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Thread: Granby Beta

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    Granby Beta

    We might be camping near Granby in the next few weeks. I'm hoping to get a good XC ride (20ish mile 3k vert). Any recommendations? Someone referred me to the Doe Cr/Strawberry loop but I'm having a hard time finding specifics (i.e. topo).

    Any recs for this loop? Is it best to ride it clockwise? Or, other suggestions in the area?
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    There is another recent thread about Grandby riding here: Riding in Grandby other than Grandby Ranch?

    I have been doing a little research on the area since we'll be up there in a couple of weekends too. I found an old thread from 2012 where Normsk and ignazr have some trail recommendations besides the ski area. Mostly easy loops or the Gilsonite / Wolverine trail near Stillwater. It'd be nice to hear what you find out and where you rode. Please.

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    I missed that thread - thanks!
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    my friend rode strawberry this weekend. let me see if i can get some sort of strava/map form him.
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    If you or anyone in your party had an iOS device you can download RideOracle https://rideoracle.com/
    It is crazy detailed, the maps are all loaded by a WP local, and the ap will GPS you around, give you distances, grades, rank the trails technically, aerobically, etc. One of the designers is a 20 year resident who had a hand in making an maintaining many of the trails in the area. It's $7, so it's a little spendy as far as aps go, but it's completely worth it if you need guidance in the area.
    I used it on that strawberry loop and it worked perfectly.
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    Unfortunately, I'm on am android. Any beta for the trail? Did you do the Doe/strawberry loop? Clockwise? How was the ride?

    Quote Originally Posted by subliminalshiver View Post
    If you or anyone in your party had an iOS device you can download RideOracle https://rideoracle.com/
    It is crazy detailed, the maps are all loaded by a WP local, and the ap will GPS you around, give you distances, grades, rank the trails technically, aerobically, etc. One of the designers is a 20 year resident who had a hand in making an maintaining many of the trails in the area. It's $7, so it's a little spendy as far as aps go, but it's completely worth it if you need guidance in the area.
    I used it on that strawberry loop and it worked perfectly.
    "Serves you right to suffer." -The Wife (after being 2 hours late)

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    here are some images from the ride my friend did last weekend. he did strawberry lollypop as highlighted in yellow on one of the pictures. he said it was fairly easy 13.5 mile ride.
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    Muchas Gracias!
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    Quote Originally Posted by brankulo View Post
    here are some images from the ride my friend did last weekend. he did strawberry lollypop as highlighted in yellow on one of the pictures. he said it was fairly easy 13.5 mile ride.
    Awesome, thanks for this! Do you happen to know if Strawberry can be linked with High Lonesome? Looks like Caribou is the connector, as Strawberry Bench would put you on High Lonesome up in Wilderness Area. And then you'd have to bail off HL at Devil's Thumb or you'll get put in to Wilderness as well... Hmmm...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Full Trucker View Post
    Awesome, thanks for this! Do you happen to know if Strawberry can be linked with High Lonesome? Looks like Caribou is the connector, as Strawberry Bench would put you on High Lonesome up in Wilderness Area. And then you'd have to bail off HL at Devil's Thumb or you'll get put in to Wilderness as well... Hmmm...
    This map confirms your speculation: Wilderness.net - U.S. National Wilderness Preservation System Map

