Actually, the route we took for our first foray in the area was a motorcycle
singletrack. Although we saw none of them on the single track itself, we did see
evidence of them on the trail, including a few obligatory mud ruts and sandy
sections. Otherwise we actually managed to cross paths with less then 10
motorized users all day, and even then that was only on the short road sections
used to connect the single track. I should mention this was also on a Saturday,
over the course of 19 miles of riding, during which I spooked 3 deer from bedding
down ON the trails... if that gives you any indication of traffic volume.
The route we took was from our campsite at the seasonal closure gate on FR730
up to FT1226. The single track crosses FR730 in both directions here, so we flipped
a coin and took the single track to our right and followed it to where it hits FR715.
From there go left and look to pick FT1226 up again on your right just up the road.
It is primarily downhill from here, through thick forest and along the creek, almost
all the way to Hwy 125, before you hit FR106 again.
As soon as you hit FR106, scope out FT1226.1A, the Sidewinder trail, in the woods
to the right across a spur road. Sidewinder climbs back up and over to FR715
where you can then hit FT1226 back up again, or as we did, take a left back to
FR106, back to our camp just past the intersection with FSR730.
All in all, I have to thank the motorcycle riders...they've built a fine, large trail
system. Trail conditions are very well maintained for the most part, and the area
feels remote since there's little or no traffic. Fun, flowy, moderate ups and downs,
nothing steep or terribly technical about it, so you can ride long distances in bigger
rings and use momentum to your advantage, even on climbs. Even the few
aforementioned mud ruts and sandy sections are either rideable or easily skirted
with a bike.
Now for the negatives....would it kill you to put the freakin' trail numbers on the
sign posts at intersections? Seriously...Then there is the bugs...umm, then there's
that issue with bugs...and oh yeah, there are a few bugs...
The area has also been decimated by the pine beetle. Lots of dead trees, which
detracts from the scenery a little, but no fire ban, which was nice. Not that it
mattered...the bugs were annoying enough to not want to stay outside of our
camper for too long. There had obviously been enough moisture in the area this
summer and there were lots of wildflowers while we were there (late July) too.
There's also a fair amount of aspen making it a possibility for camping/riding for the
fall...when the bugs are dead...Wear orange though. The area is also popular with