Here it begins. At 2,125 ft., one local's play-by-play description of the LaGrange Classic short course. The start and finish are on Weaver Bally Road. A forest service road that is open year round. After only 0.1 miles (up to 6% grade), the singletrack begins.
At 1 mile from the start, is Garden Gulch Creek. Although seasonal, expect some water in June in this rocky creek. There is no bridge, but there is a bunch of river rock. Fortunately the creek bed can be ridden across. This creek will be crossed a second time on the way back to the finish line.
Since the start of the race, the course is sun exposed, traversing a burn scar. At mile 1.5 the wildfire hit a prescribed burn and stopped. Did you notice the kiosk that you passed? Now the first climb is set to begin as you enter the 10 Cent Gulch area and its the oaks. Awww. Shade.
With grades up to 15%, 10 Cent Gulch climbs up to Howe Ditch, 2.3 miles from the start. No, you are not imagining it. The oaks really are arching over the trail from both sides.
Now that you are on Howe Ditch, it's easy street. The hydraulic gold miners needed water. To get that water, they built miles of ditches. Howe Ditch is one such ditch line. One of many, moving water to the mines. There is no longer any water in this ditch. Just a gentle climb as you go, what would have been, upstream to Jackass Ridge.
Once on Jackass Ridge at mile 3.4, it will just be 100 ft on this closed road to the Upper Howe Ditch and back to singletrack. For the next 1.6 miles, watch out for trees and rocks that will want to clip a part of your bike. Obscure even by local standards, Upper Howe Ditch will be among the most technical riding of the course with very little passing opportunities. Also long this section will be the transition from oaks to conifers.
Upper Howe Ditch ends at mile 5, dumping the rider onto the East Weaver Creek Trail. East Weaver Creek Trail is one of the longer trails in the Weaver Basin. The course traverses various sections of this trail, in both directions, transporting riders to different areas of the basin. This particular section is doubletrack with lots of room for passing.
It won't last for long because at mile 5.1 is the start of the Serenity Ditch Spur. A short little downhill to Serenity Ditch, which does contain water for most of the year. If you happen to ride this section in late June or August, budget some time to pick a few blackberries.
Alas all good things come to an end and Serenity Ditch has its end at Rainbow. How can that be a bad thing? Well, it's sun exposed and a 10% climb (in sections) back up to the East Weaver Creek Trail. Stay on East Weaver Creek Trail and it won't be long until you drop down to the campground and the trail's namesake, East Weaver Creek. This year round creek is lush. You'll cross this creek twice, but don't worry there is a nice wide bridge at each crossing. From the campground, the route goes upstream for 1 mile to the pole bridge.
Cross back over the creek, to the course's highlight, the Day Ranch Trail. You'll need to go a short distance from the pole bridge to reach the highest point (2,971 ft) of the race, which is 7.3 miles from the race start. Then it is a sweet downhill until Day Ranch ends, back at East Weaver Creek Trail. Writing anything more about the Day Ranch Trail does it and you a disservice as you really should be out riding it, not reading about it.
Back on East Weaver Creek Trail at mile 8.9, rolling doubletrack takes you back out to Jackass Ridge at mile 10.2. Race down Jackass and back to Howe Ditch at mile 10.7. Howe Ditch crosses the basin to Teacher's Rock. The drop down Teacher's Rock is perhaps the steepest downhill at 13% and returns the rider to Garden Gulch Creek. The same crossing as at the start of the race. At this point the route retraces itself back to Weaver Bally Road after which the course crosses the road to Sydney Gulch Road and the final downhill sprint to the finish line.
Local Trail AssociationTrinity Trail Alliance (www.trinitytrailalliance.com)
Trails in Route
More Stats for LaGrange Classic Mountain Bike Race - Short Course mountain bike route
Altitude min2,110 ft
Altitude start2,116 ft
Altitude end2,114 ft
Distance climb7 miles
Distance down6 miles
Distance flat1 miles
- Snow Packed
- Snow Covered
- Freeze/thaw Cycle
- Prevalent Mud
- Very Dry
Recent Trail Reports Along Route
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