Moab, Utah is one of the premier off-road and four-wheel drive destinations. Comprised of some of the most well-known trails in all of the United States, it has trail types that suit all drivers' wheeling desires. Some would call it an "off-roader's paradise". Amongst these trails, Metal Masher is one of the more popular "hard" trails in the entire area. Comprised of slick rock, sand, and dirt, this trail offers drivers everything they are looking for and more. Not only do you get amazing wheeling, you can also take in the inspiring views of the slick rock hills, see the arches off in the landscape, and enjoy snow-capped mountains in the background.
Trail Difficulty and Assessment
Lightly Modified 4X4 (Small Lift and Larger Tires)
Waypoints 11 and 12 are the hardest required part of the trail with several large rocks you have to drive over and large waterfalls up to roughly 6 feet in total.
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The hardest part of the trail that you
cannot bypass - you have to drive it.
The hardest part of the trail that is
purely optional - you can bypass it.
Rocky or undulated road surface. Potential rocks less than 36" tall and/or vertical ledges less than 36" tall and/or near vertical ledges or waterfalls less than 84" inches. Tire placement becomes more difficult. Can be steep and off-camber.Read More about our Rating System
Metal Masher is one of the more popular, harder trails in Moab. The trail is comprised of slickrock, sand, towering cliffs, and dirt with plenty of waterfalls and hill climbs. Even though most obstacles have a bypass, there are still several obstacles that you have to do. Expect 6 foot+ waterfalls, steeper than 50-degree inclines, and plenty of drops that you drag off. It is recommended that you have a lift and lockers before trying this trail.
While on the trail, you will be offered some amazing overlooks of Moab and Arches National Park.
Note: The .gpx track available here is of EJS 2016 Route. Stop at each obstacle and pick your route. When in doubt, follow the white tracks painted on the road surface.
1. Trailhead (0
Trailhead of Metal Masher. There is a parking area with plenty of space to air down before taking on the trail if you choose to wait this long. Most people air down right as they turn off the highway.
2. Intersection - Stay Right (0.7
Stay right to continue on Metal Masher Trail. Follow the signs.
3. Stay Right At Next Two Roads (1
Continue to stay right on Metal Masher. Follow the roads with heavy traffic wear.
4. Ledges (2.3
The first set of ledges gives you a basic idea of what to expect. These ledges are roughly 4 feet tall and slightly slick. Some momentum might be required.
5. Fork - Stay Left (2.4
The trail curves to the left. Follow the Metal Masher signs.
6. Rock Ledges (3
Here you will climb roughly a 4-foot tall ledge that steps up and is broken into several pieces.
7. Ledges (3.3
The first of the hard play areas, this one section is full of options to try. But please note, there is no easy bypass around this, and each vehicle is required to take a hard route. The hardest route is a 12-foot tall vertical wall that is slightly rounded on top and dug out at the bottom. The required route is a 2 1/2 foot vertical stepped ledge with a 2-4 foot steep hill climb above it. Lift, large tires, and lockers are required for either route.
8. Ledge (4
The next set of play areas. This part of the trail offers something for everyone. Just watch out for the overhang and try not to break.
Largest wall is roughly 10 feet tall and slowly tapers off to a bypass that is flat ground on the right side.
9. Tailpipe Hill (4.1
Tailpipe Hill has a hard five-foot vertical ledge to climb on the left with a less hard, but still hard route on the right. Following the ledge is a long rocky hill climb that is roughly 80 feet long.
10. Rock Chucker (4.2
Rock Chucker is one of the named obstacles of the trail. Large tires and a short wheelbase make this obstacle seem doable.
11. Mirror Gulch (4.3
The trail edges up the cliff and gets very narrow, roughly as wide as a JK. Wide vehicles will have problems here. There are several ledges that are very slippery and will cause problems. The largest ledge is roughly 4 feet tall. Some momentum might be required.
12. Misty's Thumb (4.4
Immediately following Mirror Gulch is Misty's Thumb. This set of ledges will give you something to work through. There are two lines. Hard: which s-turns up through the rocks, and Harder: which climbs directly up the steep ledges.
13. Overlook (5
Here is an overlook of Moab, Arches, and surrounding area...
Watch out! That first step is a big one!
14. Intersection - Turn Right at Arths Pasture Road (6.9
Follow Metal Masher to the right. This takes you to Widow Maker. If you go straight, you go back to the Gemini Bridges on Arths Pasture Road.
15. Widow Maker Bypass (7
Left takes you around Widow Maker. This trail isn't easy either with several large ledges and rocky hill climbs. Right takes you to the bottom of Widow Maker.
The GPS track takes the bypass route. If you want to attempt Widow Maker, stay to the right.
16. Bypass to Top of Widow Maker (8.3
Straight is the bypass to Widow Makers takes you above the obstacle so you can drop back down and check it out. Right takes you down to the top of Widow Maker.
17. Widow Maker (8.3
Widow Maker is one of the named obstacles on the trail. This obstacle has caused many rollovers and is something to take seriously. Large tires, lockers, lots of horsepower, and a longer wheelbase will help you greatly.
18. End (13
This is the end of the trail.
From here, you can go left and go back out the way you came in, or go right and head out to Highway 313.
19. Mother-In-Law Hill (
An additional challenge, Mother-In-Law Hill offers drivers a challenge like many others on this trail.
There is no dispersed camping in the immediate area.
Remember, when using free designated sites, you are required to remove all solid human waste from the area. Campers are required to possess, set up, and use portable toilets. Campers may not bury or leave exposed, solid human body waste or soiled toilet paper. The disposal of solid human waste off public land is required. You must camp only in marked sites, and no wood cutting is allowed. Following these simple rules will ensure that the sites are attractive to future campers. Enjoy your stay! The Moab Field Office maintains 26 campgrounds. Many of the campgrounds are located close to Arches National Park along the Colorado River. These campgrounds offer views of spectacular red rock cliffs amidst a green ribbon of vegetation.
From Moab, take Highway 191 north to Gemini Bridges trailhead (approximately 11.5 miles), and go left. Immediately, go left on Gemini Bridges Trail. Stay on Gemini Bridges Trail for approximately 6 miles. Follow Gemini Bridges Road through multiple corners...first a right then a left until you reach Metal Masher trailhead (approximately 5.5 miles).
Great trail. Almost everything is bypass able. The Widow Maker approach from the right trail is harder and a little sketchy. Widow Maker itself was completely undoable without a winch for all 10 in our group. RR4x4 rated is a 7. Maybe 12 years ago but today its a 10. 90% of tghe good stuff is before the look out. After that just follow the high ledge and cut out early unless you have to try Widow maker
Great trail, killer views. It was windy and chilly when we ran it, and with three capable rigs, we were able to do it in about 4 1/2 hours. Most of the named obstacles have bypasses but we chose to attempt all of them except Rock Chucker due to waning daylight. It would be a great trail even without the obstacles but they sure make it interesting!
Since it was our first time in Moab and wheeling alone we didn't plan on running Metal Masher but ended up running into a few other fellow Jeepers at Top of the World and tagged along that afternoon to check out Metal Masher. Even though we didn't try the Widow Maker obstacle, we did check it out. Metal Masher is a very scenic trail and once I recommend. We had not real issues out on the trail other than finding the trail head.
I ran this trail with my '98 cherokee on a 4.5 inch lift with 31x10.5s and a rear locker. I did have to winch on "Mirror Gulch" because I wasn't willing to use momentum to get up the obstacle. I was on the trail by myself with my family and I didn't want to risk damage.
It's a great trail. I chose it because there are very few off camber spots and limited exposure to heights and cliff edges. I had a passenger who is very sensitive to heights and "tip over" sensation.
If I were by myself, I would choose Poison Spider over of this trail. This one is still great, though.
Ran the trail and had a ton of fun... Didn't say no to one hardline. But it was the first day so if I didn't make it without trying hard, I backed down... Now I want to go back and do rocker knocker. Just need a slightly bigger tire.
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Mapping Crew - California
Joshua Noesser grew up in Southern California but has lived in different parts of the country during his young adult life. Josh was first turned to four wheeling when he road with one of his friends dad up Surprise Canyon in the Panamint Valley at age14. After nearly 3 different roll overs later and a half dozen intense waterfalls, Josh was hooked. At 16 he purchased his first Jeep a CJ 7 and by 17 was putting his first locker in it.
Currently, Josh is the owner and CEO of Nybble, an IT Solutions Company based in Orange County, California. Nybble isn't your normal IT company where everyone stays in and plays video games. Nybble's average company trip is out on the trails since a good amount of his staff enjoy wheeling too. As Josh likes to say, he offers the only IT Company with the ability to provide services in extreme locations. "If you want a server at the top of The Hammers, we will take care of that for you."
Today you can find Josh out on the trail behind the wheel in one of his three different off-road vehicles. See the vehicles below for more information.
If you ever run into Josh, please say high, he is a very friendly person and is always happy to have a new person join the group.
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