A little Payson Stoke- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    A little Payson Stoke

    I ventured up to the Rim for my B-day to explore and check out the Drew Trail . Its a pretty cool lil short trail down from the rim to the highline trail. It has the road less traveled feel and was indeed worth my trip. I rode it down the highline then took highline west to christopher creek .

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  2. #2
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    Great Vid

    Quote Originally Posted by clockwork View Post
    I ventured up to the Rim for my B-day to explore and check out the Drew Trail . Its a pretty cool lil short trail down from the rim to the highline trail. It has the road less traveled feel and was indeed worth my trip. I rode it down the highline then took highline west to christopher creek .

    Thanks for sharing some great vid of Drew Trail ... gonna have to check it out. We are looking at rehabbing the Donohue Trail to connect to AZ Trail near Pine... I know it took you more than 9:39 to ride it .... any HAB or triple black diamond sections .... did part of Highline years ago and (near Pine) and it was in hideous shape...

  3. #3
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    very nice video !

  4. #4
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    Yeah it was about an hr. No HAB or what I would call triple black . Overall drew was loose and less used . The portion of highline I did was great and you could tell it was ridden frequently.
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  5. #5
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    Thanks!
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  6. #6
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    Cool video.
    Last edited by aevanlloyd; 08-21-2014 at 09:34 AM.

  7. #7
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    Thanks.

    Cool. I saw some evidence on highline but none on Drew. If ya need a hand I am sure I can rally a good handful of troops with experience to help out . If not at least I can help and I have tons of experience in all terrains
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by clockwork View Post
    Thanks.

    Cool. I saw some evidence on highline but none on Drew. If ya need a hand I am sure I can rally a good handful of troops with experience to help out . If not at least I can help and I have tons of experience in all terrains
    Nice
    Last edited by aevanlloyd; 08-21-2014 at 09:39 AM.

  9. #9
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    Nice that sounds like a nice plan for cleaning up the trail. Sure shoot me your number and I will def hit you up when in the area.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
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  10. #10
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    Clock! Anyone know why there seems to be such a shortage of good trail systems in Payson?? The terrain up there is begging to be ridden!
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  11. #11
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    Be interested to help also, have three to five guys that would come up to your area.

  12. #12
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    Well alrighty then.
    Last edited by aevanlloyd; 08-21-2014 at 09:33 AM.

  13. #13
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    Nice video Chris!
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  14. #14
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    Hey Guys,

    I live and ride in Payson, and thought I'd reply to MTBCanuck about the lack of trails in the Rim Country.

    The mountain biking potential in the Rim Country has grown exponentially in the last year. A ton is happening, especially on the Highline sections near Christopher Creek. Pine and Strawberry are doing a ton too.

    Here's the rundown on some of the trails here. Hopefully it turns some of you on to come ride here more.

    As far as the Town of Payson goes, there isn't a lot of true singletrack in town. There is a very demanding, very technical 5-6+ mile loop in Payson called Trail 200. You can access it off of Phoenix St. There are 2 access points off Phoenix St., one being at the bottom where the road dead ends in a cul-de-sac. If you want explicit directions to Trail 200, just let me know, and I'll give more detail.

    As for the rest of Payson, there is more riding, but most of it is on motorized trails, though a lot of it is nasty, rough, and very demanding.

    If you go East from Payson on Hwy 260, there is an entire new section of the Highline Trail that was built this spring by VOAZ (VOAZ | Arizona Volunteer | Volunteer Opportunities in Az | Outdoor Projects | Non Profit). VOAZ has dedicated themselves to rebuilding the Highline Trail. They have an awesome new trailbuilding machine, and they are looking for volunteers to come up and help build new trail. Go to their website for more info on the work they are doing.

    This past spring, VOAZ built a new section of the Highline Trail (a complete new trail that was re-routed above the old trail). The new section starts at the Tonto Fish Hatchery Trailhead and goes East towards Horton Creek. So far VOAZ has only finished the new trail to the big powerline. Over the course of the next 2-3 months, VOAZ is going to build new trail and rehabilitate some of the old Highline between the powerline and Horton.

