Posts Tagged ‘Moki Dugway’

Butler Wash Road and the Moki Dugway in Utah

Here’s an update on Butler Wash Road in Southern Utah. Having driven it in the past month, I have to say it’s in pretty good condition. There was one wash that dipped pretty steeply and was soft sand trying to get back up the other side. This was located on the north end of the road, close to highway 95. The rest of the road was well graded and the washes were at that time dry. I would recommend a high clearance vehicle because of the wash areas.

If you are thinking about taking the Moki Dugway, that too was in good shape. Windy of course, but ample. I wouldn’t recommend a larger over-sized vehicle (in fact I think they are restricted on that road). Drive slowly and take your time! There were a ton of cows on the road north of the dugway, so keep a look out.

From the Bluff, Utah Website:

Moki Dugway (A.K.A. Mokee Dugway) on State Route 261 in San Juan County, Utah.  The highway decends/climbs 1,100 feet in just 3 miles on a dirt road carved out of steep rock cliffs.

Moki Dugway (A.K.A. Mokee Dugway) on State Route 261 in San Juan County, Utah. The highway decends/climbs 1,100 feet in just 3 miles on a dirt road carved out of steep rock cliffs.

Photo by Daniel Schwen

“The Moki Dugway is a staggering, graded dirt switchback road carved into the face of the cliff edge of Cedar Mesa.  It consists of 3 miles of steep, unpaved, but well graded switchbacks (11% grade), which wind 1,200 feet from Cedar Mesa to the valley floor near Valley of the Gods.  This route provides breathtaking views of some of Utah’s most beautiful sites.  Scenic views of Valey of the Gods and distant Monument valley open at every turn of the dugway.

The Moki Dugway was constructed in the 1950’s provide a way to haul ore from the Happy Jack Mine on Cedar Mesa to the mill in Halchita, near Mexican Hat.

The State of Utah recommends that only vehicles less than 28 feet and 10,000 pounds attempt to negotiate the dugway.  The remainder of US-261 is paved.”