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Klonzo North Trails

The Klonzo Trail system is non-motorized singletrack designed for mountain biking. It lies east of the Sovereign / Salt Wash trail system near the border of Arches National Park. The trailhead is on Willow Springs Road 10 miles north of Moab. The riding is fun and easy. This page covers the north trails. For more riding in this area, see the Klonzo South, Gravitron/Vertigo and Klonzo Beginner Slickrock pages.

Typical trail view on slickrock, with green paint stripes indicating the riding line. Green means we're on the Dunestone Trail. Original photos and trail review November 5, 2012 by Bruce. Latest update November 2017.

The trail system has multiple interconnected loops. Each segment is quite short. You'll rarely ride more a half mile before reaching another trail fork. The ten trails of northern Klonzo are Boondocks, Borderline, Dunestone, Cross Canyon, Gravitron, Secret Passage, Snippet, VertiGo, Wahoo, and Zoltar. The multiple connections between loops offers many different riding experiences.

Trail fork where Dunestone meets Boondocks. Now purple paint indicates the riding line.

Trail signs at each intersection keep it from getting confusing. Each sign has a "you are here" smiley-face. Colored stripes on the rock or color-coded carsonite markers identify the trail. (The color codes correspond to the map's colors.)

Color coded map. Color coded ID posts on the trail. Color-coded paint stripes on the rock. Seriously. If you get lost on this trail, it's time to give up the booze.

There's a total of 12 miles of trail at Klonzo north of Willow Springs road (with more great trails in Klonzo South). Some are pure undulating dirt singletrack (example Secret Passage). Others are almost all rock (example Dunestone). It's a good mix for pedaling around in circles and just enjoying the ride. To hit every piece of every trail requires some short "do-overs" so your "do it all" ride of Klonzo North will be 13 to 14 miles.

Looking west from the trail as Bruce hits Dunestone to make a trail video.

Base altitude is 4400 feet. Total altitude change is 400 feet from the parking area to the top of the Wahoo trail. There's a lot of up-and-down riding, though. A do-it-all ride will total about 1500 vertical.

Cactus and paintbrush were blooming during my May "update" ride.

Technical difficulty: early intermediate to advanced. With the exception of the two new advanced-tech trails on the north end, there wasn't anything tricky on this ride, so I'd rate the trails as appropriate for advanced beginners. True beginners may struggle on the narrow slope-hugging trails in the red dirt section and on a couple of short stiff climbs.

About as tricky as it gets. The connector of Boondocks climbing up to meet Dunestone. This is the steepest roughest 20 feet of climbing on the entire Klonzo trail system. And it's not that hard.

Aerobic requirement: easy to moderate. Out-of-shape riders can mosey along. Expert riders can hammer it and get a good workout. And because there are so many opportunities to "finish" the ride at the next trail fork, you can tailor your ride to the time available and to your exercise tolerance.

The higher spots on the Klonzo trails give you great views of the La Sal Mountains in the southeast.

There are wide views to the south and west from the mesa. But this is not a "destination ride" that goes someplace. It's a riding area where you select among route options and just enjoy pedaling along.

Looking southwest from the Wahoo trail. The break in the cliffs on the left side of the photo is where 313 heads west to Canyonlands.

 

The sandstone is the Salt Wash member of the Morrison Formation from the late Jurassic Period. It's about 140 million years old. There's a gentle upslope to the rock as you ride from west to east and from south to north.

Typical view on the Boondocks trail. Solid intermediate riding. Nothing tricky here, but a great system to improve your bike-control skills.

Trail Details
Boondocks
Configuration: Loop with connecting trails at top and bottom
Connections: Dunestone at mile 0.2 from parking, Dunestone at top of loop via 0.2 mile connector.
Character: Winding dirt singletrack west, hugging edge of mesa among rocks on east
Length: Around and out clockwise 1.8 miles (with 0.4 mile repeat segment)

Boondocks: heading north clockwise. Winding fast-paced dirt ribbon.

Borderline
Configuration: Straight up the hill going northeast
Connections: Parking B 0.5, Cross Canyon 0.6 and 1.0, Snippet 1.3, Wahoo 1.7
Character: Winding dirt to mile 1.0, then slickrock and rolling rock on upper portion
Length 1.7 miles

Borderline: climbing north. Undulating dirt ST on lower half, slickrock upper half.

