“A full traverse of Coyote Flat from Coyote Valley Road (7S10) to Big Pine down Sugarloaf Road (32E03).”
— Star Fangled Nut
This big ride is a complete traverse of Coyote Flat, a high altitude plateau of the Sierra Nevada. The ride consists of sometimes sandy two-track from Bishop to Big Pine with over 6,000 feet of climbing (and descending).
Begin this ride at the Coyote Flat staging area accessed from Reata/Underwood Lane in Bishop. Begin the sandy slog out the lower section of Coyote Valley Road (7S10)
(plus sized tires recommended) or alternatively drive to the base of the the switchbacks and park if you have 4WD.
Settle in for a long grind up to Coyote Creek and eventually the turn off to cross Coyote Flat on 32E303 at 12.5 miles and crossing Coyote Creek for the second time.
The traverse of Coyote Flat is a good opportunity to catch your breath (and enjoy the views) before you hit the turn to Sugarloaf Road (32E03)
at 17.5 miles, at which point you'll climb around the prominant "hill" known as Sugarloaf before a wild descent back down to Big Pine and your shuttle vehicle back to Bishop.
Note: There are singletrack descent options from the Coyote Valley Road (7S10)
and the traverse including the Druid Stones Trail (32E01) accessed at mile 10.5, Baker Creek ST (31E03)
accessed by continuing past Sugarloaf Road (32E03)
, and Shannon Canyon (33E21)
accessed from Sugarloaf Road (32E03)
. An alternate climb is Habegger Road (31E305)
, which takes you up and over Coyote Ridge at 11,000 ft but also allows you to start at a higher elevation.
See these resources for additional information:
Mountain Biking Mammoth, Extremeline Guides, By David and Allison Diller