July 4, 2013
3 of 5
4 of 5
2 of 5
Once a week
Reviewed by: PC
Hitt/Mystical to Ostrich summit is one of my "go-to" singletrack up&back rides. Nothing technical but a great workout with over 2700 feet of elevation gain from Ashland's Plaza in a little under 4.5 miles, and it's a fast flowy downhill on the way back!
From the summit there is a view through the trees down into the valley and out to Mt McLoughlin in the distance.
I'll describe the route starting from the Plaza in downtown Ashland. Sure, it's possible to drive up through town to a limited-parking trailhead. But one of the beauties of Ashland is that the trails are so close, you don't have to drive! In this description under "recommended route", mileages are from the Plaza:
From the Plaza (elev 1896), cruise up Winburn Way along the west side of Lithia Park. Turn right on Nutley (.18m), and go uphill to a left turn onto Alnut (.42m). Alnut is less steep, then start climbing again with a right turn on Strawberry (.59m). Turn left on Hitt Rd at .81m, and reach the gate (with optional parking) at .93 from the plaza, elev 2456.
After passing the gate, the road remains paved for a few hundred feet before becoming a trail which is wide at first and then settles into sweet singletrack. After a mile and a half on this trail with nearly 1000 feet of elevation gain (2.5m from Plaza), there is an unmarked junction. Go right on Mystical; the left fork is Hitt which would take you up to the Loop Road. Mystical continues the mellow but steady climb, the next junction is after another mile, 3.6m from Plaza, where a trail cuts left to meet the Loop Road near where Hitt joins it. Bear right here, and at 4.1 reach a saddle where a final right turns takes you the final quarter mile to the summit, elev 4653, 4.37m from Plaza.
Other recommended trails in the same area:
From the saddle near the summit, go south to pick up No Candies which will bring you south along the ridge to Horn Gap. Then you can go down Horn Gap trail to the Loop Road, and ride back up a mile to descend Hitt. Other favorites from Ashland without driving include White Rabbit, Jabberwocky, Toad, Pepsi, and, for a bigger workout, up&back Mt Ashland via forest roads 2060 and 200 on the way up, then all singletrack on the way down. Lots of options!