Bear Creek - TRAIL

Bear Creek - Trail, Macungie, Pennsylvania

Lots of great downhill and an excellent cross-country course

User Reviews (24)

Showing 1-10 of 24  
BikerJoe   Weekend Warrior [Mar 24, 2014]

Rode on 3/23/2014 in anticipation of next week's Winter Triathlon. Still has some stretches of snow on the trails, but I'd say 98% clear.

Other comments have summed it up nicely regarding going clockwise and the rocks. I can't imagine even professional riders being able to stay on their bike on the way down on the north side of the mountain.

This trail system has a lot of potential. Trails need some maintenance to make it a bit more ridable, more switchbacks. I like the periodic bridges they've built, and this is the first track system that put chickenwire on the bridges, which helps prevent the sliding as you're approaching some of the bridges on an angle.

BC needs to put some effort in the signage. I suspect that riding this system when the leaves are still green is easy because the dirt trail stands out from the surrounding green. But in late fall or winter everything is brown, so you often lose the path. From a safety perspective, they also need to identify some of the bridges on the trail map so you know where you are. I can't imagine getting hurt in there and trying to help someone locate you.

No one else mentioned that you need to pay $25 to get a wristband and sign a waiver to ride this system. They do give you a $25 gift card, which you can use at the bar, for lift tickets, etc., so it is essentially free.

There are portions that are a lot of fun to ride, but a lot of portions where you are walking (both up and down). Regardless, I would recommend this trail system to folks with technical riding capabilities.

Customer Service

Clockwise, start across the street from the kiosk in Parking Lot 4.

Similar Products Used: Nockamixon, Wissahickon, Pennypack, Lake Raystown
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
troy z   Weekend Warrior [Jun 01, 2013]

This review is from a 40+ cat 3 rider . Rode the long loop today and was shocked at the rocks . For a rec. weekend rider its a difficult trail . Found myself un clipped or walking thru some of the tougher sections . If your introducing someone to mountains biking you may want to hold off on this trail due to the technical nature . . I've been to French creek and thought that was rocky but this trail is wild .

Customer Service

Start at parking lot 4 . You'll see a kiosk near the road to pick up a trail map . The trail starts right there and you go clockwise around the ski hill and end up at the same parking lot . Took me 1:15 minutes at a easier pace trying to look around at other trail sections .

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
mbxcrider   Racer [Jan 01, 2013]


Bear Creek is a Very challenging trail system......It's best ridden clockwise and another reviewer is correct you almost have to be superman to ride it counterclockwise......I've raced there 5 or 6 times and and have done around 100 mtn bike races.....B.C. is, if not the most technical trail, it's right up there with the top two or three technically that I've raced. It's rocky and rooty, but mostly ROCKY. If you ride the whole outer loop it's approx 6 1/2 to 7 miles. If you do the connectors and misc smaller loops you can get 9 or 10 miles out of it, But that's tough to do unless you're with a local......Anyway, depending on ability expect a good "stnd" loop to take you over an hour in most cases.

For directions.....as you enter the resort (there's only one road in) you'll climb up a small hill and just after you crest that hill and start to go down hill there is a parking lot on the right....Park there....you'll see a kiosk that has a trail map posted.

Customer Service


As for a route.....just back across the road from that kiosk is the start of the trail system...there's actually a small sign that says "tail head"....Go in there and follow...keep making lefts and stay left at splits and follow up hill around back of ski slopes and then back down the trail system to your car....After a good thrashing in the rocks, the loop brings you back around to that same parking lot.

Mountain bike nationals are there this year and next 2013 and 2014.....I encourage you to go check it out and see what the "big guys" are in for.....It's tough.

Have fun and ride strong.

Similar Products Used:
Salisbury in Bethlehem is similar, so if you're in the area....Check Sals out too. bikevmb.com has the maps.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Eckstream1   Weekend Warrior [Jul 27, 2011]

First I'll start with... I LOVE BEAR CREEK RESORT! They rock!
Speaking of rocks... Bear Creek has plenty of them! They require a helmet to ride and it would be stupid without one...

I ride twice a week and this trail was a challenge! I rode it counter clockwise so I was climbing through the rock gardens... Everyone says to run it clockwise.

Either way... I still run counter. Once you get up the rock gardens the downhill starts just off the chairlift and is mostly singletrack with lots of technical sections and switchbacks... At the end of the run is a freeride park with banked turns, a balance beam, and some step downs...

Make sure your bike is maintained cuz it's gonna take a beating! I broke my derailleur hanger!

I would say that BC is similar to French Creek just shorter...

Check the Vid!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxx7Z1FVCnk

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
tlg   Weekend Warrior [Aug 11, 2009]

The other reviews here are pretty accurate. Trails are well marked and easy to follow. Bring your legs, lungs, and helmet. It is rocky!

This trail is only 4.5 miles. Other reviews have said it's 10-12 miles. Probably because it feels like you've ridden that far! But it is not that long.
There's 423ft of ascent. All in the first 1-1/4 miles.

It is best to ride clockwise. Counterclockwise is virtually impossibe unless you're superman.

