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HIKE!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
http://www.mickelsontrailaffiliates.com/big_mick.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_S._Mickelson_Trail

I did this ride on Saturday and had a blast. Perfect conditions, well supported, and just plain fantastic riding! You can google around and find some good info, photos and maps of the Mickelson. Just a riot. Do NOT underestimate a rail-trail. You will have fun. A cyclocross or light tired ATB is the ticket for the surface.

Got to see lots of wildlife, flora, varied climate zones, creeks, peaks, forests and prairie. Temps went from a low in Rochford of 34 to 90 in Edgemont. Yowza. Knocked it out under 8 hours with big stops for breakfast and lunch. And *still* got back to work in the afternoon.

Locals, make this a *must do* and visitors ought to plan a day of Mickelson riding no matter when you visit.
 

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Taking the Kona Jake out on the Mickelson is always a fun ride. A little different style of riding as compared to the mountain biking I do, but definitely a must do for everyone. Coming down some of the gradual grades with a llight tailwind, 35 mph can be sustained easily. Another fun aspect is night riding the Mickelson. I haven't rode the entire trail yet; a goal for this summer.
 

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Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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id love to get candycorn in a place where she would wanna do this ride with me. if i could get her endurance up, i know it would be 1 of her better days on earth. thanx for the reminder.
 

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I was curious how long it took you Tim. I never saw you again after Lead so I figured you were keeping a good pace. Me and Chuck rode into Hot Springs in just a tick over 9 hours.

Did you ride down to Edgemont? We followed the course and took Argyle road to Hot Springs. I really wish we would have just stayed on the Mickelson and went to Edgemont. I really like that last section through the canyon. Besides, those hills on Argyle road were pretty tough on me after 85 miles.

We had a blast. You are dead on when you say not to underestimate the trail. Chuck is already talking about coming up later in the summer with a few friends and riding the trail again. He is also talking about doing the Big Mick on the singlespeeds next year. Gears or not, we will be doing it again next year.
 

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HIKE!
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1,657 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah, bombed straight to Edgemont. Ended up riding with Jeremy all the way to the final check, then he turned to Hot Springs. My ride was already scheduled to get me in Edgemont, and I'm glad I stuck with that!

We were in Custer before 10am, the lunch check point wasn't even set up yet, so we went to Custer to get lunch at the grocery store. Ended up spending an hour there fiddling with this and that (Jeremy had to pull his leg off, the prosthetic, to re adjust some. He's a faast dude and a below the knee amputee!)

Ended up one sweet ride! Thanks for those pics! A single speed is gonna kill ya, toooo looooong of grades, you'll be spun out alot.
 

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I think you are right about the SS. I made those same comments to my brother but he is a SS rider and wants to give it a go. Going with a gear low enough to make the long uphill grades will not allow us to take advantage of the speed attainable on the long downhill grades. I have ridden most of the trail on my SS in 20 to 30 mile segments, but never trying to make any good time. Maybe we can try it on a weekend later in the summer. It's all good as long as we get a ride in.

I don't know Jeremy, but I saw him at the trail head in Lead. I figured he must be a hard core dude.
 

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Out There
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Two Thumbs Up on the Big Mick - even on SS

Oh, yeah. Full throated agreement on the Big Mick. Aleen Golis, the Hot Springs nurse practitioner who puts together the Big Mick, is a tireless cycling proponent and Mickelson Trail advocate. Almost 150 riders this year. Join the train in 2009.

Oh, contrare on the singlespeed. I'm no hard core, but I've ridden the Big Mick each of the past 3 years on my singlespeed cyclocross bike, set up with 42x18 gearing and 700x35mm semi-knobbies. Descents spin out in the low-mid 20's, and some of the ascents can be a grind. But all in all, a great way to enjoy the trail at a comfortable pace. With long stops at every aid station, and helping to fix 3 flats, I rolled into Hot Springs right at 4:00pm. That put me squarely in mid-pack.

So ride with what you brung. It's all good on the Big Mick.

Craig
 

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Did this event happen this year? I rode the trail on 6/20 near 7:30am and didn't see anyone or much for tire tracks. I hadn't seen the event info, just happened to be there.

The Mick was a scenic ride and I'll be back someday to bike pack it, maybe combine with Centennial trail. I created a nice 38mile loop from hwy 385 to Deadwood and the trailhead, ride the trail to near mm88, then hop on the hwy next to the trail (17?), head back north and to hwy 385 on Custer Crossing. Ride the ATV trails next to 385 back to the campground I was at (Fish-n-Fry). Not technical, but a good 3hr ride.
 
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