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White Rim Trail

The White Rim Trail accesses some of the best scenery and terrain in the Island in the Sky district of Canyonlands National Park. The Island in the Sky is an elevated wedge of land that rises above the Green and Colorado rivers, and the White Rim is the bench of white sandstone that all but encircles that wedge. The trail can be ridden either clockwise or counterclockwise (depending on camp assignments); either way, the ride begins with a thrilling descent, following steep switchbacks that drop 1,000 feet from the top of the Island down to the White Rim, and ends with a climb back up a similar set of switchbacks. Other than the start and finish, the trail largely rolls along at the same elevation, with the exceptions of Murphy’s Hogback and Hardscrabble Hill: steep (but short) climbs that reward you with incredible views.

Constructed by the Atomic Energy Commission during the uranium boom in 1950s, the “trail” is actually a four-wheel-drive road, and its mix of sandstone and graded gravel make for fun riding and easy sightseeing (Holiday’s trips are fully supported, with a 4×4 non-passenger van that carries food, water, and camping equipment). The entire trail is a scenic overlook, with views that encompass the countless spectacular canyons that give this national park its name. Watch epic sunsets while sipping post-ride refreshments from beautiful, open campsites, and sleep under the absolutely enormous, clear skies of an International Dark Sky Park.