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East Rim Trail

Storm clouds clearing above the evaporation ponds for the nearby potash mine. Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah

The East Rim Trail in Dead Horse State Park, Utah is an easy 1.8 mile one-way hike that features unparalleled views of the scenery unfolding east of the park. Note that once completed, either hiking back via the East or West Rim Trails or shuttling a car will be required to return to the starting point.

East Rim Trail Description

Beginning at the back of the Visitor Center (though the trail could just as easily be done originating at Dead Horse Point), look for the East Rim Trail to veer to the right of the paved Nature Trail. You’re immediately treated to sprawling views of the canyons below and the evaporation ponds for the nearby potash mine. Capping the horizon are the remarkable La Sal Mountains rising high above it all.

A small sandstone ridge begins running parallel to the trail on your right while the left continues offering beautiful views. You’ll soon climb up onto the rim via a short climb a few dozen feet. At this point the views to the left get even more sublime as the trail begins to wrap around the rim, taking a more westward approach toward The Neck of the park. Along the way you’re treated to the Basin Overlook, which treats you to a fantastic view looking down toward the Needles district of Canyonlands National Park.

Canyon Labyrinths Below Sandstone Ridges
A landscape of canyons sprawling out below sandstone cliffs. Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah

The main trail continues ahead and soon reaches The Neck where you’ll begin to parallel the road before climbing up sandstone rocks and onto a partially paved trail. It’s here you’ll pass through the picnic area where you’ll then make a small ascent toward Dead Horse Point, treating you to the best views of all.

Getting There

From the Dead Horse Point State Park entrance station, head south along the main road for 2 miles until you reach the parking area for the Visitor Center. Follow the path around the building (or through it) to reach the start of the trail.

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