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Kokopelli Loops - Mary's, Horsethief, Steve's, and Wranglers

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.7 (183) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

The big tour of the very best of Fruita.


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Map Key

18.2

Miles

29.3

KM

90%

Singletrack

4,921' 1,500 m

High

4,509' 1,374 m

Low

1,543' 470 m

Up

1,540' 470 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

37%

Max Grade (21°)

Dogs Off-leash

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Overview

Fruita is blessed with amazing singletrack, and much of it can be found here at the Kokopelli parking area. This ride connects many of the best trails into a long, amazing intermediate day. For cycling, trails are open to non-motorized bicycles only. For a warmup, cooldown, or easier option for beginning riders, consider Rustler's Loop in addition.

Need to Know

There is little shade, and it gets very hot here. Bring tons of food and liquid; there is none available at the trailhead.

Trails here are ledgy, rocky, and perhaps newcomers sometimes find the ratings a little stiff. Take it easy if this is your first trip.

The full description is below, but there are some good shorter alternatives:
1. Ride Mary's Loop to Horsethief Bench Loop, then return the way you came and save about 9 miles.
2. Follow the ride as below, but skip Horsethief Bench Loop and save 3.8 miles and a short but tiring hike.

Description

From the main parking lot, follow the dirt road up and over the hill. On your way down, look for Mary's Loop heading uphill on the right. It starts with a solid climb up a rocky dirt road and is not an inviting start, but this ride just gets better and better.

Continue on the doubletrack as you hug the rim above the Colorado River with some small technical obstacles and great scenery. You'll eventually reach the Horsethief Bench Loop, which you'll descend into for this ride.

99% of riders get off their bike and carry their bike 100 yards down to the bench. It's large drop after large drop, with ledges, boulders, and a few slots thrown in to keep things complicated. If you get a chance to watch someone ride down, cheer them on!

Once down on the bench, take a left and ride the loop clockwise. Soon you'll come to a slickrock-like drop onto a sandy floor. The drop is tacky and pretty rideable by upper intermediate riders.

The trail meets the edge of the bench overlooking the river with several great viewpoints and a few small rock ledges as it pops in and out of small side canyons.

Once you turn in away from the bench edge, you'll come to many rock ledges including a four foot drop that most people have to hike up. Past this side canyon, the trail becomes much easier, smoother, and faster. You leave the rock behind and ride through a grassy section with smooth dirt singletrack along a huge wall as a backdrop. The trail climbs gently back to the entrance hike-a-bike. Huff it back up!

Continue on Mary's Loop for 3 miles (passing Mary's Cutoff and Wrangler's Loop to the right) until you get to Steve's Loop (also signed as Steve's Cutoff). You'll descend a couple steps (some riders will walk them), then cruise down a nice, smooth, rolling trail to a bench a little lower than the one you've been riding. The trail is now very easy for the next couple miles, but there are wonderful desert features including slot canyons, big sandstone walls, and some shelf rock that you can ride above some major dropoffs to the canyon floor below.

The third canyon (which is the narrowest slot canyon) has a short section with broken rockfall that you'll have to carry your bike over. After than, it's smooth riding again almost all the way back up to Mary's Loop on the higher bench. One final steep uphill stretch will not be rideable by most and you'll probably have to push it a short ways.

Back on Mary's Loop, turn right on old doubletrack and start your way back to the car. Continue on Mary's (now retracing part of your route) until you reach Wrangler Loop on the left. Take it up a nice, easy hill that wanders around smooth trail for 1.2 miles until you reach a saddle. Mary's Cutoff will be to your right, but stay left/straight on Wrangler and rocket 1 mile down an old doubletrack to the road and trailhead below.

Contacts

Shared By:

Nick Wilder with improvements by Christopher McKim and 2 others

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 182 votes

#25

Overall
  4.6 from 182 votes
5 Star
70%
4 Star
26%
3 Star
3%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
1%
Recommended Route Rankings

#7

in Colorado

#25

Overall
736 Views Last Month
85,791 Since Apr 2, 2013
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
51%
3%
46%
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Photos

Cleaning the entrance to Horsethief Bench Loop... Going UP! Allez!!
Oct 26, 2016 near Loma, CO
A quick lap on one of the favorites at Kokopelli Loops–Horsethief Bench.
Dec 23, 2016 near Loma, CO
Troy kills it on the technical section.
Nov 1, 2013 near Loma, CO
Mary's Loop weaving around slot canyons
Apr 4, 2013 near Loma, CO
The trail gets technical as you turn away from the Colorado River
May 4, 2018 near Loma, CO
Colorado River overlook
Apr 2, 2013 near Loma, CO

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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Check-Ins

Sep 12, 2020
Nate Kliven
Easily in my top 5 rides ever! I was smiling almost the entire time. The trails are very well designed for both directions. 18.7mi — 2h 22m
Sep 2, 2020
Jason Booker
Gets better every time!
Aug 31, 2020
Atsuko Ohtake
Very fun!
Aug 25, 2020
Jay Musial
Aug 1, 2020
Dee F Cee
A must do. 35mi — 3h 00m
Jul 9, 2020
Jason Booker
Jun 19, 2020
Andrea Stack
Lovely 20.7mi — 3h 10m
Jun 9, 2020
Steven Kiesel