Babylon Road

The road intersects the north boundary of the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve/NCA at this signed location and continues for 3 1/2 miles to its southern end at the Virgin River.

The Babylon Road serves as an equestrian and motorized trail throughout its length within the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve and as primary access to 7 trailheads and 13 designated trails.  The road consists of a narrow dirt road maintained by the County and is subject to drifting blow sand which can be troublesome for 2WD passenger vehicles.  About ½ mile into the area after crossing the north boundary fence, visitors reach the Toquerville Mine trailhead which serves primarily as a trailhead and parking and unloading area for equestrians and motorized recreationists.  Another half mile into the area brings visitors to the Sand Cove trailhead which provides vehicle parking for visitors to the primitive Sand Cove recreation site (especially those with 2WD and low-clearance vehicles) and hikers choosing to use the Flicker, Arch, Sandstone Mountain, Sidewinder, Red Tail, and Raven trails.  A rough jeep road is available from the trailhead to directly access the Sand Cove site, but 4WD and high-clearance vehicles are strongly recommended for this option.  For safety reasons, vehicles pulling trailers of any kind are not recommended to proceed beyond the Sand Cove trailhead.  The Babylon Road past this point becomes increasingly narrow and includes steep, winding grades on a clay base which becomes treacherous during and after rain.  Portions are also very rocky with protruding bedrock and occasional washouts from heavy rains.  Steep drop-offs on the west side of the road will be unnerving to some passengers.  At the foot of the first major elevation drop, visitors will reach the Mineshaft trailhead (limited parking) which serves the Mineshaft trail with links to the Historic Babylon, Little Purgatory and East Reef trails.  Further to the south, and below the steepest decline on the road, visitors will reach the Historic Babylon trailhead at the Gap with links to the Little Purgatory, East Reef, and Mineshaft trails.  Further down is found the East Reef trailhead (limited parking) with a direct link to the East Reef and Historic Babylon trails.  Finally, visitors may continue to the end of the road, some 3¼ miles from its start at the north boundary of the Reserve, and stop at the Babylon Mill Site with direct access to the Virgin River and the Virgin River trail.  Total elevation loss top to bottom is about 520 feet.  All but the southern tip of the road lies on public lands administered by the BLM within the Red Cliffs NCA.  A small portion of the southern end touches on land owned by the Virgin River Land Preservation Association.