like an adventure as unique terrain and breathtaking views are implemented in every inch of Greater Zion, just 170 miles northeast from McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.

I’ve spent the last four years traveling to the Greater Zion area for Red Bull Rampage to shoot some of the world’s best freeride mountain bike athletes, only to hear stories about the world-class cycling that lay above me, atop the mesas. I finally had the chance to take an in-depth look at the terrain that would change the way I view Utah mountain biking forever.

We may have been pretty ambitious with all of the riding we wanted to get done over our three-day trip, but it is possible. However, give yourself at least a couple extra days if you want the full experience of Greater Zion riding.

Grafton Mesa

Our first day began exploring the southern mesas above Virgin, the home turf of Red Bull Rampage and Rockville, both home to some classic riding. Grafton was an obvious first choice. Not only is Grafton entirely shuttle-able (either via 4x4 from Rockville or a longer, smoother back route out of Hurricane), but it encompasses some of the most diverse riding in the area. Grafton is most well known for the trail “Grafton Mesa” which ends near the infamous Grafton Road Gap, but it’s not just double black riding here.

The crew enjoying the warm sun as it quickly heats the desert valley.

Up top you’re gifted with full 360-degree views on Dig It. Nothing beats morning light hitting Zion National Park in the distance. Dig It, while being a black trail, has multiple line options as well as roll arounds for some of the bigger features. If you’re wanting to push yourself a bit, or maybe just take a look from afar, this zone would be great for you. A lot of the riding in Greater Zion sits on top of these mesas, but they're more than just quick ups and downs.

What beats big trains with perfect light?
Ryan keeping speed over one of the many rock features on Dig It.

There was a solid mixture of man-made and natural features.
Ryan wanted to add a little spice to this already technical off-camber rock hit.

While there wasn't much elevation during this section, where there was, it was steep.

After making your way north across the mesa, you’ll find yourself at the infamous Grafton Mesa overlook.


What you can see below you might make you really stoked... or really nervous. This trail is rated a double black and it’s that way for all of the right reasons. Look ahead and you see big, sharp rocks that are mandatory hits, look to your right and you see 100-foot cliffs, dwelling a mere 10 feet or less to your side.


This trail is no joke... a downhill-only trail covering 720 feet of descent over just one mile.


Once you reach the Grafton Ghost Town and cemetery, you know your technical riding can finally come to a close.

Grafton Mesa mountain biking trails

Make sure to take the drive up to Springdale, the entrance to Zion National Park, for some outstanding food. We grabbed Ryan not one, but two, nitro cold brews from Deep Creek Coffee Co. before making the ridiculously long trek across the street to a local favorite, Oscar’s. I cannot express with words how satisfied I was with their food. I was instantly sold on their Pork Philly that’s slow roasted for eight hours. Eight hours, guys. If there’s anything in this article you want to fully believe the hype on, trust me.

Kaylee's Portobello burger wasn't a bad choice either.

I was thankful December in Greater Zion is temperate, because a bunch of pork maybe isn't the best thing to eat before riding. Up next we headed back up the 4x4 road to get to Gooseberry Mesa. Gooseberry lies just west of Grafton and is actually completely connected via singletrack (albeit ten miles, but thankfully only 265ft of elevation gain), if you’re feeling frisky.

Gooseberry Mesa


Gooseberry is another must if you’re in the area. This is the zone I had heard the most cyclists in the area mention when I asked about the Greater Zion trails. We quickly made our way out to the west end of Gooseberry, which is also where you’ll find the most ultimate viewpoints.


Gooseberry, while similar in style to how the slickrock trails of Moab are designed, felt extremely unique. There was a lot of flow through the rocky zones while also keeping things fast with intermittent singletrack and hard pack. The west side felt like a playground with a near infinite amount of lines through some areas and with some of the most stunning views.

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While we didn’t get a chance to ride every trail in the area, we did take a look at North + South Rim, as well as Hidden Canyon, my personal favorite. As we were returning to our car, we took Hidden Canyon as a bit of a shortcut, and I can’t tell you how incredibly excited I was to ride that trail. Unfortunately, the sun was setting quickly as we powered through, but this area felt otherworldly with multiple deep-rock cutouts and trail meandering under millions of years of history.


Serene, final moments of sun aligning with the unique ecosystem of Gooseberry.

Gooseberry Mesa mountain biking trails


St. George

For day two, we took a short trip down to St. George to check out what our friends down south had for us to see. We started our morning at the Snake Hollow Bike Park which has over 80 acres of terrain and is the only year-round bike park in all of Utah. I think those details speak for themselves.


Nestled up against the iconic red rocks, Snake Hollow has multiple dirt jump lines, slopestyle, and pumptracks. But to me, what was really unique compared to all of the bike parks I grew up riding around Colorado was their inclusion of flow lines. Their slopestyle area also has rhythm sections and lines built similar to dual slalom tracks which kept things feeling very interesting. On top of all of that, there was an entire back section with a smaller skills park that’s perfect for the whole family.



