Dusty Lizard Moab 2024

Moab Utah. These two words have the power to conjure daydreams of all time rides in an epic landscape that’s unlike anywhere else on earth. If you’ve been to Moab you know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t been, trust me when I say you’re missing out. Mosko Moto is no stranger to the awesome that is Moab, which is why they recently hosted a Dusty Lizard Campout there. When you combine great riding with a great event, you get a top-shelf weekend that’s outstanding anyway you look at it.

The Dusty Lizard is Mosko Moto’s community centric event that’s laid back, low key and focused on riding and having fun as opposed to trying to sell you something. We’ve been to several of their events now, like last year’s Ridgway event, which you can read about in Upshift 85. What we love about the Dusty Lizard is that it’s a run what you brung event where everyone is welcome, and riders are free to choose their own adventure. Mosko Moto has gone to great lengths to cultivate community at these events, and they stand up an awesome hang out spot they call the Dusty Lizard Lounge for everyone to gather in. With comfy couches, shade netting to hide from the sun, propane fire pits to keep things warm at night, live music and refrigerated beverages, the Dusty Lizard lounge is the best thing I’ve found at any event for hanging out with other riders. What’s neat about these events is that you’ll start to see familiar faces at each successive event that you attend. The Dusty Lizard is becoming a basecamp for a community that gathers in rad locations for riding.

What makes Moab such an amazing place to ride is the variety of trails and biomes that are all so closely packed together. Within an hour of riding, you can go from desert slot canyons and sandstone arches, to aspen trees and snow-capped mountains. The landscape is so unique and so diverse, that it’s no wonder Moab has become a Mecca for so many outdoor sports.

Many of Moab’s trails are world famous, like the Slickrock Trail, which is a dozen odd miles mostly on sandstone formations that provide grip like you’re riding on sandpaper. Only when Slickrock gets covered in sand does it get slick – otherwise, riders can climb and descend impressively steep lines, and the Slickrock trail is a great introduction to riding sandstone. As Chris Birch says, “It’s balance control and fear control, not traction control.” Once you get your head around what can be done on Slickrock, it’s game on for an incredibly fun and unique riding experience.

There are dozens of technical Jeep trails and other routes that take full advantage of Moab’s unique landscape. These trails run the spectrum from easy (Fins N Things) to hard (Pritchett Canyon) and everywhere in between. All of these trails have unique experiences – some have you climbing technical obstacle after obstacle, as you work your way up a sandstone canyon with water running through it. Other trails traverse sandstone mesas with plenty of fun lines that remind you of riding on a rollercoaster. I have yet to ride a trail in Moab that I wouldn’t be stoked to ride again. The Moab area also has tons of dirt roads and tracks that go through some incredibly beautiful landscapes.

One iconic trail is the White Rim Trail, which is almost 100 miles of quintessential Utah canyon country that should be on every rider’s bucket list. While some areas have one trail that’s a must ride, Moab has tons of awesome trails that fall into the must-ride category. Trust me when I say the limiting factor here is rider endurance and fuel range, because there is an endless supply of cool roads to explore around Moab. Exploration is something that the Dusty Lizard encourages, which is unique in the world of motorcycle riding events.

Instead of most other events where each day has “the route” and if you’re lucky, a few optional splits, Mosko Moto lets riders pick where they want to go, as the Dusty Lizard is a self-guided event. Several giant maps are posted on the side of a trailer parked near the Dusty Lizard Lounge, and riders are given these routes as GPX files. Each route has a description and mileage which helps riders find a ride that matches their appetite. It’s neat to watch riders come together around a map – I think maps are something that motorcycle riders are inherently drawn to, and when you bring a bunch of riders together around a map you get some great collaboration. One rider might be making a suggestion on a ride they just did to another rider, or someone may be looking for a group to go check out some trail they have their eye on. Making new riding buddies is something that Mosko Moto is actively trying to cultivate and it’s just one more example of what makes the Dusty Lizard unique.

We ran into multiple groups of riders from the Dusty Lizard out on the trail, and after talking to these groups, we found that many of them had formed up the night before or that morning to go do a ride together. Having a group is a smart move in a place like Moab, especially when you’re taking on a trail that’s challenging. We ran into a crew of riders at the last hard obstacle on a trail, and it was awesome to watch them all psyche each other up to try riding the obstacle, and more importantly work together to get a bike around the obstacle without incident. No doubt stories from that ride will be recalled again at a future date.

The Dusty Lizard is much more than great riding. After a day of exploring, adventure, and making memories, everyone gathers at the Dusty Lizard Lounge for an awesome evening. Mosko Moto has gone to great lengths to build a super cool hang out spot in camp, and their efforts are clearly paying off. Take a bunch or riders who are stoked from great riding, give them cold drinks, good food, live music, a stunning backdrop, rad sunsets, and you’ve got a recipe for a great evening. It’s impressive to see how almost everyone at a Dusty Lizard gravitates to the Dusty Lizard Lounge in the evening. At other events, you’ll see small groups of riders hanging out by themselves, but at a Dusty Lizard, it’s all a big gathering – and it’s a great time.

Mosko Moto’s Dusty Lizard is really hitting its stride as a unique and fun event in the world of motorcycle rallies/events. By combining choose your own adventure style riding in great locations with a super cool camp venue that’s mellow and not trying to sell you anything, the Dusty Lizard is realizing the stated goal of cultivating a community of riders that meets up in awesome locations to ride together. The Moab Dusty Lizard was awesome, and we’re looking forward to next year’s Moab event. We’re also keen to attend the next event in Silverton, Colorado in August. Hopefully we’ll see you there! For a list of Dusty Lizard events go to Mosko Motos events page here.