|Nice light on Sweet Connie (courtesy MTB Project)|
|Cool stock pond that you'll see riding the new trails that connect to Sweet Connie|
in Daniels and Dry Creek over to Hidden Springs
|Back of Beyond Three Fingers! Gorgeous scenery up-canyon!|
|Back of Beyond Three Fingers ...|
|Paul Hilding rides through the red rocks|
I wrote about five high-elevation hikes suitable for the fall recently, so this week I'm dishing up five must-do mountain bike rides for the fall. The mountains are becoming colorful with the huckleberry bushes and other shrubs turning deep red, and yellow and orange quaking aspen waving in the breeze.
Several of these rides are "levy specials," meaning the rides are possible because of the $10 million foothills open space levy that Boise voters passed back in 2001. Boise Parks & Recreation staff did a masterful job of stretching those dollars and selecting the best open space areas for acquisition, including some of the trails that I'll describe.
A new $10 million open space levy is on the Nov. 3 ballot, as I wrote last week. Thanks to everyone who came to our party last week. We raised more than $4,000 for the campaign. Consumed the big keg full of tasty craft beer, too! Thanks Highlands Hollow! Go to the official Boise Water and Open Space levy campaign site to endorse the campaign and find out how you can help.
Most of these rides are featured in Mountain Biking in Boise, available at most bike shops. It's available as an ebook on my web site and individual digital rides go for 99 cents each.
Now, the rides!
1. Sweet Connie from the top, levy special - With the new trails just opened up in Northwest Boise, it's possible to ride Sweet Connie from Stack Rock all the way to Hidden Springs and Cartwright Road. Rated: Advanced; Mileage: 15-20; 2,500-foot descent. Sorry, I don't have a full GPS map of this ride ... only the lower portion. Here's a link to a map on MTB project showing Sweet Connie coming down the foothills to the pullout on Bogus Basin Road. For the full enchilada, take Eastside from the left-side pullout on Bogus Basin Road about 12 miles from Boise, and ride out to Stack Rock. At Stack Rock junction, bear left to peel off on Sweet Connie down the foothills. Ride about 5 miles to the junction with the new trails in Daniels Creek and Dry Creek. Turn hard right where Sweet Connie heads over to Bogus Basin Road, and follow the new trail over to a big stock pond and then snakes down through sagebrush and rocks to Cartwright Road and Hidden Springs area. A shuttle will be necessary to fetch your rig at the Eastside Trailhead. This video of Eastside to Sweet Connie gives you an idea of what to expect in the upper end.
|Map of new trails in Daniels Creek and Dry Creek that connect to Sweet Connie|
The short route from Polecat to Hidden Springs is about 10 miles.
|Map for Back of Beyond Three Fingers Loop. After |
you do the ride, climb to the top of Three Fingers!
|Wendy and Huck take a breather on the Watchman Trail|
|Watchman Loop map. You can add some singletrack by starting in Military|
Reserve and climbing over to Shane's and Rocky Canyon Road.
|Lower Dry Creek|
|Upper Dry Creek|
|Hard Guy-Dry Creek Loop is one of the major primo rides in Boise|
|Polecat Loop Trail|
|Polecat Gulch Loop|