Day 13 : Gallup (High Desert trail & Zuni Mtn's trails - MTB ride's)

 
 
 
 
 

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture Today I'd arranged to meet up with my mate Tomas - who had driven all the way over from Flagstaff just for the day to do this ride with me, at the Gallup High Desert Trail System. I drove over to the Mentmore trail head and met Tomas and Tippy the dog to start our ride. From the car park the trail headed 1 mile across the desert to the first trail junction - The 3rd Mesa West Junction. From this Junction we took the left turn. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

The trail was well built with some very solidly built rock Cairns at the Junctions and neat trail maps, so you couldn't go wrong. The only thing missing was suggestions for the best way to ride the trails.

There were also cool metal sculptures dotted along the trail.

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture After a mile of riding we had climbed up to another high point on the trail, and the Third Mesa Crossover junction. We stopped so Tippy could have a drink and then took another left turn (Note : The right turn is the better way to go)
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture We could tell from the brake bumps as we rode up a steep hill that we had taken the wrong turn on this section of the trail. So when we got to the top we headed back down it to see how it rode. Before heading back up again. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
At the junction at the top of the Hill we took a right turn (The right way), and continued riding along the trail as it undulated up and down across the desert. The trail went along the edge of a ridge with views of the desert and Gallup in the distance. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture Tippy was in fine form as we rode the trail, only getting dropped when we headed down some of the longer hills. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture There was a stone pile at east Mesa 2 junction with a big Lizard living in it, he didn't hang around when Tippy came sniffing around. We rode on from here to the 6 flags junction. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture At the six flags junction Tomas stopped to give Tippy a rest in the shade and I rode round the Mesa I beginner trail loop.
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture At the six flags junction Tomas had stopped to give Tippy a rest in the shade while I rode round the Mesa I beginner trail loop. We then started back down the trail taking the right hand junction which took us past Bike Henge High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
The single track was great and we rode up to start of the Mesa III trail, we took a left turn and headed along the trail. To the Sundial. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

Video (12MB)

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

Video (16MB)

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

Video (9MB)

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture

Video (11MB)

High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture After some fun ridge line riding we came to a great descent back down to the Mesa III cross over junction. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture We then went left again and climbed back up again, to ride down the last fast descent to the trail head. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
Tomas almost had to go right back up to the Top as Tippy was confused about how to get down to use, until she leapt of the cliff and took a route down the hill that would have left us severely damaged. We packed up our bike and then headed into Gallup and had lunch at a mexican restaurant, before Tomas headed off back to Flagstaff. I was staying in Gallup 1 more night as I still wanted to try riding at the Zuni Mountains. The ride today had been great , very good trails and excellent company. High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture High Desert Trail - Gallup - Mountain bike Singletrack picture
High Desert Trail trail map
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture After Tomas left for Flagstaff I drove up to the Zuni Mtns, I stopped off at McGaffey parking spot, and rode up the quaking aspen trail. The trails had nice sign posts at every junction, But not much in the way of descriptions about which way was the best to go. The trail varied from double track to singletrack to riding up dry stream beds. Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture

 

Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
I kept left all the way up to Sheet Rock Tank, I didn't take too many pictures as to be honest pictures of singletrack in the woods are really boring. Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture The trails were a complete contrast to the High desert trails, and were very smooth and easy to ride. The temperature whilst not warm wasn't too cold and the air was nice and fresh. From Sheet rock Tank I took the Last Lake trail which was a new trail - it was virtually non existent in places - all you had to navigate by were little flags in the ground. Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Over riding out to the overlook point (The only place on this ride with a view other than of trees), I rode on to Junction 8.
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Then I rode back over to Sheet Rock Tank, on the way I meet a couple from Washington state who lived near Squiim who were riding Ellsworth Moments, after chatting with them I continued on and I crossed a rickety bridge and rode the Turkey Nest trail, this section of trail was faster than the previous sections of trail. And I managed to fall off and back my leg on the way down. Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
As it was getting dark I decided not to ride the Y2K trail as I didn't have my lights with me and I rode back down the quaking Aspen trail to the car. back at the car I met up with the couple from Washington and I told them about the high desert trail and I gave them a map for it. I then headed back down to Gallup to go and ride the High Desert Trail in the dark. Zuni Mtns mountain bike singletrack picture
Zuni MTB trail map
Zuni ride profile
High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride
High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride Well what can I say about riding the High Desert trail at night - Its Fantastic !!, you can never ride too slow other wise that Mountain lion you imagine is stalking you will jump on you !!!. I didn't take too many pictures as I was slightly worried about wild life encounters of the scary kind. High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride
High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride
This time round I rode the trails in what seemed to be the best possible way to get good flow (The High desert map I have above has arrows showing the route i took at night) , and they were so much fun. They was quite a wind blowing but it wasn't too cold with a light windproof shell on. High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride
High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride High desrt trail - Mountain bike night ride

DAY 14