Family Travel: Moab’s Best Adventures for Kids (plus a $500+ KOA giveaway!)
posted by: Amber Johnson
Mountain Biking Dead Horse Point State Park
Moab is the mountain bike capital of the universe and boasts several famous trails like Slickrock and Porcupine Rim for expert riders. As novices, I was tempted to stay on the Moab Canyon pathway, Moab’s newest paved trail, but we wanted more of a challenge so headed to Dead Horse Point State Park, a wonderland of trails for novice and intermediate riders.
We parked at the Visitor’s Center and posed for pictures–the view from Dead Horse Point is one of the most photographed vistas in the world. With millions of years of geologic strata that stretch into Canyonlands National Park, the mighty Colorado River snakes below with the 12,000-foot high La Sal Mountains looming in the background.
There are a few short hikes around the edge of the mesa and the ranger recommended we mountain bike the Intrepid Trail System. We started strong on the Intrepid trail, winding through juniper and pinyon trees but 10 minutes into our ride, Hadley had enough. Though rated moderate, the stretches of slickrock unnerved her so she and my husband returned to the car, ditched their bikes and hiked along the East/West Rim Loop.
I was a proud mama as Bode navigated intermediate-level terrain and rocky ledges on the Pyramid trail. About 5 miles into our loop, he started to tire and was dismayed to see a large hill looming ahead. Heroine Mom that I am, I raced ahead of him up the hill, stashed my bike, ran down and helped him walk his bike up. My memory of the situation was much different when I later asked him “What did your wonderful mother do?”
“You passed me on the trail.”
Red Sand Sea
Directly across from the Arches National Park entrance on Highway 191, there is a temporary blip in the red-rock landscape: a steep hillside of sand has become celebrated among the kid population. While Jamie rested on a rock below, I trudged behind my Energizer Bunny kids up this 100×100-foot sandbox, my feet sinking into its cool scarlet grip with each laborious step.
Upon reaching the top, gravity acted as its own adrenaline rush as we took a short run and glided momentarily in space before landing in a soft sand cushion. An hour later, we dragged our reluctant kids back to the car, leaving behind a fine powder of rouge and joyful memories.
Back at the KOA, we showered (a necessity after the sand hill), cooked hot dogs and s’mores over our charcoal grill and explored camp.
(Click Page 3 to keep reading about Kamp KOA and trekking to Moab’s most iconic arch!)