Upper Onion Creek Campground
Guide

Introduction

The Upper Onion Creek Campground is a Bureau of Land Management property located in the State of Utah with views of the Red Rock Colorado River Canyon to the west. The nearby Colorado River and canyon feature red rock geological formations, mesas, and Fisher Towers. Fisher Towers are pinnacles consisting of Cutler sandstone and crowned with Moenkopi sandstone, coated with a stucco layer of red mud. These interesting geological formations provide scenic spires along the Red Rock Canyon adjacent to the BLM Upper Onion Creek Campground area. The La Sal Mountains provide a scenic backdrop on the southern border of the area.

The campground is open year round, and there are individual and group sites, as well as a corral facility for horses. The area is near a four-wheel-drive road, hiking and equestrian trails, rafting on the Colorado River, and rock climbing locations. The campground is situated in open, rugged, Utah wilderness country and visitors can enjoy the natural surroundings characteristic of the area.

While visiting the BLM Upper Onion Creek Campground you will have the opportunity to take in multiple wilderness areas within easy driving distance. The McInnis Canyons National Park is situated just to the north, the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation area is a short distance east, Arches National Park can be found just to the west, and Canyonlands National Park is a little further to the west. The Dead Horse Point State Park is also situated nearby, about an hour's drive southwest.

RV Rentals in Upper Onion Creek Campground

Transportation

Driving

Upper Onion Creek Campground is located in Utah, just off Highway 128. From the junction of Highway 191 and Highway 128, travel east for 21 miles along the scenic Colorado River on Highway 128. There is a sign for Onion Creek, visitors can turn right at the sign and proceed 0.7 miles up a gravel road to the campground where the individual sites are located. To get to the group campground, proceed down the Onion Creek Road at the sign for about ½ a mile, the group campsites are on the left side of the road. The town of Moab, Utah is located about 40 minutes from the Upper Onion Creek Campground and travelers in the area will find many amenities and services here including restaurants, stores, sports rentals, tour companies, outfitters, and museums.

The Onion Creek four-wheel-drive road is situated right next to the Upper Onion Creek Campground and is a popular route for four-wheel-drive vehicles and equestrians. This road comes compete with 27 wash crossings! During periods of heavy rain, which occurs seasonally, these areas can flood, making the road hazardous for travel. Check conditions and use caution.

There are many national parks, wilderness areas, and state parks within an hour's drive of Upper Onion Creek Campground which makes a good base to explore the region and take in the many wonderful activities and sights.

Parking

Public Transportation

Campgrounds and parking in Upper Onion Creek Campground

Campsites in Upper Onion Creek Campground

First-come first-served

Upper Onion Creek Campground

The Upper Onion Creek Compound is a Bureau of Land Management appointed campground with 14 individual sites, limited to ten people and two vehicles per site, and two group sites. The individual sites are available on a first-come, first-serve basis, and the two group sites, A and B, which are reservable online.

Group site A has a horse corral for equestrian camping. The campground has direct access to the Onion Creek four-wheel-drive road and is popular with both OHV and equestrian campers. There are no RV hookups, dump stations, or water supplies at the campground, although there are vault toilets available for campers. The campground is situated in an open area with little shelter or shade, so be prepared to weather the elements according to the season. The open area provides spectacular views of the surrounding wilderness areas and the Red Rock Colorado River Canyon to the west.

The gravel access road is graded and accessible for RVs and tow trailers. Campsites have picnic tables and fire rings and can accommodate larger RVs with both back-in and pull-through sites. The campground is available for use year-round.

Seasonal activities in Upper Onion Creek Campground

Off-Season

Moab Giants Dinosaur Park

When the weather is too hot, or too cold, for strenuous outdoor activities in the area, visit the Moab Giants Dinosaur Park. The park comes complete with a 3D cinema and life-size dinosaur figures that will take you back in time, to when these prehistoric giants roamed the area.

There are interactive learning activities, fossilized tracks, and fascinating exhibits to discover at the museum. The museum comes complete with a ½ mile trail with 130 full-size dinosaur installations and tracks, and a 5D paleo-aquarium where huge screens give you insight into ancient undersea life. Plus, a hands-on exhibit provides an “all-encompassing experience”, a “prehistoric” playground, and even a gift shop and cafe.

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding at the Upper Onion Creek Campground is facilitated by equine camping facilities including a horse corral at group site A, and many nearby equestrian trails. Explore the spires and mesas from the back of your equine friend.

This is a hot, semi-arid wilderness area, and equestrians and their mounts should be prepared for rugged conditions. Ensure you have adequate feed and water for your stock. Equestrian activities often take place in the fall, when rivers and creeks are lower, and allow for safer crossings. Extreme heat or cold can create overly harsh conditions for horses during the summer and winter months.

Offroading

The Upper Onion Creek Campground has direct access to the Onion Creek four-wheel-drive road which is adjacent to the campground. This compacted dirt road is popular with off-highway vehicle users and is also heavily used by equestrians in the area, so use caution and keep an eye out for four-legged traffic while enjoying offroad excursions in the area.

There are many wash crossings on the road which can become flooded during wet weather, so exercise caution and check local conditions before proceeding. Ensure you have adequate safety equipment and supplies at all times.

In-Season

Rock Climbing

Rock climbing opportunities around in the Upper Onion Creek, BLM area. There is everything from casual sport climbs, 600 and 900 feet desert spires, and multi-day climbs to tackle in the region. The Titan is a 1200 foot ridge climb and there are world-class desert crack climbing spots at Indian Creek, as well as miles of cliff faces to attempt.

Climbing outfitters in nearby Moab can supply equipment, lessons, and guides, direct you to the best spots, and provide helpful tips. Use caution in wet weather as climbing activities are made hazardous by slick sediments and can cause damage to geological formations in the area.

Boating and Whitewater Rafting

Boat launches are stated at Lower Onion Creek and the Hittle Bottoms Campground on the Colorado River. Enjoy boating and fishing along the waterways from motorized and non-motorized boats. Whitewater rafting along the Colorado River is especially popular, and local outfitters and tour companies can facilitate your rafting trip with guides and equipment to take in the Red Rock Canyon and wilderness areas along the river.

Ensure you follow safety procedures on watercraft on these sometimes fast-moving watercourses including having life preservers for all passengers on board.

Hiking

Visitors enjoy hiking to explore the many geological wonders including the Red Rock Canyon and Fisher Towers that grace this Utah wilderness area. There are many hiking trailheads and overlooks along Highway 128 that can be accessed nearby.

Be sure to pack plenty of water for excursions in the area, as temperatures in the summer months are commonly around 100 F. Early fall and late spring are ideal for hiking in the area and taking in the local wildlife, views of the creeks, canyons, rivers, and rock formations.

Find the perfect campsite.