Cross Canyon
Configuration: Winding North to South from Yahoo to Borderline
Connections: Starts on Borderline 0.6, Dunestone 0.2, Secret Passage 0.3, upper Secret Passage 0.9, Snippet 1.0, Wahoo 1.3
Character: Winding dirt singletrack, tends to follow ridgeline
Length 1.3 miles

Cross Canyon: heading south. Carves a dirt path between lower Borderline and Wahoo, connects to just about everything.

Dunestone
Configuration: Loop with connecting trails bottom (TH) and at top
Connections: Boondocks 0.2 and 0.8 clockwise, loop fork 1.0.
Character: Slickrock and rollovers among juniper
Length: Around and out clockwise 2.1 miles (with 1 mile repeat section)

Dunestone: heading east. Rolling sandstone; a nice confidence builder for beginners.

Gravitron
Configuration:  One-way arc ride from top of Wahoo to Gravitron
Connections: Starts north end of Wahoo, ends in middle of Gravitron
Character:  Advanced tech trail, a lot of whoops and drops, generally downhill
Length: 1.9 miles

[ see trail page ]

Gravitron: an armored turn-and-drop, whoosh up and drop again, early in the ride heading northeast.

Secret Passage
Configuration: Arc circles away from Cross Canyon and rejoins
Connections: Leaves Cross Canyon at mile 0.3, rejoins after 0.7
Character: Winding dirt ribbon, counterclockwise (from top) offers fun descent
Length 0.7 miles

Secret Passage: counterclockwise, looking west -- whoosh.

Snippet
Configuration: Shortcut between Borderline and Cross Canyon at midmountain
Connections: Starts at mile 1.3 of Borderline, mile 1.0 of Cross Canyon
Character: Ridgeline ST
Length 0.2 miles
VertiGo
Configuration: Arc ride connecting Cross Canyon to middle of Secret Passage
Connections: Cross Canyon just below Wahoo Loop, Secret Passage at west end
Character: Advanced technical, some tight squeezes and traverses on steep slope.
Length 1.1 mile

[ see trail page ]

VertiGo: Dropping to the south on bendy twisty fun stuff.

Wahoo
Configuration: Loop at top of trail system
Connections: Secret Passage ends on lower loop; Borderline ends near top of loop
Character: Half rolling slickrock and half winding dirt ribbon, recommended riding direction counterclockwise
Length: 1.7 miles

Wahoo: Cruising through the sandstone on the south end of the loop.

Zoltar
Configuration:  North-South route on east side of riding area.
Connections: Extends from from junction of Borderline with Cross Canyon (1 mile up  Borderline from main parking) to the beginning of Houdini (see Klonzo South page) on Willow Springs Road
Character: Rolling patches of slickrock in area of juniper and brush
Length 0.6 miles

Zoltar:  Looking north, heading toward the junction with Borderline.

  Boondocks and Dunestone as a loop ride...

 If the above video does not appear on your browser/device, you can watch it on YouTube by clicking here.

 
Sample Rides
Beginner Sandstone Ride:  Dunestone Loop
This loop is quick and fun with great views and non-threatening sandstone. From the west trailhead, climbhill. Go right at the first fork to stay on Dunestone. Keep straight (left) at the next fork (if you even see it). Keep right as Boondocks rejoins. 

Juniper, bitterbrush, and pinion pine erupt from the sandstone of the mesa.

Fork right at the prominently paint-marked green-to-green intersection at 1.0 miles to stay on the Dunestone loop trail. (Straight takes you down off the mesa.) Ride around the mesa, then fork hard left to return the way you came. This ride is 95% sandstone, just two miles long, and has about 100 vertical feet of climbing.

We're heading south along the mesa edge on Dunestone.

Intermediate Quick Ride: Perimeter 5.3 miles
The perimeter ride will give you a quick taste of what's out there, without a big time commitment. For this ride, just go right. Every time. Go right out of the parking lot to ride uphill on Borderline to Wahoo. Turn right. 

Heading uphill on Borderline.

