This mountain bike event begins a few miles north of Flagstaff, Arizona, near the intersection of Snowbowl Road and Route 180, and finishes in Tusayan, Arizona, the entrance of Grand Canyon National Park. A majority of the Stagecoach course follows the Arizona Trail and the historic Flagstaff to Grand Canyon Stagecoach Line route used by adventure seeking tourists between 1897 and 1901. Many of today’s race-day aid stations are located at the original stage line rest stops and watering holes.
Course terrain varies between single-track, two-track, and maintained forest dirt roads. Bikers pass from heavily vegetated ponderosa pine and alpine aspen forests to sparsely vegetated pinion-juniper grasslands and back again. The 100-mile course starts near 7,300’, reaches a maximum elevation of 8,800’ (at Aspen Corner, mile 6), finishes at 6,600’ (Tusayan), and has approximately 7,000’ of climbing.
Bikers traverse over a shoulder of Arizona’s highest mountain, Humphrey’s Peak, through the high alpine meadows, across 422-square mile Babbitt Ranches, and along the Coconino Rim where views of the Grand Canyon, Painted Desert and Navajo Mountain await.
Often referred to as “The City of Seven Wonders,” 45-minutes North of Sedona and 90-minutes South of the Grand Canyon, lies Flagstaff, AZ. Permanently settled in 1876, the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad reached Flagstaff in 1882. In 1894, Lowell Observatory was built. In 1899, the University of North Arizona was founded. Flagstaff became the first night sky city, a movement started in 1958 to celebrate, promote and protect the dark skies of Flagstaff and northern Arizona. Flag’s estimated population stands at over 70,000 within city limits.
Flagstaff is situated along the western flank of the largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest in the continental United States. The geologic centerpiece of Flagstaff is the San Francisco Peaks, home to Humphreys Peak (12,633 feet), the highest point in Arizona. The Peaks have religious significance to several Native American tribes. In particular, the Peaks form the Diné (Navajo) sacred mountain of the west, called Dook’o’oosłííd, which means “the summit that never melts”. The Hopi name for the Peaks is Nuva’tukya’ovi, which translates to “place-of-snow-on-the-very-top”. Flagstaff’s climate and terrain coupled with easy access to vast networks of trails, make it one of the best mountain biking towns in the country.
Entry fee covers 3 aid stations, copper buckle for finishers, event t-shirt, shuttle back to Flagstaff if needed.