After lunch, we had to go see for ourselves if the trails of St. George compared to the amazing riding we had seen the day prior. In the Green Valley area, we began on Bearclaw Poppy, which had what I would call the “freeride Jr.” zone known as “Five Fingers.” This was pretty cool to see in a public access zone, one main drop point led to five or more lines with varying difficulties.



If you continue along past Five Fingers, you get some very moderate green pedaling. Next, we hopped on the Barrel blue connector to ride the lower section of Barrel also known as “Playground.” We saw some local kids riding this zone, likely because of the freedom of line choice, as well as incrementally larger hits. Lots of natural and man-made hits made this section ridiculously fun. Up higher on Barrel, which we didn’t have time to see, is some really technical rocky terrain that a lot of local pros ride consistently for training.

Riding along Barrel felt like we were in a 3D postcard.

Ryan hitting the "river gap" after getting hyped up by some local groms.
Kaylee sending the biggest drop along the trail.

We saved the best for last - the Zen Trail. The Zen Loop is a six-mile ride with just over one thousand feet of vert. If you ride counter-clockwise like we did, you get a pretty painful climb up to the edge of the mesa, but it is absolutely worth it.

Approaching another huge cliffside, Kaylee and Ryan slide through the cuts of slickrock.

As you approach the cliffside, you’re instantly greeted by massive slickrock and towering boulders.


Ryan catching the last moments of light towards the summit of Zen Trail.

Kaylee sneaking under a rock outcropping.

This trail had a lot more old-school tech riding than Grafton and Gooseberry, and also more fast, flowy, continuous riding. If you want a ride that feels more like a mountain bike ride and less playful, that’s what St. George can offer you.

You can never run out of spectacular views + sunsets in Greater Zion.

Green Valley mountain biking trails

Guacamole

Our final day was spent back at higher elevation, and this time just across the valley from our first day on Grafton and Gooseberry. We began our morning over on Guacamole, just north of Virgin. Guacamole has a very similar style of terrain to Gooseberry with countless pillow slickrocks and moderate elevation.

The unlimited lines of Guacamole.

You can link up 22 miles of unique riding or take extra laps around one of the many loops. You begin on Margarita, a nice mellow blue pedal over slick rock as far as the eye can see. It can get a bit tricky to follow sometimes, but just keep an eye out for one of the many cairns. All along the way approaching Guacamole and Holy Guacamole, the two back loops, you’re riding along the base of Crater Hill, a dormant volcano from nearly 120,000 years ago, as well as the classic view of Zion in the background.

The crew riding through the old basins alongside Crater Hill.

As you approach Guacamole, you ride through burnt trees and tall grass with the sight of large slickrock just over your horizon.

Here, the first big loop starts, so pick your poison as you make your way back to why you really came, Holy Guacamole. You’ll meander through terrain very similar to Gooseberry all along the remainder of Margarita. Shortly after hopping onto Holy Guacamole, if you’re going counter-clockwise, you will find yourself surrounded by petrified wood, some of it is even showing itself in the trail down the way.

Petrified wood poking its way into the singletrack.
Unique geology lines the entirety of the trail.


High speed found approaching the backside of Holy Guacamole.

Were you sick of valley overlooks atop of mesas yet? Good, we aren’t either. You’re bound to find at least one of these on nearly every trail you ride in Greater Zion, and the view never gets old.


Is there anything Ryan can't stoppie?

Guacamole mountain biking trails


Wire Mesa

For our final leg of riding here in Utah, we headed back across the valley one last time to see Wire Mesa. The farthest east of the trail systems we experienced in Greater Zion, Wire Mesa had the most stunning views of Zion.


Wire is, overall, a very mellow ride, a seven-mile blue trail atop the mesa with only about 550 feet of elevation change. You won’t be bored though because the mix of alternate black routes and fast, hardpacked sections make this trail a grand old time.

Flowing along the west side of Wire Mesa.
Kaylee flying through a natural-rock pumptrack along Wire Mesa.

Kaylee chasing Ryan through the dusty sunset.

Last light on Wire as we made our way back out.

Plus, making it out to the “Diving Board” is a spectacle in and of itself. We made sure to time our sunset with landing here, which made for a dark ride out, but it was well worth it. One last 360-degree view to close out our trip with a perfect cotton candy sunset and the castle rocks towering above us, even from afar.

Relaxing as Zion lights up more red than seems natural.

Wire Mesa mountain biking trails

Greater Zion may have earned a lot of its fame from Red Bull Rampage and being known as the freeride capital of the world, but I can promise you, that is merely scratching the surface of what there is to find across the many mesas. Come here not only to experience Zion National Park, but bring your bike and be sure to ride anything and everything. I guarantee it'll be as memorable for you as it was for us.

