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Moab Trail Half Marathon


A half marathon trail race through vibrant red rock canyons just beyond the Moab Rim.

Trail Running Moderate

21 km
561 m
561 m
2-3 hrs
Low Point
1.2 km
High Point
1.5 km
Moab Trail Half Marathon Map

Held annually in fall, the Moab Trail Half and Full Marathon offer a trail running race experience that stands apart from others. Part of the 2019 USA Trail Marathon Championship, the event promoter proudly proclaims that they have been considered "A Trail Runner Magazine "Bucket List" Race." If you're looking for incredible views of Moab's red rock landscape, arches, sandstone domes, and an array of slickrock trail, this race is for you.


The half marathon course pairs two popular trails, Pritchett Canyon and Hunter Rim, awarding runners with up-close views of towering red rock canyon walls. Though accessible to jeeps, the trail sees infrequent use to its difficulty.

Passing over slickrock formations and through sandy washes, the path may be obscured at times, but it's rare for runners to lose track of the trail. Through this section, you'll also be able to catch a glimpse of Pritchett Arch in the distance.

About 3.5 miles in, look for trail marker leading right (south), leaving the main canyon and climbing gradually to the canyon rim. 6 miles in, you'll reach a junction with Behind the Rocks Trail. Keep right to continue on the loop on the Hunter Rim Trail. A jeep road at first, the path transitions into singletrack after some time and continuously rewards runners with incredible views of Hunter Canyon below.

The trail terminates at the Kane Springs Road, where you'll turn right. After passing through a couple switchbacks, the official race crouse detours off the road and descends into the Kane Creek Drainage. For a mile or so, the trail follows the hard-packed sandy floor of the canyon, with a few wet crossings along the way. "This unique canyon is rarely traveled but absolutely beautiful," according to the race promoter and while you will likely get your feet wet, only one mile remains once you leave the canyon.

An intermediate course by most standards, the race does tend to sell out quickly. The half marathon course is also an excellent year-round loop popular with trail runners, though most would likely follow Kand Springs Road back rather than trekking through the mile-long section of canyon at the end.

Other than special events, there is no potable water or restrooms anywhere on the course. For the race, aid stations are typically spaced 3 - 6 miles apart, allowing many runners to utilize a handheld bottle rather than a vest. The minimal climbing and lack of technicality also makes trekking poles unnecessary.

Due to the size of the event, runners depart in waves that leave every few minutes starting at 8am. The median finish time is typically shy of three hours, with the fastest of runners finishing in under two. It's also worth noting that this event has occurred on the same weekend as daylight savings time, so be mindful of that when you set your alarm the night before.

Source: https://stuckintherockies.com/2018/11/pritchett-canyon-to-hunters-rim/ http://www.moabtrailmarathon.com



Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.


3 out of 4

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

Best time to visit

all year round

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area