When Wahoo brings you to Cross Canyon, turn right and head south. Turn right again to take another whooshing downhill on Secret Passage. Climb up to Dunestone. Then drop to your right off the mesa on Borderline and head back to parking.

Rebel bike at the junction of Borderline with the Wahoo loop. Counterclockwise is the recommended riding direction, so you can enjoy a whooshing downhill without pausing for climbers on the narrow ribbon of singletrack.

Strong Intermediate Do-it-all Loopy-Loop: 12 miles
This ride starts from downhill left and progresses, loop by loop, to uphill right. An exact description of every trail fork gets pretty tedious. Just ride around in circles until you get there. Who cares if you don't follow my exact itinerary? It's all good. If you're up to it, you can add the advanced-tech trails VertiGo and Gravitron to the north end of the ride.

Here's the description of the ride on my downloadable GPS track (see riding resources below):

We've reached the Salt Wash sandstone and are heading uphill east along the escarpment.

I started with the Boondocks loop clockwise. After repeating the western 0.4 miles, I caught the connector to Dunestone.

I rode Dunestone clockwise, repeating the north segment before dropping to Cross Canyon.

Climbing back uphill on Secret Passage, southbound and heading for Cross Country.

I dropped south (right) on Cross Canyon to Borderline and climbed uphill until I reached again reached Cross Canyon (but uphill from where I left it). I took Cross Canyon north and forked left (west) on Secret Passage. Secret Passage looped back to the Borderline-Cross Canyon junction.

At the top of the Wahoo loop, we're looking west. Lots of downhill curving turns ahead.

Next I climbed Borderline to Wahoo. Once around Wahoo counterclockwise (full loop). Down the rock of Borderline to Snippet, Snippet to Cross Canyon. Cross Canyon back up to Wahoo. Loop around Wahoo again, all the way back to the Cross Canyon junction.

Climbing back uphill on sandstone toward the junction of Borderline and Wahoo.

Now I turned on Cross Canyon and rode all the way south to Borderline. I forked right on Borderline and followed it back to Parking A.

Looking toward the La Sals from Borderline as we head home.

Getting There:
Western Trailhead: Willow Springs Road forks east off Highway 191 18 miles south of I-70 and about 10 miles north of Moab (1.8 miles north of the junction with Highway 313 (to Canyonlands and Dead Horse Point). Turn onto Willow Springs Road. Keep straight as spurs go to camping areas. At mile 1.4, turn left to cross Courthouse Wash (may not be passable in wet weather). At mile 2.0 pass the Sovereign Trail parking area, a flat area outlined in rocks on the left (north) side of the road N 38 41.876' W 109 39.868', with a natural gas pump building on the right. At mile 2.7, turn left off Willow Springs Road onto a small doubletrack. 100 feet later, park and begin your ride. The trail on the left takes you clockwise and immediately to the slickrock.
Eastern TH: Keep going on Willow Springs Road past the west trailhead. At mile 3.0 from US 191, turn left on doubletrack. Drive 0.2 miles to a small area of slickrock. The trail to the left goes toward the western trailhead. Right climbs up for a counterclockwise loop.
Midway and Redhot TH:  Keep on Willow Springs Road past the first trailhead, then keep right at the fork (at mile 3.0 from US 191). There will be a few parking spots at the entry to the Midway trail and at the Houdini/Redhot/Zoltar trails.
Riding resources for this trail:
Single-page riding guide (2012 pre-finish version)
See also:  Klonzo South pageBeginner slickrock page
                Gravitron page
GPS track files (right-click and "Save as..."):
   GPX individual tracks   Dunestone-Secret Passage 5.4 mile ride  
   Big Loopy 12-mile track    Perimeter 5.3 mile track
Maps for printing:  View area topo 
    Trail Mix Map (updated 11/1/14 for new trails)    Zephyr Trail
Lodging, camping, shops:      Links to Moab area resources

Bathrooms: None at Sovereign or Klonzo
Water: None
Camping: Primitive spots along Willow Springs Road
Commercial camping across from 313.
Nearest supplies: Gas and quick-stop on 191 across from 313, 1.7 miles south of Willow Springs road.

Copyright 2012 UtahMountainBiking.com (division of Mad Scientist Software Inc)
Updated 2014 and 2017.