Posts Tagged "mcdowell mountain mountain bike"

Mountain Bike Trails – Fountain Hills – Pemberton Competitive Tracks

Posted by on Apr 16, 2012 in Arizona (Phoenix Area), Pemberton | 0 comments

Mountain Bike Trails – Fountain Hills – Pemberton Competitive Tracks

Difficulty:  Easy to Technical (great for all skills)

Distance:  Three Loops (Sport Loop – 3 miles, Technical Loop – 4 miles, and Long Loop – 8 miles) 

Every time I go out to Fountain Hills to do some mountain biking on Pemberton Trail, I discover new variations and trails.  I have always heard how good the competitive loop trails are out at Pemberton, but how can I try something new, when the trails I have come to know and love are so great!  Well, due to time constraints today, I was forced to go for a shorter trail, so it seemed the perfect day to try these out.  Oh, have I been missing out!  These trails are fantastic and I can see why so many people rave about them!  I started out on the sport loop, after the park ranger told me that this is absolutely the best trail out at Pemberton.  I now can’t say I disagree.  It is not too challenging, and it is short (only 3 miles), but I don’t know that I can disagree with him, and this could very well be the best three miles of trail in the park!

After checking out the sport loop, we headed over to the long loop (8 miles).  This is another fantastic trail with a good mix of fast single track, beautiful scenery of the Mcdowell Mountains, and a few good climbs and drops (nothing too technical).   There are a couple spots that can scare off a newbie, and one of the riders while on the trail proceeded to tell us that he was airlifted off of the trail last year after hitting some soft soil on a descent.  Don’t let it scare you, as you will be disappointed after riding this trail that you did not do it sooner (that’s how I felt anyway).  He went on to say after this that he lives in Fountain Hills and as soon as his collar bone healed, this was the first place he brought the bike back out to.  I can see why people love living in Fountain Hills.  The houses and real estate is beautiful with awesome scenic views.

I can now officially say that my new favorite trails in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Fountain Hills are the competitive tracks.  The best area in the state for mountain biking just got better, but tons of other riders already know this.

Read More

Top Mountain Bike Trail in Fountain Hills

Posted by on Mar 25, 2012 in Pemberton | 0 comments

Top Mountain Bike Trail in Fountain Hills

MILES:  13

DIFFICULTY:  Easy with a few tricky spots

Just when I thought mountain biking in Scottsdale and Fountain Hills could not get any better, we discovered this great trail head that connects to Pemberton Bike trail system.  From Scottsdale, take Shea out to Fountain Hills and then head north on Palisades Road for about four or five miles until you see the signs for the Sonoran Trail Head.  Follow the road from the parking lot through the guard gate and pass a few incredible homes and LUXURY FOUNTAIN HILLS REAL ESTATE.

This trail head is a hidden gem for mountain bikers.  The facilities are probably the nicest of any trail head I have ever been to, and hardly anyone knows about it.  The parking lot is usually half empty.  From the trail head, just follow the signs for about a half mile to the entrance to Mcdowell Mountain Regional Park system.  Pay your $2 to help keep the trails open to all and maintain them and then head back into the trail and connect to Dixie Mine.  This trail is less traveled than the other main trails in the Pemberton Park, and you can connect to the rest of Pemberton with some killer views and a few great climbs and descents.  Follow Dixie Mine for a couple miles and then you will see the actual Dixie Mine.  Pretty cool little detour if time permits, but then connect back from Dixie Mine to Pemberton.  Today we took Pemberton West back into Coach Whip and then Coach Whip back to Dixie Mine.  Take a right at the Pemberton junction to add anywhere from another 8 to 12 miles of awesome fast single track.

From up at the top of Coach Whip you can take several detours up and over the Windgate Pass, or just connect to make it a great little loop back to Dixie Mine.  These are the best trails in the state and the best part about it (other than the fast single track or incredible views) is that you can take so many variations of this trail that you basically can ride it 20 times without taking the same path twice.


Read More

Mountain Biking in Fountain Hills with some awesome scenery

Posted by on Jan 31, 2012 in Pemberton | 1 comment

Mountain Biking in Fountain Hills with some awesome scenery

MILES:  15

Difficulty:  Easy to Medium

Here is a great trail in the beautiful city of Fountain Hills, Arizona.  If you haven’t taken the mountain bike out to Pemberton (home to many races throughout the year such as the dawn to dusk), you are missing out.  This is one of the best trails you will every find, with different technical skills across all levels of ability.

The Pemberton trail is 15.2 miles from start to finish but the variation in the map below is my favorite way to ride it with some sweet single track sections.  Start out on Pemberton trail in the normal direction (south) and then head West on Granite Trail, until you hit Bluff Trail, then take Bluff Trail and join Pemberton after about four miles.  This is smooth and fast with some gradual easy climbing.  Once you hit Pemberton head left (South) and connect to Coach Whip.  This is a great trail that will take you all the way over to Windmill and Windgate Pass if you are feeling daring, and up to the saddle with a sweet view of the entire city.  In the trail below, I took Coach Whip over to Dixie Mine and then connected back to Pemberton.  Coach Whip and Dixie Mine give you some great climbs with some fast and rocky down hill sections.  The rocks can be a bit much for some, but trust me….it’s worth it.

This trail will take you back down to Pemberton Trail, and then back down to where it all started.  Taking the trail this time of year (January-March) will give you some of the best scenery anywhere down here in Phoenix, Scottsdale or Fountain Hills, with great views of boulders, saguaro’s, wild flowers and fast single track.

If you finish Pemberton and feel like adding on some distance, try to get over to the competitive tracks at the entrance to the park.  There are several different trails at the competitive loops with “Easy”, “Mid-Level” or “Difficult”  levels of technical skills required.

 

 

Read More

Pemberton – Coach Whip – Bluff – Dixie Mine Trail at McDowell Mountain

Posted by on Dec 30, 2011 in Pemberton | 3 comments

Pemberton – Coach Whip – Bluff – Dixie Mine Trail at McDowell Mountain

Difficulty:   EASY

Distance:  18.5 Miles

City:  Scottsdale

Here is a great variation on one of the best single tracks in AZ.  Pemberton trail is 15.3 miles, but by taking Granite Trail over to Bluff, then head North to Pemberton and then head Left at the Pemberton intersection over to Coach Whip and follow to Dixie Mine, connect back to Pemberton head left and connect back over to Bluff for the fast single track back to the parking lot.  We ran into a guy on the trail (about 60 years old) that referred to Bluff Trail back to the parking lot as “HOT FUDGE SUNDAE”.  This is fast, easy and great fun.  Clip in and enjoy the single-track back in.

 

 

Read More