    You can park at the bottom of Horton now, ride the road up to the Fish Hatchery, take the Highline across to Horton, then drop the Horton back down to your car. It's a good loop now, and will be an even better loop once VOAZ is done.

    Last year, VOAZ rebuilt the Horton Trail from the bottom to the Highline. The Horton in itself is an amazing out and back. It's 4 miles uphill, with a killer 4 mile descent. VOAZ is planning on sending a crew back down the Horton this fall to finish up more of that trail. There is also a user made trail on the East side of Horton Creek which has been rehabilitated is now rideable, though I haven't been on it yet.

    Along with Horton, VOAZ is going to rebuild the Derrick Trail which starts out of the campground at the bottom of Horton. Once finished, the Derrick to Highline to Horton will offer an incredible loop.

    This past spring, VOAZ built 4 new miles of trail along the Highline going West from See Canyon. In the next 2-3 months VOAZ is going to finish that section by linking up See Canyon with Horton and the Fish Hatchery.

    It's been everybody's dream for a long time to be able to ride from See Canyon to the Fish Hatchery or Horton along the Highline. This fall that dream should be a reality.

    VOAZ is building primo singletrack, and they do have mountain bikers in mind when building trail (along with hikers, backpackers, trail runnners, and horseback riders).

    After all the work is completed from See Canyon to the Fish Hatchery, VOAZ is planning on re-routing and rebuilding a lot of the Highline Trail going East to the 260 Trailhead. They are talking about rebuilding the trail from the 260 Trailhead to Military Sinkhole too. Once that is finished, you could park at the 260 Trailhead, ride up the Rim to Military Sinkhole, ride across the top of the Rim on the General Crook Trail, access the Carr Lake Trails, then drop the Drew Trail and ride back to your car. That is going to be an amazing loop once finished (though it is rideable now, just rough in spots).

    On top of the Rim, there is a lot of XC riding around Willow Springs Lake, Woods Canyon Lake, the edge of the Rim, and Carr Lake. It is easy to link up all those lakes in one big ride (though it takes a few trips to learn how to link all those areas up). If you can get a shuttle, riding the top of the Rim then dropping the Drew to Highline to See Canyon is one of the best ways to end a ride. When I ride the top of the Rim, I usually have my wife pick me up in Christopher Creek.

    There is some new trail up See Canyon, but not all of it is rideable. The Forest Service got a good size grant, and used the money to rebuild the See Canyon Trail going up the Rim from Christopher Creek. I haven't been on it yet, but I hear the lower 2 miles are rideable. The guy that works next door to me had a bear charge at him on the upper See Canyon Trail a few days ago.

    If anyone wants more specifics on any of these rides, I'd be happy to give more detailed info. Just let me know.

    I will respond shortly with another message describing what all has been done in Pine and Strawberry. They have some killer new singletrack up there too, and they continue to build more and more.

    As for going out and doing trail work or trail maintenance, get a hold of the Forest Service or VOAZ. Back in 2009 and 2010 there was a Payson crew of mountain bikers regularly going out to clean up the 260 Trail. I believe they easily got Forest Service permission upon going out.

    Cheers!

  15. #15
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    Thanks for the detailed update!! That's fantastic news re: Highline. Any news on further Highline reroutes to the west of the Fish Hatchery or more importantly (for purely selfish reasons) the section between Washington Park & the Pine TH? A few of us hiked through that area last month and saw at least 3 sections where the trail had been rerouted, but there is still a ton of work to do up there.

    The route planning gears are already turning for a re-visit and another crack at the bikepacking loop we tried a couple years ago. That piece of Highline between See Canyon & the Hatchery was my undoing on that ride.
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  16. #16
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    As for Pine and Strawberry, they have a lot going on. I do believe VOAZ will eventually rebuild the Highline from the Pine Trailhead to Washington Park. I believe it's VOAZ's intent to re-do all of the Highline Sections. I've even heard word of redoing the Donahue Trail and the Dripping Springs Trail that comes off the Rim.

    The Fire on the Rim mountain bike race in Pine has spurred a lot of new trail building around Pine.

    The Pine/Strawberry Trail on the West side of Hwy 87 has had a lot of work done to it in the last few years.