Local Knowledge

Getting There:

• Fly into the St. George Regional Airport (SGU) with daily connections from Salt Lake City on Delta, Denver on United and Phoenix on American; (Dallas-Fort Worth seasonally beginning in March)
• Drive – Greater Zion is just off Interstate 15. Just 90 minutes north of Las Vegas and four hours
south of Salt Lake City. 


The Climate (not like the rest of Utah!)

• Climate can change drastically during the year and throughout the day and depending on what
elevation you are at.
• Winters are mild with highs in the 50s or 60s, great for all outdoor adventures. Chilly in the
evening and early morning, but nothing layers can’t handle.
• Summers the temperatures range from the 80s-90s with some days reaching upwards of 100
degrees.
• Expect dry heat and come prepared with plenty of water.


- The Wildlife:

Greater Zion is the only place on the planet where the Mojave Desert, the Colorado Plateau and the Great Basin merge. With this diverse landscape comes many types of wildlife and plant species. Most wildlife is elusive, but you may occasionally, on mountain bike trails and public lands, encounter the protected desert tortoise, coyotes, kit foxes, quail, roadrunners (meep meep!), leopard lizards, gopher snakes and canyon tree frogs. Vegetation includes desert-adapted species such as creosote bush, narrow leaf yucca, sand sage, blackbrush, scrub oak and desert willow.


- Bike shops and repairs:

Bicycles Unlimited
Bike Fix Utah
IBBC Cyclery & Multisport
Over the Edge Sports
Rapid Cycling
Red Coyote Cyclery
Red Rock Bicycle
Zion Cycles
See full list here.

- Guiding and shuttle services:

Bike Zion
Mountain Bike Buddies
Paragon Adventure
Red Coyote Cyclery
Ride On
Utah Mountain Bike Tours
Utah Mountain Biking Adventures
Zion Cycles


- Food and Drink:

See full list here.

Hurricane
• Pig’s Ear American Bistro – beautiful dishes and beautiful views with a wide variety of choices including many for the health-conscious individual and the not-so-health conscious individual. Lunch and dinner.
• Lonny Boy’s BBQ – rustic joint with all the barbeque favorites. Lunch and dinner.
• Main Street Cafe - Cozy, vibrant cafe offering wide-ranging & vegan-friendly American dishes, plus a shaded patio. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Muddy Bees Bakery - Baked breads and healthy options, also licensed beekeepers with local, flower-fed, non-medicated honey available for sale. Breakfast and lunch.

La Verkin
• River Rock Roasting Company – A local’s favorite, River Rock offers some of the best coffee around, pastries, hot breakfast items and amazing views over the Virgin River Gorge. Enjoy a pizza, burger or salad and beer with a view later in the day! Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Stage Coach Grille - Charming, wood-filled mainstay with a nostalgic vibe, turning out elevated American classics. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Springdale
• Oscar’s Café – A local favorite, Oscar’s serves casual Mexican, burgers, and vegetarian fare. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Camp Outpost Company – Recently opened, this American dining experience serves quality, rotisserie-driven comfort food. Located in the Desert Pearl Inn with ample outdoor seating in a nostalgic, camp-like setting. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Bit & Spur Restaurant & Saloon – A popular cantina for contemporary Mexican and southwestern fare plus a robust selection of craft beers. Dinner.
• King’s Landing Bistro – a classic American restaurant with great views and full bar. Dinner.
• Switchback Grille - Contemporary restaurant offering mountain views through large windows and a menu of steak, seafood & wine. Dinner.

Virgin
• The Cactus Room Restaurant - Don’t judge a book by its cover, this souvenir shop/restaurant is known for its bison and wagyu burgers and popular pies. Lunch and dinner.
• Balcony One – Upscale southwest barbeque in a rustic elegance, featuring steaks, salads, pasta, as well as a full bar. Lunch and dinner.

St. George
• George’s Corner – great American fair (fried chicken is awesome) with a peek into the past – the restaurant is decorated with images of the region’s history. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Benja’s Thai & Sushi – Select from some of the best Asian food in St. George. Lunch and dinner.
• Station II by Zion Brewery - Sample beer at the recently opened Station II Bar by Zion Brewery. The restored 1918 firehouse features a taproom, lounge, patio and billiards room. Outside food and beverage is welcome – even grab a pizza or pasta from The Pizza/Pasta Factory across the street before you hit the bar. (Open after 4 p.m. daily.)
• Cliffside Restaurant – dinner or lunch with a view, overlooking the city and all the way out to the peaks of Zion. Upscale, but comfortable, dining.
• Wood. Ash. Rye. – high-end small plates and craft cocktails in The Advenire hotel in downtown St. George. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• Red Fort Indian Cuisine – rated THE top restaurant in St. Georg for several years running. Authentic cuisine and setting. Lunch and dinner.
• Angelica’s Mexican Grill – If you love street tacos, this is the place in downtown St. George. Delicious meat choices and a salsa bar which is a small marvel. Lunch and dinner.


