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  1. #1
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    Most awesome cycling place to live

    If u could live anywhere in Tucson or Phoenix area,schools, jobs, and cost were not an issue where would u be? Not just mountain biking but road riding and gravel grinding. Easy access,local bike shop,and buds to ride with would be high priorities. Hit me with ur best shot!

  2. #2
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    Most awesome cycling place to live

    Iíll bite.

    So for staters I canít comment on Tucson.

    So very little is out my door but short drive options are endless. I think I would get board with anything all the time. So living close to one is farther to the others. Bellow are places I have ridden this fall. All but Sedona/flagstaff I have ridden this month and I am a 1-3 day a week rider with a family.

    I live near Shea/101. And I canít complain

    Mcdowell Mountain Park parking lot 25min
    PHoenix Mountain Preserve - 15 min
    Browns Ranch - 18 minutes
    Hawes - 25 min
    South Mountain - 25 minutes
    BCT - one of my favorites. BCC trailhead 45min.
    Lost dog trailhead or gateway - 10 min
    Sedona /oak creak 1.5hrs (best fall and spring riding)
    Flagstaff shultz y 2hours - I would argue this is the best spot in Arizona June through September - money no concern get a summer place there
    Prescott (never been but hear itís awesome)

    Also Durango 7hrs
    Moab 7.5 hrs
    ParkCity 1hr flight. 30 min drive. (SW $75 for bike bag)

    I donít road ride but there are roadies at every coffee shop in my area in the AM.

    My location was based 100% on work and family needs but it has worked out well for mountain biking. I can get away from it all whenever I want.

    My favorite bike shop is Rage Cycles. Itís near work but not home.

    I really think given the year round options to ride, and vicinity for work to major city, this has got to be a top 10 place to live / work/ ride in the country. I would not call any of the places I ride (except maybe Sedona) top 10. But year round + major city + road trips where is better? The sport and trails are exploding so finding people to ride with is not hard.

    Even when I retire Scottsdale / Flagstaff combo seem hard to beat
    Last edited by Bones2; 3 Weeks Ago at 12:02 PM.

  3. #3
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    North Scottsdale....I really like the Boulders area of Carefree and Cave Creek as well for October thru May living. I'd have to bail out in the Summer months.
    2019 Yeti SB5C
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  4. #4
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    For Tucson,

    Catalina Foothills

    20-30 mins to 50 year trail, Honeybee canyon, starr pass, and sweetwater

    Close to the road up Mt lemmon for access to all that awesomeness (both roadie and MTB)

    Access to the loop to get anywhere on a road bike such as A Mountain, Gates Pass, etc... as well as Catalina Brewing which is a bike themed brewery that has indoor bike parking and $1 off first beer if you ride there.

    Fairly close to a lot of good roadie riding on the east side to include Saguaro Natíl Park East and the road out to colossal cave mtn park/Vail, etc...

    Lots of good bike shops all over town.

  5. #5
    Meatbomb
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones2 View Post
    Also Durango 6hrs

    I live near Shea and 110th st and love the area but I could never make it to Durango in 6 hours. What's your secret?

  6. #6
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    Most awesome cycling place to live

    Quote Originally Posted by Phillbo View Post
    I live near Shea and 110th st and love the area but I could never make it to Durango in 6 hours. What's your secret?
    Google maps currently says 7hrs to Durango and 7 hrs to Moab. Will correct above.
    Both still doable in a day. I think you can shave at least 30 min off google map estimate.

  7. #7
    Meatbomb
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    I drive to Durango at least 6 times a year and have never made it in less than 8 hours. but then, I'm never in a hurry.

  8. #8
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    I ended up in Fountain Hills to have a good stepping off point for trips up north on 87, but I've been really, really pleasantly surprised by my access to stuff.

    From my door I can ride to Hawes and McDowell (many access points, rode Dixie Mine, Bell, Sunrise the other day and can access Pemberton/competitive tracks and Gateway too) in under 10mi and T100 or Browns in 15ish. That's like half of the trail in the whole valley area. A lot of gravel easily accessed as well, not to mention some of the best road climbing around here. I don't think I could choose a better place in the PHX area unless I lived at a TH, and because I ride a lot I think I actually prefer the variety offered where I'm at.

    McDowell Mountain Cycles is my nearest shop, and they've been nothing but nice and helpful when I've needed stuff. They also do several rides through the week and have a keg for post ride. I'm a loner rider personally, but cool to have the option nonetheless.

  9. #9
    Black and Sticky
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    Youíre getting good response above. My suggestion is a little different and goes like this: no matter the general area where you end up, find a place close (i.e., short ride) to a trailhead for trails you like. I live about three blocks from the trailhead where 32nd Street dead ends into Phx Mtn Preserve from the north, roughly Shea and 32nd St. My ďhomeĒ trails are the ones surrounding T100 between Tatum and Dreamy Draw. I still drive to all the places mentioned above. But itís so nice to be able to ride from home at a moments notice and not spend valuable time driving.

