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The Most Epic Desert Southwest MTB Road Trip Ever

If you were to hit all of these epic desert trails in one road trip, it would be the most epic Desert Southwest mountain bike road trip EVER!!

Mountain Biking Moderate, Difficult, Severe, Extreme

Also in Colorado, United States of AmericaNevada, United States of AmericaNew Mexico, United States of AmericaUtah, United States of America

Gooseberry Mesa


The USA's Desert Southwest is one of the most dramatic landscapes in the world. Wide-open expanses of sagebrush, sand, and rocks have served as the set for countless movies. Towering rock formations burst from the ground in every variation imaginable—from upthrust cliffs to soaring spires, freestanding arches, blocky monoliths, and everything in between. In the Desert Southwest, the sky is massive, water is scarce, the landscape is harsh and unforgiving, and yet... this rugged terrain radiates a magical beauty that has captured the hearts of millions of visitors.

Connecting this iconic landscape is an endless network of trails. While many of the original routes were created by animals moving from place to place, and some were created by Native Americans, today, mountain bikers have embraced this rugged landscape by building miles upon miles of bike-optimized trails. Now, some of the most renowned mountain bike destinations in the world are found here in the Desert Southwest. Have you heard of Moab? Fruita? Sedona? Yeah, I thought so.

This road trip itinerary creates a loop connecting the most iconic mountain bike destinations in the Desert Southwest. In between the big-name destinations, you'll find lesser-known gems that are just as worth riding, even if they only receive a fraction of the traffic. If you complete this itinerary, you'll visit:

— Grand Junction, CO — Fruita, CO — Moab, UT — Hurricane, UT — St. George, UT — Boulder City, NV — Sedona, AZ — Prescott, AZ — Phoenix, AZ — Tucson, AZ — Gallup, NM — Albuquerque, NM — Glorieta, NM — Santa Fe, NM — Aztec, NM — Cortez, CO

As you scroll through the list below, you'll realize this is an ambitious selection of trails. If you were to ride every single one of these trails in the course of a single road trip, it would easily be the most epic Desert Southwest mountain bike road trip EVER!! This list is meant to be inspirational. You can easily pick and choose the trails and the destinations from the list that you'd like to hit. The loop can be significantly shortened by skipping one or more destinations, or only hitting one trail in each location. But for the true vagabond that's leaving winter behind in search of desert sand and sun… consider tackling all of these epic trails (and more!).

Routes included

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