    Unless, of course, there's something "off the map"...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Full Trucker View Post
    Awesome, thanks for this! Do you happen to know if Strawberry can be linked with High Lonesome? Looks like Caribou is the connector, as Strawberry Bench would put you on High Lonesome up in Wilderness Area. And then you'd have to bail off HL at Devil's Thumb or you'll get put in to Wilderness as well... Hmmm...
    i have never ridden there but from the map that is what it looks like. other way to make bigger ride of this i guess would be to do lolly pop with three out and back legs (doe, carribou, strawberry bench), to avoid bunch of dirt roads. any idea how bikeable high lonesome is?
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    Quote Originally Posted by brankulo View Post
    i have never ridden there but from the map that is what it looks like. other way to make bigger ride of this i guess would be to do lolly pop with three out and back legs (doe, carribou, strawberry bench), to avoid bunch of dirt roads. any idea how bikeable high lonesome is?
    I know people who have ridden it, and I aim to ask them what they thought, as well as get some additional beta. The basic word I've gotten from the guys at Totally Wired is High Lonesome is alright, but there are many other miles of better trail in the area. I'd still like to ride it one of these days, being that it's some high country and part of the CDT and all. I found a GPS track that basically does an out-n-back necktie on Strawberry, then climbs Meadow Creek Rd. (FS-129) up past Meadow Creek Reservoir to the junction of Caribou, down High Lonesome, and then back to hwy 40 via FS-128 and Cabin Meadow Rd. Looks like that full loop was just shy of 45 miles... kinda big and quite a bit of road in there, has to be some way of cutting out all the road. I'm looking in to it, for sure. I've been wanting to find a nice, big ride up this way for a while.

    EDIT: Do you happen to know the name of the book the scan came from in the Dropbox link you posted?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Full Trucker View Post
    EDIT: Do you happen to know the name of the book the scan came from in the Dropbox link you posted?
    yeah, here, its nice book to have
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    Quote Originally Posted by brankulo View Post
    yeah, here, its nice book to have
    Sweet, I already own that one (got a free copy by contributing a photo to it).

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    The trail I have been looking for is in my guidebook??
    "Serves you right to suffer." -The Wife (after being 2 hours late)

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    Quote Originally Posted by slcdawg View Post
    The trail I have been looking for is in my guidebook??
    Hey, I found a really nice review of a guidebook that might have some info on the trail you're asking about. You can read that review here: Review: The Mountain Bikers Guide To Colorado - Dan Hickstein


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    Now that is funny!
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    I just rode the strawberry loop with the out and back to the lake and it was in great shape. Make sure you do the lollipop clockwise! I have rode up Devils Thumb trail to High Low and then over to Meadow Creek, We came down Strawberry Bench to Strawberry Lake and out. You need to shuttle a car for that one. Another ride out of Fraser that can be bigger is the Foolish Elk loop. Dougie can draw it out on a free map for you at Totally Wired. It is a big dirt road climb with some fun single track downhill. I haven't rode it this year and it might be questionable if the trees have been cut out. The forest service doesn't really acknowledge the trail so locals have to maintain it. Shoot me a PM if you have any questions while you are out here and I may be able to be a tour guide.
    oh yea, the phases can have a pretty long ride in them, and there are some really new trails I call the invisible trails that can be fun but you need a sense of adventure cause parts of them are invisible!
    Last edited by dtimms; 08-12-2013 at 07:36 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtimms View Post
    I just rode the strawberry loop with the out and back to the lake and it was in great shape. Make sure you do the lollipop clockwise! I have rode up Devils Thumb trail to High Low and then over to Meadow Creek, We rode the wilderness
    Posting this publicly is kind of a bad idea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dtimms View Post
    I just rode the strawberry loop with the out and back to the lake and it was in great shape. Make sure you do the lollipop clockwise! I have rode up Devils Thumb trail to High Low and then over to Meadow Creek, We came down Strawberry Bench to Strawberry Lake and out. You need to shuttle a car for that one.
    What do you think of High Lonesome? I know only a few people that have ridden it, what's it like? And you went south to north, correct? Looking at the elevation profile it seems like it would be "better" (i.e. more descending) ridden in the other direction. Your thoughts? I've been looking at a big loop that would start/end just off 40, and go up Strawberry and do the loop, across Caribou (to avoid the wilderness area hint hint what SkaredShtles said), then down HiLo and back to the car.


    Quote Originally Posted by dtimms View Post
    Another ride out of Fraser that can be bigger is the Foolish Elk loop. Dougie can draw it out on a free map for you at Totally Wired. It is a big dirt road climb with some fun single track downhill. I haven't rode it this year and it might be questionable if the trees have been cut out. The forest service doesn't really acknowledge the trail so locals have to maintain it.
    Foolish Elk is great, and Dougie and the guys at Totally Wired are the best source of "where to ride" up there. Totally forgot about that ride, glad you mentioned it!


