Rimrocker Trail Recon

Halfway through the Rimrocker Trail overlooking the Dolores River canyon at sunset.

Halfway through the Rimrocker Trail overlooking the Dolores River canyon at sunset.


160 miles of dirt and fun…

At least, that’s what the brochure promised… and the Rimrocker delivers. It is billed as a combination motorized route stretching from main street in Montrose, Colorado to downtown Moab, Utah. The Rimrocker system crosses some of the most diverse landscapes in the Colorado Plateau. A couple days on this trail will show you farmland, the high Uncompaghre Plateau forests, deep red rock canyons, historical mines, juniper forests, 1,000 ft. plus high cliffs, mountain lakes, and even an alpine pass if you so choose. Much of the route is quite remote and seeing other people can be a rarity, so you need to go prepared. Weather can make a massive impact on the route. Seasonal storms can make typically easy routes impassable for days- another consideration to keep when exploring the Rimrocker. The vast majority of the trail system is on USFS, BLM, and county roads. The route is not very technical for even a stock 4x4, but alternate challenges can be found if desired.

We have completed multiple recon trips throughout the Rimrocker’s various sections, and there are still more alternate routes to explore. The official Rimrocker Trail has sections that can be bypassed or tackled in portions, which is how most people complete the trail. It is open to ATVs and UTVs, so be cognizant of fast movers when on the trail. The reason for the multiple Flatwater Overland recon trips is a mission to find the quintessential route for overland vehicles and camping through the Rimrocker as a single pass through journey. It is such a great route, that it deserves a full experience. Take a long weekend and enjoy all the Rimrocker has to offer. Early summer and fall are the best times to explore. Winter means the high country parts of the trail will likely be closed. Summer means high temperatures in the desert sections, but also solitude.

Absolutely go to the official Rimrocker Trail website. Literature is available there as well as downloadable GPS routes and up to date trail information: