Rockstacker

Rating: 
One-way Distance: 1.7 miles
Difficulty: Strenuous
MTB Skill level:
Elevation: 4438 - 4584 feet
Cellphone: 0-3 bars
Time: 45 mins.
Trailhead: Amasa Back/Kane Creek
Fee: none
Attractions: Technical singletrack




Rockstacker is located in the Amasa Back Trails area near Moab, Utah. The lower end of the trail begins near the end of the Jackson trail. From there is climbs slickrock ledges with some dirt tracks until it ends at the Pothole Arch trail. There are several steep stretches, a few sharp corners, and some narrow spots.


For this post we began at the Amasa Back trailhead along the Kane Spring Road and followed Cliffhanger to the Pothole Arch trail. We got off onto the Rockstacker trail on the return from Pothole Arch and followed it down to the Jackson trail. After reaching the Kane Creek trailhead we followed the Kane Spring Road back to the Amasa Back trailhead to complete the loop which came out to over 13 miles.


From the top the Rockstacker trail crosses some slickrock to the edge of the rim.


After a short distance the trail begins descending from the rim and drops over a rocky ledge.


From there the trail travels around a bowl to a point that juts out from the rim and makes a big dive down some bumpy ledges to the next lower bench. This is a pretty hairy drop but it is probably easier to go down than it is up. Don't overshoot the bottom or you will end up in the river about a thousand feet below.


The next stage of the trail is much easier in comparison. It alternates between red dirt and broken slickrock and the ledges are a lot shorter than the drop off from the point.


Sooner or later you will need to stop and take in the scenery. It's worth spending a little extra time to appreciate the landscape and it's also fun to try and spot other trails in the area that you may have already done like the Moab Rim, Pritchett Canyon or Poison Spider trails.


After the initial drop from the Pothole Arch trail the Rockstacker actually climbs higher than that point three different times before it makes a long descent to its junction with the Jackson trail so even in the downhill direction there is 553 feet of elevation to gain.


The slideshow at the end of the post should give a good idea of what the trail is like. We tried to include pictures of all of the transition points like the one in this picture.


Past the midpoint the trial encounters several more big drops that are very technical.


The second big drop has several switchbacks with sharp corners.


The remainder of the trail is more broken ledges and slickrock that ranges from smooth to bumpy.


For a grand finale you are treated with about a quarter mile of easy rolling.



It all comes to an end at the Jackson trail. Notice that the sign says that the Rockstacker is 'Dangerous, Extremely Technical'. We'll admit that we had to walk our bikes in a couple of places but we aren't all that good anyway and we are loaded down with a few thousand dollars worth of camera equipment and electronics. We ran into a couple of hikers that had come up the Jackson trail and were headed to Pothole Arch but we didn't see any other mountain bikers. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is grab your bike or 'Take a hike'.