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Holiday Valley / McCarty Hill State Forest

Average Rating:    (3.88 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 8

These are some of the best trails to ride in western NY. Miles of endless singletrack, lots of roots, rocks, logs, downhills, and flowing trails. There are lots of long but not too steep climbs as well. This is the place to go if you are looking for a long, technical, challenging xc ride.
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Latitude
42.26117620658854
Longitude
-78.66846084594727
Trail Directions
Take Rt. 219 South to Ellicottville. Turn left at light in town and go about 1 mile to Holiday Valley ski resort. Turn right here and go about 1/2 mile, park at the Training Center at the bottom of the hill. Ride the dirt road to the left all the way to the top of the hill, this is where the single track starts. The best way is to check out www.wnymba.org and look at the map to see where all the trails are.
Trail Length
up to 30 miles
Trail Level
Advanced
Trail Type
Singletrack & Fire Roads
City/County
Ellicottville
Country
USA
Web Address
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
October 10, 2010

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: Bodie6 ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
Holiday Valley is a xc rider's dream come true. It literally offers something for every rider. From trails that flow really well (Big Merlin, Rocky's Run, Buzzard's Breath, Mutton Hollow) to technical trails (Bent Rim, Porcupine, Four Rocks, Eagle) to rock gardens (FLT), to downhills (Growler) and creek crossings (Yukon's Lunch) and to tails that offer great scenery (Rim Trail, Race Loop), you can spend an entire day out here and find a combination of trails that suite your riding style. The workers from the local bike association (WNYMBA) have done a tremendous job of maintaining the trails for races and for weekend warriors alike. It's no surprise that Ellicottville is ranked as a IMBA epic ride. Get out here and enjoy the trails before grabbing some food and a beer in the beautiful town of Ellicottville. Awesome trails and an awesome scene!!!

Recommended Route:
Get a map. This is an all day epic ride (between 6-8 hours):
Start at Eagle -> Sidewinder -> Dead Dog -> Big Merlin -> 1/2 of the Race Loop to the tower -> FLT -> North Pale Ale -> Middle Pale Ale -> Hungry Hollow Road to Rim Trail -> Eckert Rd. -> South Pale Ale -> Middle Pale Ale -> Rocky's Run -> Buzzards -> Mutton Hollow -> Porcupine -> Rain -> Eagle.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Eastside Overland Trail in Gerry, NY (some great singletrack if you know where to look). Westside Overland Trail. Golden Hill.



Comments
bikingbrad (07/28/2014)
Great review nothing new to add really. If you want to do more technical trails like Bent Rim hit them while you're fresh they will beat you up. Intermediate and easy trails are really alittle too easy (deaddog) but fun. Take two days if you want to ride everything.
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Review Date
May 18, 2007

Overall Rating
 3 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: rob412 ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
The description on the main page summed up the riding here pretty well...miles and miles of rugged cross country riding. This was my first and probably last visit to the trails on McCarthy Hill. There were many miles of challenging trails and some sections flowed well and were pretty fun, but I guess that I'm spoiled with the trails in Western PA. My home turf is surrounded by trails with a higher fun factor.

JR and myself rode the trails for two days and managed to cover a good bit of ground. We rode the Pale Ale Trails, Big Merlin, FLT, Rim, down to the CC Camp, and a few miles of the dirt roads connecting all of the trails. I thought that Big Merlin rated the highest on the fun scale. The trail flowed well, had some short fun downhills, a couple challenging climbs, and some obstacles to lauch over.

Rim trail came in second place because it also flowed well, it had a few more technical sections but lacked any fast downhill-like sections. FLT was a long trail which had different characteristics when you were in different sections. But overall, FLT had more technical rock gardens than any other trail (we didn't ride bent rim). If you like picking a line through baby-head rock gardens you will love FLT trail. JR demonstrated his superman faceplant technique more than once on that trail.

We joined the WNYMBA riders by accident on day two. These guys are a nice group of guys, were excellent hosts, and they have done a fine job with their website. Check out the site: www.wnymba.org They put together the map which we bought at Mud Sweat and Gears (recomend stopping by) which was a great asset on the mountain. Look forward to riding with them again. The trails here are definately worth checking out especially if your close by.

Recommended Route:
Big Merlin & Rim were the highlights

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Golden Hill



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Review Date
October 29, 2005

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a month

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Reviewed by: iguanabuster ,  Racer

Summary:
These trails are amazing! Riding these trails for the first time this spring is was got me seriously into mt biking. I've been back 4 times since (its a 3 hour drive and im a broke college student, so thats a lot). This is my favorite place to ride by far. You can go do 30, 40, 45 mile rides and still want more, its that good! There really isnt any long steep climbs, so if it has a downfall that would be it. If you live within 4 or 5 hours drive, you need to come ride here and spend a weekend at least. Stop at Mud Sweat and Gears and get a map too.

Recommended Route:
Ride as many trails as possible! Big Merlin is smooth and fast, Bent Rim is very technical, the pale ale trails are somewhere in between, try em all

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Spencer park



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Review Date
October 3, 2005

Overall Rating
 2 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Gears ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
Did most of the race loop and some of Big Merlin (sp?) trail but we got goofed up due to a map error. The map linked off of this page seems more accurate than the one from the shop in town. The trails are generally smooth and less technical than the trails I normally ride in PA. There were no man made obsticles and it seemed like the area suffered from some overzealous trail maintenance. Every log that had fallen across the trail was cut with a chain saw. Try building some log roll-overs! Good downhills were also lacking for the ammount of uphill riding. Trails were also labled poorly for such a heavily riden area. There were some great jumps over water bars on Big Merlin Overall, not a bad area but much more could be done with the quality terain.

Recommended Route:
Only did the race loop and parts of a few adjoining trails. I would return to try some other trails if I happend to be in the area.



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Review Date
March 31, 2005

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Every few months

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Reviewed by: playpunk ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
The trails in Holiday valley are the best in western new york. The FLT might be a little faster, but the trails near ellicotville are the best -- because of their variety. These trails have it all. Fast, flowing singletrack (the race loop) tough, technical rocky sections (pale ale trails) and fast, flowingt downhills and grueling climbs. This is one of my all time favorite rides, a great place to go for a couple of hours or a full day.

Recommended Route:
GET A MAP at wnymba.org -- or follow the IMBA Epic route described on the imba website

Other recommended trails in the same area:
the FLT - Portageville Area



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Reviews 1 - 5 (8 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

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