Sweetwater Preserve

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SHARES
  
AVERAGE RATING
****
4.41 out of 5
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Beginner
10
miles

Singletrack
↑ 1,100 ft
↓ 1,100 ft
2,469
elevation (ft)

Network
Trail Description
About this trail
The Sweetwater Preserve features about eight miles of singletrack built by mountain bikers. A pristine piece of desert nestled between existing development, it is truly a gem and holds one of the densest collections of saguaro cactus in the Tucson area.

The singletrack begins to the right as you exit the parking lot. Stay right to enter a thick forest of saguaros. Look for a rare crested saguaro among them. At the top of a small pass, continue to the right on the "Black Rock" and "Sun Circle" loops. Hang on for a high speed blast through the Ocotillos on Black Rock, the longer of the loops.

After finishing the loops turn right to climb the semi-technical Lost Arrow Trail. At the next junction a left turn provides a more challenging option, Red Canyon Trail. Close the loop by descending the Wildflower Ridge Trail, enjoying birds eye views of the entire preserve.
added by smorrisBunny Hop January 12, 2009
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
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Recommended Trails
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Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
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Recent Trail Check-ins     (48 total check-ins)
  WOW AZ   3 weeks ago
  Molli Bee   on Dec 1, 2015
  hproctor   on Nov 29, 2015
  Wyles36   on Nov 10, 2015
  Biofanman   on Oct 25, 2015
Photo & Video Gallery (28)
Trail Photos & Videos (28)
 
Reviews (17)
 

Granny Gear

January 31, 2016
 
Review: This is a very nice series of interconnected trails. Most of them are suitable for beginners, but there are some definite challenging spots. The saguaro vista trail is spectacular, try to do it in the golden hours right after sunrise or in the hour before sunset. If you're visiting from out of town or out of state, don't miss that one. It's short, but I rode it multiple times...you are literally riding between Saguaros. That's a novel experience. Slime in tubes or tires is advisable.

Similar Trail: Haven't seen any like Saguaro for scenery.

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Singletrack


November 29, 2015
hproctor Singletrack  
 
Review: Quite a bit more than a beginner trail. Beautiful ride through rocky canyons with an abundance of Saguaro, Barrel, and Prickly Pear cactus along with other desert flora that can do some damage if you go off trail. Several loops available that are similar with the exception of Roller Coaster, which will end your ride with a smile. "You are here" map signs found at every junction, making it impossible to get lost.

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Gramcounter


October 10, 2015
 
Review: Very rocky, with beautiful views. Easy to a few technical rock garden type spots. Riding through all the cacti was very unique. Definitely worth the trip.

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Gramcounter


March 20, 2015
 
Review: Great day to ride. Flowers out and new section of trail was awesome!

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Granny Gear

February 27, 2015
xavier61 Granny Gear  
 
Review: I rode Sweetwater for the first time today. The trail is remarkably well maintained, kudos to SDMB. Marking are very clear, no way to get lost in here. The trail is not just a MTB trail, it is multi-use. Be prepared for hikers, joggers and horseback riders at any point. Everyone I encountered was friendly. There is not a single direction to ride, so be careful as to who is around the corner. As a relative noob to MTB I really enjoyed some of the trails. A lot of rocks are in the trail. If you don't have the technique or the leg strength you will be doing a bit of hike a bike. Elevations are fairly consistent, no sharp inclines, but if you can't keep moving you will lose your momentum and be walking. I'll definitely be back again for another ride.

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Gramcounter

January 28, 2015
 
Review: Enough challenge to kick the craving, and there are a few technical spots but really only good for a quick ride. Advanced riders might be wanting a little more after.

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Gramcounter


December 25, 2014
 
Review: Sweetwater has become one of my goto trails. SDMB has been working hard to add new sections. Lots of options and the trail keeps you honest. Great technical spots, climbs and great flow.

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Granny Gear

July 20, 2014
 
Review: I've been riding this trail fairly regularly over the past few months as it's close to home. It's also been a great platform for learning some valuable MTB skills. This park has a number of different loops intersecting regularly enough that you can vary your direction of travel and combinations of loops to keep a regular rider entertained. These trails overall are easy enough to give a novice confidence while they master a number of important skills: negotiating some rocky drops and climbs, making a sharp 90 degree turn at the bottom of a nice downhill section; maintaining momentum during a short, steep loose climb; picking saguaro needles from various body parts when you don't manage to make some of the twisties sections. It's not unusual to spot deer, rabbits, quail and other wildlife while riding this spectacular saguaro forest. It can be VERY hot in the summer months, so bring a hydration pack with at least 70-100 oz's of water and tools to fix a flat if you have a closer encounter with the flora on this trail.

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Bunny Hop

May 5, 2014
 
Review: I've been mountain biking for a few months now and have been on some really easy trails and on some that just scared me. I visited Sweetwater for the first time this past Sunday and while I enjoyed myself, I am not sure I would consider this a beginner system. At least not as a beginner myself. The rocks presented some challenges I was not ready for, or that I hadn't the slightest clue how to tackle. There were a good number of spots where I opted to hop off and carry the bike a short distance before proceeding. The scenery is awesome and it is worth checking out, but if you're a noob be prepared for some pucker-time.

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Epic


March 26, 2013
John Fisch Epic  
 
Review: This trail is a rare combination of mostly easy and mostly fun. The densepack of saguaro is fantastic--it's like riding through a real forest, but of giant cactus rather than pines. You could take a noob here and enjoy the scenery or go here yourself and ride fast. Either way, it's a worthy ride

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Sweetwater Preserve MTB Trail 4.41 out of 5 based on 17 ratings. 17 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed
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Spring Break Singletrack Trek Part IV: Livin' on Tucson Time, Take 1
28 SHARES | 6 COMMENTS