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  1. #1
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    Nov 2005
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    MT. Mags, Tell Me Bout Copper City.

    Planning a trip up there sometime, wondering what the boondocking situation is like for a truck and trailer. Dispersed BLM?
    Would love to hear some thoughts and experiences.
    Favorite trails with recommended directions?
    Thanks in advance...
    Forum Cross Pollinator

  2. #2
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    May 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Planning a trip up there sometime, wondering what the boondocking situation is like for a truck and trailer. Dispersed BLM?
    Would love to hear some thoughts and experiences.
    Favorite trails with recommended directions?
    Thanks in advance...
    It's actually pretty awesome. I rode there a ton the previous two seasons. Only been there twice so far this year. Lots of boondocking going on right now. I think it's the funemployment people. Bring On-X maps. It's mostly BLM with a couple small pieces of private mixed in.

    My favorite loop is out Green Eagle (right on the loop from parkinglot) > High Ore Connector > up High Ore > down Motherlode north switchies > Boss Tweed (I had KOM for a year and slipped up and someone snagged it!.......its not an officially one way trail but it should be. North to south only) > pedal up the road back to Motherload and continue north on ML to where it joins the north end of High Ore again > Follow High Ore back to the start of Neversweat > Neversweat back to High Ore Connnector > Continue on Green Eagle (right again aka finish counter-clockwise loop back to parking lot).

    I am not the biggest fan of Mary Widow. It has it's fun parts and good tech, but alot of berms make no sense and turn WAY too tightly for how much speeed you can have coming into them. Neversweat flows way way better.

    I haven't been on Destroying Angel yet, but I hear it's really nice. I rode Trident once. The top ridge is cool. The switchbacks heading east are so tight and loose that it's not even fun. Then again I was riding it when it was BRAND new and very very soft.

  3. #3
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    How long and how much vert is that loop?

  4. #4
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    Dec 2004
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    A 3 hour ride dicking around can get you 18 miles and around 2300-2500 feet of up and down.

    Been riding Destroying Angel a good bit lately, excellent views of the Missouri River valley.

    CC is still busy on weekends but the crowds seem to be falling off now that Helena is G2G. If you get there and the lot is full, take heart, once you get back behind the easy loop you don't encounter too many people. And what WRG said about Merry Widow/Trident is 100%, Merry Widow is a weird DH, the ride out to where you drop Trident is the best part of that loop, once you start down its still narrow and loose.

    I have been riding Wednesdays and Saturdays out there. Shoot a PM if you want to meet.

    Camping.... Trailer is sporty but not impossible. Once you are out back the views are pretty, kind of severe but great sunrise/set
    Ooof!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    549
    It’s quite busy these days. It doesn’t just feel busy for MT, it’s busy. Weird times and not much else dry in the vicinity. If you drive up past the parking lot to boondock, you can skip 75% of the madness.

    WRG’s loop ideas mesh with mine. I have ridden Destroying Angel. Worth it. Still got that fresh trail feel a bit.

    The only thing close by that is sort of similar that I can think of are the systems around Helena, which I prefer riding wise for the most part. Boondocking def seems easier at CC.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by greasyslope View Post
    It’s quite busy these days. It doesn’t just feel busy for MT, it’s busy. Weird times and not much else dry in the vicinity. If you drive up past the parking lot to boondock, you can skip 75% of the madness.

    WRG’s loop ideas mesh with mine. I have ridden Destroying Angel. Worth it. Still got that fresh trail feel a bit.

    The only thing close by that is sort of similar that I can think of are the systems around Helena, which I prefer riding wise for the most part. Boondocking def seems easier at CC.
    You definitely want to ride Helena if you are heading up this way, but as greasy said camping is tough anywhere close to trails. Especially boondock type stuff. I have 'docked a couple times up by Strawberry Butte, but with a trailer it might be a bitch unless you are good at doing k-turns with it.

  7. #7
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    Oct 2003
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    Bozeman
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    WRG's loop is a pretty good one, but I'd add in Destroying Angel for sure. It's riding in really nicely now, and I think it might be my favorite trail there.

    I'd recommend:

    Green Eagle South ->
    High Ore all the way to the high point at the north end of copper city ->
    Destroying Angel ->
    Boss Tweed ->
    back up the road and climb Motherload N switchbacks (or Trident to upper S. Motherload if you like hard climbs) ->
    High Ore to Neversweat down, and out on Green Eagle N

    If you want more than that, I don't mind Trident as a climbing trail (but you'll push the last stretch for sure), and the techy stuff along the ridge top is fun. It's not a good descent compared to the other options at Copper.

