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blueBlack Downieville Classic

  4.8 ( 96 ) Favorite

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14.0 mile 22.5 kilometer point to point
90% Singletrack


Ascent: 663' 202 m
Descent: -4,846' -1,477 m
High: 7,103' 2,165 m
Low: 2,895' 883 m


Avg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 42% (23°)


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Trail shared by Jason Lampenrider

14 beautiful downhill miles of fast, flowy, rocky, technical, loose terrain, and drops.

Jason Lampenrider

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-


The Downieville Classic ride. Get your car/shuttle ride to the top. The trail starts immediately on singletrack. There is very, very little climbing. There will be snow in places through May.

Sunrise trail leads into Butcher trail, which leads to either Third Divide trail or Second Divide Trail (Third Divide is faster and shorter than Second Divide; Second Divide is longer, but in my opinion, not as much fun as Third Divide), which leads to First Divide Trail, followed by a fire road, then a road ride return to Downieville. Nearly all of it is downhill.

Need to Know

You'll need a two cars; one to get you to the top and one to take you back up once you're down. Or there are shuttle services available in Downieville. Expect the unexpected on this Ride. The Butcher trail is the most technical portion. First Divide trail is along a rock wall to one side and a drop off to the other.


Start on the Sunrise Trail on narrow, rolling singletrack with small descents and climbs that make a good warmup.

This trail meets with the Butcher Trail, where you can expect speed, loose rocks, creek crossings, tight switchback descending turns, and perhaps a few hike-a-bike sections, depending on your skills. Just after the final descent, you'll cross a bridge over a creek and begin a doubletrack climb.

Half-way up this climb, there is a fork decision. Left (and descending) is Second Divide and right (and continuing to climb) is Third Divide. Second Divide is longer, but not as fast (or in my opinion as fun) as Third Divide. Third Divide is mostly smooth singletrack, with only a few small technical sections. You can really get some speed on this trail.

Third Divide leads to a fireroad descent for about a mile. If you've had enough, you can continue along the fire road back to Downieville. If not, you can drop into First Divide (upper portion). Look for a little sign that says "Trail" with an arrow. First Divide is relatively flat/descending singletrack, and at times is quite narrow with a rock face wall on one side and a drop off small cliff on the other. Watch not to clip your bars on the rock faces.

First Divide (upper) meets up with a fireroad, which you can take back to Downieville, or cross and continue along First Divide (lower) for more of the fun rock face/edge narrow singletrack.

Once you emerge to the paved road, follow it back to Downieville.

Overall, this is an advanced ride. Intermediate riders will enjoy it too, but might need to hike-a-bike in a few sections. It's not at all recommended for beginner riders.


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Nov 8, 2018
Jordan Harp
Oct 13, 2018
Evan Sharp
13 dudes and a MTB trail
Sep 18, 2018
Chris Sarot
Sep 17, 2018
Tommy Smith
Sep 4, 2018
Sunrise to butcher to third divide to first divide. was told second divide was expert only. 14mi
Sep 3, 2018
Leland Hubble
Aug 29, 2018
Sylvia Cei
Aug 10, 2018
Bailey Weiss

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 96 votes


in Gold Valley


  4.8 from 96 votes
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Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

Really fun ride not super technical or difficult at all. fun, fast, very little climbing. DownievilleOutfitters offers a $20 shuttle. Lives up to the hype wish I could have done another run only another $15. Be careful someoneon our shuttle busted his collar bone. Waterfall section is very rideable. Sep 13, 2016
I did 2 shuttles in one day for my first trip to DV. I was wasted by the time I was done. I made the mistake of taking the 2nd Divide on the 2nd run. If I do 2 runs again I'll do 2nd Divide first as it has a lot more technical climbing. I really like 2nd Divide, but I had no legs left at that point. Sep 30, 2017
Abe Gold
Tucson, AZ
Abe Gold   Tucson, AZ
Most fun I've had on a bike in California. Do NOT bring your dog as speeds on this trail are far too fast. Lots of streams by the trail and small crossings, places to swim and waterfalls. Deep woods ride. Expect 15-20 degree temp change from top to bottom. Pad up as you'll be goin' fast. May 30, 2018

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