    Quote Originally Posted by dtimms View Post
    oh yea, the phases can have a pretty long ride in them, and there are some really new trails I call the invisible trails that can be fun but you need a sense of adventure cause parts of them are invisible!
    I've heard of the Phases recently, but don't know much about it (them). Have to get up there to do some 'splorin' soon...
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    As far as Hi lonesome goes, it isn't anything to base your ride around. I don't think it would be worth it to climb up from Strawberry and over just to go down Hi Lo. I haven't done the ride in over a year but if I remember correctly, it is pretty chunky with some grunt climbs (I also did it single speed). I would recommend coming from Devils Thumb trail if you are doing the point to point.
    The Phases are just outside Tabernash and are old dirtbike trails. The lower trails are BLM and they don't really do any maintenance or anything on them. The upper trails are on FS and they don't like people on those trails. Every year they stack a bunch of logs across the top entrance to the trails and then do nothing else. The logs have all been removed and the trails are super fun. If you want a good loop out there let me know. They did get a little tore up by some dirtbikers but that just adds some technical climbing!
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    I ended up riding a big loop from Granby last Friday and saw maybe a handful of other people. Gotta like the weekday rides in the Colorado mountains.

    I started in town riding south to the end of Lake Granby where I turned on to CR4 and rode a few miles up to FR123 in the Bowen Gulch area. There are some side trails along the forest road 123 built for OHV atv's that are pretty fun - banks, berms, and twisty, but also had some loose stuff typical of a moto route which may still be better than a dirt road. Hopped on FR123 again then caught on to the Gilsonite up to the Wolverine trail. Gilsonite is shared OHV and the beginning of Wolverine allows motorcycles so there was a little HAB but still a great trail out in the Grand valley. Once I hit the Wolverine singletrack the trail conditions improved enormously and almost all could be ridden except for the altitude and the short steep climb up to treeline. Dropping down the other side, in to the supply routes, was great especially with some recent maintenance to the bench cuts. The single track trail opened up to the atv's and then 4wds when I reached the North supply route which made for a lot more bobble-head rocks. I dumped out into RMNF along 34 and coasted into town. I left early and it took most of the day to ride the 40 mile clockwise loop and climb the 3900 feet over treeline. Bring a map, a GPS and stay right.

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    Did a big ol' loop(ish) up near Tabernash this past Saturday. Put in a little over 40 miles of splorin' and generally ignorin' all advice from anyone. I'm glad we did what we did, simply to get tires on all the trails we wanted to, but doing it again I'd do it differently. First of all, there's a metric sh!t-ton of riding to do up thattaway. Second, THIS APP RIGHT HERE if you have an iOS device is crucial, as is NatGeo map 102 (or is it 103?). Our route started at the junction of Hwy 40 and County Rd 83, there's a good little spot to park right there. There is a bunch of singletrack on either side of USFS 129 that is mapped on the app I linked to... our route started with and included some of that. It's worth it, and that's all that I'll say about it. Otherwise, here's what we rode:

    Strawberry Creek loop: Headed north out of the Strawberry Creek TH parking lot, did the necktie (lollipop) clockwise as was recommended. The first part of Strawberry is really fun heading north, quite zippy and flowing and fun. There were some muddy spots but nothing too bad. Very pretty, lots of green and a lot of trail in the trees. Strawberry Creek West (the first part of the necktie going clockwise) was a steady, mellow climb all the way out. Strawberry Creek East coming back was a hoot, lots of quick steeper descents and pedally fast-ish sections. I can see why it is recommended to ride this clockwise. All in all this was a great little loop, and if you get that app and can connect it with some other stuff in the area could make for a great day. So then, heading south on Strawberry we eventually came to...