    One other thing, from a gravel/road perspective, consider something close to AZ Canal or one of the other canals that allow access. Canals are like gravel highways that get you from one area of town to another without the worry of getting run over in traffic.

    Forgot to say, Shadetree Bikes, Cave Creek Rd at Sweetwater.

    Bob
    Last edited by Bituman; 3 Weeks Ago at 08:09 AM.
    "Some people follow their dreams, others hunt them down and beat them mercilessly into submission." - Neil Kendall

  10. #10
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    I'm going to cast my vote for far North Scottsdale...think almost to Boulders Resort.

    As soon as I leave my subdivision I can ride my road bike in bike lanes all the way to the Bartlett Dam turnoff without ever riding on either Scottsdale Road or Pima Road.

    I can ride my mountain bike for three miles on the same above mentioned bike lanes and then hook-up with the Brown's Ranch network, entering off Legend Trails Parkway.

    It is also only a short drive to Spur Cross trail head and Cave Creek Regional Park; plus you can ride the Maricopa Trail north from the Bartlett Lake ranger station.

    I have received good service from the Flat Tire Bike Shop in Cave Creek and I enjoy the food and coffee at Local Johnny's adjoining the bike shop.

    And I'm pretty sure there are tons of other trails in the area I haven't even discovered yet.

  11. #11
    Low speed, High Drag
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    After living out here for 15 years, I can definitely say NOT San Tan Valley!!
    I need a cool saying to put here.

  12. #12
    I am Walt
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    NE Mesa, near Hawes and lots of other stuff, incl canal access and good road routes.
    N Scottsdale, near Brown's Ranch
    Fountain Hills, near McDowell Mtn Park and McDowell Sonoran Preserve
    Ride more; post less...

  13. #13
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    Pretty happy with having Pima Canyon trailhead out my back gate. Conveinance is why I live where I do. South mountain has many great trails.
    AKA: G-wat

  14. #14
    Ahhh the pain....
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    My 2 cents... I think the answer really depends on what type of mtb riding you like...if you're an xc guy, enjoy some occasionally roadie stuff, I think anywhere in the box below is pretty darn good.
    You can hook together many of the areas with canal and other off-road connectors keeping you out of traffic.
    You also have easy access to some good roadie climbs (Humboldt, Bartlett Lake, etc).
    As an added bonus, you're closer to Prescott, BCT, Flagstaff, and Sedona.
    Admittedly, if SoMo riding is your thing, it's not the most idea location.
    Personally, living where I do (32nd and Shea) I've found to be ideal given all the constraints of "real life".
    oh, and anything west of i-17 is basically California so that's a no-go.
    Most awesome cycling place to live-bestinvalley.jpg
    Last edited by Raybum; 3 Weeks Ago at 08:22 AM.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedyd View Post
    If u could live anywhere in Tucson or Phoenix area,schools, jobs, and cost were not an issue where would u be? Not just mountain biking but road riding and gravel grinding. Easy access,local bike shop,and buds to ride with would be high priorities. Hit me with ur best shot!
    NE valley works well for me. Scotts/101 area. Quick access to PMP, Brown's Ranch, McDowell parks, Apache Wash area, etc. (Couldn't care less about road/gravel, and if anything would gladly discourage road riding in the area since so many of them tend to be self-important dickbags impeding traffic... esp up on Dynamite lately.)

    Schools... nada clue. I already finished going to those almost 20 years ago.

    Jobs... depends on what skillset is availble?

    Cost... pricey up this way, but not bad unless you're looking for a large place with a decent chunk of land under it.

    Bike shops... Kinda screwed on that, but that's why god invented the internet. Performance is shutting down, REI can suck a walrus dick, Landis is pretty good but limited selection (as is the case with many LBS's,) Airpark bikes looks like a tornado blew through so who knows what they even have (although its a damn fine candy store to oggle priceybits,) etc. My first instinct is just to make the haul down the 101 and hit up Global Bikes @ Ray. Pretty rare that I need to visit though.

    Buds to ride with... no idea where your friends live, so you're on your own. =)

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevhogaz View Post
    After living out here for 15 years, I can definitely say NOT San Tan Valley!!
    Been in Queen Creek since 2001....and this man speaks truth. San Tan mountain park blows.

    If I were moving tomorrow I'd be picking a place in NE Mesa. Be within riding distance of the Hawes trail network and a stones throw from Mesquite wash single track when its time to bust out the dirt bikes.

  17. #17
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    I live the north west corner of Ray's box of coolness.