Customer Service

http://www.mapmyride.com/route/united-states/pa/-macungie/195124983499381696

This is my GPS of the trail. Check out the satellite view!
It can be downloaded into Google Earth and viewed in 3D

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
FreddieMac   Cross Country Rider [Jun 23, 2008]

Ok, so… This was the first time that I have ridden this trail and let me say that it flat out kicked me arse. I’m not the best rider in the world, but I do put in about 50 or so miles a week- weather and life permitting, but I was definitely feeling like rookie after the first mile. This place felt like that story that grand pa used to tell… you know, up hill… both ways… in the blazing heat…. You get the idea. I felt like this whole place was one steep rocky hill climb. Although, as others have said, “the down hills made it worth it”.

I do love how the only marker (that I saw anyway) from the yellow trail to the red trail (the one we needed to get home) was one little trail marker that was off to the side of one of the down hills (the steepest and longest one). I’m not complaining, it’s just that it is almost impossible to see some thing the size of a playing card 10 feet in the air as you pass it at mach 3… your vision blurred from small boulders littering the trail. Combine this with the OOOOHHHH $HHH!TTTT from the downed tree at waist height and you have a very interesting experience.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
cheez14   Weekend Warrior [May 03, 2008]

Several very rocky, technical sections. Back side of the mountain is fast and fun. Toughest part is the steep incline to the top of the mountain. 100 yards of cleared, but very steep uphill. Downhill is worth the work though. I hoof it with my SS.

They've done some major renovations to the trails since last summer and everything is in great shape. I hiked/ran a bunch of times last year, and was tenative to ride it because of rocky sections and little trail attention. Trails and markings are much better than a year ago. Huge plus for new riders is they have updated maps at the desk of the inn.

I live 8 miles away and it's great for a quick after-work or quick weekend ride. Main loop takes 40-60 minutes.

Found out today, you now have to sign a waiver at the front desk of the inn and get a "season pass." Since it is privately owned, it's no big deal. Just have to do it once and they give you a tag to hang under your seat.

Customer Service

Trails are on color systems. Park at the lot that looks over the main pond, by the wooden kiosk. Blue trail (main) starts to your left, across the road. Wraps all the way to the top of the mountain and down and around the back side. There are a couple of side trails, but I've gotten in the routine to just take the main blue loop all the way around. You'll pop out in that same lot. I'll ride it reverse one of these times.

Similar Products Used: Walking Purchase in Salisbury/Bethlehem is similar to BC.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
d-urb   Weekend Warrior [Mar 10, 2008]

I had to write a review on this trail. It may be only 10-12 miles but it is insanely fun to ride here. There's a good climb involved, around 650 ft., big rock gardens, and an awesome downhill section to finish the ride.

Customer Service

Park in the gravel lot and go clockwise, defenitely clockwise is the most fun.

Similar Products Used: Wissahickon, French creek, Salisbury, South Mountain
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
RoyDean   Weekend Warrior [Sep 08, 2007]

I've now ridden Bear Creek twice (beginning of season and end of summer), and for sure it's a great (but short) course. I'm still not up to the task of riding the whole loop without taking a few rests (or crashing a few times), but for sure it's a challenge. The amounts (and sizes) of rocks makes French Creek look like Pocono International Raceway... in other words, it's much rockier than French Creek. The "challenge" trails didn't seem to be all that challenging, other than being slightly rockier and steeper than other parts. There are, however, a few "off trail" challenge features that are pretty tough for an intermediate rider such as myself.

Customer Service

Start in the gravel lot on the right as you drive in, sign in at the little kiosk thingie, and head across the access road to the trailhead. Ride clockwise. Once at the top of the ski slope, you can either continue down on the other side, or ride down the way you came. You can also ride the loop in reverse.

Similar Products Used: French Creek
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Rudy18   Cross Country Rider [Oct 20, 2006]

The reviews you read back from 2002 are no longer valid. The resort has undergone significant improvements and the chair lift does not run in the summer (except for special events, ie. DS and DH races).

With that said let me say that this may be one of the top 10 trails in the state and maybe in the mid-atlantic area. I have ridden many places throughout the eastern part of the state that are posted on this site and some premier trails in other states and I think this is one of the best. It probably isn't for beginners and it will be a great challenge for a confident novice who is willing to take some lumps. Experienced trail riders will love it because it has everything we crave. When desribing this trail the operative word here is technical; technical rock gardens, technical climbs, technical downhills. I feel the best bike to use on BC is a 4"-5" travel duel bouncy rig, but the occasional hardtail is sighted from time to time. The trail builders do a fenominal job of keeping it fresh with new trails being built all the time and improving already existing sections. I am lucky enough to live in an area (Lehigh Valley) where we have at least four different trail systems (Lehigh U., Salisbury, South Mtn., BC) of above average technical demand and I feel Bear Creek is the best. Come check it out, you won't be disappointed.

Customer Service

The Blue trail is the main trail and is roughly 5-6 miles. The yellow is a really nice spur off of the blue that you shouldn't miss. Red is all of the short cuts if you are pressed for time. Recently they have added a black spur off of the blue also, nice and technical.

Most people ride the trail in a clockwise manner, but I've ridden both directions and it is a completely different, fresh ride. See the review below for the trailhead.

Similar Products Used: Lehigh University, Salisbury Townhips 'Walking Purchase Park', South mountain in Emmaus - call South Mtn. Cycles, and Jordan Creek in Whitehall, plus don't forget to get up to Jim Thorpe which is only about 40 minutes up the T-pike.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 24  

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