    Caribou: Caribou runs basically west/east and connects Strawberry to High Lonesome, and it joins HiLo south of the Wilderness Area. There are two "entrances" to Caribou, a north one that looked like a REALLY steep climb, and a south one that follows the actual Strawberry Creek (the creek, not the trail). Both of these Caribou trails meet up halfway to HiLo, and become one trail. Confused yet? Well, you can see this on the NatGeo map. Anycrap: Caribou is pretty tough. It's a mellow pitch but is quite rocky and rooty, with awkward maneuvers that got us off our bikes every so often. And the trail gets tough to follow, as in non existent save markings on trees to follow like cairns in spots. There was one section that was basically a swamp on the side of a hill, which necessitated hiking upwards through waist-high grass and no trail surface. Maybe I'm just a sally but yeah, tough. This could fun in the other direction, but I think the awkward rock gardens might not even be very rideable descending either. Could be fun to try someday, we'll see.

    High Lonesome: Definitely a cool trail. We rode it the "descending" direction (from the junction of Caribou a couple miles north of the Junco Lake TH all the way to the Devil's Thumb TH) but you don't really lose a lot of elevation. There are no extended descents on this trail, but that's not to say it's not fun. It's just different for what I am used to in Colorado. Lots of roots, everywhere, which I really enjoy riding to be honest, so I was cool with it. Roots and rocks, almost all in the trees save a couple of meadows, and very lush right now. We were over 30 miles deep at this point and had gotten monsoon hailed on Caribou, but we all managed to rally and have fun with this trail. If I were to do this again I'd start at the Devil's Thumb TH and just ride it as an out-and-back. On fresh legs and proper expectations this would be a really fun ~15 miles ride.

    Since there really aren't any trails that connect HiLo back with the Tabernash stuff on the southern end, we ended up riding back to the vehicle on dirt roads. Our initial plan was to take dirt roads back north and grab some more of the singletrack near USFS 129, but it was not to be. Between route finding, getting monsooned in a hail storm, and Caribou and High Lonesome being slower going than expected we simply ran out of daytime so we high-tailed it back to the truck.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldenboy View Post
    I ended up riding a big loop from Granby last Friday and saw maybe a handful of other people. Gotta like the weekday rides in the Colorado mountains.

    I started in town riding south to the end of Lake Granby where I turned on to CR4 and rode a few miles up to FR123 in the Bowen Gulch area. There are some side trails along the forest road 123 built for OHV atv's that are pretty fun - banks, berms, and twisty, but also had some loose stuff typical of a moto route which may still be better than a dirt road. Hopped on FR123 again then caught on to the Gilsonite up to the Wolverine trail. Gilsonite is shared OHV and the beginning of Wolverine allows motorcycles so there was a little HAB but still a great trail out in the Grand valley. Once I hit the Wolverine singletrack the trail conditions improved enormously and almost all could be ridden except for the altitude and the short steep climb up to treeline. Dropping down the other side, in to the supply routes, was great especially with some recent maintenance to the bench cuts. The single track trail opened up to the atv's and then 4wds when I reached the North supply route which made for a lot more bobble-head rocks. I dumped out into RMNF along 34 and coasted into town. I left early and it took most of the day to ride the 40 mile clockwise loop and climb the 3900 feet over treeline. Bring a map, a GPS and stay right.
    I am having a really hard time finding where you started - I don't see either CR4 or FR123 near lake granby. It probably means I just shouldn't be allowed out by myself on the trails but would you mind posting a link to a map showing this? Thanks.
    Last edited by rmac; 09-10-2013 at 08:44 AM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmac View Post
    I am having a rally hard time finding where you started - I don't see either CR4 or FR123 near lake granby. It probably means I just shouldn't be allowed out by myself on the trails but would you mind posting a link to a map showing this? Thanks.
    I couldn't find FR123, but I was able to find CR4 here: ACME Mapper 2.0

    Heading north/northwest on that road would take you towards Wolverine and Gilsonite IIRC from the maps on the Ride Oracle app.
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