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

 

Choose a District Navigation

 

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. 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.

 

Island in the Sky

Updated June 10, 2019

  • Scenic Drive: open
  • Shafer Trail: open
  • Mineral Bottom: open
  • White Rim Road: impassible at upheaval wash due to flooding. Imminent danger on the road north of Labyrinth campsite.

Four-wheel drive 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.

 

White Rim Road Flooding

The upper basins that feed the Green River were well above 100 percent snowpack this winter and spring. It is likely that spring runoff will cause the river to sporadically flood the White Rim Road between Hardscrabble and Labyrinth campsites starting around the beginning of May and lasting through late June.

If this occurs, permit holders will likely not be able to cross this section of road. If your trip has you entering or exiting through this area and the road is flooded, you must turn around and return the direction you came. Absolutely no off-road travel to bypass the flooded area (by mountain bike, motorcycle, and/or vehicle) or camping outside of the conditions of your permit will be tolerated. We highly recommend you bring extra fuel for your vehicle (enough to drive an extra 100 miles). It is your responsibility to be prepared and plan accordingly.

You must determine current river flows for when your permit is scheduled.

Only walk-in day-use permits will be available during flood season. No permits will be available online. You can get permits at Island in the Sky Visitor Center or the park administrative office in Moab during the flood season.

The road will likely be flooded at levels as low as 15,500 cfs. You may monitor river flow conditions at the USGS data site. We recommend you check river flows just prior to your trip.

 

The Needles

Updated April 29, 2019

  • Scenic Drive: open
  • Elephant Hill Access Road (2WD): passable
  • Colorado River Overlook 4WD Road: passable
  • Elephant Hill 4WD Road: passable
  • Lavender Canyon 4WD Road: passable
  • Horse Canyon 4WD Road: impassable
  • Peekaboo 4WD Road: impassable

Even when rated as "passable," four-wheel-drive roads in The Needles are challenging. 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 April 4, 2019

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: passable to two-wheel drive
  • Highway 24 to Horseshoe Canyon: passable to two-wheel drive
  • Green River to Hans Flat or Horseshoe Canyon: passable to two-wheel drive
  • Hans Flat to top of Flint Trail: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive vehicles only (year-round)
  • Flint Trail: passable to high-clearance four-wheel-drive vehicles only (year-round)

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. Rangers cannot winch vehicles out and commercial towing fees below the Flint Trail start at over $2,000.

Last updated: June 10, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

2282 Resource Blvd.
Moab, UT 84532

Phone:

435-719-2313

Contact Us