    While I don't have really great trails out my front door I have really good trails very close. Plus I am 1:15 from Prescott so I get alot of riding there in the summer. I can ride BCT from my house as well as getting on Maricopa and connecting to just about everything in the north valley. I have my daugther in a very good charter school 1/8 miles from my house. It is far from downtown, but has it advantages. However where Ray lives you can hop on your bike and be on cool trails in 3 minutes. I can be on Maricopa trail in 5 minutes, but that is not coolest bit of trail around. Just connector to other stuff really.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  18. #18
    dirt visionary
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    I am going to say far east valley. For me I get Hawes (10 min drive), Gold canyon (15 min drive), pass mountain (5 min drive) , south mountain ( 30min drive) , Picketpost(25min drive), AZT north and south of picketpost, Globe (1hr20 to 7800ft) , Superstition mountains, 2 lakes within a very short drive, salt river, two more lakes a bit further out , Four peaks close, Awesome 4x4 less than 30mins with more within an hr. I am sure I am missing more reasons.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
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  19. #19
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    I would second the vote to live within a couple miles of a trailhead if possible. I'd live in Las Sendas to ride Hawes and Usery. Plenty of other obsessed locals to ride with, good bike shop to get service done at Two Wheel Jones, growing trail system, access to road loops in the same area and gravel grinding routes to the north and east. Gold Canyon isn't too far off, same with Papago. In the Summer you would stay in Crested Butte.

  20. #20
    C-H
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    For Tucson:

    Yes, the Foothills would be really good for access as mentioned.

    If you like close access to a bit easier trails I'd say the west side. Close to SweetWater Preserve and Starr Pass / Gates Pass.

    I live in East/Central and ride on the road also so I got close access to 130 miles of bike path all around Tucson.

  21. #21
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    Definitely not Ahwatukee, there's no riding to be had here, especially at South Mountain!

  22. #22
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    Hey Clockwork; where you bean?!
    Yes, Gold Canyon/AJ is great; and the new Goldfields area being developed now is soooo sweet. lots of BLM right out the door; and a 5-10 min drive to Hawes/Tonto/First Water/GC/TRw etc
    And the folks are friendly, the taxes are low, the schools are good, and the police and fire are top drawer.
    Cheers.
    TS

  23. #23
    slower than you
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    Last edited by rockychrysler; 1 Week Ago at 06:14 PM.
    "May your trails be winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view." - Ed Abbey
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  24. #24
    dirt visionary
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    Hey TS, I have been LK Sculpting dirt for the future. I broke my face severely last june at angelfire and have just started to ride again.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
    arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body.

  25. #25
    dirt visionary
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsrt taco View Post
    Definitely not Ahwatukee, there's no riding to be had here, especially at South Mountain!
    Your right not Ahwatukee if you want to keep your bike/s lol j/k but seriously its always do disheartening to hear when another garage or house swipe has happened.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
    arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body.

  26. #26
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    So; I guess that settles it; N East Mesa/AJ/GC are tops. So much Trust Land/BLM; and Tonto's recent changes bode well for mtbrs.

    Heal well CW; you do such fine sculpting.
    Cheers.
    TS

  27. #27
    Turns right to go left
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    Quote Originally Posted by myt1 View Post
    I have received good service from the Flat Tire Bike Shop in Cave Creek and I enjoy the food and coffee at Local Johnny's adjoining the bike shop.


    Cool joint for sure.

  28. #28
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    A few words for the West Valley. While I currently live just West of Rio Verde and love the riding out here West Valley has some affordable housing and fantastic road riding with the West Valley Cycling ride one of the best road rides I have been on. Then you have Skyline park which is new and has some lung busting climbs and lots of switchbacks. New trail going in there all the time. Next you have FINS for short tech stuff, long loops in Estrella now that the comp loops connect to the main park, Maricopa trail which connects White Tanks to the north through the Verrado trails and skyline. Then you have dirt canals running north south, others headed south west and dirt roads that run around the whole mountain chain and power line roads as well. While the single track is not what it is here in the East Valley there is loads of great riding in the West Valley and getting around on a bike certainly feels much safer.

  29. #29
    Ahhh the pain....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Transition Senior View Post
    So; I guess that settles it; N East Mesa/AJ/GC are tops. TS
    Yet another self-serving, Traildick wanna be.

  30. #30
    Just another half mile...
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    Ditto on Ray's comments. I too live at 32nd/Shea and find it ideal central area to live while working. PMP is out my back door for afterwork night ride romps, and most riding areas are 30-45 drive for weekend rides. As I get older, my riding style is getting more towards XC than AM and plan to more out closer to NE Scottsdale when I retire in 5-7 years.

    Quote Originally Posted by Raybum View Post
    My 2 cents... I think the answer really depends on what type of mtb riding you like...if you're an xc guy, enjoy some occasionally roadie stuff, I think anywhere in the box below is pretty darn good.
    You can hook together many of the areas with canal and other off-road connectors keeping you out of traffic.
    You also have easy access to some good roadie climbs (Humboldt, Bartlett Lake, etc).
    As an added bonus, you're closer to Prescott, BCT, Flagstaff, and Sedona.
    Admittedly, if SoMo riding is your thing, it's not the most idea location.
    Personally, living where I do (32nd and Shea) I've found to be ideal given all the constraints of "real life".
    oh, and anything west of i-17 is basically California so that's a no-go.
    Click image for larger version. 

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