Moab KL/Trailhawk Trail Guide, Please provide input! - 2014+ Jeep Cherokee Forums
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post #1 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-27-2016, 07:55 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Moab KL/Trailhawk Trail Guide, Please provide input!

I am planning a trip down to Moab next spring, 2017, and want to get an idea for what people have done in a TH down in the desert paradise. My TH is stock but it would be nice to get a real-world reference point for what's doable at Moab in either a stock or modified KL.
  • What trail(s) have you done?
  • What designated difficulty level (Moab trail or Jeep Badge of Honor) (1-10)?
  • Did you complete all obstacles, if not which ones did you skip?
  • Was your TH stock, if not, what major mods?

From what I've read on the forum, thanks @taatmk and @Jenk

(?) Easy trails (any KL / non-TH) could do:
Onion Creek
Shafer Trail
Potash Road
Hurrah Pass
Gemini Bridges

Trails a TH can do, but better with mods and/or skipping obstacles:
Fins & Things (3-4), stock TH can't do Jug Handle
****'s Revenge (3-6)
Top of the World (3-4)

(?) Trails a TH can do with a lift and 31" tires:
Poison Spider (4-6), maybe tough?
Elephant Hill (5-7), ?

Helpful links
http://www.discovermoab.com/fourwheel.htm
http://www.cruisemoab.com/trail-rating-system.asp


I'm surprised this isn't a sticky or something already. Please provide input and help me refine the lists!
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post #2 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-27-2016, 09:27 PM
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Here are a few possible trails at Moab that your TH can handle
I have not done any Moab trails in a KL but have been there 3 times, for a week each time

Agree on Fins being a must do for your first time ... also
Elephant Hill
Chicken Corners
Hey Joe
Klondike Bluffs
Shaffer Canyon ... easy with spectacular views

I am back and forth on H**l's Revenge, while H**ls Gate is the intense section ... if it rains even H**ls Revenge can be a lot for the inexperienced, it can get real slick very fast

Poison Spider ... I would have to say no, especially on 31" tires


If you don't me asking ... how much off road experience do you have? Especially with climbing or descending small rock ledges 12" to 14". Since you are not going until spring you have plenty of time to gain experience
One add that you would be thankful for would be to add rock sliders (rails)


Shafer Canyon, which is located within Canyonlands National Park
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post #3 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-27-2016, 09:31 PM
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Highly recommend this book
https://www.amazon.com/Guide-Backroa.../dp/1934838063

I also recommend watching You Tube videos for each of the trails that you are considering

Bob
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post #4 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-27-2016, 09:49 PM
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Calling @taatmk

I know he's at lesat done the following BoH trails out West in the KL.

1. Elephant Hill
2. Fins and Things
3. Hole in the Rock
4. ****'s Revenge
5. Ophir Pass
6. Black Bear Pass
7. Imogene Pass
8. Engineer Pass

Never been, maybe one day. Here are the Moab BoH trails and their rating. Hope it helps.
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post #5 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhowdy View Post
Here are a few possible trails at Moab that your TH can handle
I have not done any Moab trails in a KL but have been there 3 times, for a week each time

Agree on Fins being a must do for your first time ... also
Elephant Hill
Chicken Corners
Hey Joe
Klondike Bluffs
Shaffer Canyon ... easy with spectacular views

I am back and forth on H**l's Revenge, while H**ls Gate is the intense section ... if it rains even H**ls Revenge can be a lot for the inexperienced, it can get real slick very fast

Poison Spider ... I would have to say no, especially on 31" tires


If you don't me asking ... how much off road experience do you have? Especially with climbing or descending small rock ledges 12" to 14". Since you are not going until spring you have plenty of time to gain experience
One add that you would be thankful for would be to add rock sliders (rails)


Shafer Canyon, which is located within Canyonlands National Park
Some but not much, I've never done an organized Jeep event. I've played around on mountain and dirt washouts and trails many times in years past and with the TH, but I've never driven on slick rock like in Moab before. For the slow stair steps and descents, I assume having it in 4 low and riding the brake is what's best?

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post #6 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarinR00 View Post
Calling @taatmk

I know he's at lesat done the following BoH trails out West in the KL.

