May 19, 2014
This is a wonderful trail system, but you have to be careful which sections you choose to ride, because it wasn't necessarily designed for mountain bikes, so it can be a bit hit or miss. For instance, the French Creek section of the trail is covered with baseball to bowling ball sized rocks, which makes riding just plain painful. The areas of solid ground you do have is pretty torn up by horse traffic. On the other hand, Alkali Creek is mountain bike heaven, with other sections of trail sprouting out all over the area. One of my favorite rides is to start at Bear Butte Lake, cross the highway over to the Alkali Creek Trailhead, and then if a 20 mile out and back isn't good enough for you, continue up Bulldog before turning back around. Other good sections are Iron Creek (a bit out of the way and very rocky, but fun), Samelius (I think I spelled that right. . .rocky and challenging, but fun), and possibly Silver City (I don't know if that's the name of the trailhead, but that's the city where it starts). The last is good either for a very short ride, or multiple river crossings, some hike-a-bike and usually a good amount of mud and wandering cows.