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Hard Guy to Dry Creek Loop

Consensus:    (details)
 4.4 from 7 votes
  Difficult from 2 votes
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Rank: #1 in Boise
#18 in Idaho
#350 Overall
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“A long climb that will test your legs and lungs, followed by a drop into a gorgeous shady drainage.”
Cory Harelson on May 11, 2013
Getting There     GPX File     Print
17.4 Miles 3,232’ Ascent 5,629’ High 7.0% Avg Grade
90% Singletrack -3,233’ Descent 3,319’ Low 21.6% Max Grade
Restrictions
Close all gates behind you.
Overview
A steep and challenging yet not very technical climb up Hard Guy leads you out of the high desert and into the pine trees. Then a short jaunt on the Boise Ridge Road leads to the start of one of the better descents in the foothills, Dry Creek.
Need To Know
The ride up Hard Guy is steep, and there isn't much shade until near the top, while the descent has lots of shade. So if it's going to be a hot day it pays to start early and get the climb over with before it warms up.
Description
From the Miller Gulch Trailhead (you can also start about 1/2 mile "down" Boise Ridge Road at the Corrals Trail trailhead, which cuts out a little climbing), climb the initial hill to where the connector trail meets up with Corrals Trail. Hang a left on Corrals and enjoy the mellow cruise while it lasts. There is short a "frontage singletrack" that cuts off to your right at one point. Take this if you want to increase your singletrack/doubletrack ratio.

Eventually there will be a left turn for Hard Guy. Take this and drop down a short distance to where the steep climb begins. Pedal, pedal harder, and pedal some more. If it's a hot day there are a few shade trees towards the top of the trail. Don't forget to look at the nice view behind you.

Eventually Hard Guy ends at the Boise Ridge Road. Hang a left and follow the Ridge Road for a couple miles of rolling terrain. Keep an eye out for a trail that cuts off to your left (there will probably be bike tire tracks on it). Note that this is unmarked and is the second possible left. It's a short distance after the first left which I believe ends in a dead-end on a ridge (but I haven't investigated).

This is the start of Dry Creek. Follow this trail out onto the ridge. After a couple minutes the trail makes a sharp turn to the right and there will be a fainter trail that breaks off to the left. GO RIGHT (left is Shingle Creek Trail). As soon as you turn, the trail starts dropping. Get ready for a winding trail through the trees, some rocks and drops, a few washed out corners, and LOTS of creek crossings which are all rideable. Plan on getting your feet wet! The fun just keeps coming all the way down.

Eventually you reach a fork where the Dry Creek Trail cuts up a slope to the right and leaves the creek. You can take this all the way back to Bogus Basin Boulevard, which you can ride downhill back to where your car is parked. This lower section of dry creek is of a different character than the upper portion, with lots of ups and downs, and with technical bits that seem to mostly come on the ups.

Another option, and the way I chose to go, is to go left at the fork, and cut across the creek one last time to a connector trail which takes you up and meets up with the bottom portion of Hard Guy. While this requires a short but steep climb to get back up to the ridge that Hard Guy follows, it prevents you from having to ride the sometimes busy Bogus Basin Boulevard back down (nice if you ride with your mutts like me :) ).

If you took the connector just reverse your tracks when you get back to the bottom of Hard Guy (right on hard guy, down, up a short climb to Corrals, right on Corrals, right on the connector back to Miller Gulch Trailhead).
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COMMENTS
OTHER RIDES NEAR HERE
4.5 (4)
A great loop around Bogus Basin Ski Resort.
near Boise, ID
4.0 (1)
A nice, fun, short loop perfect for a quick hit after work.
near Boise City, ID
3.8 (4)
A great loop featuring two of the best descents in the lower foothills.
near Boise City, ID

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PHOTOS of Hard Guy to Dry Creek Loop
 3.3 from 3 votes
Flowers and pine trees towards the top of Hard Guy (Garden City, ID)
 3.0 from 3 votes
Coming back down Hard Guy Trail (Garden City, ID)
 3.0 from 3 votes
End of Hard Guy Trail (Garden City, ID)
 2.7 from 3 votes
April showers really did bring May flowers! (Garden City, ID)
 2.3 from 3 votes
This is the first shade tree on Hard Guy as you climb and makes a nice s... (Garden City, ID)
 2.3 from 4 votes
Old Hard Guy/Fast Guy Junction just below the weather station on Hard Guy (Garden City, ID)
 2.0 from 3 votes
Lots of creek crossings on the anything-but Dry Creek Trail (Garden City, ID)
 2.0 from 3 votes
The Boise Ridge Road winds through the pine trees. (Garden City, ID)
 2.0 from 3 votes
This is the turn for Shingle Creek Trail. Stay right if you want to rid... (Garden City, ID)
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