The Moab Fondo Fest is a two-day cycling event that takes place in Moab, Utah, on May 4th and 5th, 2024. It offers two different options for riders: the Gran Fondo Moab, which follows the scenic La Sal Mountain Loop Road for 60 miles, and the Gravel Fondo Moab, which explores the rugged terrain of the Moab backcountry for 50 miles. The event is open to cyclists of all levels, from beginners to experts, and features a mass start, professional timing, aid stations, and post-ride festivities. TransRockies, a company that specializes in mountain biking, trail running, and gravel cycling adventures, organizes the event, and we consider it to be one of the Best race events around. In fact, we've featured them in a few of our popular 'Best' articles including the Best Road Cycling Race Events in the Southwest, the Best Gravel Cycling Race Events in the Southwest, and the Best Cycling Race Events in Utah.
The Moab Fondo Fest is more than just a cycling event. It’s an opportunity to experience the stunning landscapes of Moab, Utah, and challenge yourself on some of the world's most diverse and beautiful roads. Moab is known as a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts, with its red rock formations, canyons, mesas, and mountains. The Moab Fondo Fest will take you on a tour of some of the area's most iconic and scenic routes, where you’ll encounter breathtaking views, exhilarating climbs, and thrilling descents. Whether you opt for the Gran Fondo Moab, the Gravel Fondo Moab, or both, you’ll be rewarded with a sense of accomplishment, camaraderie, and fun. The Moab Fondo Fest is a cycling adventure of a lifetime, and you don’t want to miss it.
TransRockies Gran Fondo Moab
One of Utah's premier Gran Fondo-style, this scenic journey will take you along the La Sal Mountain Loop Road, unveiling a breathtaking tapestry of canyon country landscapes. The 60-mile (100 km) route traces the graceful curves of the Colorado River, then ascends into the La Sal Mountains, passing through the picturesque Castle Valley. The La Sals offer awe-inspiring vistas of towering 12,000+ foot peaks overlooking the red rock valleys far below. As you complete this stunning loop, you'll return to Moab via the enchanting Spanish Valley Drive, crossing the finish line at Old City Park. Gran Fondo Moab welcomes cyclists of all levels, featuring a mass start with overall and professionally timed results. With its mix of challenging climbs, rolling hills, flat stretches, and captivating scenery, this event promises a cycling experience that will linger in your memory for years to come. The route spans 63 miles with 5,500 feet of elevation gain. Strambecco rates the event a Best Road Cycling Event in the Southwest and a Best Cycling Event in Utah.
TransRockies Gravel Fondo Moab
2024 marks the inaugural TransRockies Gravel Fondo Moab. The ride begins along the rugged Gemini Bridges Road, where red rock formations and endless vistas will surround you. As you pedal past the iconic Gooney Bird rock, you'll know you're in the heart of Moab, and while making your way up the Gemini Bridges, climb to Highway 313, panoramic views of the majestic Canyonlands surround you. From here, the real adventure begins! You'll ride along Dubinky Well Road, where every pedal stroke rewards you with stunning desert views. The Moab gravel provides the perfect terrain for gravel lovers seeking the ultimate challenge. This path will have you meander south along the base of Mill Canyon, bringing you full circle as you return to Bar M. Whether you're exploring the desert gravel for the first time or you're a seasoned rider seeking the next challenge, the Gravel Fondo Moab promises to etch an unforgettable memory into your cycling journey. The gravel route has not been announced but is expected to be of similar length and elevation gain at the road event.
Part of the TransRockies Race Series
TransRockies Race Series is a series of events that span road cycling, mountain biking, trail running, and gravel biking. The events occur in some of North America's most beautiful and rugged destinations, such as Alberta, British Columbia, Colorado, and Utah. The TransRockies Race Series is not just for elite athletes. It is designed to cater to both competitive and recreational participants, with different categories, distances, and formats to suit different levels of ability and experience. Whether you want to race solo or as a team for one day or for six days, you will find an event that suits you.
The TransRockies Race Series is also more than just a race. It is an adventure that combines fitness, fun, and friendship. You will get to enjoy the stunning scenery, the diverse terrain, and the friendly atmosphere of each event. You will also get to experience the camaraderie and support of fellow racers, volunteers, and organizers. You will make memories and connections that will last a lifetime.
The TransRockies Race Series features ten events over nearly 40 days annually. Strambecco covers several of their events, including Moab Run the Rocks, Moab Rocks, Moab Fondo Fest which includes the Gran Fondo Moab and Gravel Fondo Moab, Golden Rush, Gran Fondo Badlands, TransRockies Single Track-6, TransRockies Run, TransRockies Gravel Royale, TranSelkirks Run, and the Golden Ultra.
We consider their races and events to be some of the best out there and have been featured in a handful of our popular 'Best' articles including: the best road cycling race events in the Southwest, the best MTB race events in the Southwest, the best gravel cycling race events in the Rockies, the best Mountain Bike Events in the Northwest, and the best cycling race events in all of Canada.
