Day 11 - Kokopelli Trails / 18 Road - Mountain bike rides (CO)


In the morning after a good nights sleep I got up late, and I had a good full cooked breakfast at the Residence Inn. I then went out to try and get some Neoprene socks ready for an overnight hike I was going to be doing in the Zion narrows. I finally managed to get some and some short gaiters at a big outdoors shop called Cabela's. Then I headed down to the Kokopelli Trail head off of Interstate 70 exit 15.

I started riding at around 11:30am by now it was quite hot around 90f but there was a slight breeze so it wasn't unbearable. I started the ride by riding up and over to the Rustlers Loop.

Although the Rustlers Loop is pretty easy its well worth doing as a warm up, as the trails fun and smooth with some great views and fun fast sections of singletrack.
Rustlers loop is about 3.6 miles long and the loop returns you back to entry gate, after a few ups and downs.

From the end of Rustlers I rode up the Mary's Loop double track, by now I was feeling quite Hot

I cut off Mary's after about 5.8 miles or riding at around 13:00 and did the hike a bike down to Horse thief bench Loop trail.

Horse thief Bench is a great trail, lots of smooth fast singletrack, with rocky technical sections , and great views of the river.

Towards the end of the trail it climbs back up a wash, there were quite a few butterflies on the flowers here.
After riding along by the side of the cliffs where Mary's trail rolls, the trail returns you back to where it drops in. The skills of the riders that can ride down this are amazing. I stopped at the top and had a bit to eat resting in the shade of a bush as it was hot in the sun.
I then continued along Mary's trail, which gradually reverts from jeep trail to being Singletrack.
I met a rider from Colorado who was just finishing a road trip around the states, and we rode a long together swapping cameras so we could both get some good pictures without having to use tripods. Mary's has some great trail sections high up above the Colorado rivers
From Mary's we connected onto Steve's Loop and then rode around Handcuffs's this great piece of trail wiggles around the valleys and quite often you can look down to see the trail where you had just been riding.
From Handcuffs we climbed up Lions Loop, this section of trail has some great rocky sections, and more great views.
Lions Loop has a couple of downs but mainly goes up, at the end of the singletrack there was a pretty brutal climb up a jeep road, at the top I had to stop and shelter in the shade to cool down as it was so hot. We then cut off left onto the Troy built trail.
Troy built trail initially drops down steeply via some tricky moves, and then goes up and down heading NE towards the book cliffs, there's quite a few climbs along the way, which were interesting in the heat.
The last section of the drops down through a neat slick rock gully, before climbing back up through grass land to the Hawkeye Road.
As we were both low on water, and I also wanted to do a night ride at the 18rd trails we decided to head back along the Dirt Road, the road back is almost 5 miles and has a fair bit of up hill initially and wasn't too much fun in the heat - I wish it had been cooler so I could have ridden up to Mack Ridge like I have done before.
Back at the car I drank lots of fluids as I was feeling quite dehydrated and a bit light headed.In total I'd rode 28.01 miles of Kokopelli trails with 3250ft of climbing and 3249 feet of descent. The riding as usual had been great - it would have better if it had been cooler though.

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I headed to Fruita and bought myself a very tasty cinnamon ice cream malt at Enstrom Candies. Then I drove to the 18 road trails car park.

It was still very warm even after the sun went down at the 18 road trail head.

I started the ride @ 19:15 by riding up the dirt road until I could cut off onto the front side trail, I then rode along this singletrack until I came to Joe's Ridge which I rode up.

Then the ride down Joe's Ridge was great fun in the dark.

From the end of Joe's Ridge I rode backup to the top of Kessler's Run via the dirt road through the camp grounds. I then had great fun blasting down Kessel run , as the trails so smooth , with great twisty banked corners.
When I got back to the SUV at about 21:00 I decided to pack up and head back to my Hotel. I would have stayed out later as the night riding was greta fun. But I knew that I had to get up very early to drive to Moab to ride the Whole Enchilda the following day. Back at my Hotel I heated up another ready meal and eat some cold chicken i'd bought the day before before, before packing up all my stuff ready for a quick get away in the morning.

Click here for Day 12