MTB Project Logo

blue Big Merlin

Navigate on-trail with our free app

iOS App Store Android App Store

Trail

3.6 mile 5.8 kilometer point to point
Singletrack
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 385' 117 m
Descent: -358' -109 m
High: 2,143' 653 m
Low: 1,948' 594 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 13% (8°)

Dogs

Off-leash
Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by Jon Sundquist

Navigate on-trail with our free app

iOS App Store Android App Store

Weather

Getting forecast...

Current trail conditions

Unknown See History

Popular rides nearby

Biked this trail?

Add details to help others plan their adventure.

One of the most popular trails in the Ellicottville Trail system.

Jon Sundquist

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Description

Big Merlin is a fast, flowy, popular singletrack, easy to access from the parking area at its start, or from the short connector trail coming over from Holiday Valley.

Although the trail surfs the contour of the East McCarty Hill spur, it has plenty of climbing and descents. This trail starts at East McCarty Hill forest road near a popular parking spot. After a short bit it comes to the intersection with Porcupine. Stay left and soon you'll enter a particularly nice section of red pine.

The trail starts to descend to meet up with an old log road that could take you to the bottom if you're interested. Instead, stay left and regain all that altitude you just lost.

Once back up top, you'll come across a bail out back to the road, but you'll stay right to stay on the trail. This leads to a somewhat off camber side hill section that brings you out to the end of a side spur. Since it's the end, this means you get to descend again. This time you'll be on some nice bench cut and a switchback built under the guidance of one of the early IMBA trail crews back in 1999.

At the bottom, you'll follow an old log road briefly to start the climb back up. This quickly turns to singletrack along a nice bench cut sidehill climb. At the top, the trail heads left along an old log trail that brings you back from the end of this side spur. It turns to singletrack to stay on the side of the ridge. Soon the trail starts to descend again, only to climb back up. Are you starting to notice a pattern here?

Just in case all that climbing back up has tired your legs, the last part of this trail is relatively level, paralleling the last bit of East McCarty Hill Forest Rd. Where it crosses a small access trail, you can bail out to the road or continue on straight to Dead Dog Loop.

Contacts

Rate This Trail

Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Trail

Check In

Check-Ins

Apr 22, 2018
Kevin Gaczewski
wet many trees down on the trail 8mi
Jul 2, 2016
Justin Whitmer
Jul 6, 2015
Sheryl Bower
A very fun trail! Those folks at WNYMBA have really done a great job with all of their trails.

Stewarded By


Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 5 votes

#6754

Overall
  4.0 from 5 votes
5 Star
40%
4 Star
20%
3 Star
40%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#166

in New York

#6,754

Overall
4 Views Last Month
694 Since Apr 26, 2013
Intermediate Intermediate

0%
0%
100%
0%
0%
0%

0 Comments

MTB Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Mountain Bike

MTB Project is supported by

Support Your Local IMBA Chapter