Area Accommodations & Things to Do
If you have not visited Moab, you are in for a treat. We consider it to be one of the Best Destinations for Outdoor Athletes - Moab, UT. It’s an absolute outdoor paradise offering iconic Southwest scenery and a wide array of sports options in addition to trail running. There is something for everyone, from hiking to kayaking, rafting, rock climbing, off-road adventuring, and exploring national parks.
When it comes to lodging, the town has a variety of options to suit different preferences and needs. Three highly recommended options are the Big Horn Lodge, Gonzo Inn, and Field Station Moab (which also offers spots for van lifers), all known for their friendly accommodations and convenient locations. However, if you don't mind a bit of a drive and are looking for something more secluded, the Red Cliff Lodge and Sorrell River Ranch are two beautiful lodges located about a 40-minute drive from town.
The culinary scene in Moab, Utah, is surprisingly diverse, offering a range of dining options from casual cafes and food trucks to upscale eateries, with menus featuring everything from traditional American and Southwestern dishes to international cuisine. Many establishments also focus on locally sourced ingredients, ensuring a fresh and unique dining experience in this scenic desert town. Some favorites include Milt’s Stop N Eat, Moab’s oldest restaurant (try their burgers and shakes!), Jailhouse Cafe, and the Moab Food Truck Park.
Moab, Utah, is an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise, offering a plethora of activities for adventurers looking to explore the stunning natural landscapes surrounding the town. Just 5 miles from Moab, you can find Arches National Park, a must-visit destination known for its breathtaking arch formations, with popular trails like Delicate Arch and Devils Garden Primitive Loop providing challenging runs or hikes amidst the park's unique scenery.
Canyonlands National Park and Dead Horse State Park are both about a 40-minute drive from town, offering vast, panoramic views and a variety of trails. The Syncline Loop in Canyonlands is a great 8-mile run or hike option, while the Intrepid Trail in Dead Horse Park provides a 9+ mile loop suitable for mountain bikers, hikers, and runners alike.
Beyond these parks, Moab boasts a variety of trails for running, hiking, and mountain biking. The Slickrock Trail, Bar M area trails, Magnificent 7 area trails, Grandstaff Canyon, Corona Arch trail, and Porcupine Rim trail all offer unique and challenging terrains with stunning views. For those interested in history and culture, several sites feature fascinating petroglyphs to explore.
If you’re looking to give your feet a break, the Colorado River offers kayaking, paddleboarding, and rafting opportunities, with several rental outlets available in town. Jeep and ATV rentals are also popular, providing a different way to explore the rugged terrain. For a bit of exercise and relaxation, the Moab Aquatic Center on 400 West features a swimming pool and workout equipment.
For the more daring adventurers, Moab has unique canyoneering tours, rock climbing locations, and even skydiving opportunities. The recently opened zip line course, which includes a thrilling via Ferrata option, adds to the adrenaline-pumping activities available. Beginners interested in climbing can get their start at the Moab Adventure Park on Kane Creek Road.
After all the excitement and adventure, you might find yourself in need of some rest. Consider a nap on a smooth, sunny red rock or in Moonflower Canyon. Alternatively, a cool soak in Grandstaff Canyon Creek or Mill Creek offers a refreshing way to unwind and rejuvenate before your next Moab adventure.
The Transrockies Race Series, which Moab Fondo Fest is a part of, is a unique multi-sport event series spanning Road & Gravel Cycling, MTB, and Trail Running events throughout North America. Many of their events are multi-day and take place in spectacular destinations. Strambecco covers several of their events, including the Moab Rocks, TransRockies Gravel Royale, TransRockies Singletrack 6, Gran Fondo Badlands, and TranSelkirks Run.
Other best-in-class MTB events taking place in Utah include the True Grit Epic and 25 Hours of Frog Hollow from GRO Races and part of the National Ultra Endurance Race Series (NUE) and the N24 Series, respectively.
For the multi-sport athletes out there, there are many bucket list-worthy events to add to your calendar that take place in Utah. Gravel cyclists will appreciate some of the Best Gravel Cycling Events in the Southwest held in-state, including the Belgian Waffle Ride Utah in early April in Cedar City. This is the 5th annual BWR Utah, part of the North American Belgian Waffle Ride Series and the second leg in the Tripel Crown of Gravel Series. Two additional great gravel events are the Crusher in the Tushar from Life Time Events, part of its Grand Prix Series, and the True Grit Gravel Epic from GRO Races.
Finally, those who prefer pedaling on the pavement are not left out, with some of the Best Road Cycling Events in the Southwest happening throughout the year here, such as Lotoja and the Utah-Cache Gran Fondo, which is a GFNS Partner Event and a UCI Worlds Qualifier.
Trail running enthusiasts also have their pick at a slew of top shelf events in the state of Utah including The Moab Trail Marathon, Tushars Mountain Runs from Aravaipa Running, the Wasatch Front 100 which is part of the Grand Slam of Ultra Running and a Rocky Mountain Slam Series event. Vacation Races is a premier operator with multiple in-state events from the Antelope Canyon Ultras, Bryce Canyon Ultras, Zion Ultras, many of which are UTMB and Western States Qualifiers.