Beef Basin UTV and Dirt Bike Trail
Dugout Ranch parking area for the start of Beef Basin Loop has a large parking area and a restroom. They is also camping about 100yrds down the road just across Indian Creek. The parking area is large and has room for trailering your Jeep or UTV's to the area. It took us about an hours drive to get from our Vacation Rental near Moab to the trailhead.
The first few miles of the UTV trail to Beef Basin follows the Cottonwood Canyon Road, the road is scenic but use caution as there are many ruts in the road.
After about 5 miles the trail starts to climb along the edge of Bridger Jack Mesa. Take your time here to look at the scenery, with Bridger Jack Mesa to your left and Cottonwood Creek Canyon to your right.
Shortly after a cattle grate and fence you can stop and get a nice view of the canyon you just climbed out of with the Abajo Mountains, Shay Mountain in the background. Though not as high as the La Sal Mountains in Moab, they still offer cooler summer temperatures than the open desert.
Salt Creek Canyon Overlook. At one time you could take a street legal Jeep or Dirt bike to up Salt Creek Canyon to Angle Arch but not any more. Now you can only view the canyon from the Cathedral Point Overlook, on of the best scenes in all of the Moab area.
Abajo Mountains as seen the part of the Salt Creek Canyon Overlook. There are many trails in this part of the Manti-La Sal National Forest that are best accessed from Monticello Utah. What you see from this view is the upper reaches of the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park.
Salt Creek Canyon Overlook. From the overlook you are directly above the Big Pocket. If you have binoculars with you you should be able to spot some of the many cliff dwellings in the area.
Salt Creek Canyon Overlook. Also if you take the time and know where to look you can see several large arches from the overlook. The closest arch in the area is names Wedding Ring Arch and with a close eye you can spot it to the left of this view.
Salt Creek Canyon Overlook. It is now a 4 day backpacking trip to explore this canyon and view its many sites, the best of which is Angel Arch.
Lavender Canyon Overlook. If you follow the overlook trail clockwise you will eventually come Lavender Canyon. Notice how the walls of Lavender Canyon are much steeper than the slopped walls of Salt Creek canyon even though they are right next to one another.
Lavender Canyon Overlook. If you want to explore Lavender Canyon you can, but your dirt bike has to be street legal also you must go to the Needles District visitor center to get a pass. There is a lesser known side canyon off of Lavender Canyon you can access on a dirt bike or UTV named Dry Fork of Lavender Canyon. It is an awesome canyon to explore for several large arches to hike too.
From Moab take US HWY 191 South or From Monticello take US Hwy 191 North to UT 211. Follow UT 211 to the Dugout Ranch Parking area, unload here and start riding up canyon on the main dirt road. Our guide book is recommend for detailed directions on the trail.