Desert RATS: Stage 1

Fruita

The "Salt Creek" stage, connecting Loma to Rabbit Valley.

Trail Running Moderate

Distance
31 km
Ascent
615 m
Descent
597 m
Duration
4-5 hrs
Low Point
1.3 km
High Point
1.5 km
Gradient
Desert RATS: Stage 1 Map

Presented by Gemini Adventures, the Desert RATS Kokopelli 150 is possibly the most epic adventure race in the west. As the longest-running stage race in North America, this week-long adventure is designed to test both mental and physical limits of even the most seasoned athletes.

Description

Stage 1 of the Desert RATS Kokopelli begins just west of Fruita, Colorado in a small town named Loma. Monday morning racers are shuttled to the trailhead from Moab, a 90-minute drive without traffic. For spectators and crew, the start is just moments off of Interstate-70, just beyond a commercial Port of Entry when heading east from Utah.

Though each stage undoubtedly showcases its own unique beauty, Gemini considers this "one of the most beautiful sections of the entire course". Vast red-rock canyons and stunning views welcome racers as they traverse through the McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area.

First known as the Colorado Canyons NCA, the site was renamed in October of 2000 in honor of late State Representative Scott McInnis. While racers traverse the northern boundary of the canyons, the area is home to "the second-largest concentration of natural arches in North America," according to the Bureau of Land Management. Endless petroglyphs and pictographs, as well as 25 miles of the Colorado River can also be found within the canyons.

For Stage 1, aid stations are available at miles 6.0 and 13.7 of the 19.8 mile leg. There is no other water or facilities along the trail.

Source: https://geminiadventures.com/desert-rats/

Difficulty

Moderate

High Exposure

3 out of 4

Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

April, May, June, October, November

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area