Cultural History to Modern Four Wheeling Adventures
By Del Albright, Modern Jeeper Ambassador
Ancient Anasazi native peoples were mostly peaceful farmers and explorers, living in and around Moab Utah and the Four Corners area of the southwest, as much as 10,000 years ago. They built cliff dwellings to protect themselves from enemies and to harbor their grain and food supplies high up in the red rocks. Today, four-wheelers and recreationists worldwide come to Moab to be part of that history , nature, and lifestyle.
Fremont and Pueblo Native Americans have always been a part of the Moab culture. In fact, the Anasazi people were ancient Pueblo Indians and no matter where you travel in the area, you can find signs of Native American life, such as petroglyphs (etchings in rock) and pictographs (paintings on rocks). Modern Jeepers today respect that history and those remnants of yesteryear by not disturbing this cultural heritage.
Paiute people were also prevalent during later eras of Moab’s development. “Moab” is a name some say, that comes from the Paiute word “moapa” – meaning mosquito. However we look at it, Moab is today’s mecca of recreation in the red rocks.
Fins ‘n Things is a popular trail just outside Moab, UT, where even beginning jeepers can experience the red rocks.
The geology of Moab is made up of sandstone arches, pinnacles, fins, bridges, towers and castles. Two types of sandstone are dominant – the reddish colored Entrada Sandstone, and the white/pinkish Navajo Sandstone. Entrada sandstone dates back 150 million years to the Jurassic Period. It is an amazing place for all forms of outdoor recreation.
Entrada sandstone in Arches National Park, Moab, UT.
Many areas around Moab have obstacles that can challenge the best of us.
Moab is rich in minerals with huge deposits of uranium, vanadium and potash. In the 1950’s Moab became known as the Uranium Capital of the World and most of the roads we enjoy today as Modern Jeepers were old mining and Uranium roads.
Descending “slickrock” is usually fairly easy to do as long as your line takes into account your jeep’s abilities.
Modern Jeepers stay on the trail, even when that trail is miles of slickrock sandstone.
Red, the Land Use War Machine gettin’ it done on a fun obstacle.
One of the great things about Moab is finding a lunch spot where everyone can hunker up together on big slickrock slabs.
Moab truly is unique and is a wonder of the world — a mecca of four-wheeling for sure! Modern Jeepers need to make it Moab at some point in your wheeling career. Be sure to help keep Moab beautiful by packing out your trash, staying on the trail, and setting the example for others.