Montana Enduro Series: 2023 Helenduro
Race Details:

MES racers - welcome to the first stop of the 2023 Montana Enduro Series: The Helenduro. The Montana Bicycle Guild’s hometown race is one of the longest-running enduro races in the US, going back to 2009. It was a local four-race series until 2014 when the newly-formed MBG incorporated it into the Montana Enduro Series. For this event, our base area is the Park Avenue Building parking lot, located at South Park Avenue and Cruse Avenue on the south end of downtown (301 S Park Ave). This is the same location as the previous two years.

Racer Check-In
You have two options for check-in. Look for the MES tent or table.
• Friday 7/21, 5:00-8:00 outside Blackfoot River Brewing (66 S Park Ave)
• Saturday 7/22, 6:30-7:45 at the Park Avenue Building (301 S Park Ave)
YOU MUST CHECK IN BY 7:45 AM SATURDAY, at which time we will release unclaimed spots to waiting racers. We encourage checking in Friday to reduce crowding and wait times Saturday morning.

If you check in Friday and become unable to race Saturday, please return your timing chip to us as soon as possible.

MES Waiver
You need to sign our MES waiver. You begin the check-in process by signing a waiver and bringing it to the MES tent to collect your timing chip and number plate. If you’re under the age of 18 you will need to have a parent or guardian present at check-in. Your 19-year-old buddy doesn’t count.

Timeline
Friday 7/21
The course will be open for inspection and practice. Please remember that South Hills trails are multi-use and the general public will be present during practice on Friday. Please ride under control and be courteous to any other trail users you encounter. Note that our volunteers may be out setting and buttoning up the course throughout the day. Make sure to give them smiles and high fives.
5:00-8:00 PM: racer check-in at the MES tent beside the Blackfoot River Brewing taproom

Saturday 7/22
6:30 AM: racer check-in at the MES tent, located in the Park Avenue Building lot
7:45 AM: unclaimed racer packets released for on-site registration
7:45 AM: volunteer meeting
8:15 AM: racer meeting (MANDATORY)
8:30 AM: race start
3:00 PM: course closed
Late afternoon: Podium celebration

Course
It gets harder and harder to plan routes with trails that have never been used in a Helenduro. We have, however. Please note: the exact course that you will compete is defined by the on-course markings and timing gates. The course and exact start/finish points are subject to change prior to race day at the discretion of MES. We will be placing start and finish points during the day on Friday. This course includes four stages. All categories will race all stages.

This race starts by heading south on Park Avenue as it turns into West Main Street. At the fork, turn right and continue south on Grizzly Gulch Drive. Turn into the Dump Gulch parking lot and climb McKelvey Trail. Continue past the South Dump Trail intersection to the top of the Mount Helena Ridge. Turn left and continue south on the Mount Helena Ridge Trail, past the upper intersection with the South Dump Trail. Continue to the intersection with Show-Me-the-Horse Trail, in an open meadow on the Mount Helena Ridge.

STAGE 1
Show-Me-The-Horse Trail
It’s a Helena classic, and most riders know every turn. But with the wet spring, the grass in the meadow is very high and tight, and the trail surface is looser than usual. Enjoy the backcountry flavor.

Transfer:
Up (south) Grizzly Gulch Road, up Wakina Sky Trail, up Stairway to Heaven Trail to the top of the ridge. Be aware of traffic on this county road and ride safely.

STAGE 2:
Stairway to Heaven Trail
This trail is a Helena classic that doesn’t see much use nowendays. The trail is covered with loose gravel as a result. If you raced in 2022, you saw the upper half of Stairway to Heaven, but skipped the lower half. The first junction you encounter presents two options: up and over the little hill or around it. Both are fair play. At the second junction (where you continued to the left last year), stay right with the Stairway to Heaven trail as it descends to the top of the road. There are many turns hiding in the tall grass and they come up with very little warning. The stage ends at the bottom of the meadow, near the road.

Transfer:
Descend the Wakina Road a short distance, watching for Evan's Trail on the right. Take Evan's Trail into the meadow.

STAGE 3:
Evan’s Trail
Descend Evan's Trail. Much of this trail is narrow with significant sidehill exposure. Expect several tight switchbacks and a punchy climb out of the creek bottom. This is swamp donkey country, so sing out to avoid surprising a moose.

Transfer:
Cross Orofino Drive to the Waterline Trail and continue uphill onto the TR Trail. Climb TR Trail to the intersection with Pinchot Trail. Turn right and continue to climb Pinchot Trail to its intersection with Rent Money.

STAGE 4:
Rent Money, Roger Fuchs, Rodney Ridge, and Don’t Fence Me In Trails.
This is a long stage and you will be gassed at the end. Descend Rent Money, exiting to the left onto Roger Fuchs Trail. Exit Roger Fuchs Trail to the right onto the Rodney Ridge Trail, cross the meadow, and sprint to the intersection with Don't Fence Me In Trail. Descend Don't Fence Me In to the Waterline Trail, continue to the right on Waterline around one chicane, then turn left to descend three switchbacks to Orofino Drive. The stage ends at the parking lot.

Transfer:
Return to the Park Avenue Building via Orofino Drive, West Main, and Park Avenue. Be aware of vehicle traffic. The race ends at the bottom of Stage 4. You are responsible for returning to the base area, a short ride down the gulch. You will encounter other vehicle traffic. Please be courteous and respect other users.

Hydration: we will have water available in two locations:
• Bottom of Show-Me-the-Horse Trail
• Orofino Drive crossing
Self-sufficiency is a core tenet of mountain bike racing, so please do not rely entirely upon on-course water. That said, we anticipate high temperatures and will prioritize getting water out on course.

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