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  1. #1
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    Rim/Payson/Cabin Loops

    Staying here with some non-MTB people in August:
    https://www.google.com/maps/place/34...4!4d-111.19867

    AZ Trail is spitting distance and I'm thinking of heading south towards Blue Ridge. It's designated black diamond but I'm not sure if that's because it's "fun" or because it's a brutal ass-beat-down hiking trail. From the elevation scale it appears there are a couple pretty steep, likely HaB sections. Depending on how far I decide to ride...

    Was thinking about heading south towards the Cabin Loops but that's 11 one-way miles of black diamond just to get there. When I think black diamond I think National or Hairball. 11 miles of that is like 20 or 30 normal miles so I'm thinking maybe I'd just head down to Blue Ridge and chill lake side then return.

    Who has ridden the area?

    Thanks,

  2. #2
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    Rim/Payson/Cabin Loops

    I can't load the map but if you're starting the AZT from 87, there are a few good, steep HAB sections. Not too big of a deal because that segment is fun but be aware. The main big HAB is when you descend down into the Blue Ridge Reservoir and then have to climb back up the other side of it. The trail actually crosses the bottom of the reservoir above the water line. The HAB is steep and full of big steps. It's a good ass kicker. Took me 40 mins last time but I had a loaded bikepacking rig and it was my first time bikepacking and I'm slow. Schilling has done it in 15-20 mins I think. I've only ridden the segment south to north so I can't comment about doing it the other way.

    One more thing to be aware, there is a big closure order in the Cabin loops area due to the two fires there (not sure if they are extinguished yet). Check out the Coconino NF site to make sure it's not going to interfere. I think most of the Cabin Loops are closed except for a portion of the Fred Haught/AZT portion down to General Springs.
    Shit happens...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ECEGatorTuro View Post
    I can't load the map but if you're starting the AZT from 87, there are a few good, steep HAB sections.
    Sorry, I still had the map as private. You can see it now but, yes, the camp grounds are maybe a mile or so south of 87.

    Quote Originally Posted by ECEGatorTuro View Post
    One more thing to be aware, there is a big closure order in the Cabin loops area due to the two fires there (not sure if they are extinguished yet). Check out the Coconino NF site to make sure it's not going to interfere. I think most of the Cabin Loops are closed except for a portion of the Fred Haught/AZT portion down to General Springs.
    Good to know. That makes my plan of just going to Blue Ridge and back seem like an OK idea. That'll still be 22 miles with at least one brutal HaB.

  4. #4
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    As Eco said, a good hike a bike going down and up to bypass the reservoir.

    Regarding cabin loops, if you have a map, the entire area between FR 139 on the east, FR 95 on the west, FR 139A on the north and FR 300 on the south side, make a large box of closed forest. I drove the area Sunday and there are still pockets of smoldering in some areas.

    By august it should be all accessible. The fire wasn't hot enough to burn trees to the ground, but it will be a different trail for sure when it re-opens.

    UBar and Barbershop are still open and fun trails. However UBar after HAB of Blue Ridge may tax you
    If you're lucky enough to be in the mountains,
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by azjonboy View Post
    As Eco said, a good hike a bike going down and up to bypass the reservoir.

    Regarding cabin loops, if you have a map, the entire area between FR 139 on the east, FR 95 on the west, FR 139A on the north and FR 300 on the south side, make a large box of closed forest. I drove the area Sunday and there are still pockets of smoldering in some areas.

    By august it should be all accessible. The fire wasn't hot enough to burn trees to the ground, but it will be a different trail for sure when it re-opens.
    The fire was right there? I hadn't been following it so didn't have any idea where it was...

    Quote Originally Posted by azjonboy View Post
    UBar and Barbershop are still open and fun trails. However UBar after HAB of Blue Ridge may tax you
    I don't see those on the map but knowing the shape I'm in I'll be lucky to get to Blue Ridge and back...

  6. #6
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    Houston brothers and Fred Haught are closed from 300 to 139A. A large portion of Cabin Loop. UBar runs east from 95 up 139G and goes through forest then crosses FR 139 outside of closure / burn area. Fun trail, tough in places. When it connects to Barbershop it's awesome

    A good ride would still be UBar to Barbershop to Dane Springs.
    If you're lucky enough to be in the mountains,
    you're lucky enough.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by azjonboy View Post
    Houston brothers and Fred Haught are closed from 300 to 139A. A large portion of Cabin Loop. UBar runs east from 95 up 139G and goes through forest then crosses FR 139 outside of closure / burn area. Fun trail, tough in places. When it connects to Barbershop it's awesome

    A good ride would still be UBar to Barbershop to Dane Springs.
    Ha! I thought the whole loop was just Cabin Loop so I wasn't looking at trail names. I see them now...

  8. #8
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    You'll be about a half hour to Pine. Very cool trails down there.

  9. #9
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    BigO: Heading south from Blue Ridge CG there's a fairly chunky HAB almost right out of camp. Once up top, the trail is fine. If you're feeling a bit worked from the initial HAB, you may not want to drop down the AZT to the Blue Ridge Rez crossing. The HAB out on the return is about 25-30 mins on average. (I did it in 17 mins, but I was really hoofin' it)

    Another really good option out of Blue Ridge CG is to ride north on the AZT. Yeah, onto the Happy Jack segment. The first 5 miles or so are really good singletrack. I'd turn around where the AZT crosses FR82. (enable the bicycling layer on Google maps, it's where the brown line ends north of AZ87 at a 'U-shaped' turn in the forest road) You could also make a loop, riding back on forest roads if you want. This option will give you about 11-12 miles in total with very limited HAB if any.

    *About a 1/2 mile or so beyond FR82, the AZT dumps onto a long series of jeep roads that are complete garbage. The ATA is currently looking to add singletrack in this area to get the trail off these roads!!*
    I ride the crappy trails so you don't have to
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by schillingsworth View Post
    BigO: Heading south from Blue Ridge CG there's a fairly chunky HAB almost right out of camp. Once up top, the trail is fine. If you're feeling a bit worked from the initial HAB, you may not want to drop down the AZT to the Blue Ridge Rez crossing. The HAB out on the return is about 25-30 mins on average. (I did it in 17 mins, but I was really hoofin' it)
    I guess a lot will depend on how hot it is. And, of course, whether or not that descent to the Blue Ridge Crossing is worth it. I won't be in any hurry and haven't been to Blue Ridge in decades so it may be worth it. I'll just take my time. Plus, there probably won't be anything going on back at camp. They'll probably have music playing and "city noise" is not conducive to me enjoying the outdoors. I don't know why people like to ruin the great outdoors by bringing the sh|tty city with them.

    Quote Originally Posted by schillingsworth View Post
    Another really good option out of Blue Ridge CG is to ride north on the AZT. Yeah, onto the Happy Jack segment. The first 5 miles or so are really good singletrack. I'd turn around where the AZT crosses FR82. (enable the bicycling layer on Google maps, it's where the brown line ends north of AZ87 at a 'U-shaped' turn in the forest road) You could also make a loop, riding back on forest roads if you want. This option will give you about 11-12 miles in total with very limited HAB if any.
    Good to know it's crap after FR82.

  11. #11
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    Anyone know if there's any good shooting spots north of Blue Ridge?

  12. #12
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    Not really.
    Too many housing developments to the north
    If you're lucky enough to be in the mountains,
    you're lucky enough.

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