Black Canyon Trail

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↑ 4,400 ft
↓ 3,500 ft
elevation (ft)
avg mph
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4.91 out of 5
About This Trail
added by bdgerber Granny Gear on December 16, 2008
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This discription is for the Table Mesa trail head which has 1.5 miles (N) out on the Black Canyon Trail to the Little Pan Loop. The Little pan loop will take you down to the Agua Fria river and this loop length is about 6.5 miles. Then you head back (S) on the 1.5 mile Black Canyon Trail to the trail head.

If you are not familiar with Arizona mountains then it is a good idea to have a GPS since there are many branch off trails and off road vehicle trails.
Bring a comb for removing cactus needles and a few extra tubes. (Slime tubes are worth it)

There are additional miles of trails to this sytem with a total of 62.
Rider Questions
System Trails (2)
Black Canyon Trail - Little Pan Loop
Emery Henderson
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2 check-ins
on Oct 12, 2014
on Dec 18, 2011
acarges on October 12, 2014
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: It's a full body work out, challenging and fun. There is not much more to add than what others have stated. Except, it was a war with the cactus. Wear shin and full arm armor. It is impossible to avoid them: feet, hands, arms and legs are torn up good. Worth it 1 time but if I'd did it again I would have picked up the armor.

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Eric Foltz on September 26, 2014
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: This review is for the Little Pan Loop section of the Black Canyon Trail. This is one of the best trails in the country. It is perfectly designed for mountain bikes with good climbs and fast extended downhills in a beautiful setting.

Similar Trail: Hahn Trail

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Luis Hernandez on June 22, 2014
1 out of 1 readers found this useful
Review: Did this trail from exit 242, off HWY 17 . I consider myself an intermidiate rider and found the trail fairly easy, except for the tight switchbacks and exposure. Some sections with some huge dropoffs! You don't want to make a mistake in these sections. Other than that, its flowy single track goodness. Very beautiful trail with some rocky sections for added fun. I would rate this an intermidiate trail. Very nicely made, but more signs for direction would make things easier for first timers. Summertime is not the best time to hit this trail and UST tires and slime tubes are a good idea. Flats really ruin a ride and your bound to get them here.

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AaronT on April 30, 2014
1 out of 1 readers found this useful
Review: I take exit 236 - Table Mesa - to the TH (FYI - Get the singletracks phone app. It links all TH's to your phone's GPS. Hard to find without it). From there head N. At the fork about 1.4 miles you can either take the standard trail (go right) or head down to the little pan loop at the agua fria river (left). If you head to the river make sure you head immediately right once it comes out of the mountain onto the sandy double track or else you end up on Jeep trail 9980. Follow the rock bridge across to the other side and head due N again. You will pick uo the trail again there. The trail curves in many directions after that but don't worry. Head North and in approx 3 miles you will come to a large out cropping and a dirt road, Turn RIGHT on the dirt road and right after the the big left turn you will see on your right the BCT TH which will take you back to the original fork in the road and back to Table Mesa TH. It is easier to do this in reverse order the first time CCW (take the right at the fork - at the road turn left and get on little pan on your left and ride that down to the river) but i prefer it CW. IT really is an awesome trail. Plenty of H2O, T/R tubes & some CO2 cartridges. It's a long walk. Do not ride this trail from Jun-Sep.

Similar Trail: Hawes for topography, Granite Basin for layout.

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nedmario on February 21, 2014
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: This trail has many sections and each one is a little different as far as climbing technical and scenery The best starting point is the black canyon city trailhead just off the rock springs exit of I17. You can go north or south from here and both directions are awesome. GO north to bumble bee trailhead and back for a great climb up amazing views, water crossing flawy single track and great downhills. Intermediate difficulty

Similar Trail: Trail 100 with bigger climbs and better views

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Trevor Warne on January 21, 2014
2 out of 3 readers found this useful
Review: Fast fun for the most part but lots of tight switchbacks that break the flow. Some 'you are here' signs would be helpful as trail is very repetitive and every section has the same 'Black Canyon Trail' signs - pay close attention to your GPS! Intermediate ride, other than modest exposure nothing technical. Very quiet and peaceful compared to Phoenix.

Similar Trail: Intermediate trails in McDowell mountains.

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Ryan Brunswick on December 24, 2013
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: theTraill Is Scenic But Fairly Exposed With Good Climbs And Descents. thE Trail Has Many Right Switchbacks And Overall Is A blast

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stumpyfsr on February 3, 2013
1 out of 1 readers found this useful
Review: Amazing trail! Havn't ridden such a singletrack in a long time. I rode from TH at Exit 242 to the TH at Exit 236. Wish I had a map, so I could make some kind of loop there. Lots of rocks, switchbacks, 2 river (Aqua Fria River) crossing and spectacular views. Even now it was hot and I ran out of water after 15 miles (had 3L bladder filled). Could use water filter if i had it with me. This trail deffinatelly not for beginners. Climbs are technical in spots and steep, but still rideable.
Northern part of my ride is smoother and many bike tracks visible. Southern part is much rougher due to more rocks and equestrian use.
Signs are in some spots. Still I'd like to see a map at least on major intersections.
It's the best trail I rode in Arizona so far and I want to come back and ride more here and on similar trails.

Similar Trail: Similar to Sedona, but more workout and less people

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getouttheretoo on April 1, 2012
1 out of 1 readers found this useful
Review: Had the opportunity to ride this trail with one of the builders- locals are proud of this trail, and for good reason. A beautiful, purpose-built single track through incredible desert, feeling of being way out there, and a nice, long ride. The switchbacks are rideable, climbs are tough but rewarding. Highly recommended!

Similar Trail: Flagstaff, Arizona Trail

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mtn417 on April 26, 2011
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: Find map and info at Usually start at black canyon trailhead and head south and loop back around little pan and up. Haven't ridden in a year or so and they are Rapidly upgrading trails, get out and explore, this kicks the valleys butt, no crowds and super hikers. Great singletrack!!! Super isolated! Bring lots of waters, lots of rattlers out here.

Similar Trail: sedona, templeton

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abegold on August 12, 2010
0 out of 0 readers found this useful
Review: This is a premier trail with water crossings, big climbs and great building standards.
A sweet piece of the trail that will extend from northern Phoenix to Prescott, already mostly complete.
Another access point is from exit 242 of Interstate 17. If headed north exit and cross the freeway and turn right towards Black Canyon City. Go less than 100' and turn left. The road will curve southward. When it T's go right to parking and trailhead.* Review edited 8/12/2010

Similar Trail: South Mountain-Phoenix, Bell Rock-Sedona

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Black Canyon Trail MTB Trail 4.91 out of 5 based on 11 ratings. 11 user reviews.
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Trail Features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Trail Conditions
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