I rounded up the reluctant duo of Jeff & Nancy to join in on the fun. Jeff always seems to raise an eyebrow when I present him with rides, yet he continues to show up. I must be doing something right. I have a sneaking suspicion that it's Nancy who nudged him in the right direction.
|Two Sixty trailhead sans snow.|
As soon as we left the trailhead, I noticed something was different. The handful of deep ruts that Arturo and I experienced in December were gone!! Fully re-routed on sweet singletrack.
|Fresh re-routing on Highline. Photo by Jeff.|
|Rippin' rim country. Photo by Jeff.|
|Nancy all smiles too. Photo by Jeff.|
|Highline trail exceeding expectations! Photo by Jeff.|
|Evidence of a fresh re-route.|
|Forest Service employees actively moving boulders/tree branches into the old corridor. Photo by Jeff.|
|Missed my timing by 1 second for a good synchronized shot.|
|More fresh tread in the early morning glow.|
|Fun techy switchbacks to play on. Photo by Jeff.|
|Well contoured trail replaced.....Photo by Jeff.|
|...This. Photo by Jeff.|
|There were still plenty of challenges on the trail, not everything was buffed out. Photo by Jeff.|
|Don't slip! Photo by Jeff.|
|I had my tech game going, felt good on the power moves all day. Photo by Jeff.|
|Did we time warp to Sedona?|
|In a matter of minutes we felt like we were riding in Flagstaff, Prescott & Sedona.|
|I think this trail is about to become more popular.|
The trail started off ok, climbing away from the Derrick trail. Then it became more steep and had large rock hits & sharp turns. Time to break out the HAB. Now it's a ride!!
|Fairly steep through here. Photo by Jeff.|
|Some tight chunky lines. Photo by Jeff.|
We arrived at the spring where a few hikers were also enjoying the oasis. This is a very cool spring as you can witness the source of the water flowing out of the mountainside only a few feet from the trail. I'd recommend this as a day hike as well.
|Jeff & Nancy help give the spring a sense of scale.|
|A secondary spring tucked away to the right of Horton Spring. This one had man-made help creating pools.|
After a nice break we were back at the trail. The next section over to the Hatchery flew by, the trail was so much fun.
|Every so often...Boom! A huge vista would open up.|
|Handlebar high grass made the trail tough to see for a bit.|
|Crossed Tonto Creek as we exited the Highline trail below the Hatchery.|
|Mostly central AZ, but there are a few outliers.|
|I don't think I'd like to ride with that on my back.|
|Fish tales galore.|
|The tiered residence of the outgoing fish, the bigger the get, the farther down the hill they go.|
|We passed by a few isolated communities wondering if some were in direct competition.|
|World's largest water bed?? Or simply the area's fire hydrant.|
|Near the junction of Roberts Mesa & Control rds.|
We did luck out on water though. We were about to filter from the East Verde River when we came upon another small community. A church was on the corner and had a working hose on the side and couldn't have come at a better time.
|I start down a long downhill section. Photo by Jeff.|
|Not sure why there's an AZT gate over here, the AZT leaves from the other side of the parking lot.|
|Full Highline trail.|
As always, it's great to ride with the SS duo, Jeff & Nancy, thanks for coming out. Read Jeff's take on the ride here.