Curated Lists of Favorites Across Greater Zion:

Places to Enjoy a Drink
Hot Chocolate Offerings – warm up after a cooler day of mountain biking
Uniquely Greater Zion
Coffee Shops


- Must Dos:
Snow Canyon State Park – Miles of hiking and views for days – and made famous by movies like “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” – with slot canyons, arches, pioneer routes, lava tubes, and petrified sand dunes.
Tuacahn Center for the Arts – Broadway-style shows in the summer; concerts and performances across the other seasons; plus a Saturday market.
Quail Creek State Park – Paddleboarding, kayaking boating, swimming, camping
Sand Hollow State Park – OHV on Sand Mountain, paddleboarding, kayaking, boating, jet skiing
Via Ferrata -- Combine scaling the steep face of gorgeous canyon walls with the security of iron- rung ladders and safety cables – one of the only places in this country that has this quest.
Zion National Park after dark to observe the dark sky (certified International Dark Sky Park)


Regions in Article
Zion National Park


163 Comments

  • 85 25
 The St. George/Zion area is one of the coolest places on planet earth and I highly recommend it but be warned, most of the riding is surprisingly bland. You can get into some really gnarly Rampage type stuff like Flying Monkey or the old Rampage site which is a cool hike-a-bike experience, but the networks featured here are mostly flat and pedaly, the kind of trails that were fun on bikes from the late 90s but not so much by modern bike and trail standards. There’s just not a lot of elevation to work with. If you’re into technical pedaling you’ll be stoked but if you’re looking to charge on your 160mm enduro, just do your homework first; you might be disappointed. It’s a gorgeous destination, especially when the weather is nasty elsewhere, but the riding always left me wanting a bit.
  • 64 8
 I'm not sure if I agree. The riding is great and it's a beautiful desert, that's what you get. And it's not boring, not everything needs to be A-line.
  • 40 2
 I feel like the riding in st george and southern utah in general is awesome….actually you’re right. No one go here Wink
  • 24 1
 I like the riding, but it is kind of at two extremes for the most part. It's mostly either Rampage style gnar or very rolling pedally technical slick rock (e.g. Gooseberry). There are some exceptions. for most of the riding, a trail bike is plenty (suggest 29er for rolling all the square rock edges).

My personal beef with it, just from a vacation destination aspect, is that the food and coffee in Hurricane/La Verkin/St. George sucks. River Rock is very mediocre and always packed, Stagecoach is mediocre and super overpriced ($50 for two burgers with no drinks). The couple of places I went in Springdale were crazy expensive for what you got, especially for coffee.
  • 13 0
 @blackercanyons: most of the riding is very punchy and technical, with very little being rampage type gnar. And you’re right, the food and accommodations in the area suck and are overpriced. Conversely, the camping is sick and you can just cook for yourself.

I would much rather hike or climb on a trip to the area and do a little hucking at the old rampage site
  • 4 30
flag DoubleCrownAddict (Jan 4, 2022 at 7:20) (Below Threshold)
 You go there to watch Rampage. Don't stick around for the riding unless you brought a big bike and are doing the Kong trail or the original Rampage site.
  • 5 0
 At the end of the day, it's desert riding and people either love it, or hate it. I aboslutely love it and could session tech climbs all day, but I'm glad it's not the only kind of riding I have available to me. It's nice to get some proper descents every now and then.
  • 3 0
 It's a great place to sharpen you technical pedaling skills.
  • 3 4
 its also way too crowded, hence why i moved. Good luck riding gooseberry mesa and bearclaw poppy. Usually these areas are full of massive groups of familys riding together.
  • 7 0
 The riding is a blast but you are right, it is techy and slower. Don't be expecting to be ripping along at 20 mph down flowy never ending singletrack. It will work ya though having to weave through lines and doing a bunch of extra bike movements, so much so that a 7 to 8 mile ride will be plenty for those who regularly do 15+ mile rides back home.
  • 7 0
 @Dlakusta: I agree with your disagreement. It’s a different type of riding. Sure, it’s mostly a lot tamer than trails in actual mountains but everything I’ve done in the St. George area is great in its own right. I learned more about technical riding in 2 hrs at Gooseberry Mesa than I had in the 4 years prior. Bear Claw is great, especially if you take the longer Stucki Springs route (but don’t forget the Fingers on your way back). Above Bear Claw on the Mesa to the East is Zen—basically a short and sweet Gooseberry with a decent climb and descent on the way in and out.

