By: Heather May

What’s in A Name?

2 riders high fiving on trail

Utah is rightly known as a mountain biking mecca. It’s one of the premiere destinations because of its Slickrock trails, other-worldly geology, and undulating terrain.

Moab is America’s best-known mountain biking town. It’s only fitting that two of Holiday River Expedition’s mountain biking trips are based there. And don’t let the name fool you—Holiday River is an expert in Moab mountain biking trips. They’ve been outfitting back-country trips for half a century.

Here are three Utah mountain biking trips that should be on your bucket list:




White Rim Trailbiker on trail near water- white rim

You will travel 86 miles in three to four days along the famed island’s perimeter at the Sky mesa top in Canyonlands National Park. While there you’ll be performing significant climbs while marveling at the spectacular landscape. The mesa sits on sandstone cliffs over 1,000 feet above the terrain. Peak over the edge and see the confluence of the Green and Colorado rivers far below. But not to worry: The gentle, hard-packed, double-track trail is accessible to intermediate beginners. Experts will enjoy the fully supported, catered tour, too—especially the 360-degree views of red rock wilderness.




rider on the mazeThe Maze

This is another Utah mountain biking trip that takes advantage of Canyonlands National Park in southeast Utah’s high desert. This Moab biking trip takes place in Canyonlands’ most remote district, which means some of the most challenging mountain biking terrain anywhere. Depending on whether your trip is three or four days, you will ride 15 to 30 miles a day passing vertical uplifts and plunging gorges, to breathtaking overlooks and through pinyon pine and juniper forest and an ancient tropical swamp.




San Rafael SwellRiders in the swell

No to-do list of Utah mountain biking trips is complete without completing this lesser-known gem on the edge of the Colorado Plateau. The vast stretch of public land is home to striking ridges and fins, deep-cut caves, and winding canyons. This mountain biking trip takes place over four days, full of technically challenging routes for 20 to 30 miles a day. The trip will take you to what’s known as the Little Grand Canyon, an eroded gorge with views of the San Rafael River, and through Little Wild Horse Canyon, a narrow path through a river of red rock.






Heather MayHeather May’s first white water rafting trip was the Gates of Lodore with Holiday River Expeditions and she can’t wait to return. She’s an award-winning journalist based in Salt Lake City. She covers travel, food, and health for a variety of publications. You can connect with her at