Rothrock State Forest beginner/intermediate rides?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Rothrock State Forest beginner/intermediate rides?

    New to area and new to MTB. Can anyone with riding knowledge of the Rothrock area give any insight into some short loops or out&back trails that aren't too challenging in this area? I can handle some technical but certainly would be walking the bike down something very steep and/or very rocky. Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I don't know precisely where you are, but the Nittany MTB group ( NMBA | Nittany Mountain Biking Association ) would likely be a good group for you to get into personal contact with.

    They also have a fairly decent web site, with group activities posted, and trail-info links (to MTBProject.com) which includes route and difficulty information.

    Rothrock is kind of big, which makes it hard for me (who is NOT an authority on Rothrock) to make a snap-advice-contribution. ;^)

  3. #3
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    Cooper's Gap area are the easiest trails.

    Pick up a Purple Lizard map to prevent getting too lost.

  4. #4
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    It's ironic you asked that because I was just telling a co-worker looking for beginner/non-tech trails in the area that Rothrock is all intermediate to advanced. If you're not experienced in rocks, or don't have the confidence to ride rocks yet, you will have a hard time in Rothrock.

    Of course Rothrock has miles of gravel road and doubletrack that are not tech. For singletrack, the only trail I can think of that is beginner/intermediate grade from the Galbraith Gap trailhead is: Lower Longberger. Doubletrack in that area are North Meadows Road, Gettis Ridge Road, and Detweiler Run Rd./Thickhead Mtn. Rd. FYI - all of these doubletrack have rather significant climbs/descents so although they are not tech they do change in elevation. From Cooper's Gap: singletrack would be Chicken Peter (does have some rock gardens), and Dutch Alvin.

    Suggest putting together a loop with gravel road, doubletrack, some of these singletrack, and just try others. Challenge yourself to improve.

  5. #5
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    Rothrock is in general very technical but I have a few favorite loops.

    1. Take bear meadows road for 3 miles and then hike up Kettle Trail to get up on Tussey Mountain Trail. Ride that out and back, go back down kettle, and take Longberger Path back to the parking lot. Longberger Path is a fun smooth downhill. Tussey Mountain is very rocky. You may have to do a lot of walking particularly the first mile after climbing kettle. The 2nd half is pretty smooth.

    2. Climb Laurel Run Rd for 3ish miles and hang a right onto Lower Trail. At the intersection, take the trail which climbs up to Bald Knob Ridge Trail. Ride the ridge to Maguire. The ridge is pretty rocky and technical. Maguire is a fun fast downhill. Ride Lower Trail back to the road. There is a small parking loop at the Lower Trail Laurel Run intersection. The climb to Bald Knob Ridge can be tiring if you ride from Galbraith Gap. Lower Trail is also a fun downhill but don't go further than the Maguire intersection. It gets very very rocky near Shingleton gap. Another ride could be to park at Shingleton gap, ride up lower to the road and back down. Be prepared to walk the first 0.5 miles though.

    Also, you should check out the "Accuweather trails" in state college. The loop is only 2ish miles but its very flat and fast singletrack.

  6. #6
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    This is awesome info. Got a purple lizard map and will check these out. Also nittanymba.org is great. Cheers!

  7. #7
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    if you can travel a little raystown lake trails would put a huge smile on the face of beginners (and most everyone else too).

    everywhere else out there is pretty rough and rugged. i am sure you could put together loops that are not ridiculous though; just use lots of fireroads and connectors to give yourself some time to breathe between trail sections. finally someone mentioned coopers gap; when i think coopers gap i certainly don't think of beginner trails unless your riding fireroads.

  8. #8
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    Yeah, can't wait to hit Raystown from all I've read. Thanks for the info!

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