Place store identification
|Golden Spike Trail
The Golden Spike Trail runs on tilted Kayenta bedrock. This type of sandstone forms gazillions of ledges, so there are stretches of smooth stone alternating with drop-offs and uphill ledge attacks. This trail is a technical-rock lover's dream -- 7 miles of up-and-down hard-hitting tech riding. Now the bad news: To ride Golden Spike, you need to get there. That means you have to climb up the Gold Bar Rim or Poison Spider Mesa trails. On your bike. These trails, with their ledges and stiff climbs, will get "first crack" at you. By the time you hit the stunts on Golden Spike, you'll be a whimpering jelly-legged wannabe. Or maybe not. But we warned you.
On slickrock areas, the Golden Spike Trail is well-marked with painted "spikes" on the rock. There's an occasional short side-trail to the rim.
|Riding notes, north to south:
0.0 South from Gold Bar below overlook
N38 36.846 W109 38.533
0.8 Keep L (Downhill R to Rusty Nail)
N38 36.511 W109 38.245
0.9 Golden Crack N38 36.509 W109 38.138
1.2 Back to Rim N38 36.549 W109 37.554
2.4 Turn away from rim N38 36.204 W109 36.887
|2.9 Stay L N38 35.883 W109 36.816
3.2 Back to rim N38 35.875 W109 36.510
4.1 Keep L N38 35.299 W109 36.472
5.5? L for Portal Connector (exact spot not noted, sorry)
6.7 At Poison Spider N38 33.710 W109 35.788
L for Portal, R to descend Poison Spider
Gemini Bridges - Gold Bar Rim Trailhead
Drive south on US-191 for 16 miles south of I-70 (about 15 miles north of Moab). Spot the parking area on the west (right as you head toward Moab) side of the road. GPS N 38° 39.381' W 109° 40.672'. Park in front of the railroad tracks, and head out west on the road.
To reach the Golden Spike Trail from the Gemini Bridges trailhead, you'll follow the Gold Bar Rim Trail. This is 8.5 miles (5 easy, 3.5 tougher) with about 1500 total feet of climbing. Just before the viewpoint that marks the end of Gold Bar, you'll turn right as the Golden Spike begins.
Poison Spider trailhead
Go 6 miles down U-278 then right up a short dirt road with a sign that says "Dinosaur Tracks." GPS is N 38° 31.917' W 109° 36.473'.
To get to the Golden Spike via Poison Spider Mesa, you'll climb about 800 feet, then gain and lose a few hundred as you push over the Navajo sandstone domes of Poison Spider. As you follow the little "Jeeps" painted on the rock, the Golden Spike trail forks left at about mile 7.5.
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