Whether you’re shuttling or grinding up the gravel road, the singletrack is a pleasant surprise – mixing incredible views of Mt. Rainier, Mt. Stuart and Lake Kachess with alpine meadows, creek crossings and old growth forests. If you’re looking for machine built flow, this is not the trail for you; but, if you’re looking to challenge yourself on steep rooty and rocky terrain that’s flowy in its own right – you’ll enjoy what this trail has to offer.
The more popular route is to ride a clockwise loop that ascends the gravel roads to the singletrack trailhead. The climb is no joke – a true grinder – ~3000’ of elevation gain, largely accomplished over 4-miles, on compact and loose gravel with varying grades (roughly 10-15% in places), balanced by brief plateaus of relief.
If climbing is not your bag, the gravel roads are accessible by car/truck for shuttling during the summer/early fall. You’ll want to be cautious of water bars that may create issues with vehicles lacking sufficient ground clearance – you may find yourself high centered if you’re not careful. And, if you’re any bit concerned with the finish on your car/truck, keep in mind that you will likely find brush and branches that will want to leave a friendly reminder of your adventures on the gravel road.
Once at the top, you’ll be rewarded with scenic views, including the saddle of the ridge that you’ll eventually hike-a-bike to after merging with the central Kachess Ridge Trail. At the saddle, you’ll descend ~6-7 miles on beautiful singletrack that will test your riding over sections of rock and root mixed with periodic exposure and creek crossings. It truly is a gem hidden within the cascades.
Thanks to the volunteers and trail crews that keep it accessible…
What’d we ride: Kona Hei Hei Trail, Yeti SB6, Yeti SB5 and a Trek Rumblefish