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Sheep Creek Loop

 4.5 (31)

13.1 Miles 21.0 Kilometers



1,508' 460 m


-1,508' -460 m



Avg Grade (3°)


Max Grade (11°)

10,852' 3,308 m


10,061' 3,066 m


Shared By Marcel Slootheer


All Clear 35 days ago
Dry - fast, flowy, beautiful and no crowds. what mountain biking should be History

Getting forecast...

A fun ride through some magnificent aspens.

Marcel Slootheer

Dogs Off-leash

Features -none-


This ride follows mostly raw singletrack through aspen groves with beautiful meadow crossings. This trail is highly recommended in autumn during the color change. I would schedule three hours for the 13-mile loop, if you stop several times for breaks and photo stops (especially in the fall season).
The last 1/4 mile of Forest Service Road 455 just before the Sheep Creek Trail (FST 645) trailhead is steep and rutted. If you drive a 2WD, lower clearance vehicle you might consider parking in the area just before you see the road go steep up the last hill.

Need to Know

This trail doesn't get a lot of traffic so early in the summer things might appear a bit overgrown and show little sign of use.


Park at the end of Forest Service Road 455 (or at the bottom of the last hill - see above "Restrictions" section) at the top of the hill at the trailhead for Sheep Creek Trail (FST 645).

From the TH, it's a mile or so of slight downhill singletrack on Sheep Creek Trail (FST 645) through aspen groves over to the Cave Creek Crossing. Then, there are a few ups and downs over semi-rocky singletrack until you hit the first tricky creek crossing for Twelve Mile Creek.

This is at just under three miles in from the start. Just after that, you'll see the fork for the Twelvemile Trail (FST 684). Hang a left onto this trail.

Now you are on the Twelvemile Trail (FST 684) heading up. It's about three miles of rocky, gradual climbing. It's not super steep but has a few short rock gardens to keep you honest. You'll cross over a few small creeks, a few meadows, and see some older campgrounds. The trail might be a bit hard to see until you finally get to FSR 173. There's a gate there, that's the road you want, to the right. Technically this is the highest point of this ride.

FSR 173 is an up-and-down, rocky and rolling 4WD road. You'll be on that for a mile or so, until you get to FSR 175 in the valley.

Just after you take a right onto FSR 175, after approximately 1/10th of a mile you'll see a cairned exit to the right just before the road goes uphill. There is a sign posted. This is where you hop back onto Sheep Creek Trail (FST 645).

It's three miles of tight, twisting singletrack through forest, along the creek, and through some awesome sage brush, heading mostly downhill.

You'll eventually get back to the fork for Twelvemile Trail (FST 684). Head back the way you came (hang a left) to continue back on Sheep Creek Trail (FST 645), it's back up the singletrack from earlier, back to the TH.


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Your Check-Ins


Jul 13, 2018
Adam P
see strava notes 13.1mi
Jul 10, 2018
Alexander Jonathan
Jun 17, 2018
Arthur Fabert
Jun 14, 2018
Zach Rochon
Jun 3, 2018
Steven Mattics
Great route. The singletrack portions of this loop are amazing! Climbs are pretty easy, but keep in mind you are over 10K feet the whole ride. 12.2mi — 2h 00m
May 31, 2018
Bradley Booker
Dry and green. Some creeks are full but all crossings are dry. A few down trees in the path. 16mi
May 18, 2018
Steve Heeney
15mi — 3h 00m
Oct 1, 2017
Matthew Rensel
From lower parking lot. still a good ride but a few small patches of early snow. 9999.9mi

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 31 votes


  4.5 from 31 votes
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