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The Ledges

 16 votes

3.0 Miles 4.8 Kilometers


304' 93 m


-94' -29 m


1,329' 405 m


1,120' 341 m



Avg Grade (1°)


Max Grade (7°)



A signature trail of the Back 40 and a "must ride" for experienced riders.

Charles Williams


Features: eMTB allowed
Dogs: Leashed


This route is a black diamond trail requiring advanced skill. I want to get that out there up front. The expert rating is mainly earned by a stretch where riders will experience exposure to a potential fall of 20 feet or so from some narrow rock ledges that are on ~ 1/3rd of the trail. Those areas can be walked if people are intimidated by exposure to heights, but just be aware that there's very little room to walk and push your bike. For those who are deathly afraid of heights, it may not be your cup of tea even with getting off your bike to walk a few sections that are only about 50 yards in length where the "straight down" fall exposure is present. It has so many great parts besides the narrow rock ledges, that if you're OK with hike-a-bike for a total of about 150 yards, it's still a GREAT trail!

Now that we have that out of the way, let's get on to the good stuff! This trail is incredible. It incorporates some of every required skill for the avid mountain biker. Jumps (no gaps), berms, technical rocks, bike handling in narrow spaces, and some killer flow in several places.

I recommend riding this counter clockwise. Climbing it is a different challenge altogether, but going counter clockwise gives you the benefit of the flow to go with the narrow technical ledges.

Drop in off Commonwealth, going counter clockwise (northwest). Right out of the gate, you have some berms and good flow. You descend into a valley, and then climb up the opposite side, which leads you to the short table top jump section. This is big time fun! Be a little leery just after you pass through a quick power-line opening, because there are some drops that have some quick corners after them. Don't "air them out" too much, or you won't have enough braking time and you'll "exit stage left."

Next are some flowing rollers along the edge of a big ravine with a few very small creek crossings. Cross the low wooden bridge and get ready for the rock ledges!

Once you've negotiated them, you are into the final section, which is flowing with good berms, some rock kickers to get the wheels off the ground, and one alternate technical line to the right.

After some rock-lined berms, you'll end in a field, and wish you could teleport yourself back to the top to ride the whole thing again. Did I mention this trail is a BLAST? If you are at least a high level intermediate rider, DO NOT MISS descending this trail if you are in this area. It has something for every rider!


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4.6 from 16 votes

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Oct 13, 2017
Ben Zill
Sep 2, 2017
adventurefamilyinmotion butcher
started in Metfield parking lot, down mulligan, ledges and up back 40 7mi — 0h 47m
Jun 21, 2017
Nate Roter
May 12, 2017
Allison Toomey
Danielle flatted 3mi
Mar 15, 2017
Goose Figueroa
Fun trail with scary very thin sections. Definitely doable as long as your pedals and handlebar not touching the the hill. Don't look down! Lol 2.9mi
Feb 26, 2017
Brandon McElroy

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Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 16 votes


in The Back 40


  4.6 from 16 votes
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in The Back 40


in Arkansas


102 Views Last Month
2,343 Since Aug 30, 2016
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Vincent Edwards
Fayetteville, AR
Vincent Edwards   Fayetteville, AR
Don't ride this trail if you aren't comfortable with some exposure. The technical difficulty is intermediate, but good bike handling skills are still a must. At times the trail is narrow, with a 40ft drop off on one side. If you are comfortable with exosure, this is currently the most unique and memorable trail in the Back40 system. Riding on solid rock brings a welcome relief in terms of dependable traction. Keep your speed in check the first time you ride this- not so much on the rock ledges as on the flowy jump lines- there are a few tight turns with limited traction on tap. Sep 5, 2016
Nicely designed to incorporate the area's natural features. Limestone and flint make this tough on sidewalls and skin if you get off line. Best ridden in groups unless you are very experienced or totally self-sufficient. Not to be missed. Oct 19, 2016

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