    Riding down the South Motherload Ridge from North to South is a fun and fast downhill with some chunky (but mellow compared to the DH trails) stuff above the Trident junction and flow below it.

    I think the Motherload N downhill from the High Ore / Destroying Angel junction is better than the switchbacks coming from the first saddle. It's worth the extra few minutes of climbing to go that way vs WRG's loop, in my opinion, even if you're not riding Destroying Angel.

    Agree with everyone else on Merry Widow, but I like the top techy section. The gully turns are odd.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    You definitely want to ride Helena if you are heading up this way, but as greasy said camping is tough anywhere close to trails. Especially boondock type stuff. I have 'docked a couple times up by Strawberry Butte, but with a trailer it might be a bitch unless you are good at doing k-turns with it.
    We did a couple of days in Helena last June, looking to mix it up a bit. We had so much fun there with the shuttles. Doubt those are running!
    Possibly thinking one day at Copper City, and one day at Lewis and Clark Caverns just to see different stuff.
    Forum Cross Pollinator

  9. #9
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    Oct 2003
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    Banff
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    good info. next road trip still stop by
    thanks


  10. #10
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    Ran into elesquiador at the trailhead. Busy day but by the time we reached the back, totally manageable. Click image for larger version. 

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    Couple of Pix.Click image for larger version. 

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    Ooof!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
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    1
    Copper city would be a great family camping and riding spot. My kids love it but the drive from Bozeman isn't worth it to me(if I'm riding without the kids) unless everything else is snowed in. The best riding here is the long rowdy descents we have in the mountains. Copper city is mostly cross country praire riding - and it's awesome for that. But it's not what I think of when I think of Montana mountain biking. I wouldn't road trip here for a boy's weekend but would for a family weekend. My favorite loop is North motherlode down boss tweed down up motherlode switchbacks down south motherlode then back up to the downhill trails. I think merry widow is pretty cool. South motherlode is super fun down.

  12. #12
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    Dec 2005
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    Also if you are driving between 3 forks and helena there is a pretty decent stretch under construction with pilot cars etc..and not to be a Karen but you might want to keep an eye on the 14 day mandatory quarantine for out of staters.

  13. #13
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    So, had a stellar day up here today. Found great camping, easy peasy. Went up high ore, up Motherlode, up High Ore, down Destroying Angel, up/down Motherlode, and down High Ore to camp. Took a break, and then rallied with a friend for lap two, up High Ore twice to do Neversweat and Mary Widow. Solid first day, 25 miles and 4k of vert on the nose. Gonna explore trident, Boss Tweed and some other loops tomorrow. Pretty great stuff up here for being out in the middle of nowhere!

  14. #14
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    May 2006
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    And you could stop and ride Lewis and Clark caverns on the way home.

    Sent from my SM-A600A using Tapatalk

  15. #15
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    Rumors afloat that L&C is about to go big with new trails. Maybe they can get the switchbacks rideable this time.
    Ooof!

  16. #16
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    16th anniversary ride today! Rachel did most of it. We rode High Ore, Motherlode, (from the top), she rode down Motherlode back to camp. We continued riding down Trident, Up Boss Tweed, down Boss Tweed, up Trident, Down Motherlode. 20 miles with 3500. PM' ed you, Bunion, dont know if you got it.

  17. #17
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    Nov 2014
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    Solid ride.

  18. #18
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    Dec 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    16th anniversary ride today! Rachel did most of it. We rode High Ore, Motherlode, (from the top), she rode down Motherlode back to camp. We continued riding down Trident, Up Boss Tweed, down Boss Tweed, up Trident, Down Motherlode. 20 miles with 3500. PM' ed you, Bunion, dont know if you got it.
    I did, just now. My bad.
    Ooof!

  19. #19
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    Did you two ever connect? Were my ears ringing, haha?

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  20. #20
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    Dec 2004
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    Tinnitus
    Ooof!

  21. #21
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    May 2006
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    That's a multi syllabic word, Bunion. Hmmm. Need more bonafides.

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  22. #22
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    Well, we didnt connect, but if we had, we would have talked about your rad tattoo...

  23. #23
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    May 2006
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    west tetons
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    Ya, thanks to the wildly talented cy whitling and black fox studio.

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