1. Elephant Hill
2. Fins and Things
3. Hole in the Rock
4. ****'s Revenge
5. Ophir Pass
6. Black Bear Pass
7. Imogene Pass
8. Engineer Pass
I have traversed each of these 8 trails in the Cherokee Trailhawk. Here is a quick summation of my experience.
1. I did this prior to getting the MFC lift. It is doable in an un-lifted KL, but lifted would make it so much easier. I did have rock sliders and used those repeatedly. Lots of dings and scrapes on the sliders. You will need to take it carefully and pick your lines well. I did get a sidewall puncture on the climb back out. That was with OEM Firestone Destinations. I would like to do it again now lifted and with BFG KO2's.
2. I also did Fins & Things before being lifted. Again, it was doable in an un-lifted KL. I again hit down on the rock sliders frequently. The beginning half of F&T is easier than the second half. Both halves combined together make a good half day run. There is a paved road the crosses and divides both halves.
3. Hole in the Rock "Trail," the Badge of Honor trail, is much more difficult than the Hole in the Rock "Road" which is not a BOH and doable in a high clearance 2x2. The "road" is on the west side of Lake Powell. The BOH "trail" is on the east side of Lake Powell. Hole in the Rock Trail is the most challenging and difficult of any of the eight BOH's I have done. Yes, much more difficult than Black Bear Pass. I needed, ie a winch line, on several of the obstacles. Some of the named ones include, "Twister," "the Chute," "Grey's Mesa" to name a few. Go with a buddy on this one. If you break down, or get stranded while being alone, it can be upwards of a 35 miles walk just to get back to pavement, then a good 70 highway miles back to Moab. Don't underestimate this one. It is hard! And it is time consuming. Two full days to do it. Three would be better. Its a 70 mile round trip of slow crawling.
4. H's Revenge is very doable in a lifted KL. I did, however, go past many of the more difficult named obstacles on the go-arounds. Those would be named obstacles like, "Mickey's Hot Tub, the Escalator and Tip Over Hill. The "go around" route is referred to as "the Tip Toe Route." You hit most of the entire trail, and do many obstacles. You just by pass the super challenging Easter Safari challenges. It is a very fun trail. H's Revenge rates up there as one of, if not the most, favorite trail I have done. The views are great. Just for fun, there is a Youtube video out there of some guy going over H's Revenge in a white Ford Crown Victoria.....
5. Ophir Pass is very doable in an un-lifted KL. It is easier going the east to west direction verses the other way around. I've done it both directions in the KL. Near the top, there are some loose shale depressions that are challenging in the west to east direction; but still very doable. If you are in the area, this is a BOH that should not be missed.
6. This one is a challenge; I did it with the MFC lift and it was very necessary. I have heard of a few others doing it in a KL without the lift, but it is much less taxing on you to have the lift. Doing it in good weather is also desirable as the loose shale rock on the section called the "steps" is scary enough in dry conditions. People have lost their lives on this trail. Its not to be taken lightly. However, by taking your time and thinking through your lines, it is fun and doable. Tough sections begin after crossing over the pass itself. There are some high ledges to negotiate before the "steps." The steps are steep, on a narrow shelf, and will get your attention. Take it slow. After the steps are the switchbacks. The first two are the most challenging. Having a spotter is very helpful. It will take a many point turn to get around them. As you descend, the switchbacks get easier and easier. Stop at the Bridal Veil Falls, both at the top and at the bottom for some nice views.
7. I would definitely recommend doing Imogene Pass staring from Telluride to Ouray. It will be extremely difficult doing it the other direction. After crossing over the pass, the immediately descend down toward Ouray has some very challenging steps and depressions that were slow and challenging heading down. It would be tough doing them uphill, which the Ouray to Telluride direction would require of you. Lots of ruins and things to explore on this trail. Its also rather long compared to the other three Telluride area BOH's I've done. Its also one of the highest (elevation wise) trails in the state of Colorado.
8. We did Engineer Pass in a September snow storm. It didn't impeded us per se, but it did effect the view from the top. Several other passes were encountered by us on the way just to get to Engineer; making in a nice full day trip. We left US Hwy 550 and when up Corkscrew Gulch, over Hurricane and California Passes to the ghost town of Animas Forks. There is where the run up Engineer Pass actually began. This one was not too difficult. You could do this one in an un-lifted KL without too much trouble. The shelf road near the top gets narrow and is hard to pass other vehicles. Still, this one is not too bad.

