This IMBA epic is acclaimed as being one of the best MTB rides in the Country. The ride starts at the 18 Road Bookcliffs Recreation Area and takes you high up into the Book Cliffs. This is a big ride with a waterfall portage .With all the options you can mix up the start and finish any way you like, but the route should probably be ridden clockwise.
Well I finally did this ride this spring. I started at the upper parking lot down Kessel Run to Western Zippety (a pipeline road) to Frontside Trail to Coal Gulch Road. This section is typical Bookcliffs. Ya gotta love it! RIDE UP Coal Gulch Road stay right at the fork and CLIMB STEEPLY to the top!! This is a long climb up a dirt road. Follow the road on the ridge top heading south. There are many spur roads Stay on the ridge top . You will pass a pump station that is always running. I was able to find some bicycle tracks to let me know I was heading in the right direction. Keep straight on the ridgeline. The road turns to double track . This is a fun rolling section with some short climbs Just as the trail starts to drop down the 2100 ft. decent there are great views of the Grand Valley. Next there are a couple of really steep downhill sections. Turn right on the single track down to the wash. This downhill was tight , twisted and fun! Ride down the wash if you can. When you reach the waterfall hope the rope is in good shape! At the bottom of the waterfall continue down this difficult wash .Look for the trail that parallels the wash crossing it several times. Itís a toss up which way is easier! Watch for the singletrack out of the wash. After about four challenging climbs (that pushed me to the limit!) turn left on the road follow this road about a mile turn right when you reach the singletrack , ride past the corral up one more hill to the lower parking lot and back to camp. What a ride! Route finding wasnít difficult but you should probably take a map.