Amasa Back 4x4 Trail

Moab

One of the original gnarly epics, the Amasa Back 4x4 trail still offers some serious gnar on the way down.

Mountain Biking Severe

Distance
15 km
Ascent
470 m
Descent
473 m
Low Point
1.2 km
High Point
1.5 km
Gradient
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Amasa Back 4x4 Trail Map

Description

As one of the original mountain bike destinations, most of the best-known classic mountain bike routes in Moab are actually motorized routes. In the case of Slickrock, it was motorcycles. In the case of Amasa Back, it was (and still is) 4x4 jeeps. While of course motorcycles and all manner of offroad vehicles also attempt Amasa Back, this is a classic, gnarly Moab jeep route that is now just as renowned for mountain biking.

While a wealth of top-notch singletrack has been built around the iconic Amasa Back road (check out Hymasa -> Captain Ahab and Rockstacker -> Jackson’s), many riders still choose to ride the road—either as a climb to get to the singletrack, or as an out-and-back ride on its own. Despite being a wide 4x4 road, it’s a ripping-fun descent on the way back down.

This ripping-fun is provided by all manner of rocks—rock gardens, rock slabs, rock rolls, rock ledges… you name it, Amasa Back has it. There are even some serious ledge drops of 8-10 feet in height if you have the cojones, but of course with a trail tread this wide, there are always some ride arounds.

Some of these ledges make for challenging climbing and some hike-a-bike, but since jeeps do manage to get up this road, there’s usually a pedalable line to be found somewhere.

Up high, the grade of the road mellows out as it skirts along a sheer cliff face that drops over a thousand feet straight down. While the 4x4 track is wide, this section is still seriously exposed, mandating caution. The views from the rim are downright jaw dropping, though, so be sure to pack a camera!

Difficulty

Severe

Widely variable, narrow trail tread with steeper grades and unavoidable obstacles of 15in/38cm tall or less. Obstacles may include unavoidable bridges 24in/61cm wide or less, large rocks, gravel, difficult root sections, and more. Ideal for advanced-level riders.

Extreme Exposure

4 out of 4

Some trail sections are extremely exposed where falling will almost certainly result in serious injury or death.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Features

  • Technical
  • Road sections
  • Drops
  • Rock Rolls
  • Rock Slabs
  • Rock Gardens

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area