SOUTHWEST USA: Grand Canyon to Gooseberry Mountain Biking Tour

Mountain, Guided
Medium, Challenging
Grand Canyon to Gooseberry Mountain Biking Tour
The Southwest U.S. is the place to be for your next mountain biking adventure. On this one-of-a-kind trip, we ride the best trails and explore the unique beauty of Zion, Bryce, and Grand Canyon National Parks. Our first rides take us to the world famous Grand Canyon North Rim, only open to visitors for half of the year. The Arizona Trail is an excellent high country warm up, and while riding the Rainbow Rim, the views are breathtaking. Continuing north, just outside Bryce Canyon National Park, Thunder Mountain combines technical riding with amazing views. We then reach Zion National Park, and ride the Hurricane Rim JEM trail. Enjoy breathtaking views of the park and Virgin River while riding this classic single-track. We end with the world class riding of Gooseberry Mesa. These lands are rugged and primitive, appealing to those looking for an adventure. Remoteness, limited travel corridors, and low visitation have all helped to preserve this rare opportunity for mountain biking enthusiasts.
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Meet at 8:00am in Las Vegas, NV to begin our epic journey of the best mountain biking that Zion, Bryce and Grand Canyon National Parks have to offer. We begin with a transfer across ... morethe Mojave Desert, peppered with Joshua Trees, to the alpine forests of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Before our ride, we rise over 7,000 feet in elevation from Las Vegas, climbing onto the Kaibab Plateau. Running north-south and cut across in the middle by the Colorado River, the extra height of this enormous landform is what has led to the immense depth of geologic exposure at Grand Canyon National Park. Today’s ride is designed to acclimate us to the almost 9000’ elevation of the plateau, traveling over undulating limestone track surrounded by the high country’s spruce and aspen forest.
The famed Rainbow Rim Trail runs near the National Park through Kaibab National Forest, and is the only section of trail along the rim of the entire Grand Canyon where bikes are allowed! ... moreA gorgeous, moderate out-and-back over a surface of eroded limestone, the trail cuts in and out of the forest to parallel spectacular Grand Canyon views. Each of the trail's five overlooks offer a distinct view and perspective of the Grand Canyon's features, including the Powell Plateau, Steamboat Mountain, Tapeats Amphitheater and Great Thumb Mesas. Flat sections follow brief up-and-downs as the trail winds in and out between the overlooks.
After a final breakfast near the North Rim we travel north to ride only a few miles away from the Bryce Canyon National Park. Thunder Mountain trail travels through Dixie National ... moreForest to a stone amphitheater of hoodoos that rivals Bryce Canyon. After climbing to the trailhead by way of a scenic bike path and quiet fire road, we carve packed limestone turns, descend tight switchbacks, and cut across open ridges on our descent. We camp tonight in the gorgeous Kodachrome State Park and if times allows take a short hike amongst the multi-colored sandstone layers.
Today we trade our MTB shoes for hiking boots and take time to explore the inner depths of Utah’s most famous parks. Arriving first at Bryce Canyon National Park, we take a short hike ... moreto admire the colorful stadiums of hoodoos and natural rock spires. Then we enjoy a tasty lunch and transfer to the famed Zion National Park. Poetically referenced as “Yosemite dressed in red,” Zion’s crimson sandstone walls tower over 2000 feet from the valley floor. This afternoon choose your own adventure: explore the quaint town of Springdale, cycle the park road to the Temple of Sinewava, hike the world famous Virgin River Narrows, or examine the pristine Emerald Pools. Our camp will be at the base of Zion’s towering red sandstone walls where the descending sun rays set the colors ablaze.
We spend the day in the low desert, challenging ourselves on the most sandstone slickrock we’ve seen yet. On Gooseberry Mesa, the landscape mixes slickrock and firm-packed dirt among ... morepinions and junipers. Here, we won’t be tackling long climbs or descents. Instead, the riding is a test of balance, burst strength, and reaction time: short ups, brief downs, and quick turns. The sandstone surface is pockmarked with weathered dips, creating fun swoops and jumps as well as the occasional small pool where we can splash our faces and catch a breath. With an easier ride tomorrow, we can wear out our legs to the fullest before return to Springdale tonight.
Just outside the Zion Park borders, The JEM trail, humorously named for trailblazers John, Ellen, and Mike, is a beautiful exploration of the lower Virgin River corridor. High-speed ... moretrack cuts through the open desert, accompanied by expansive views of the river below. Easy climbs are followed by fast and flowy downhills, creating a seamless transition back to desert riding. Along the ride, our guides show us the beginnings of the geology we’ve seen in even greater glory in Zion Canyon. After a final tasty lunch, our guides will shuttle us to the airport for our flights home. Saying goodbye is always the hardest part, but as you travel to your next destination you will be bringing with you not only some great photos but friendships and memories to last a lifetime.
2016 - 22 years in the travel industry, selling adventure tours and supporting local businesses and 12 years with the brand Pure Adventures®! In 2012 Pure Adventures sold our first ... moreand original brand Discover France Adventures (started in 1994 by our owner Loren Siekman) . Pure Adventures grew on its own in order to meet the demand by customers wanting to other destinations around the world and experience similar high quality self guided tours but in other destinations than France. Pure Adventures was just recently awarded a Best Trip Winner by Active Times for 2014; and recognized in 2015 by Outside Magazine
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