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Cool

Question 1 = yes, that is probably what I would do
Question 2 = Little Pan for sure
Question 3 = That's where I would look. Just be aware that it is a pretty high traffic area for the off road crowd during the day. Should be quiet enough at night though if you are just crashing out there.
Thanks for the feedback/confirmation. I contacted Laurel from Wild Bunch Desert Guides about a shuttle on Friday 12/18. If anyone is trying to ride from Big Bug to Bumblebee that day, send me a PM.
 

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1. If you could do 1 day as a shuttle, where would you start and end? I'm thinking Big Bug to Bumblebee, about 22 miles from what I can tell

Any guess on how many hours this ride is? Sounds like a great ride, but I've been duped before on AZ rides and ended up biting off more than I intended, mostly because it turned into hike-a-bike or just super rough. Assume I'll be on a slow to moderate site seeing ride, not making time.

(For reference we did the C4 loop earlier this year and finished it feeling pretty good. Although I enjoyed the Go John area and the like, I didn't care for the open 2 track riding on the first part.)
 

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1. If you could do 1 day as a shuttle, where would you start and end? I'm thinking Big Bug to Bumblebee, about 22 miles from what I can tell

Any guess on how many hours this ride is? Sounds like a great ride, but I've been duped before on AZ rides and ended up biting off more than I intended, mostly because it turned into hike-a-bike or just super rough. Assume I'll be on a slow to moderate site seeing ride, not making time.

(For reference we did the C4 loop earlier this year and finished it feeling pretty good. Although I enjoyed the Go John area and the like, I didn't care for the open 2 track riding on the first part.)
My 1 day is Mayer to Rock Springs. That's a manageable 35 miles(?) and includes some of the best descents and a fine ending near pie. That climb and then initial descent headed south from Rock Springs to the Little Pan Loop is really sweet but then becomes a bit of a rocky beatdown to Table Mesa after being all day on the bike. That area got really hammered from a particulary intense monsoon thunderstorm a few years ago.
 

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I don't think that section of Biscuit is actually part of the BCT route? I believe the Emery TH is technically the southernmost point.

Edit: Looks like MTB Project shows that section as being part of BCT route, but Trailforks ends at Emery TH. Weird.
Biscuit Flat is part of the BCT and it is on Trailforks. BCT ends at Carefree Hwy.
 

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My 1 day is Mayer to Rock Springs. That's a manageable 35 miles(?) and includes some of the best descents and a fine ending near pie. That climb and then initial descent headed south from Rock Springs to the Little Pan Loop is really sweet but then becomes a bit of a rocky beatdown to Table Mesa after being all day on the bike. That area got really hammered from a particulary intense monsoon thunderstorm a few years ago.
Thank you rockman! Appreciate the heads up! The rocky beatdown is what I'm trying to avoid.
 

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1. If you could do 1 day as a shuttle, where would you start and end? I'm thinking Big Bug to Bumblebee, about 22 miles from what I can tell

Any guess on how many hours this ride is? Sounds like a great ride, but I've been duped before on AZ rides and ended up biting off more than I intended, mostly because it turned into hike-a-bike or just super rough. Assume I'll be on a slow to moderate site seeing ride, not making time.

(For reference we did the C4 loop earlier this year and finished it feeling pretty good. Although I enjoyed the Go John area and the like, I didn't care for the open 2 track riding on the first part.)

Starting at Big Bug the first 15 miles went really quick. I did them in about 1.5 hrs. I was not going at a super fast pace. I don't know exactly where Bumblebee is, but the ensuing miles are much slower.
 

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Did Big Bug to Bumble Bee last weekend - awesome spin. Took about 3hr30min - & I’m fairly average fitness & skill. A little beat up at the end of it - First 3 sections are reasonably quick and a little less physical. Hidden Treasure is a bit tougher, and bumble bee is definitely the most physical of the 5 sections. All sections are great fun, nothing too scary from a tech perspective, lots of great flowy descents - a definite 2 thumbs up! Oh, it is a little scratchy out there so glasses, sleeves and some long socks are a good idea.
 

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Checking back in with a Ride Report from this past Friday 12/18/2020. Rode Big Bug to Bumble Bee (Crown King parking lot) with two others; one PinkBiker who I shuttled with, and one of his friends who looped it and met us at the Big Bug trailhead.

