Arches National Park
The Moab area is centrally located in an area with scenic parks in just about every direction, such as Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, Dead Horse Point State Park, and others. Moab's spectacular red rock topography, in addition to it's world famous mountain biking, hiking, four wheel driving, and river rafting makes this area perfect as a vacation destination.
The landscape around Moab varies from thousand foot deep canyons to the 12,000 foot mountain peaks. Moab is also a favorite destination for many photographers and artists seeking out their next masterpiece. With this diverse terrain, Moab is considered the ultimate vacation spot for those that like to hike, raft, rock climb, bike, kayak, canoe, four wheel drive, sightsee, or participate in just about any outdoor activity you can think of.
Situated along the Colorado River, the city of Moab is the place for those that like to enjoy the charm and hospitality of a small resort town. Moab's fun downtown district contains an outstanding combination of knowledgeable local guides and outfitters, diverse cuisine, and exciting nightlife.
The town's growing arts community features a large number of local art galleries and organizes annual events such as the Moab Art Walk, Artists Studio Tour, and the Moab Arts Festival. Annual music events, such as the Moab Music Festival in September and the Moab Folk Music Festival in November, provide great music in a spectacular outdoor setting. Moab also features an extensive restaurant and shopping district. Moab has 30 hotels & motels, 10 bed & breakfasts, 2 resorts, 26 guest houses/condos/apartments and 15 privately owned campgrounds. Couple that with 28 public campgrounds in area national parks and on public lands and you have accommodations to suit any taste!
For Additional information on current events in Moab, visit; Discover Moab
Rock Art Sites in the Moab Area
What is Indian Rock Art?
The Anasazi whose culture centered south of Moab in the Four Corners area, concentrated much of their subsistence efforts on the cultivation of corn, beans and squash. These sedentary people, also harvested a wide variety of wild resources, such as pinion nuts, grasses, bighorn sheep and deer. The Fremont, who were contemporary with the Anasazi people, also grew corn, and were apparently more dependent on hunting and gathering wild resources than were the Anasazi. Their territory was mainly north of the Colorado River, but overlapped with the Anasazi at Moab.
Both cultures had a complex social structure, and were highly adaptive to the extremes of the environment. The Anasazi and Fremont are classified by scientists as "Formative" cultures.
The most recent inhabitants, the Utes have been in southeast Utah since the 1200's. They were a very mobile hunting and gathering people who moved in from the Great Basin. They used the bow and arrow, made baskets and brownware pottery, and lived in brush wickiups and tipis. The Notah (Ute people) lived freely throughout western Colorado and eastern Utah until about 1880, when they were forced onto reservations.
Dating the Rock Art
Taking Care of Rock Art Sites
Wolfe Ranch Rock Art
Utah Scenic Byway 279 Rock Art Sites
The round holes carved into the sandstone underneath the left side
of the petroglyph panel once held the roof poles of a structure which
was excavated by archaeologists prior to road construction. The structure
and the rock art panel were easily accessible before the talus slope
was cleared away to make room for the road. Continue south 200 yards
to the next "Indian Writing" sign. You will find the large
bear with a hunter at the bear's nose and another over its back. At
an interpretive pullout approximately .75 miles further along the Utah
Scenic Byway 279, you can see Indian rock art and dinosaur tracks. On
the north side of the road two spotting tubes indicate the location
of three toed allosaurus tracks in the Navajo/Kayenta sandstone interface.
Binoculars are needed to view the petroglyphs located to the left of
the tracks at the base of the cliff.
For More Information on the Anasazi and Rock Art, Visit Cliffdwelling.com
Golf Course Rock Art
The panel runs from ground level up to approximately 30 feet on the
high rock wall. Designs cover an area about 90 feet wide. The panel
is from the Formative Period and you will be able to see human figures,
such as the "Moab Man", elk, canines, and big and small
bighorn sheep. Look to the far right of the panel and find what is
popularly referred to as the reindeer and sled.
Continue another 1.2 miles to another rock art panel. A huge rock surface covered with desert varnish faces the river from the cliff side of the road. Here, you can see bighorn sheep, snakes, human forms, and a trail, possibly indicating a route from the river up Kane Springs Canyon. Again, you will notice some vandalism. (If you miss this site, it may be seen more easily on the return trip.)
Approximately 75 feet west and down the slope from the road is a large boulder with rock art on all four sides. Figures and designs range from the Formative to the historic Ute period. The well known "birthing scene" is found on the lefthand corner on the east side. Notice the feet-first pre sentation of the baby. Look for various animal forms, such as a centipede and a horse, bear paws and a snake, as well as triangular anthropomorphic (human) figures.
Courthouse Wash Rock Art
You will see large painted ghost-like illustrations typical of the
Barrier Canyon Style Archaic figures on the red-orange surface. The
numerous figures include human forms, bighorn sheep, shields, scorpion-like
illustrations, possible dogs, a long beaked bird and abstract elements.
You can see evidence of painted multi-colored figures superimposed
on other pictographs. On the desert varnish surface you will see human
and animal like figures as well as abstract forms. This site is on
the National Register of Historic Places because of its representation
of a Barrier Canyon Style rock art panel.