The Maze – Canyonlands Mountain Biking

Holiday’s Maze bike trip takes you into an impossibly beautiful landscape. Steep canyons step down across the desert in a tangle of white, pink, red, and orange sandstone. Pinnacles, buttes, and jagged mesas stretch out as far as the eye can see. This is rugged country. The first European explorers who encountered the Maze took long detours to avoid this network of sheer-walled canyons. However, native people called this land home for millennia before that, leaving pictographs and granaries deep within the canyons. Wild, remote, and absolutely spectacular, this is Utah’s ultimate multi-day bike trip.

Our professional guides will lead you on a ride that feels like it drops off the edge of the world. Bike along double-track 4×4 roads with our support van following behind. Camp out on the edges of mesas with vistas that go on forever. Explore Utah’s red rock desert on an active, human-powered vacation. The Maze is the least-visited part of Canyonlands National Park, and it is strictly regulated to preserve its wilderness values. Group sizes are small and it’s not unusual to bike all day without seeing another group. Maze bike trips run in the spring and fall – bring your own bike, or rent from our fleet.

Read more about this aMAZEing region of Utah: check out our Insider’s Guide to the Maze.

Green River, Utah: Things to Do and Places to Explore

Featured Review:

“Our group of college friends gets together every year for a reunion and this year’s trip in the Maze was exceptional. Every detail was thought out and the guides took care of everything. All we had to do was ride and enjoy each other’s company. Thank you for a great trip. The riding, the meals, the gear all top-notch.” (D. Mansfield)

Holiday is an authorized concessioner of Canyonlands National Park.  Additionally, (& more importantly) the Maze District was home to Indigenous people and cultures long before our present day society existed. Out of respect for these people, Holiday acknowledges that Canyonlands National Park and the stretches of the Green and Colorado Rivers that approach it are the traditional homelands of the Núu-agha-tʉvʉ-pʉ̱ (Ute) people. Read more about our land acknowledgments here.
Book This Trip

Trip Overview

  • Type:

    Bike

  • Location:

    Canyonlands National Park

  • Length:

    4 or 5 Days

  • Dates:

    May, September & October

  • Meet at:

    Green River, Utah @ 7:00 pm (night before the trip)

  • Difficulty:

    Advanced

  • Min. Age:

    12

  • Deposit:

    400

Highlights

  • Fully supported riding into difficult-to-access terrain
  • Sheer vertical uplifts and plunging gorges
  • Earn the views and your delicious dinner
  • Solitude and exploration in a truly awesome landscape
Getting Here Before You Go Packing List FAQs

Rates & Dates

4 Day

  • Adult:
  • $1,245
  • Youth:
    18 and under
  • $1,245
  • Senior:
    65 and older
  • $1,245
  • Group:
    10 or more
  • $1,245
Book This Trip
Check Availability
2023
  • May
  • 9, 16
  • September
  • 12, 21, 30

2023 Prices are subject to NPS approval

5 Day

  • Adult:
  • $1,365
  • Youth:
    18 and under
  • $1,365
  • Senior:
    65 and older
  • $1,365
  • Group:
    10 or more
  • $1,365
Book This Trip
Check Availability
2023
  • April
  • 26
  • September
  • 21

2023 Prices are subject to NPS approval

Itinerary

The Maze bike trip covers approximately 80 miles of rugged desert terrain on the west side of Utah’s Green River. Starting from the Hans Flat Ranger Station, this trip could go a number of different ways, all of them spectacular. Ride down and east to the Maze Overlook or camp higher up in the Orange Cliffs Unit. Either way, you’ll encounter panoramic scenery, unique rock formations, and find plenty of spur roads to explore if you feel the need to add miles to your days. All trips gradually work their way south toward the place where the Colorado River feeds into Lake Powell, near the old Hite Marina.

Sample Itinerary

The night before your trip: please attend a brief pre-trip meeting at our base of operations in Green River, Utah. We’ll provide any rental sleep kits, set up rental bikes, collect personal beverages, and inspect personal bikes. If you’re bringing your own bicycle please make sure that it is in good operating condition. We recommend getting it serviced by a professional shop before the trip. If your bike does not pass our inspection you will be asked to rent a Holiday bike for $205.00/person. Once bikes are adjusted and set for the trip, we’ll get them loaded up for tomorrow’s early morning departure. This is also the best time to check out our on-site store for any last minute purchases (check out our packing checklist to see what we carry on-site).

Day 1:

Meet back at our warehouse early the next morning with your gear organized into a “day bag” and a “camp bag” to help us effectively organize the support van (our FAQs page has other packing tips). We’ll get settled in the vans for the 3-hour ride south to the Hans Flat Ranger Station, a remote National Park Service outpost and the Maze District headquarters. We’ll start riding from here, rolling along the edge of the Maze, catching glimpses of the canyons below through the pinyon and juniper trees. Pause for lunch and to stretch your legs at the Bagpipe Butte Overlook. Not far from there, we’ll take a sharp left turn and drop off the edge of the world, down the Flint Trail, and into the region the old-timers called “Under the Ledge.” Camp at the Golden Stairs. You’ll cover about 15 miles this first day, with options to ride out a couple of spur trails.

Day 2:

Start the day with coffee and eggs cooked to order, then ride downhill and around Elaterite Basin. It’s a short ride today, only 12 miles. The goal is to arrive at our camp at the Maze Overlook by lunch time, giving us the whole afternoon to hike into the Maze itself. Scramble down through layers of geologic time, using steps carved into the smooth rock surfaces. Hike through willows and cottonwoods at the bottom of the canyon and discover the Harvest Scene, a pictograph panel that may have been painted over 3,000 years ago. Hike back up in time for sunset over the Chocolate Drops.

Day 3:

Today we’ll ride back out the way we came, up the Golden Stairs and south to the base of Teapot Rock. After the initial climb out of camp, the riding is mostly rolling and downhill. Total miles for the day are approximately 20, with an option to add a 9-mile side ride to Sunset Pass. Tonight’s camp is in a slickrock alcove, with views of the La Sal Mountains far to the northeast.

Day 4:

This morning we’ll ride around the canyons that feed the rapids of lower Cataract Canyon. Stop at multiple overlooks and trace the shape of the canyon. Imagine the Colorado River far below, splashing and roaring over its rocks. The road here is well-graded, and the miles pass quickly as we gradually descend to Highway 95 and the Hite Bridge on the upper end of Lake Powell. We’ll log about 25 miles today. A 2-hour scenic drive will bring us back to Green River at approximately 4:30 in the afternoon. Take your time sorting and unpacking your gear – just don’t forget to say bye to your guides before you hit the road!

Please keep in mind that this is a sample itinerary. The Maze is large and there are a number of routes we could take to explore different corners. The above is one possibility. We could also ride deeper into the Orange Cliffs Unit of the Glen Canyon Recreation Area, check out Cleopatra’s Couch and Panorama Point, and camp at the Bowdie Canyon Overlook, right above the Colorado River.

Maze Mountain Biker Julian Springer

Any bike trip into the wilderness is changeable by nature. Trips may change based on assigned camp sites, weather, group size and interests, and other unforeseeable elements. We encourage you to plan on riding 15-30 miles each day, and to arrive with an open mind and a flexible attitude.

The Maze bike trip is the most technically challenging route we offer. This undeveloped dirt road includes rolling, technical doubletrack, steep uphills and downhills, loose rocks, sand, and ruts. The trip is roughly 80 miles long with many opportunities to do side-rides in addition to the main route. Riders with no off-road bicycling experience, or who are not athletic, will most likely find this trip difficult. All riders should prepare for the trip by riding their bike on a regular basis prior to the trip.

Reviews

Still not convinced? See what others are saying.

Submit your review
1
2
3
4
5
Submit
     
Cancel

Create your own review

Holiday River Expeditions
Average rating:  
 15 reviews
 by Thomas Foley

We ran into some difficult conditions in the Maze that required us to alter the course of our trip. This is disappointing, but part of getting outdoors. The guides did a great job reworking the trip to provide a good experience



OVERALL: We had another outstanding experience with Holiday. The trip was excellent and well managed. Our guides Jack and Ben were outstanding- really good team that worked with us and kept things fun. I would recommend both of them and Holiday to friends.

 by Joel & Alison Schenk

The mountain bikes were amazing! I had ridden a friend's 30-year-old mountain bike in preparation for this trip and the Specialized bikes we rented from you were in a totally different dimension. Very comfortable and easy to use.

This was our second trip with Holiday River Expeditions and the same reasons we came back this year are the same reasons we are already looking to another adventure next year - great food, enthusiastic guides, and intimate knowledge of some of the lesser known facts and features of this beautiful area. Although we were not able to make it into The Maze, I appreciated the fact that Jack was able to explain thoroughly the nuances of driving these particular backroads in less-than-ideal conditions. He and Ben were able to come up with viable and suitable add-ons that I think everyone enjoyed.

 by Bob & Karen Neubauer Kandiko

Karen at the office was very helpful with all arrangements.

Very nice to have a sample itinerary.

Jack and Sam were always enthusiastic and engaging. They were excited to do the extra hikes through the Maze and to Hitchhiker Panel and they extended every day when opportunities presented themselves.

Tim was very responsive to our desire to add an extra day for hiking from the Maze Overlook which was the highlight of the trip. With the overwhelming crowds in nearby parks, we felt like the only people exploring one of the most beautiful and remote areas in Utah!

 by Glen Seymour

Susan and Sam were great. Very supportive, great cooks, and super attentive to group's needs. Would gladly have them lead a future trip.

The Maze bike trip is an outstanding trip in a gorgeous landscape, including a great side hike to see pictographs off the beaten path. Joined up with a group of now new friends. The rides were incredible, the camp sights were great and the meals were so delicious. Everything was perfect.

 by Jack & Connie Bennett

Excellent attention to every question and detail by Karen & staff.

Our guides, Jack and Sam, were exceptional in all categories. Both of them were very attentive to every member of the group and showed so much enthusiasm and energy, no matter how tired they must have been at times. Ours was an "inaugural" five-day biking/hiking trip in the Maze District and as such, involved some new exploration for the guides. They had done their homework and the additional day and hikes and exploration could not have been more successful or enjoyable. We loved this trip!

Page 1 of 3:
«
 
 
1
2
3
 
»