Started at about 10:30 Am. Total ride ended up being 24.5 miles with 1400' feet of climbing and took us 4:20 (nice).

Talked to a fellow in the Big Bug parking lot (hiker I think?) who said they had just done a bunch of maintenance trimming the cat claw. Thanks! Definitely noticed the work. Dirt was great for the first 10-15 miles, super soft and a little tacky from the rain the week before.

Here I am getting started. Perfect weather, 50-60 and light breeze.
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The cool windmill somewhere in the middle

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The Antelope Creek section definitely stood out as one of the best, tight, winding bench-cut singletrack at first and then opened up a bit and you could let 'er rip more


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The last section of Bumble Bee is definitely the toughest including that loose janky fireroad climb at the start. Pretty tough after a long day in the saddle. And Bumble Bee is definitely the rockiest section that you need to power through. Here's me grinding it out


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Camped just down the street at Bumble Bee Ranch - highly recommend! $10, reservation required, hot shower. Had some Whiskey and hope to be back someday to ride the Little Pan Loop. Only saw 1 hiker the whole day and no other riders. Pretty amazing trail both in terms of construction and maintance. Stoked

- Wildmeff


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- WildMeff
 

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Great pics WildMeff! Appreciate that not having been there yet.

I ended up doing a few dez rides I've never done since the temps were so nice. Was solo one day so went out to McDowell Regional Park and did the Pemberton Loop and some exploring in the foothills, beautiful and peaceful place. Then did some of the AZT at Picketpost, out and back. Another gem! We were driving out that way wondering how this place was going to be anything great from a scenery standpoint, go over the pass that drops down in to Superior, the view emerges and was like "WHAAAAA???" Just so many amazing places over every hill and around every corner.
 

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Reviving this thread somewhat in reference to an original question:

Final verdict on leaving a car overnight (actually 2 overnights) at the Emery Henderson TH? Yea or nay?

Thanks!!
 

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An update for anyone else who is still wondering. YES you can park overnight at Emery!!

I left my car at Emery TH a bit nervous with the no overnight camping signs everywhere, but technically it didn't say I couldn't park... so off I went. I left Friday around 10 am, only car in the lot, headed north. Night 1 I camped near the Big Bug TH off 69 (so I could hoard water from the gas station, pedaled down the highway with a gallon balanced in each hand). Day 2 I rode north up Orme Road then got on the BCT at Russian Well, Copper Mountain Loop, past 69, and made it to the first river crossing near Kay mine to camp for night 2. Day 3 I finished up back at Emery around 1 pm. Car was still there, no boot, no ticket, all intact. Very happy.
 

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Sounds like a pretty solid adventure! Any other pics or ride report from the trail? Did you drive or pedal north from Emery Henderson to the start of BCT?

I feel like the BLM and other agencies (Forest Service, etc.) are so strapped right now between fires, Covid, federal changes, that they don't have time or effort to give people a hard time for usage like this. Plus it sounds like what you did was perfectly legal?
 

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I rode from Emery, that's already the BCT trail. I've got pics on my phone, I just always use MTBR at work so I don't post pics (shhhh! don't tell my boss!)

Here's my Strava link with some pics in there.
Emotional Rescue | Ride | Strava

Honestly, the trail starting from Emery was pretty lame and a buzzkill way to end the ride. The farther north I went, the more fun and scenic the trail. The Copper Mountain loop and the Antelope descent were amazeballs fun. All that janky lava rock crap south of Rock Springs wasn't really my cup of tea, but hey that's all part of the journey.
 

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You rode 50 miles per day? holy ****
LOL that felt slow. But the short days and the fact that miles don't come fast or easy in AZ made this a longer trip. With some decent endurance fitness and more daylight this route is totally doable in 2 days/1 night.
 

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Yep, two 'day rides' and you can knock it all out, no shuttle required. :)

BCT: High Plains Drifter Crisscrossing loop of sorts staging from Rock Springs heading north to Orme Rd, then south on the BCT w/Copper Mtn. Loop & short OnB on the BCT so nothing is missed.

BCT: Southern Vision Quest OnB of sorts staging from Rock Springs going south on the BCT and doing both sides of the Little Pan & Boy Scout Loops.
 
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