Friday, November 10, 2006

Kentucky Camp

Tucson, Arizona
Kentucky Camp is one of the best rides in Southern Arizona. It's higher in elevation than Tucson and parts of it look like my old stomping grounds in central California. The whole area is crisscrossed with canyons, some of which have running water almost all year round. There are tons of jeep roads, abandoned mines, and caves to explore. Today, I went out with SDMB and rode the southern chunk of the IMBA Epic Loop, which is a real blast. My favorite part is the Ascent O' Death, a hellish climb that separates the men from the boys. We were all boys today. But we tried really hard.

How to get there: From Tucson, take I-10 E. Exit at HWY-83 toward Sonoita. About 5 miles before Sonoita, you'll turn right at the Gardner Canyon sign. Take the first right and follow signs 5 miles to Kentucky Camp.

Length: 15 miles, 2 hours, 2000 foot climb.

Trail Conditions: Trail is in great shape, but, as usual, some sections are a tad overgrown with grass and calf-shredding catclaws.

The Map: Click on the map below to head to Motionbased. There's a good map and description of the Kentucky Camp singletrack at SDMB, and the IMBA epic is described here.
Map of Kentucky Camp (1/2 of IMBA Epic Loop)

The Ride: I won't replicate the great description of the IMBA epic that is available at SDMB. We did the southern section that begins just above Kentucky Camp and is about half jeep road and half singletrack.

To find the trailhead from the parking lot, continue on the dirt road you came in on for about 0.5 mile and you'll see the trail marker on the left. Take this trail down to Kentucky Camp and follow the directions above. On the way out, we skipped this last bit of singletrack and climbed the short 4WD track from the Camp to get back to our cars.

No comments: