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Black Canyon Trail (BCT) - IMBA EPIC

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.4 (37) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

An exciting, long-distance singletrack experience through the foothills of the Bradshaw Mountains.


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Map Key

77.5

Miles

124.8

KM

100%

Singletrack

4,351' 1,326 m

High

1,608' 490 m

Low

3,897' 1,188 m

Up

6,640' 2,024 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (1°)

20%

Max Grade (11°)

Bureau of Land Management Treasures

One of the Bureau of Land Management's "Backyard to Backcountry" treasures, this trail was developed between The Black Canyon Trails Coalition, IMBA and the Hassayampa, AZ BLM office to provide world-class riding experiences.

Check out the top 20 BLM Backyard to Backcountry rides!


Dogs Unknown

E-Bikes Allowed

Overview

The Black Canyon Trail (BCT) is a long-distance singletrack that runs from the boundary of the Prescott National Forest, across Highway 69 south to the Carefree Highway.

The trail parallels Interstate 17 and offers a variety of experiences through the Sonoran Desert landscape, including saguaro forests and rugged canyons. Most of the route is flanked to the west by the Bradshaw Mountains.

Need to Know

Due to its length, the BCT is often broken into segments and can be accessed from multiple trailheads along the route. Depending on your vehicle situation, both out-and-back rides and point-to-point routes are possible.

Detailed section descriptions start at the south end with mtbproject.com/trail/704520…

Description

The BCT is an overall descent from its beginning at Prescott National Forest to its terminus at the Carefree Highway. The majority of riders skip the section north of Hwy 69 and start with the Big Bug segment heading south.

The northern reaches vary from open and rolling desert to small canyons. The middle sections from Bumble Bee to the Table Mesa trailhead offer the most dramatic scenery and the most adventurous riding. From the Black Canyon trailhead south to the bottom of Little Pan, expect multiple crossings of the Agua Fria River.

The southern section of the BCT is mellow with a gradual descent. Many people stop at Emery Henderson trailhead as the section between there and the Carefree Highway is flat and uninteresting compared to the rest of the route.

History & Background

The BCT was designated as a National Recreation Trail in 2008. The Black Canyon Trail Coalition has been instrumental in the planning, design, construction and maintenance of the trail.

Contacts

Shared By:

Leslie Kehmeier with improvements by John Geronimo and 1 other

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 37 votes

#1

in Mayer

#260

Overall
  4.4 from 37 votes
5 Star
54%
4 Star
27%
3 Star
19%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Mayer

#14

in Arizona

#260

Overall
262 Views Last Month
85,908 Since Nov 18, 2014
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
6%
24%
0%
70%
0%

Photos

The Bumble Bee segment of the Black Canyon trail has an abundance of giant saguaros.
Apr 24, 2015 near Black C…, AZ
BCT Trail
Dec 8, 2013 near Black C…, AZ
The Antelope Creek section of the BCT is very scenic.
Apr 24, 2015 near Spring…, AZ
The Big Bug segment of the Black Canyon Trail (BCT) has plenty of fun and flowy sections.
Apr 24, 2015 near Spring…, AZ
The Dripping Spring windmill is about as developed as the Black Canyon Trail gets.
Apr 24, 2015 near Spring…, AZ
On the flats of the BCT between the Antelope Creek and Hidden Treasure segments.
Apr 24, 2015 near Spring…, AZ

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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Check-Ins

May 2, 2021
Mark Slovak
Feb 28, 2021
Atsuko Ohtake
Feb 25, 2021
Cindi Hillemeyer
Jan 1, 2021
Alfredo Barajas
Nov 11, 2018
PJ Garadis
Oct 25, 2018
Justin Lowry
Awesome trail, slightly overgrown at the moment, but still great 77.7mi
May 5, 2018
Mike Kortas
21mi
May 3, 2018
Matt Hage
Connected to Little Pan Trail for loop — 2h 00m

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