Camels Back to Watchman Mountain Bike Loop

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Date of ride: April 21, 2012
Trail System: Ridge to Rivers (Boise, ID)
Level of Difficulty: Difficult, 2,500 ft of climbs, steep terrain in the Watchman area, and very steep DH on Trail 6.
Mountain Range or Region: Boise Front  State: WY  Country: USA
Total vertical gain: 2,500 ft.
Distance: 19.7 miles.
Equipment Used:Jamis Dakar XAM-1 full suspension bike.GPS Data:GPS Data:

GoPro video highlights of the ride:

Ride Details:
This ride starts out fairly easy from Camels Back, up Kestral and over the Connector to the Fort Boise Reserve. Then you turn left on Mountain Cove and then take Ridge Crest to Bucktail. At the top of Buck tail, you take either Shane’s or Three Bears to the top of the ridge where this loop connects. Once you get above Shane’s loop and are on the main Three Bears climb is where the real ride starts. There are three sustained, difficult climbs on Three Bears – maybe that is how it got its name. After a short, but fun downhill into Rocky Canyon, you immediatly start another sustained climb up 5 Mile Gulch and Watchman. Once you climb out of the bottom of the 5 Mile Gulch and start back towards town, then the major climbing work is over. The Trail 6 DH is very steep in some sections and has rocks, big bumps and sharp turns. There is a short, steep climb out of #6 and then you hit the fun part: down Trail 5 to Fat Tire, over to Sidewinder, Crestline, Redcliff, Kestral and back to the start – all of this is downhill.
A couple of additional notes on this ride; Trail 6 has motorbike traffic on it and tends to degrade as the you get later in the riding season. Be sure to pack some energy bars or similiar to recharge and make sure you have plenty of water. This is a 3 hour + ride for me, and I’m pretty certain that even top riders would be looking at 2+ hours.

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