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Level: Intermediate
Length: 5 mi (8 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Out & Back
Elevation: +0/79 ft
Total: 7 riders
 

Mountain Biking Zaisan Chutes

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#1 of 76 mountain bike trails in Mongolia
#217 in the world

The trail runs through a mixed conifer forest of Siberian Larch, Siberian White Pine and Siberian Spruce. The entire trail consists of soft organic ST covered with soft burnt orange larch needles. It is an out and back -- up on the way out and down on the way back.

The Chutes themselves make up most of the route. They drop 1350 ft (410m) in just 1.25 miles (2km). They are fast and furious but soft and relatively smooth with a few fun obstacles along the way. Run them as fast as you dare.

After you reach the top of the Chutes (pedaling and pushing), you can just turn around and run back down or you can take a left and keep following the ST up the mountain. It is a MUCH more gradual climb from the top of the Chutes onward. I usually continue to the first very large opening in the forest (you can't miss it). It is an exposed ridge-like area, maybe just 0.75km (1/2 mile) from the top of the Chutes. This is a good place to turn around though the trail continues. You can access many more miles of trails from here, but it is much slower going for a while.

From this upper opening back down to parking lot at the camp is about 4 km (2.5 mi). It is one awesome fun ST DH. The entire route drops 1765 ft (~540m). This is the first trail in Mongolia to be posted on Singletracks. I have chosen the Zaisan Chutes because it is one of my favorite trails in Mongolia. Like most trails in Mongolia, the trail actually does not have an official name. I am naming the trail, "The Zaisan Chutes" after "The Chutes" in Colorado Springs. The main chutes are just about the same length as in COS, but three times steeper and quite organic in places (unlike the Chutes in the Springs). Welcome to mountain biking in Mongolia. More to come.

Before you go
  • No Drinking water 
  • No E-bikes permitted 
  • No Fat biking allowed in winter 
  • No Fee required 
  • No Lift service 
  • No Night riding allowed 
  • No Pump track 
  • No Restrooms 
Getting there
The trail lies near the Zaisan area of Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia. The Zaisan area is located on the NW end of Bogd Khan Uul (Uul means mountain in Mongolian). To get to the trail, start at the bridge that crosses the Tuul River on the main road to Zaisan. From the bridge, head south about 1km (0.6mi) to the main fork in Zaisan. Take the right fork and head south again up Zaisan Valley 1.8km (1.1mi) and take a left through a gate with a small brick building (all on your left). Go another 0.5km (0.3mi) until the road dead ends at the parking lot of Zaisan Camp. Park here. From the parking lot if you look west, you will see a large, steep, east facing mountain slope. The Zaisan Chutes Trail comes out of the tree line that runs up the entire length of the slope. The trail comes out of the tree line less than a kilometer (1/2 mile) up the slope from the parking lot as a crow flies. There is no sign. From the camp follow the two track up the mountain slope along the tree line. First, you will see another small two track going off to your left into the forest. Don't take that. Go just a little further and you will see a small trail to your left again, going into the forest. That's the bottom of the Chutes.
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jeffdak (on Oct 11, 2016)
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(on Nov 12, 2019)
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

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| 15 mi
***
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***
Intermediate | 12 mi

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Reviews

  • Nomado
    *****

    Much more smoother trail. Did it yesterday. More so than pedaling it was more of a pushing the bike up type of hiking. Midway past, there was really steep section which burned materials off of my brake pad when coming down. Other than that quite pleasant hike. I came across an old guy hiking there.
    It took me only several minutes to find the trail into the forest, which was immensely helped by pictures posted here. Once I found the trail, it was pretty much straight forward. There is no way one would lose the trail once inside the forest.

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  • mongwolf

    Thanks Hutch. Trust you are doing well. "Join the party" and start adding new trails yourself. Also I'm not using a GPS. So if you are, please start adding your GPS data to the trails listed.

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  • Voyageur
    *****

    hello @mongwolf !

    im really interested in trying this trail next week but i cant find the trail. could you please provide me with a more detailed map/route on how i get there from zaisan?

    thank you!

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  • mongwolf
    *****

    One other great aspect of this trail is its wilderness value even though you are just a few minutes from downtown Ulaanbaatar (pop. nearly 1.5 M). It climbs through gorgeous forest and is remote and quiet. I have seen a beautiful large owl, eagles, kites, and deer. I can't wait for the first ride this spring after the snow melts.
    It is amazing that immediately adjacent to this trail (starting at the same location) is Zaisan Trail, on which literally hundreds of persons hike every weekend. In contrast I have only met two other parties on The Chutes, and I have ridden the trail probably seven or eight times. It is equally beautiful to the other trail; most people just do not know the Chutes exits.

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  • mongwolf
    *****

    In the Chutes it's a 1350 ft descent in 1.25 miles on virgin forest trail in Mongolia -- soft and organic just begging one to go as fast as one dares. How could it be anything less than a 5? It is an intermediate trail but really steep with roots in a few spots. In the Chutes themselves it averages 20% slope, but it is much steeper in places -- over 40% in one spot -- one really fun spot. =)

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