South Mountain Vacation - where should i ride and what should i pack?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    South Mountain Vacation - where should i ride and what should i pack?

    Hi All

    I live and ride in Orange County CA. But I will be taking the family up to south mountain Arizona to the Arizona Grand resort and spa water park up there. Lucky me it looks like you have some great mountain biking there as well (but that played no role in choosing the hotel... )

    Let me know what to expect,temps, type of riding and so forth. I plan to ride in the mornings around 7am and will be going up there Easter weekend. Are there any problems with thorns and flats (dont have to deal with that here and i ride tubes). Just curious what extra gear to bring.

    My kids like to bike also - but how demanding are the trails - is there something under 500 feet of climbing for the youngsters (7 and 10).

    any other tips would be appreciated - especially trails right off the resort. I cant be out too long so i plan on riding about 2 hours a day so i can get back to the kids and wife

  2. #2
    Meatbomb
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    You have a wide variety of trails right out the back door of the Grand. Mellow XC to chunky gnar.

    You may want to throw in a couple Slime Tubes just to be safe. Az is brutal on tires/tubes.


    7am temps should be nice but it's starting to heat up a bit in the afternoons so pace yourself.


    Kids will do fine on Desert Classic

  3. #3
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    You're more likely to pinch flat than thorn flat, lots of square edge. Thick tubes or slime thick tubes. DC will be right there or go up pima and branch off to whatever the kids can handle.
    a real Dirkbag!

  4. #4
    PMarsh Thumbs Up!
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    I have not had any issues with tubes the past couple days of riding. I've definitely pounded over some rough rocks too.

    Going to South Mountain tomorrow to ride the DH there, so I will update after that.
    2011 Giant Glory 01
    2013 Pivot Firebird
    2004 Turner Rail - Stoled

  5. #5
    kAZ
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    Looks like the closest trails you can ride over to are the bottoms of Javelina and Beverly. You'd probably enjoy climbing Javelina, but I doubt your kids would like it. And going up Beverly from there is a not unsteep not unrocky climb. Not too far up though Beverly Canyon has a smooth jeep road type trail with a fair amount of other crisscrossing options. You should ride over there and see what you think.

    The best chance to find suitable riding for a 7 yr old would be to go the the Pima parking lot. I don't know if riding over to that lot with kids is do-able, but looking on googlemaps it looks like you can take 48th St where it goes through the neighborhood to Pima Canyon Rd, the main issue being the somewhat busy roundabout south of the resort. From Pima, Desert Classic is likely to fit your needs, although it does get rocky in places and there are some wash crossings that aren't super easy. Possibly the surest option is to go up the 1/2 mile long "fire road" from the Pima Lot to the bottom of National. There are also trails that crisscross through the Pima Canyon area that could work out. In any case, you should check these trails out first. I'm trying to think whether my kids would have enjoyed riding in those areas when they were that age, and I'm thinking it's iffy for a 2nd grader.

    Riding by yourself, you should ride from the resort up Javelina, then go onto Mormon Loop and then National and ride up at least to the Waterfall. Go as far up National past the Waterfall as time allows, then turn around and ride down National (not Mormon Loop, although that's a fine descent also). Ride back to the resort via East Loop/Beverly. You can ride this on any kind of bike, but imo coming down National is more enjoyable on something with more than 4" of travel. The other obvious option is to ride Desert Classic out and back. 2 hours is probably a little trim to loop DC and National via Telegraph, but...

    Temps shouldn't be an issue leaving early, but it will be hot compared to San Diego. Carry plenty of water. Not all that many thorns on the eastern SoMo trails, but the safer bet is to put slime in your tubes.
    Last edited by kAZ; 03-27-2012 at 11:01 PM.

  6. #6
    PMarsh Thumbs Up!
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    No issues over a South Mountain either. I think my tires got a couple marks on the sidewall, and the tread had a couple gouges in the knobs, but otherwise no issues.
    2011 Giant Glory 01
    2013 Pivot Firebird
    2004 Turner Rail - Stoled

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