    The new gem in Pine is the Bearfoot Trail. It runs diagonally going East from Hwy 87 around the Portals neighborhood and Camp Lomia. The Bearfoot Trail is amazing. To access it, park right at mile marker 270 on the East side of Hwy 87 north of Pine. There's enough room to park multiple vehicles. Go through the gate, take an immediate left, and go about a hundred yards up the hill. There are a couple of rock cairns as the trail intersects that quad track. Take a right, and follow the singletrack about 7 miles until it ends. Right now, it's an out and back to Pine Canyon.

    The goal is to rebuild the Pine Canyon/Dripping Springs Trail, so that you can ride the Bearfoot down to the Pine Trailhead. Eventually there will be an amazing loop of singletrack around Pine and Strawberry where you will hopefully be able to do a complete loop out of the Pine Trailhead.

    From the Pine Trailhead, they recently built a new section of trail to create a 2-3 mile beginner loop out of that parking lot.

    Hopefully in the near future, work will start on the Highline Trail going East from the Pine Trailhead. I don't know the timeframe of all that. It will be amazing when you can ride (or hike) on good trail between the Pine Trailhead and Washington Park.

    Another good ride is to shuttle the Arizona Trail from where it crosses Hwy 87 north of Blue Ridge Reservoir, and ride it back down to Washington Park, Whispering Pines, or even back into Payson. Don't forget the Cabin Loop which is part of the AZT up on top of the Rim.

    The folks in Pine and Strawberry are even talking about building a true DH trail coming down from the Rim into Pine.

    There are some good visionaries up in Pine doing good things in relation to mountain biking. They want to become more of a mountain bike town.

    The Rim Country is on the up and up.

    Best Again!

  17. #17
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    My buddy aevanlloyd might be able to drop some photos in of all these trails and new trail work. He's ridden them more than me this summer.

  18. #18
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    I rode Carr Lake trails last summer and linked together a good 20 miles. The trails were great and I would rate them a challenging XC ride due to the altitude and a little bit rough around the edges (just like I love it). Signage was a little lacking, but knowing where I was, what borders the area (rim and Woods Canyon Lake road) I was not concerned. I need to see more up there as I roll across the rim a lot for work.

    Could you gurus up there explain what is challenging (but not all hike a bike) to a fairly fit SS rider with pretty advanced skills? My times up there are short, so exploring is usually out of the question unforturnately!
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  19. #19
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    Cory, I know the General Crook trail through that area is pretty nice. I don't recall how many miles it was since I went OTB on the Military Sinkhole descent and destroyed the GPS unit I was using!! D'oh! Have you been to the Cabin Loop trails? That may give you what you seek, but yes, there are a few short HAB sections for a SS rider. (<5 minutes I'd guess). I'd recommend an OnB from the General Springs Cabin, 22 miles total. See attached file.

    Ahh yes, the Bearfoot trail. I couldn't remember the name of that one. So it simply dead ends right now? That Dripping Springs trail was a brute, had a HAB section that rivaled the corkscrew on Mingus Mtn. Egad!!

    Sorry for the hijack Clockwork, that is one bada$$ video!!
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  20. #20
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    This thread brought a huge smile to my face. Can't wait to get out there and ride. Thanks for the video and all the information about new trail building. I would be glad to help w/ trail building as well.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mickbwolf View Post

    There is some new trail up See Canyon, but not all of it is rideable. The Forest Service got a good size grant, and used the money to rebuild the See Canyon Trail going up the Rim from Christopher Creek. I haven't been on it yet, but I hear the lower 2 miles are rideable. The guy that works next door to me had a bear charge at him on the upper See Canyon Trail a few days ago.
    Funny you should mention the bear. group of us hiked See Canyon this past Sat and as soon as we got on top of the rim when the trail levels out some we stopped and were eating snacks, we heard something large moving around off in the trees and heard some strange grunting sounds. We all just picked up our stuff and headed back, I tried to convince everyone it was probably an elk or something, but Idon't think so...

  22. #22
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    Thanks folks no issues with the hijack Lots of relevant information has been posted and increases the stoke for Payson and future additions/improvements to the rim area for mountain bikers.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
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