||Dino Flow Trail
The Dino Flow mountain bike trail opened in March 2012 in the Klondike
Bluffs (Baby Steps) riding area north of Moab. It's easy-intermediate in
technical requirement, but suitable for experienced beginners who are
willing to walk a few short spots. The trail is 5.5 miles in length,
having been extended in 2013 to reach the Dinosaur Tracks parking.
Typical trail section on Dino Flow, as
a ribbon of dirt hugs the lower edge of the slope. Photos and ride
description from a checkout ride March 24, 2012.
|The Dino Flow trail begins at the road fork where Klondike
Bluffs splits from Copper Ridge Road. It follows the lower slope at the
point where the valley meets the rocky escarpment. The trail meanders
northwest, midway between the Copper Ridge Road below and the EKG Trail
Here's the trailhead at the fork where
the Klondike Bluffs trail and 4x4 path split from the Copper Ridge 4x4
||The trail is over 90% dirt. (By contrast, the EKG Trail
over 95% slickrock.) As a "flow trail" it's designed for rapid
cruiser-type riding rather than technical challenges. If you're looking
for fun rock to play on, this trail can get you to (or from) that rock.
But the trail itself is pretty tame.
As of 2012, the trail is very soft. In
some uphill areas this will make pedaling difficult for beginners -- and
may create control problems when the slop is encountered on a downhill
|The north end of the trail is 150 feet higher in elevation than the south end.
Gentle up-and-down riding will bring the total climbing to 350 vertical
feet for the one-way south-to-north trip. The trail will cross (from south
to north) Baby Steps loop south, Little
Salty, and Baby Steps North, Mega Steps,
pass Nome and Homer, then end at the dinosaur trackway parking.
The trail will traverse several rock
escarpments. These areas are easy to ride with minimal bumpiness.
||Experienced beginners, family groups, and
early-intermediates can ride Dino Flow out-and-back. Like the popular
Brand Trail system, the Klondike Bluffs area is being expanded to provide
riding opportunities for riders of varying ability.
Occasionally the trail hits open rock,
usually as it crosses a washbottom. These are the only bumpy spots, and
there's nothing tricky.
|Why would expert riders be interested in Dino Flow? Several
- Skip Copper Ridge Road for direct singletrack access to the south end of
Baby Steps and EKG.
- Quick delivery to the north end of EKG by singletrack, when there isn't time
or muscle to do it both ways and you don't want to ride the road.
- Nice alternative to the Copper Ridge DT for returning from the Baby
Steps or Mega Steps loops.
The trail intersects the up-down
trails. These intersections are plainly marked with signs and "you
are here" maps. Different paint colors designate the trails, also
helping to avoid confusion.
||Sandstone areas have pink paint to mark the trail. Intersecting
trails feature different paint colors to help you pick the right trail. When
the trail does encounter open rock, it's usually smooth enough for
less-experienced riders to pedal seated. The trail gets rougher as it
approaches junctions with the uphill-downhill routes.
Typical sandstone area, looking back
to the south.
|There is one "what were they thinking" S-turn
switchback that only expert riders will clean. Just hike uphill 30
feet and get back on the pedals. I guess even a "flow trail"
needs an occasional challenge.
The trail sneaks across the valley
floor at a couple of spots.
||On my checkout ride, the trail wasn't yet packed. Rain plus
bike tires will change this. But in 2012, expect some moon-dust and dirt
digs, especially on the high-use section between the road fork and Baby
Not too tough. Just keep pedaling.
|Here's my recommendation for a quick mountain bike ride -- about 90 to 120
minutes for a strong rider. This is suitable for a second ride of the day, or a warmup before
the big event. Take Dino Flow northbound. When Dino hits Mega Steps,
jog uphill for 1/4 mile. Now catch EKG southbound and play on the technical
End of the trail, looking back. We're
looking south from Mega Steps. This is what you'll see if you're taking
Dino Flow back from the Mega Steps loop.
||When you're finished with biking EKG, drop back downhill on Baby
Steps until you hit Dino Flow. Head back to parking for a 12-mile ride
with 1500 vertical feet of climbing -- most of it up-and-down on the EKG
trail. This ride is described in the riding notes section below.
