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Kennebec Pass loop

Average Rating:    (5 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 10

From Mayday, it's a rugged dirt road, all climbing, then bear left about 10 miles up, onto the way more rugged 4wd road to Kennebec Pass. At the parking area, keep bearing right, trail is marked, probably snowfields on top. You'll hit the Sliderock "trail," a goat path descent thru a dangerous 45 degree talus slope until you pop out on a dirt road. Directly across you'll see Co Trail signs. From here it's about 20 miles to the end of the CT. After you cross the wooden bridge about 5 miles in, set yer mind for some serious climbing for the next hour or so, once that's done, it's pretty much all downhill to pavement on Junction Creek Road, a few miles from town. The loop measures 58 miles from my doorstep in town, and feels longer. Leave early, plenty of dumbass tourists start riding at noon and get to spend a night in the big CO woods. Also take serious rain gear, it can hail and snow on you any month of the year in the high country.
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Latitude
37.37015718405753
Longitude
-107.8857421875
Trail Directions
This is ridden as a loop from Durango by many locals every 4th of July. Climb 160 west to Hesperus, then take the right toward Mayday and the obvious LaPlata Mountains. To avoid the highway climb, you can also take 211, a dirt road, behind Bodo Ind. Part, then jog right on Wildcat Canyon Rd. for a mile, then a left up 125, another dirt road, then a right on pavement toward Hesperus.
Trail Length
58 miles, loop fromtown
Trail Level
Advanced
Trail Type
Singletrack & Fire Roads
City/County
Durango
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (10 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
July 22, 2008

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 5 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a year

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Reviewed by: crager34 ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Did as a group ride and did not do the loop. Caught a ride up to just under the pass. Amazing high country downhill and run the tallus field... it's not that bad. Have good brakes!!! Get down to the bridge and earn the next 10 miles of downhill by hike-a-bike'ing (in sections) uphill for the next 4 miles. Great fun all the way around.



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Review Date
August 4, 2003

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 5 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Mark ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
I rode this for the first time as a solo ride yesterday. I cheated a bit, and got a ride to Hesperus. I have ridden that section of road too many times on my road bike to want to add on to a long mtb ride with 10 miles of climb on a highway. The talus / scree field is not as bad as described - just don't fall. The 4-5 mile climb after the bridge is nasty if you have already put in 6000 feet of climbing that day. This is probably the best wilderness - type ride I have done in the area. A lot of fast root-laced downhill, and unexpected switchbacks. I saw only 3 hikers back near town, and that was it for the whole ride. A great chance to get away from it ALL.

Recommended Route:
Get a freakin ride to Kennebec Pass. The ride up the dirt road from Hesperus is not fun, but there is some excellent scenery. However when your legs are throbbing, it takes a little away from it. Lots of latrines at the camp grounds - Use them, not the woods.



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Review Date
October 14, 2002

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Robert , from Hollywood, FL

Summary:
I am going to make this short. If I were to write a detailed review it would be 5,000 words easily! Starting at 11,700 feet the trail descends about 100' in about an 1/8th mile. Then you climb what would normally be a middle ring easy climb. However at that altitude it was a killer. Once you catch your breath crossing the scree/talous field was FREAKING hairy at best. Our townie guy that showed us the way just cruised through it in a tuck position. However after that it is the best 25 miles of single track I HAVE EVER RIDDEN PERIOD! The climb in the middle is a killer but you will barely remember it when you get back to town. The last 6 miles of trail was the most fun I have ever had on a bike. Tight, roller coaster like sections, switchbacks, places to get air, you name it! Ride this trail. Best ride ever.

Recommended Route:
Unless you are a freakin STUD, shuttle to the top some how. We had 3 vehicles and it took 2.5 hours to go back and get them. The last 3 or so miles of the forest road requires 4wd. REALLY

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Hermosa Creek - great trail as well, do it first so it will not disappoint you



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Review Date
July 31, 2002

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Raoul , from Tijeras, NM

Summary:
This is a BIG day of riding. As Dr. Rearrango says bring plenty o'water - I had 150 oz. and I was a bit light. This ride, as a full loop, is not for the faint of heart due to the amount of climbing, the gripping descent through the talus slope, and the obvious fatigue factor in the last 10-15 miles. Do not attempt this ride unless you're FIT. If you are, however, you will be rewarded with one of the best days on a bike imaginable. This ride has it all from cruiser highway warm-up, lung-searing climbing to the top of the pass (the last 2 miles were on 4WD road - very steep and rocky, but until then not bad really), technical descending, and buff singletrack (and lots of it). If that's not enough, the scenery is spectacular and will make you forget (somewhat) about your tired legs. The trail is excellent, well-marked, and surprisingly vacant. I would say this ride is a "must" if you plan on several days of riding in the Durango area. Do it!

Recommended Route:
as described above by DurangoMan



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Review Date
July 29, 2002

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Dr. Rearrango , from Albuquerque NM

Summary:
The 4 of us did the whole blue plate enchilada from Durango- about 55 miles. A true epic! From the grunt up to Kennebec and down the well-signed CT, it was an incredible ride! My GPS logged almost 8000' of climbing! The 14 mile climb from Hesperus to Kennebec Pass was long & grueling, especially the final 2 miles. The scree field descent was way cool- a narrow track with mondo-exposure funneling into the ponderosa forest. The rest of the CT is is primo single track. The grasses and weeds were really grown over on portions of the trail. The middle climb after the bridge is quite the shock to the legs after all that descending, but you are then rewarded with another supreme forested singletrack to Junction Creek Trailhead. I recommend this ride for strong adventurers who are willing to be "out there" for 7hrs. Only 2 hikers were seen the whole way on Saturday in July! When we finally near the Junction Creek Road did we see other riders. Bring lots o' water or a filter setup. This was the best epic ride I've done. 20+ miles of singletrack! I can't believe how challenging and fun this ride was!!!!

Recommended Route:
Kennebec Pass Road to Colorado Trail.
The same one that everyone else recommended.



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Reviews 1 - 5 (10 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

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