I kind of wish Pb wouldn’t feature these lesser known places. They’ve already increased in traffic 10x over the last 6 years.
  • 2 0
 @blackercanyons: Yeah I'd probably opt for Las Vegas over that area and have more options for food and entertainment. Utah is definitely filled with incredible outdoor stuff that you probably could spend your lifetime exploring.
  • 7 0
 @foggnm: bootleg canyon is wild
  • 1 0
 I like St George a lot but agree with the OP it's rolling blues or rocky, exposed double blacks. For those squarely in the middle it can be choice between boredom or overly challenging. Zen is one of the few that sits in the middle but a trip is easily combined with Vegas for some more options.
  • 5 1
 I disagree. I grew up just north of the St George area and it's gotten even better with the evolution of mountain biking. Taking a modern mid-travel trail bike on Gooseberry, Guac and the Boy Scout Trails is alway a great time. the only trails I can confidently say are a "Pedal up for the long downhill" are Zen and Barrel.
  • 1 0
 Very well described opinion of this area. felt the same way with my experience. Cool stuff because I had never ridden anything like it, but def very flat and pedaly feel to most of the riding locations. I wish i spent more time at the old rampage site and had a larger crew with me.
  • 5 1
 It’s definitely not your pervasive spoon-fed flow trail system. The challenging trails require power, and skill- otherwise you will get manhandled. There are tons of entry-level to intermediate level trails and just a spattering of gut-busters.
I make the drive down every winter during a strong winter ridge.
  • 1 0
 @blackercanyons: and the FB in St George is a absolute freak show.
  • 2 0
 I don't enjoy pedalling, but when done righteously, it's just a chore like any other.
  • 67 6
 Please stop telling people to come to Utah.
  • 12 0
 For real..
  • 35 4
 You realize these pieces are sponsored by the local visitor's bureau, right?
  • 19 0
 @toast2266: local tourism boards/city councils and local residents do not have the same goals. Ask people who live in Moab. They had the opportunity to route all those semi trucks around town, and the local government voted against it. No resident there wants those trucks going through town all day every day.
  • 8 14
flag DoubleCrownAddict (Jan 4, 2022 at 7:18) (Below Threshold)
 @toast2266: Is there any other state that spends more money trying to attract visitors than Utah?
  • 2 0
 @toast2266: oh I know...
  • 10 2
 @blackercanyons: The local residents elected the city council. And the city council and the local businesses are the primary source of funding for the tourism board. So if the local residents don't like it, it's up to them to change it.

Of course, those local residents live in an area where 90% of the economy is driven by tourism, so they'll likely find themselves unemployed if they bite the hand that feeds.
  • 22 1
 @DoubleCrownAddict: Arkansas, you know the self proclaimed mountain bike capital of the world lol
  • 8 0
 @toast2266: Yes, and Utah's marketing blitz over the last 10 years has ruined it.
  • 8 2
 @toast2266: when a large portion of the working population has to live in their vehicle on BLM land to be able to afford to work there, something is wrong. sure, the business owners have nice houses and are raking in dough and will continue to vote for stupid ass policies like voting down a highway that would reroute all the semis around downtown or continuing to allow SxS's to drive through town, but the business owners aren't the majority of the residents, they just have the money to influence the outcomes.
  • 4 0
 @blackercanyons: that's a problem with almost every town with a tourism based economy. And it's a big problem, to be sure.

But trying to limit the tourism isn't going to fix that. The cat's out of the bag, and even if you could limit tourism, that just means less money for everyone.

Expecting livable wages and enacting affordable housing measures are going to work a lot better.
  • 3 10
flag unrooted (Jan 4, 2022 at 9:27) (Below Threshold)
 Hey everyone from California: look at what kind of house/land a measly $500,000 will get you in southern Utah, plus their taxes are much lower.
  • 11 1
 The trails aren't yours. You just live near them.
  • 5 0
 Pretty much the economy of southern Utah is tourism isn't it? Why would you want that?
  • 5 2
 Utah sucks, now leave.
  • 4 1
 @blackercanyons: in Moab the town and the county have vastly different opinions on tourism. The town is against it, county is for it. It’s a real struggle.
  • 1 0
 Well you've got about a decade to plead your case to the International Olympic Committee
  • 5 5
 @unrooted: We do not need more commifornians moving to Utah. They are already flooding here by the thousands.
  • 4 0
 @unrooted: no............the problems need to stay in CA
  • 2 4
 @Greener43: then maybe st George will become the nice place it could be.
  • 2 4
 @Greener43: wah wah wah California is soo bad. The people suck wah wah wah stfu with that “ Utah is better” bs mindset.
  • 2 0
 @unrooted: it is a nice place. more people aren't going to make it better.
  • 2 1
 @blackercanyons: maybe if there’s more people there might be a decent restaurant or coffee shop in the greater St George area, as well as more trails.
  • 1 0
 @unrooted: I'll take mediocre coffee for fewer people. and there are plenty of trails. If I want good coffee and better food and 5 million people on the trails, I'll go to Moab or Tahoe or the Front Range.
  • 1 0
 @unrooted: also, you don't need a lot of people to have good coffee. I live in a town of 2000 people in BFE and the coffee here is as good as anything I've had across the US. There is no "benefit" to having more people that I would be willing to trade the relative peace and quiet in the Zion area for. I avoid even going to St George due to the traffic, and either stay out on the mesas or, at most, in hurricane or la Verkin. Utah doesn't need more people.
  • 2 2
 @blackercanyons: too bad I’m such an amazing PB influencer, 30,000+ people just bought land just outside of St George due to my comment. Your welcome.
  • 5 1
 @blackercanyons: It's not like there's any shortage of towns in Utah that are small, out of the way, and are barely affected by tourism. If you don't want to deal with tourists, that's great - avoid Moab, St. George, and a small handful of other communities that cater to tourism.