On the loop ride described below,
we're climbing a short distance up Mega Steps to reach the EKG trail. Mega
Steps is marked with light green paint.
Not an exciting trail, but good cruising. Most riders will use a piece of it, but only to get
to another trail without touching (gasp) dirt road. Potentially good
riding for specific groups of less-experienced bikers.
Here's a thought: Split your group by ability. The newbies head up Dino
Flow while the experts take EKG. Last group to the dino tracks kiosk at
the north end pays for dinner.
Trail view on EKG, heading southbound.
EKG is marked with orange paint. The La Sal Mountains are in the
||At the far north end of Dino Flow, there's a parking lot for
visitors to the dinosaur trackway. Perhaps more important to you, there's
a toilet. (It's an outdoor pit toilet, but unless you're afraid of crows,
a toilet is a toilet.)
Tracks of a big 4-legged dinosaur of
the late Jurassic such as apatosaurus or camarosaurus.
Leave your bike at the kiosk. Find the foot trail that heads steeply
uphill. It's found on a straight line from the road just before it turned
into the parking area. Hike about 1/10
mile. (The trail is closed to bikes.)
Just uphill from the sauropod tracks
are these three-toed chicken-like tracks, thought to be the predatory
allosaurus. (Sorry T-Rex fans, but allosaurs were top of the food chain in
this era. The T-Rex won't be around for many million years.)
|Riding notes, clockwise loop with EKG
0.0 Cross cattleguard heading east
N38 46.418 W109 42.735
0.8 DT splits, take ST in middle (Dino Flow)
N38 46.998 W109 43.072
1.0 Keep L (R = EKG trail add-on 2012)
N38 47.118 W109 42.983
1.4 L and join EKG to cross wash
then keep L as EKG forks away
N38 47.369 W109 43.253
1.9 Cross Baby Steps South (DT)
N38 47.590 W109 43.556
3.1 Cross Salt Wash
N38 48.248 W109 44.147
4.4 Cross Baby Steps North
N38 48.898 W109 44.718
5.3 R uphill on Mega Steps
N38 49.355 W109 45.167
5.5 R on EKG
N38 49.419 W109 45.037
6.5 Join Baby Steps for 100
N38 48.974 W109 44.611
Split L to stay on EKG
N38 48.951 W109 44.619
7.8 Cross Salt Wash
N38 48.598 W109 43.913
9.5 R downhill on Baby Steps
(Option 2012: straight on
N38 47.742 W109 43.284
9.8 L on Dino Flow
N38 47.590 W109 43.556
10.9 Straight onto DT
N38 46.998 W109 43.072
||Getting there: Starting at the Colorado River, drive
15 miles north from Moab. Look for a turnout with parking on the right and
a sign for Klondike Bluffs Road. There will
usually be cars parked there (GPS N 38° 44.452' W 109°
44.037'). For a longer ride, park here and ride up the road. Most cyclists will choose to go through the gate and drive 2.7 miles. Keep left at
the fork. At 2.8 miles, park your car in the broad parking area by the
fence. Go eastbound across the cattleguard through the fence and begin your ride.
Note: Map color-coded to show named trails individually.
Does not correspond to described loop above.
|Northern Klondike TH: On Highway 191 8.5 miles
south of I-70 and 6.5 miles north of the southern Klondike Bluffs road
(about 5 miles north of the airport), watch for a "Northern
Klondike" sign at N38 49.504 W109 46.893. Turn east (toward the
sandstone bluff). Keep to the right as the road winds south around a small
hill. 1.2 miles from the highway as the road is heading east toward the
bluff, fork right on a fainter jeep road N38 49.103 W109 46.061, as the
main road continues to the dinosaur tracks. (Park here if the road is in
bad shape.) At mile 1.6, you'll come to the TH for the Jasper and Agate
loops (N38 49.087 W109 45.625) on your right. At 2.0 miles, you're at the
bottom of Mega Steps at a larger parking area N38 49.179 W109 45.417. To
reach Dino Flow, head uphill on Mega Steps.
Dinosaur Tracks TH: At the trail fork at mile 1.2, keep left
on the main road toward the dinosaur tracks. About 1/2 mile further, turn
to the right into the parking area. The Dino Flow trail is up against the
mountain, to the left of the pit toilet.