Dead Horse Point State Park…
A Complete Guide

Dead Horse Point State Park

Located within the Canyon Rims Recreation Area in southeastern Utah, Dead Horse Point State Park sits 2,000 feet above the meandering Colorado River.

Legend has it that turn-of-century cowboys rounded up some of the many wild horses that roamed free in the area.  

They then herded them through a 30 yard narrow neck on to a narrow promontory with sheer cliffs on three sides.

The neck was then blocked with branches and brush and the horses were neatly corralled.

The cowboys selected the best horses which were to be sold, or to be used for their own personal use, and the rest were left in the corral.

Before the cowboys were to leave with their horse herd, the gate was to be opened and the remaining horses would be free to go on their own accord.

However, as fate would have it, so the legend goes, the brush gate was inadvertently left in place and the horses were trapped inside and died from lack of water.

Dead Horse Point State Park Area  Map

How to get there

Take US 191 nine miles northwest of Moab to Utah 313, then 23 miles southwest on Utah 313 to the end of the highway.

Dead Horse Point State Park

Operating Hours and Seasons

6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Visitor Center Hours

•    March 15 to Mid-October – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
•    Mid-October to March 14 - 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

You may find books and maps on Dead Horse Point State Park at the Visitor Center, or you may click on the link below which will take you directly to

Dead Horse Point State Park


The Visitor Center is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

However, the park remains open during these holidays.

Dead Horse Point State Park

Entrance Fees   

$10 Day-Use (per vehicle with up to 8 passengers)

$5 Day-Use for Utah seniors 62+

$75 Annual Day-Use Pass

$35 Senior Adventure (annual) Pass

$2 per person (commercial groups, buses, etc)

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There is no lodging within Dead Horse Point State Park.

The nearest lodging is in Moab, Utah.

Dead Horse Point State Park

To find lodging in Moab, use the Search Box on the right.

Simply enter the dates you have in mind, and the server, Hotels Combined, will provide you with a list of the lodging available on the dates you have specified.

This is not a booking agency. It is a search engine to help you find great lodging at great prices.

Dead Horse Point State Park

Kayenta Campground

21 Sites

•    Electrical hookup
•    Grills (For charcoal only.  Wood burning is not allowed)
•    Picnic tables
•    No Water or Sewer Hookups

Campground Host
Dump Station
Water available near restroom

For reservations, call toll free 801-322-3770


All water must be hauled in from Moab.  Consequently it is in short supply.  Don’t depend on there being enough to meet all your needs.

Recreational vehicles should fill water tanks before coming to the park.


Pets are allowed within Dead Horse Point State Park.

However, very stringent rules apply.

•    Must be on a leash at all times.
•    Allowed in campground but must be on a leash
•    Cannot be allowed to cause a disturbance
•    May be walked along public roads
•    Not Allowed in Public Buildings
•    Not allowed on trails
•    Cannot be left unattended.
•    Pick up after your dog and properly dispose of waste

Dead Horse Point State Park

General Park Rules

For more information about Utah State Park rules, Click Here.

Contact Information

Dead Horse Point State Park
P.O. Box 609
Moab, UT 84532-0609

435-259-2614 - main park number

 801-322-3770 - camping reservations

 800-322-3770 - toll-free camping reservations

Flora and Fauna

The Park supports more than 90 different species of desert plants including juniper, sagebrush and squawbush, as well as native grasses and many seasonal wildflowers that have adapted to the high desert climate.

Like the plant life, many of the animals at Dead Horse Point have adapted to living in the harsh desert environment.


•    Rocky Mountain Mule Deer
•    Blacktail Jackrabbit
•    Coyote
•    Desert Bighorn Sheep
•    Desert Cottontail

Desert Cottontail

Desert Cottontail Dead Horse Point State Park

Common Raven

Common Raven Dead Horse Point State Park


•    Collared Lizard
•    Gopher Snake
•    Midget Faded Rattlesnake


•    Common Raven
•    Scrub Jay
•    Common Nighthawk
•    Mourning Dove
•    Western Meadowlark
•    Red-Tailed Hawk


•    Pinyon Pine
•    Single Leaf Ash
•    Utah Juniper

Shrub-Like Plants

•    Cliffrose
•    Four-wing Saltbrush
•    Mormon Tea
•    Fremont Barberry
•    Narrowleaf Yucca   

Twisted Juniper

Twisted Juniper Dead Horse Point State Park

Sego Lily

Sego Lily Dead Horse Point State Park


•    Creeping Primrose
•    Sego Lily
•    Prickly Pear Cactus
•    Common Sunflower
•    Claret Cup Cactus


Ancestral Puebloans and Fremont People

From the stone tools and rock art found in the area, it is know that both the ancestral Puebloans and the Fremont peoples lived here from about 500 A.D. to the 1300s.

These people were hunter-gatherers.  They foraged for native plants, hunted bighorn sheep, deer and rabbits and grew crops of maize, squash and beans.

Later Inhabitants and Explorers

They were followed by the Ute and Paiute cultures who may have arrived in the area as early as A.D. 800 and the Navajo who migrated here after 1300A.D.

It is likely they were still using the area when the first Spanish explorers arrived around 1776 while searching for travel routes to the Spanish missions in California.

Dead Horse Point State Park


Mormon pioneers first tried to establish the Elk Mountain Mission in the Moab valley in the summer of 1855, but conflicts with the Utes led them to abandon their efforts.

It wasn’t until 1878 that settlers returned and established the farming and ranching community of Moab.

Uranium and Potash

In the 1950s uranium was discovered in the area and thousands of prospectors, miners, workers, and speculators poured into Moab.

But, by the 1980s uranium had been replaced by potash mining, which was used as fertilizer, and tourism.

Although potash has been an important part of the local economy since the early 1960s, tourism has been the mainstay.

State Park Status

Dead Horse Point State Park was established in 1959 with a 628-acre gift donated to the State by San Juan County.

Through acquisitions from the Bureau of Land Management and other state agencies, the original 628-acre gift has grown to more than 5,300 acres.

References and Resources

Utah State Parks

The Free Encyclopedia

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