Legendary Drives

Utah #2
Utah Ghosts and Canyons

State There are two ways to get down to Moab, Utah, from I-70 or U.S. 191. The latter route is the fastest especially if you are coming from the west, and it's a quick half-hour blast through the desert. However, eastbounders and others not in a hurry should take Rte. 128 instead. Better yet, take one off ramp east of that, Exit 212, for the extra treat of Cisco. Not technically a tourist attraction, Cisco is a ghost town out on a windswept desert plain. It's unclear whether there are any remaining residents of this eerie site, so stop and take a look, but don't linger too long.

Getting back to the drive, the road past Cisco hooks right into Rte.128 and heads toward Castle Valley. After a few fairly uneventful miles, Rte.128 plunges into a canyon and starts following the Colorado River. It's one thing to take a canyon drive through a national park, but quite another to be able to enjoy one on a real world road that is generally less traveled and without the artificially low speed limits and endless lines of motor homes. This road has everything, scenery as stunning as any in the area, and the curves are really fun to drive. The canyon walls are high, and have fascinating geological features all along the way; tall towers, spires, wind caves, you name it. Don't get too wrapped up in the drive to forget about stopping to enjoy the scenery. The riverbank is wide, offering lots of safe places to pull off and skip stones or even get your feet wet. You'll want to pick a spot halfway down the route or so, as the last few miles of this road closer to town tend to attract tourists and local outdoor types. At the end, you'll reach U.S. 191. A right turn will get you to Arches National Park, a "must-see" attraction. A left will bring you to Moab, an outdoor activity mecca and a great base camp from which to enjoy the sights and the best mountain bike riding in the country.

Starting Point:
Cisco, UT

Distance of Drive:
105 miles

Must Eat:
Moab Diner
189 S. Main Street, Moab, UT 84532
Phone: 435-259-4006
Call ahead to confirm hours of operation.  

Best Time of Year for Drive:

Points of Interest on Drive:
Ghost Town of Cisco
Fisher Towers
Arches National Park

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