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Pass Mountain Trail

 3.8 (13)

7.2 Miles 11.6 Kilometers


Singletrack

1,141' 348 m

Ascent

-1,139' -347 m

Descent

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

39%

Max Grade (21°)

2,632' 802 m

High

1,889' 576 m

Low

Shared By C R John

Conditions


Unknown

Getting forecast...

A take-no-prisoners loop around Pass Mountain.

C R John

Dogs Unknown

Features -none-

If entering from Usery Park, there is a fee. The sandy Tonto Forest access at the northwest corner is free.

Description

Most of the trails in Usery Park are easy, beginner trails. Experienced mountain bikers often hit up Usery when they are recovering from injury - like after riding Pass Mountain.

Pass Mountain is (mostly) rideable in either direction, but clockwise is a bit more manageable as it puts more of the chunkier sections on the downhill and it will be an easier climb up to the saddle. There are a couple of possible starting points, but heading north from the Usery parking lots is a gradual climb with several water barriers that are not insurmountable, but after a few dozen they start to sap your strength. Near the northern end there are some treacherous wash crossings that only the bravest will tackle on a bike.

On the northern side of Pass Mountain, things really get interesting. The narrow, off-camber trail hugs the side of the mountain as it winds its way precariously along the escarpment. Take advantage of the viewpoints to get your fill of scenery. Hopefully once you're satisfied it will allow you to laser-focus on the trail rather than gawking at the scenic Goldfied Mountains and inadvertently riding off a cliff (don't ask me how I know).

Continuing around the northeastern side of the mountain is more of the same fun, rolling, cliff-edge riding, mostly smooth, decomposed granite surface with some techy boulders now and then to challenge you. There is one rocky, rubbly climb before you arrive at the saddle. The whole northern section of the trail up to the saddle is five-star stuff, so many prefer to turn around at this point and bomb back down for a ridiculously fun ride.

You don't have to be criminally insane to continue the loop clockwise from the saddle, but it helps. You'll first have an off-camber rock ledge to maneuver. There's a high penalty for failure, so walk it if you need to - somebody has to live to pay the mortgage. There are some hairpin turns and a chest-on-seat rockface to descend. The trail smoothes out for a bit, but much of the southern portion will include streambeds, babyheads, and bowling balls. The chunky downhill stuff is rideable but may shake your kidneys loose before you're done. You feel super-human if you've made the descent from the saddle with all your skin intact, but don't lose focus on the last bit back into Usery, as the chunkiness has been known to grab a front wheel and send an overconfident rider OTB.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Apr 6, 2018
John Whittle
Added part of maricopa trail on the NW side 10mi — 3h 00m
Mar 11, 2018
Corey Meiteen
8mi
Feb 10, 2018
Trevor Mariner
Me and chris 5mi
Dec 3, 2017
Brian Pickart
Jun 6, 2017
Hunter Osborn
Mar 20, 2017
Mike Skiest
Rocky but so fun and great views 7.2mi
Mar 9, 2017
Josh Minalga
7.2mi
Jan 18, 2017
Anette Zurbuchen

Trail Ratings

  3.8 from 13 votes

#4838

Overall
  3.8 from 13 votes
5 Star
31%
4 Star
46%
3 Star
8%
2 Star
8%
1 Star
8%
Rankings

#121

in Arizona

#4,838

Overall
79 Views Last Month
3,351 Since Apr 13, 2014
Difficult Difficult

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18%
64%
18%
Recommend clockwise direction as description states. Chunky stuff is definitely easier going downhill. Fun stuff! Dec 13, 2016
This is a TOUGH trail, especially on the north and east sides which are steep and rocky (think boulders). These two sides will require most riders to walk in several sections. The views are nice on the east side and you will have plenty of time to view while walking your bike. The south and west sections are much more manageable and may be the only sections I ride if I go back. My bike took a real beating from the abundance of boulders which was a little depressing. When I go riding I want to ride, not walk my bike half the time. Next time I’ll probably leave the bike at home and just hike this trail. Apr 6, 2018

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