From Winthrop, travel 10 miles west on Hwy 20 to Goat Creek Road on your right (just before crossing over the Methow River before Mazama) and take a right. Follow Goat Creek Road for 1/2 mile to NF-100 (Rendezvous Basin Rd) turn off on the right (or from Mazama, just follow Goat Creek road east out of town about three miles until you reach NF-100 on your left).
Please note the map is as accurate as possible. But the ride route is very obvious and a map is not really needed. Remember things change. Be prepared, capable, and self-reliant.
Average ride time is about 90-120 minutes. Distance is about 11 miles. All singletrack!
Parking has recently changed as of about 06/16. See notes above.
Also, there is a nice, little route below the new parking area that takes you to an excellent valley overlook. When you enter that trail (unmarked, but obvious) bear right as going straight will take you down to Edelweiss. The trail is a loop and will bring you out on the trail that goes down to Edelweiss. Turn left to ride back up to the parking area.
Go to the intersection with Rendezvous Basin Road, above Edelweiss, after driving up East Fawn Creek Road, passing through an open steel gate. You'll park immediately to the left, but note that the trail starts up immediately on the right side of the intersection. From Goat Creek Road to the trailhead is 1.7 miles.
To begin this ride, start on the right, opposite from the trail finish, at the entry sign into singletrack marked Start Me Up
, an arrow, and a Rendezvous Basin Loop sign. After a switchback climb, follow the singletrack to the right. Follow this section as it curves around the south side of the hill, with great views from a couple of open overlooks. Turn right at a junction and follow the obvious trail. It will curve around a big down tree and over three small creeks on ladder bridges.
Continue, following the singletrack on the $8 Rake
trail. Continue following singletrack, well into the Grizzly Mtn area. Cross a dirt doubletrack and continue following the trail, signed as Cowtown
, on singletrack. This winds around for about another mile, and eventually drops steeply onto a narrow dip, then up and quickly turns right, crosses a dirt road and onto singletrack again onto the Raisin Bran
Exit the singletrack from Raisin Bran
onto Gunn Ranch Road and head straight across the road onto more singletrack. In a few yards, look for the wooden sign for Witches Run
and follow the signs and markers.
Follow the trail through dense woods, and following more dense thickets (with a Blair Witch Project feel), you'll reach a clear-cut. Follow the doubletrack along the edge (clear-cut and hillside on your right) and continue about 1⁄2 mile, watching for the points where the trail re-enters the woods on singletrack immediately after a little dip. Continue on singletrack through more open terrain, basically following the broad ridgeline, then dipping sharply to the right and climbing up toward Gardner Hut on more singletrack.
At Gardner Hut, get back on singletrack on the other side of the hut, and ride through on the curvy and skinny trail for about 1⁄2 mile and finally curving to the left and up, crossing doubletrack, then passing through a fence line (gate), and turn left onto singletrack just on the other side of the fence. This fence line trail is called Cub Trail
Follow Cub Trail
across until it dumps out right at Rendezvous Pass. Cross the cattle grate and immediately look for singletrack to the right that heads toward Rendezvous Hut. This section of trail traverses above the road, then crosses the road and circles clockwise around the crown of a knoll, then reaches Rendezvous Hut. When you reach Rendezvous Hut, continue past the hut and onto level, rocky singletrack for another 200 yards, and look for the wooden sign for Brita
on the left side.
Enter singletrack here, and continue following singletrack. Some steep, loose and rutted descents are in this section; ride fast and take chances!
There is a road crossing here. Immediately cross the road and head back onto more singletrack. Note the wooden sign marked Happy Ending
Smile for a mile of flowing fun, then watch for a banked right turn that continues (and avoids the old upper trailhead) down to finish right where you parked the car. This trail exits on the road directly across from the start. There is a trail sign that reads This Is The End
at the very finish, at the 3-way road junction.
Thank you cows, you guys and gals did a great job creating this system.