Road Conditions

Contact district visitor centers for current conditions before beginning any backcountry trip.

You may need a permit to drive on some park roads.

Rain and snow can quickly change unpaved roads to four-wheel-drive condition or make them impassable. Weather

 

Backcountry Travel Advisory

Backcountry driving conditions can change rapidly after rain or snow. Most backcountry roads in Canyonlands require high-clearance, four-wheel-drive vehicles with a low range gear (4LO).

All drivers should carry the following items:

• At least one full-size spare tire
• Extra gas
• Extra water
• Shovel
• High-lift jack
• Chains for all four tires (especially from October through April)

Drive Carefully!

Visitors caught in the backcountry with disabled vehicles can expect commercial towing fees in excess of $1,000.

 

Choose a District Navigation

 

Island in the Sky

Updated June 30, 2020

  • Scenic Drive: open
  • Shafer Trail: open
  • Mineral Bottom: open
  • White Rim Road 4WD: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive

Even when rated as "passable," four-wheel-drive roads are challenging. High-clearance, four-wheel-drive vehicles with a low range gear (4LO) is required on the White Rim Road. Other vehicles (e.g., all-wheel-drive vehicles, and low-clearance or high-clearance two-wheel-drive vehicles) have difficulty negotiating the rough slickrock, loose rocks, deep sand, and steep switchbacks. Permits are required on the White Rim Road.

Carry extra fuel and be prepared to self-rescue. During winter, all vehicles should carry chains.

 

The Needles

Updated July 8, 2020

  • Scenic Drive: open
  • Elephant Hill Access Road: open
  • Colorado River Overlook 4WD Road: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive
  • Elephant Hill 4WD Road: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive
  • Lavender Canyon 4WD Road: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive
  • Horse Canyon 4WD Road: impassable due to flooding and quicksand
  • Peekaboo 4WD Road: impassable due to flooding and quicksand

Even when rated as "passable," four-wheel-drive roads in The Needles are challenging. High-clearance, four-wheel-drive vehicles with a low range gear (4LO) are required on these roads. Other vehicles (e.g., all-wheel-drive vehicles, and low-clearance or high-clearance two-wheel-drive vehicles) cannot navigate the rough slickrock, loose rocks, steep ledges, deep sand, and steep switchbacks. Depending on the season, you can expect ice, up to two feet of water, quicksand, vegetation or rock outcrops that could scratch a vehicle, or debris that you must negotiate while staying within the boundary of the road. We recommend traveling in groups of two or more vehicles—both with winches—in order to facilitate self-rescue. Park rangers do not winch vehicles out. Do not attempt any roads if there is a forecast for heavy rains, which lead to flash flooding. Never cross flooded roads.

You must have a permit on some Needles roads.

 

The Maze

Updated July 1, 2020

Call Hans Flat Ranger Station at 435-259-2652 between 8 am and 4:30 pm for latest road conditions.

  • Highway 24 to Hans Flat: heavy washboarding; passable to high clearance two-wheel-drive
  • Highway 24 to Horseshoe Canyon: heavy washboarding; passable to high clearance two-wheel-drive
  • Green River to Hans Flat or Horseshoe Canyon: heavy washboarding; passable to high clearance two-wheel drive
  • Hans Flat to top of Flint Trail 4WD Road: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive
  • Flint Trail 4WD Road: passable high-clearance four-wheel-drive vehicles

Maze roads are challenging and visitors must be prepared with the proper equipment to facilitate self-rescue. Visitors should carry extra supplies in case it takes a day or two for the road to dry out. Cell phone communication is not reliable. Park rangers do not winch vehicles out. Commercial towing fees below the Flint Trail start at over $2,000. Roads rated 4WD must have 4WD with a low range gear (4LO) and high clearance. Other vehicles (e.g., all-wheel-drive vehicles, and low-clearance or high-clearance two-wheel-drive vehicles) cannot navigate the rough slickrock, steep ledges, loose rocks, deep sand, and steep switchbacks.

Last updated: August 5, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

2282 Resource Blvd.
Moab, UT 84532

Phone:

435-719-2313

Contact Us