But don't show up on the doorstep of one of the most popular national parks in the country and start bitching about the fact that there are tourists there.
  • 2 1
 @toast2266: I wasn't talking about tourists. I was saying that more people moving to Utah from California wouldn't make Utah better, counter to unrooted's assertion.
  • 2 5
 @blackercanyons: it’s not an assertion if I say it. It’s a fact.
  • 2 0
 @unrooted: ohhh, you're a douche. got it. moving on.
  • 1 5
flag unrooted (Jan 5, 2022 at 14:42) (Below Threshold)
 @blackercanyons: I’m the opposite of a douche.
  • 3 0
 @unrooted: no, you definitely aren't. You deftly made that very clear in one short comment.
  • 1 3
 @blackercanyons: I deftly am.
  • 1 0
 @DoubleCrownAddict: Umm… California for sure. Nevada too.
  • 1 0
 @unrooted: Not anymore. Homes are overly expensive in St. George now. Stay in CA please.
  • 47 1
 If you see a big ass yellow Corvair coming towards you, you probably done fucked up and got your Sprinter stuck.
  • 18 0
 So, we got a call ...
  • 9 0
 @husstler: We'll get 'em out...
  • 8 2
 Hahahahaha such an obscure reference. I love it!
  • 7 0
 Here is your shirt
  • 3 0
 Haha! I binge watched his channel for a week just to take in the scenery and watch The Banana tugging at stuff twice its size.
  • 3 0
 thanks for watching
  • 6 0
 At least Ed will get you a weather update
  • 2 0
 Literally @BCpov 's latest video, lol.
  • 1 0
 @thustlewhumber: Oh Shit! Lol. I had no idea.
  • 3 0
 Hahaha! I’m down with the ‘rona since Friday and Matt’s Off Road Recovery is one of my favorite time killers.
  • 1 0
 Just ask Matt if you can sign up for AAA and wait a few weeks before using the towing service benefit. JK I know Matt is a good guy trying to help is poor middle class folk!
  • 37 0
 Me when there is an article about someone else’s home trails: “yes, yes, very interesting”

