The Strawberry Valley Blues Festival and Rim Country Mountain Bike Festival are only weeks away. Just wanted to plug the event again and invite any and all who want to come ride the Rim with us on June 12 and 13 while also enjoying a Blues Festival in Strawberry.
Below is a weekend itinerary. I know it's long, but I wanted to try and be as thorough as possible. Some of my mileages may be off a little, but you'll get the gist! If I've made any mistakes, nicely bring it to my attention. I am a busy guy and wrote this up late last night.
We figure some of you will want to show up on Friday. We don’t have an official ride planned for Friday, but we encourage all of you who come into town to do a little exploring on your own. Stop in at Hike, Bike, & Run to say hi, check out the Natural Bridge, hike down to Fossil Creek, hike or mountain bike from the Pine Trailhead, all while taking in the beauty around Payson’s Rim Country.
Friday June 11th
Friday June 11th
Saturday June 12th
THIS IS A FREE RIDE! We will be meeting between 9:00am-9:30am at the General Springs Cabin to ride the Cabin Loop trail system. We want to take a group photo of all riders at 10:00am to start the ride. To find the General Springs Cabin, take Hwy 87 north from the town of Strawberry to Forest Road 300. Turn right (or east) onto Forest Road 300 and drive approximately 10 miles. Look for our white Hike, Bike, & Run van which will be parked alongside the 300 Road. This is where the Arizona Trail crests the top of the Rim. There is a war monument at the junction. The General Springs Cabin is about a half mile down the dirt road to your left (going north, away from the Rim). Here is a link to a map of the Cabin Loop http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/coconino/rec...aught-tr.shtml
There are multiple route options to cater to all level of riders.
Short Loop - Out and back on Fred Haught Trail - 12 mile round trip (easiest option)
Standard Loop - Fred Haught Trail to Houston Brothers Trail back to Forest Road 300 - 20 mile ride (this will be the loop most of us will be doing - it is a difficult 20 miles).
Long Loop - Fred Haught Trail to U-Bar Trail to Barbershop Trail to Houston Brothers Trail back to Forest Road 300 - 30-40+ miles (this is a difficult loop with lots of hike-a-bike)
These are not mandatory group rides. We encourage folks to team up, make new friends, and enjoy some trail magic, but ride your own ride, know the route you will be riding in advance, be prepared, and have fun. This entire route is above 7,000 feet in elevation, and the trail is remote, so be prepared for any trail problems and for any inclement weather.
After Saturday’s ride, we’ll head back to Strawberry or wherever you are staying, clean-up, and hit the Blues Festival. The Blues Festival is in the heart of Strawberry approximately 2 ½ miles down Fossil Creek Road. Enjoy the Blues Festival, but make certain to save some energy for Sunday’s mountain bike ride.
Sunday June 13th
ANOTHER FREE RIDE! We will be meeting between 9:00am-9:30am at the Rim Lakes Recreation Area. Go East on Hwy 260 approximately 30 miles east of Payson. When you crest the top of the Rim, you will see a Forest Service Visitor Center on your right. Take a left onto Forest Road 300 (heading towards Woods Canyon Lake), and park in the first parking lot on your right. You will see our white Hike, Bike, & Run van parked here. The parking lot is only a quarter mile off Hwy 260. Here is a link to a map of the Rim Lakes http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/asnf/maps/im..._lakes_map.pdf
We will once again take a group photo at 10:00am to start the ride.
Short Loop - Rim Vista Loop, using part of the General Crook trail to Woods Canyon Lake and back - 12-13 mile ride (easiest option)
Medium Loop - Rim Vista Trail to Meadow Trail to Woods Canyon Lake Trail, around Woods Canyon Lake, taking Meadow Trail back to Rim Vista Trail and back to your car - 16-18 mile ride
Medium Long Loop - All of the above, but going west on the Rim Vista Trail, riding to the Mogollon Campground, then taking the General Crook Trail to the Carr Lake Trailhead, riding the Boulder Hop Trail, then riding back to your car - approximately a 25 mile ride (it is worth checking out the Carr Lake Trails if you can manage the mileage).
Long Loop - all of the above, but after the Boulder Hop Trail we will take the Drew Trail and ride down the face of the Mogollon Rim (it is a steep downhill but I do it on a rigid single speed), once down the Rim we will take the Highline Trail to See Canyon, then ride back to Christopher Creek where our Hike, Bike, & Run van will shuttle all of us back to our cars on the Rim - upwards of a 30-35 mile ride (this ride is Epic, and if you can go the distance, there is no better way to end a Rim Lakes ride then by dropping the Rim and riding to Christopher Creek - the last 6-7 miles of this ride is extremely technical and difficult, but amazing).
After the ride, you are on your own. You can go home, try and squeeze in a bit more of the Blues Festival, or meet us for dinner in Payson at the Payson Pizza Factory.
Over the course of the weekend, if you like the trails you ride, and can see the potential of Payson’s Rim Country as a mountain biking hot spot, please leave a donation. 100% of all donations will be given to the Black Mesa Ranger district, and will be used for trail maintenance and new trail signage for the Rim Lakes trails.
If you have any questions, email Mick Wolf @ Hike, Bike, & Run at firstname.lastname@example.org