November 30, 2015
First off, I don't think this trail is the super difficult Hell that people make it out to be, and I'm still a fairly novice rider. Is it difficult? You bet. Is it impossible and so hard that it's not fun? Not at all. I think the reputation of this trail scares off riders who could otherwise have an enjoyable ride. Even with having to walk up a bit of the hills, I still had a fun afternoon doing a lap. Endurance wise, this trail kicked my rear. I've never felt this tired after a trail of this distance. Definitely make sure you're in decent shape before attempting. Although difficult, most of the trail was rideable for the average rider, but definitely bring your A-game. What makes this trail difficult isn't necessarily the technique required, but the sudden elevation changes. This trail definitely takes advantage of the terrain. There are two really difficult, steep downhills, but they're clearly marked with double black diamond signs. Just take it slow and be prepared for sudden turns, drops (no air required), and switchbacks and you'll be fine. If you want a reference point as to the difficulty, I'd say it's a more difficult version of Mt. Zion. If you can do Mt. Zion with no problems, you're ready to attempt The Beast.
Overall, very fun, challenging trail. You'll have a hard time finding something more fun in South Louisiana.
Big Cedar Wilderness Trail in Dallas, TX