Muley Point is a mecca for boondockers, overlanders, and outdoor adventurers. It is one of many notable sites encompassed by the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area in Southern Utah. The panoramic point includes view of Monument Valley, Navaho Mountain, and canyons carved out by the San Juan River below. The long, sandy dirt road accessing the tip of Muley Point is punctuated by undeveloped campsites. And, while there may be no amenities, the views are worth the inconvenience.
Accessing Muley Point
You cannot reach Muley Point without passing numerous signs warning of driving hazards. The Moki Dugway’s tight hairpin turns limit the length of vehicles permitted to access Muley Point from the south. As for Muley Point road itself, even small, 2-wheel drive vehicles can traverse much of Point with relative ease in dry weather. Yet, according to many sources, the deep dirt roads become impassible after rain. Of course, we have 4-wheel drive, all terrain tires, and dry weather, so our only limitations were common sense and courtesy to only use preexisting routes and camp sites.
I see a lot of posts about Moki Dugway being the mot dangerous road in the world. I’m not sure what metrics these writers are using. We certainly had much more hair raising experiences on other stretches in Utah alone. Regardless, Moki Dugway is a mind-blowingly scenic stretch of dirt road connecting Utah Highway 95 and US Highway 163. Travelers from the south take the Moki Dugway from the Valley of the Gods to ascend an 11% grade to the top of Cedar Mesa and access Muley Point. While the dirt road is generally wide and even occasionally paved, the hairpin turns mean that only vehicles under 28-feet are permitted. Fortunately, there is a little dirt lot at the base of the Dugway for oversized vehicles to park. There are also several wide pullouts to allow other vehicles to pass or pause to take in the view.
Moki certainly is part of the whole experience of Muley Point. Even so, we are grateful to not encounter any oncoming traffic while taking the blind, hairpin turns up to our campsite.
Camping On Muley Point
While there are campsites along Muley Point, there are no amenities. There is no nearby pit toilet, there are no trashcans, there is no running water, there are no electrical hookups, and there is only the occasional and unreliable bar of cell service. This is a site for classic boondocking. Everything you need, you pack in. Everything you make, you pack out.
This goes especially for human waste, which has been a growing problem in remote campsites as more people learn about boondocking but not the basic rules of stewardship that comes with these sites. So, if you don’t have the resources and tools to camp sustainably, remember that there are developed campgrounds in Mexican Hat, Monument Valley, and other nearby sites that are designed to handle your shit. Both literally and metaphorically.
Muley Point & Avions Truck Campers
Among the Avion truck camper community, this is a destination to visit upon the completion of your camper. After years of gradual improvements, however, we can’t help but visit ourselves. There is still plenty of work to do on our dear Avion, but we aren’t the types of people to allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good. This lady could do the Rimrocker and Shafer Trail. There isn’t much it can’t do.
A Night on Muley Point
It feels so good to be back out west. There are so many amazing sights around the world. But the wide expanses of this high elevation desert make for some singular sunsets.
As soon as the golden glow of the sun signals the prelude to sunset, we both go into auto pilot. I grab my cameral and start snapping away. Meanwhile, Chris, the practical one, pulls out the wine, pulls up a chair, and pours me a glass knowing, full well, that I won’t stop shooting until the light is too weak for freehanded photography. He just sits, sips, and takes in the sunset.
As the light fails, slightly panting, I join Chris for the final shades of dusk and my first sip of wine. With the solemnity of nightfall, we weigh who had the most fun.