I am heading to San Diego to celebrate a wedding anniversary in January. We are taking the Cherokee and will hit two more Badge of Honors on the way back to Salt Lake. Those will be Pinyon Mountain in southern Cal and Schnebly Hill in Arizona. That will make 10 in all.
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Last edited by taatmk; 11-28-2016 at 10:07 AM.
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post #7 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taatmk View Post
I have traversed each of these 8 trails in the Cherokee Trailhawk. Here is a quick summation of my experience.
Heck of a write up man. I'll be saving this. Thank you!

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post #8 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 08:31 PM
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I'm stopping through Moab for just one day in December on a road trip in our TH. We've never been there.

Since we're just one car, I'm trying to decipher which trails it's responsible to go on without messing up the car or getting stuck.

Great information in this thread.
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post #9 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-28-2016, 09:33 PM
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Moab KL/Trailhawk Trail Guide, Please provide input!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CptCrackers View Post
I'm stopping through Moab for just one day in December on a road trip in our TH. We've never been there.

Since we're just one car, I'm trying to decipher which trails it's responsible to go on without messing up the car or getting stuck.

Great information in this thread.


Consider running Onion Creek. The views are good and very doable in the TH.



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post #10 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-29-2016, 01:41 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up List Update

I collected the responses and looked up some more info, here's what I have so far (list is obviously not all inclusive), Moab trail difficulty of 1-10 (either BoH or traildamage.com):

(?) Easiest trails: doable in KL (non-TH), or most AWD or 4x2 truck:
Potash Road + Shafer Trail (2-3)
• verified by @bhowdy
• Has paved sections, and includes highway
• Done in a Rav4 on youtube
Hurrah Pass (2), unconfirmed by KL
• May include water crossing
• Connects to Chicken Corners (or Harrah Basin)
Chicken Corners (2-3), unconfirmed by KL
Gemini Bridges (2-3), unconfirmed by KL
Spring Canyon Bottom (2), unconfirmed by KL

Easy with stock TH (or other KL w/ mods)
Onion Creek (2-3)
• verified by TH, @O|||||||O
Jackson Hole (3), unconfirmed by KL
Hey Joe (3-4), unconfirmed
• not suggested for full size trucks, brush damage possible
• Consider Spring Canyon Bottom (2) instead
Klondike Bluffs (3-4), unconfirmed by KL
Hole in the Rock Road (3), not "trail"
• verified by TH, @taatmk
Trails a stock TH can do (better with mods and/or skipping obstacles):
Fins & Things (3-4), BoH
• Verified by @taatmk
• stock TH on most obstacles
• First half is easier than second half
• rock sliders recommended
• skip Jug Handle, and possibly others
****'s Revenge (3-6), BoH
• Verified by @taatmk
• Doable with stock TH and sliders (YouTube video)
• "very doable" with lift
• Skip the "very difficult" Easter Safari challenges: i.e. Mickey's Hot Tub, the Escalator, Tip Over Hill
Trails a modified TH can do, stock is not recommended (≥30" tires, lift, winch, sliders)
Elephant Hill (5-7), BoH
• Verified by @taatmk
• Passable in stock TH w/ rock sliders
• Aggressive tires recommended (strong sidewall)
• Lift highly recommended
Top of the World (3-4), BoH
• Likely difficult for a TH (try if you dare)
• Verified by @taatmk
Poison Spider (4-6), BoH
• Likely difficult for a TH (try if you dare)
• Verified by @taatmk
Hole in the Rock Trail, not "road" (4-6), BoH
• Longer drive, but reachable from Moab area, 2+ days to complete
• Verified by @taatmk
• Very difficult
• Winch required/recommended
• Do not attempt solo

Uncertain/unfavorable
Cliff hanger (6-7), BoH
Steel Bender (6), BoH
Pritchet Canyon (7-9), BoH
Metal Masher (5-9), BoH
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