Me when there is an article about my home trails: “god damn it. what the f*ck”
  • 2 0
 @knarrr LOL. Yep. Although here in NM we aren't really a big destination for anything so despite world class riding, I never have to worry about crowding except perhaps during opening weekends at Angel Fire.
  • 19 0
 With or without a mtb - the landscape is absolutely mindblowing
  • 16 3
 Shhhhhhhhhhhhh... there's already waaay too many people here.
  • 15 3
 True that!!! The trails can't handle the Amount of people here already... We live in a fragile desert and most folks don't respect or understand that..
  • 14 1
 NGL, I was a little bummed to see a feature on it on the front page, for that reason.
  • 9 0
 Too many people EVERYWHERE
  • 11 6
 Mountain bikers aren't the ones you need to worry about. They'll show up with their Tacoma, pitch a tent and ride bikes. It's the guys with the F-350's pulling the 40 foot 5th wheel toy haulers that cause the problems.
  • 7 0
 @fullendurbro: I see plenty of Toyota bros come here and f*ck shit up... so just depends person to person ...
  • 5 0
 @jeremyhottingerf: The Gladiator Bros are the new Tacoma Bros around here.
  • 4 5
 @jeremyhottingerf: So are we talking about Yota bros, or mountain biker bros? Yota bros are just like any other 4x4 community. Powersports don't exactly attract people who want to be kind to our planet. lol
  • 11 1
 Food and Drink: Prickly pear milkshake from that General Store on the way into Springdale with the miniature old west town thing out front. Only place on earth I've ever had one and they're amazing.
  • 25 1
 Was the milkshake spiked? tehe. Sorry, I'll see myself out.
  • 4 0
 It’s kinda surprising to hear anywhere in Utah is still trying to increase visitors past where we’re at now. Most talk I’m seeing is about trying to deal with growing pains in small towns like dust control from increased OHV traffic, traffic generally, parking, and a lot of housing converting into short-term rentals.
  • 7 0
 Are yoga pants the new trail pant?
  • 2 0
 Babe alert
  • 8 1
 But can I buy a beer?
  • 14 0
 Yes, but only 5% if purchased cold, full strength only available at the state run liquor store and its not refrigerated... UT is weird.
  • 2 1
 @JarrodB: WHAT!
Any law prohibiting ice cream too? That's some strange laws you've got there.
  • 4 6
 @JarrodB: Bro you can get beer at any gas station/grocery store/pub here and even at most restaurants.
  • 26 13
 @nozes: mormons.
  • 25 10
 @blackercanyons dunno what's up with the downvotes, the weird laws ARE because of Mormons.
  • 3 1
 All the 3.2% ABV you can drink! Think of it as a session beer.
  • 3 0
 @woofer2609: throw it in your camelbak! It’s basically water
  • 4 0
 @woofer2609: its now 5%
  • 1 0
 @Trailfingers: cool, when did that happen?
  • 4 0
 @woofer2609: I think the end of 2018, but could be 2019. After they upped the percentage everything is a little foggy. Just kidding, I haven't lived in Utah for years.
  • 1 0
 I think you are right about 2018/19, I recall it happening and being somewhat stoked, every beer at the grocery store is a session (5.0%) but nowadays when I have that CO full strength it hits me hard!
  • 11 0
 @blackercanyons: Honestly all the folks crying about PB (or Outside for that matter) blowing up Utah and other western destinations should be GRATEFUL that we still have the church in place. It's the one final buffer we have that still creeps visitors out and keeps a good percentage of people from making the move here and instead getting caught in the nice "wanna move west" safety net that is Colorado. I still ride up ski lifts with tourists who are flabbergasted that any normal person can live here and not be totally crippled by the influence of the church. It's truly a "blessing" and not something that any other state has going for them, far as I can tell...
  • 2 1
 The original laws were made by the Church because they were the only ones in Utah to begin with. Now, they could probably make new legislation with regards to alcohol content in beer, but because the church is still so prevalent in Utah, there isn't enough support to make it happen. And honestly, if you're in the Zion's National Park area, and you're feining for a stronger beer, just drive a couple hours south out of the state.
  • 14 0
 @danielfloyd: You're wrong, it was Native Americans there to begin with.
  • 4 0
 @Trailfingers: Right. First settlers is what I should've said.
  • 1 0
 @JarrodB: I always thought that regular ABV was 5.0% and was "full strength" , no? I mean that's what most yellow beers are.
  • 1 0
 @woofer2609: yellow beer? Is this a Canadian term I'm unfamiliar with. Like yellow as in not dark?
  • 1 0
 @Trailfingers: Molson Canadian, Budweiser, Keystone, Busch, Labatts; essentially the beer that 75% of the population drink is 5% ABV. Craft beer tends to have a bit more alcohol, but the majority of beers are within a percentage of 5% ABV.
  • 1 0
 @woofer2609: I see, I was unfamiliar with the term, but I like it. Most of this thread has been commenting on how until recently, Utah has strict regulations on selling cold beer, not in a liquor store, that was above 3.2 abv. Now that has been increased to 5 abv, which is typical of most non-craft beers.
  • 2 0
 @woofer2609: when I or my friends here refer to beer as being "full strength" we are referring to beers in their original high abv form available at the state liquor store, as opposed to their lower 5.0% max abv counterpart brewed specifically to be sold at convenience/grocery stores. Funny thing is, drinking the 5.0% most of the time, I get wrecked when I have anything higher these days
  • 5 0
 @Kvision: I definitely don’t disagree with you. I live in a Mormon area outside of Utah and am grateful for the Mormons for said reason.
  • 4 1
 Love Grafton Mesa, don't forget to send the road gap by the Cemetery, and spend some time at the Rampage sites, the og one has hits us mortals can do Smile
  • 2 0
 Maybe leave the 160mm travel enduro at home. But these are still really fun trails. If i wasn't camping out i wouldn't make this a destination, but if you are, it's pretty special.
