The Complete Guide to the Sand Flats Recreation Area

If you’re looking for some motorized fun or some of the sweetest single-track in the US, then look no further than the Sand Flats Recreation Area. This adrenaline-pumping desert destination boasts plenty of adventures and killer scenery. It’s a popular place, but for good reason. Here’s what you need to know to plan a visit to this great recreation area.

Where is the Sand Flats Recreation Area?

One of the best parts about the Sand Flats Recreation Area is its quick-and-easy access from downtown Moab. A 15-minute drive along south Mill Creek Road and then Sand Flats Road takes you to the main gates. From here, there are countless amazing opportunities for outdoor fun.

Any vehicle can reach the gates and get to most trailheads. The dirt road is graded and well maintained. Most trails beyond Sand Flats Road are high-clearance 4WD only.

How Much Does Entry Cost?

The Sand Flats Recreation Area is managed by a partnership between Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Grand County. In order to maintain the area, there is a required fee for use. Compared to the nearby national parks, the fees are relatively low. However, they vary depending on your activity.

  • $5 for a single-vehicle day pass or $10 for a 7-day pass
  • Entry by bicycle, motorcycle or shuttle is $2 per day or $5 for seven days
  • Trailers are charged $5 per vehicle
  • Annual passes are $25
  • Camping is $15 per night per vehicle and an additional $5 for a trailer

Pro Tip: You can now purchase your entry permits online for the Sand Flats Recreation Area.

The Best Things to Do in the Sand Flats Recreation Area

There are countless options for recreation in the Sand Flats area. Keep in mind most activities are suitable for 4x4 enthusiasts and mountain bikers. Hikers and sight-seers might want to check out other areas such as Arches National Park, Dead Horse Point State Park, and other Moab hikes.

Here’s a list of the top 4x4 trails in the Sand Flats Recreation Area

Mountain bikers should put these incredible single track trails on their to-do list:

  • The Whole Enchilada (starts in the La Sal Mountains, but winds through Sand Flats)
  • The Porcupine Rim Trail
  • Slickrock Trail in Moab

How Many Days Should I Spend at the Sand Flats?

Some people will spend all of their time in Moab in the Sand Flats Recreation Area and others may choose not to visit. Since Moab is world-famous for its Jeep trails, renting a Jeep or going on a Jeep tour is a must-do Moab activity. Going on a Jeep tour for a day is a fun way for novice drivers to experience the awesome safari routes near Moab.

Bike and 4x4 enthusiasts may choose to camp in Sand Flats so they are close to the heart of the action. Alternatively, you can opt to pop into this area for the day to ride your favorite trail. How much time you spend in the Sand Flats Recreation Area really depends on what you’re looking to do with your time in Moab.

For 4x4 and mountain bike lovers, the Sand Flats Recreation Area is an absolute desert playground. With plenty of challenging terrain and stellar backdrops, this is the premier spot for your sport in Moab.

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