  • 2 0
 What if you’re riding flying monkeys or Nephis twist?
  • 1 0
 @unrooted: I still rode Nephis twist on a trail bike.
  • 3 0
 @Spencermon: I did too (so I guess I’m as cool as you) but i would’ve had more fun on a bigger bike.
  • 1 0
 @unrooted: I have 1 mountain bike. So I use what I have. The 210mm dropper helps though. (he thinks I'm cool)
  • 4 0
 Another Tory Powers masterpiece!
  • 1 0
 Thanks dude!!
  • 5 1
 And remember to not be a "Californian type" when there.
  • 3 0
 The comments on this article have really succeeded in proving how lame mtn bike culture has gotten.
  • 1 0
 Small correction: I believe the "Five Fingers" area is actually called "Three Fingers of Death". Another spot a bit further down is 'Clavicle Hill", which is appropriately named.
  • 4 1
 Awwwww yeahhh Ry and Chels
  • 2 0
 Yessiree thx bud!
  • 4 1
 Lots of good climbing there too.
  • 2 0
 The Painted Pony in St. George is my favorite restaurant of all time. It's pricey but highly recommended.
  • 3 1
 These types of articles are fantastic. They always give me inspiration for my next trip.
  • 2 0
 I wanna move here so bad. If I could find work to afford the $500k starting homes.
  • 2 3
 Cedar city ..shhhh
  • 2 0
 you will find work, guaranteed.
  • 1 0
 Ridden in Sedona for 2 weeks and loved every minute of it and was considering this area, can anybody give me a idea on this verses that and what was overall better ?? Cheers
  • 3 0
 Ive ridden both extensively. (i've spent months in Sedona and used to live in SW Utah). Its kind of apples to oranges. Sedona is super touristy, as is the greater Zion area, but the Sedona MTB tourism is different and tends to be more dispersed. There are a lot more epic camping option in the greater zion area and affordable places to stay, but sedona has its fair share of places to camp, although lodging can be absurd in Sedona itself. The trails are all concentrated right outside of the small town of Sedona. I would wake up and just spontaneously decide what i was going to ride, while Utah takes a little more planning and depending on what you like to ride, shuttling. If youre into huge drops and lots of airtime, it would be SW Utah for sure. There is a lot more diversity of trails in the greater Zion area, but a lot of it is pretty crowded with big groups, especially on the weekends. In sedona, i can hit the most popular trails sometimes and only run into one or two people. There is my review
  • 1 0
 Similar in a way that both have rolling blues and tech double blacks and not as much in the middle. Sedona can be easily combined with Phoenix/Flagstaff, St George with Vegas. Greater Sr George is more dispersed, larger drive times between trailheads but as mentioned quieter and with better camping options. If you enjoy one you'll probably enjoy the other. Style wise Sedona is more consistently technical, St George has more sustained descents though the easier stuff is still very rolling terrain.
  • 1 0
 I remember why I have a full suspension bike when I ride out there. Even when you are on the saddle you still take a beating.
  • 2 0
 Ride On Mountain Biking, not only a tour/shuttle company, but premier, concierge style rental company too.
  • 1 0
 You guys hit just about everything that you'd want to on a first trip. Barrel Roll is another worthwhile area, but if you did Zen then you got the climbs and the scenery in.
  • 2 1
 If anyone has personal recommendations for rentals/guides, I'd love to hear it.
  • 3 2
 full.. sorry
  • 5 0
 OTE Hurricane for demo bikes, Utah Mountain Bike Adventures (owned by Monte) for a guide.
  • 2 0
 Hit me up. I’m the guy in the photos.
  • 2 1
 There is an amazing Poke spot in st george too. Best ive had outside of Hawaii
  • 1 1
 Your photos of the food don't need such a shallow depth of field. It's difficult to see all the detail of how delicious that food potentially is.
  • 3 3
 A. Can I also bring my petrol powered dirt bike?
B. What's the acceptance criteria for immigrants?
  • 3 0
 Yes. There is a lot of dirt bike trails
  • 5 4
 Now's a good time to come with Kamala in charge of the borders lol
  • 2 1
 @jrocksdh: you’re not wrong lol
  • 2 0
 @RynoRodrigosouraus: guessing the downvoters were some that tried to get in..?
  • 1 0
 Local Flavors with Bri.. Tory Powers
  • 2 1
 Oh yis, my hometown showing whats up.
  • 2 1
 Camping on top of the mesa(blm land)!!
  • 1 0
 mandatory magic mushroom riding zone
  • 1 0
 Epic!
  • 2 2
 I heard these trails are getting crowded, and full of mopeds. (Ebikes)
  • 3 1
 Gna be super fun to do on the new crop of E trials bikes coming! Electric motion etc
  • 1 0
 We hardly saw a single soul on our entire trip!
  • 8 9
 Seriously st. George sucks so bad. You're not paying attention ponktrike.
  • 10 1
 Yea the whole Zion area Is pretty lame... nothing flows and its uphill both ways.. unless you are hucking cliffs..
  • 10 0
 @jeremyhottingerf: I mean it’s true. Worth checking out once. Not really worth going back.
  • 4 0
 @jeremyhottingerf: That's just desert riding. Moab is the same way.
  • 2 0
 @fullendurbro: some people love it. I personally prefer riding in mountains, but desert riding is a nice change sometimes. but I know folks that live in Moab/Fruita/St George that love it and don't want to ride anything else.
  • 3 0
 @blackercanyons: Same. I usually take ~6 desert trips a year and I love every single one, but I'm glad it isn't the only riding available to me.
  • 1 2
 That's great. But where are laurie, dak, luca and connor riding next year?
  • 10 13
 Best part about Utah?!? The 3.2% beer! Makes me feel like I'm in Europe racing again, I can slam beers all day and not even be buzzed!

Be safe be well,
Incognito Robin
  • 2 0
 Don’t have it anymore
  • 5 0
 wow bro you are totally rad man
  • 2 2
 @t-dog888: Thanks!

Be safe be well,
Incognito Robin
  • 1 0
 Its 5% now. At breweries etc you can consume higher % there and buy to go.
Also high % can be bought from temp at the state stores.
So utah isn't too far off then Canada(b.c at least)
  • 1 2
 All those trails suck, nothing to see here.

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