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  1. #1
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    Specifically, Grand Junction

    Hey all

    Iím in Junction for work. I should be done by around 5/530 today, and noonish tomorrow. (4/8 and 4/9)

    I was planning on riding out at 18rd but itís farther out of my way that I had expected.

    Iíve never ridden in GJ/Lunch Loops (ďsearch jongĒpeeps: I did search and all I found was more general info, and Iím looking for specifics.)

    I generally like pretty technical/ledgy/chunky riding. But due to an unfortunate cervical vertebrae fracture 7 months ago, Iím pretty rattled and keeping it mellow. (Small drops are cool. Big drops and doubles are not).

    Iím hoping for a short 60-90 minute ride this evening, and a longer 2-3 hour ride tomorrow.

    What about food? Anyplace not to miss for dinner and beer?

    It looks like most of the hotels are big chains on the interstate. The only hotels downtown are more spendy and donít look any nicer. Am I missing something? Where to stay tonight? (didnít bring camping rig, hotels on the expense report).

    Thanks!
    Last edited by Tech Tonics; 04-08-2021 at 02:21 PM.

  2. #2
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    Shorty ride at LL? Head up and loop Holy Cross. Longer somewhat techy ride would involve heading up to Little Park, then Eagle's Wing up to Free Lunch, then finish with Holy Cross again. Or Lemon Squeeze or whatever those "new" trails are called.

  3. #3
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    Free Lunch and Holy across I think are above my ďrehabbing a broken neckĒ status.

  4. #4
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    Shorter ride: As skaredshtles said head up Tabeguache or Pet E Kes and link into Holy Cross and take that back around via Coyote Ridge > Ali Alley > Curts. You can extend this however you want by adding in smaller loops, just check maps or Trailforks. Holy Cross is maybe my favorite trail out there

    Longer ride: Up Pet E Kes, right on High Noon, right on Eagle's Tail (a few techy features here but it's short) and then take Andy's loop all the way around and up to where it hits Ribbon trail and keep climbing to the road. Beautiful views of the monument and canyon scenery on Andy's with a nice lung buster of a climb, a cave, and weird gobliny landscapes. When you get up to the road cross it and either bail to Holy Cross again by going left or if you want longer take Gunny Loop all the way around and work your way out via Clunker and the same ending trails as the last ride

    I haven't ridden LL a ton so you may get better local knowledge but those are some of my favorites and I've ridden all of them so far this season so I can vouch that they're riding nicely. I personally like LL better than 18rd but they're very different so it's all fun. Loma also has really nice scenery but I think the LL trails are more fun
    Quote Originally Posted by other grskier View Post
    well, in the three years i've been skiing i bet i can ski most anything those 'pro's' i listed can, probably

  5. #5
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    Not sure what you hotel budget is, Hampton Inn downtown is my norm when work is paying, about $130 a night.
    IF you want to be the good employee the Grand Vista out by the airport is not a bad older hotel $60 - $70 per night.
    There a few newer breweries in town, Monumental Beer Works is my new fave. Food.... I like Namaste for Nepalese/Indian food but they are way out of your way on HWY 50 (I havent tried the downtown location). Thai Number 9 has decent thai food. Kannah Creek Brewing company has decent beer, good pub food and a great outside area.
    Skared pretty much nailed my recco for the Lunch Loops - its a great area
    Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield: Oh, I'm sorry. Did I break your concentration?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tech Tonics View Post
    Free Lunch and Holy across I think are above my “rehabbing a broken neck” status.
    Don't avoid Holy Cross - technically I'd rate it lower-intermediate.

    And Free Lunch has "easy" lines around all the "big" features.

    ETA: I just watched this ride-behind of HC (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33uQk-uU53k) and there is apparently quite a bit that is somewhat hazy in my recollection. I'd still recommend you ride it... but it should be rated as solid intermediate, IMO.
    Last edited by skaredshtles; 04-08-2021 at 04:13 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tech Tonics View Post
    Free Lunch and Holy across I think are above my “rehabbing a broken neck” status.
    Holy Cross is fine. It's XC with short techy spots, no real drops, very easy to walk anything that you're not 100% on.
    Free Lunch has ride-arounds but yeah, if you're planning to take all the ridearounds I wouldn't bother with it.

    Less out of the way than 18Rd but very worth riding would be Horsethief Bench.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrenalated View Post
    Holy Cross is fine. It's XC with short techy spots, no real drops, very easy to walk anything that you're not 100% on.
    Free Lunch has ride-arounds but yeah, if you're planning to take all the ridearounds I wouldn't bother with it.

    Less out of the way than 18Rd but very worth riding would be Horsethief Bench.
    Agreed - and while you're out there doing Horsethief, head up and do Moore Fun.

    Actually - wait until you're healed up before you do Moore Fun, maybe.

    Also - don't try to ride the entrance to Horsethief until you're healed up.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by skaredshtles View Post
    Also - don't try to ride the entrance to Horsethief until you're healed up.
    Ya if you ride horsethief donít be put off by the entrance and turn around. The rest is very mellow and has awesome views


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Quote Originally Posted by other grskier View Post
    well, in the three years i've been skiing i bet i can ski most anything those 'pro's' i listed can, probably

  10. #10
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    Ribbon is a really cool trail. Lots of the lunch loop trails are great, but ribbon has a significant "this is pretty neat" factor. It has a few spots that you'll want to walk to keep things conservative, but most of the trail isn't that rowdy.

    It'd be easy enough to park near the bottom of ribbon, pedal the road up, ride down ribbon, then do whatever loop in the gunny area that fits your time constraints.

  11. #11
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    The ribbon is wicked friggin cool, such a unique ride. And yes, some spots where you want to pay attention.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums

  12. #12
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    I know I'm in the minority, but I think the Ribbon sucks. There's a few minutes of "holy shit I'm going really fast", but the riding itself isn't worth the effort. And it's a total PITA to get up and out of there.

    I'll take a big loop that includes Gunny, Eagle's Wing, and Holy Cross any day of the week over the Ribbon.

  13. #13
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    I think the Ribbon is worth riding - but works best if youíre with someone who knows the trail. In spots itís like backcountry skiing down a field of powder.

  14. #14
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    Gunny is my go to. Add a little butter knife and you get your chunky XC game going

  15. #15
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    Thanks for all the info!

    Had a great ride. Tabeguache up and holy cross and then took some wrong turns to eventually Curts-out.

    Holy cross was great but want to follow someone through a lot of it. Spent lots of time dabbing and walking up and trying shit again. Sick trail though.

    Unsure of the plan for tomorrow. You guys seem torn on Ribbon. May ride HC again hoping to remember some of it.

    Otherwise some of the stuff around palisade maybe? Fruita seems far away for riding I should be doing with my wife.

    Still having PTSD flashbacks on technical terrain though and thinking more-mellow=more-better.

  16. #16
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    If dry, Palisade Rim trail is a fun loop. Some cool petroglyphs up der on top der. Great views of the valley too.

    Otherwise go back to LL. Ribbon is worth doing once for sure. Just link it back to the gunny loop.

    18rd is fun, like good old fashioned mtb fun. It isnít very far of a drive. You will like it.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tech Tonics View Post
    Thanks for all the info!

    Had a great ride. Tabeguache up and holy cross and then took some wrong turns to eventually Curts-out.

    Holy cross was great but want to follow someone through a lot of it. Spent lots of time dabbing and walking up and trying shit again. Sick trail though.

    Unsure of the plan for tomorrow. You guys seem torn on Ribbon. May ride HC again hoping to remember some of it.

    Otherwise some of the stuff around palisade maybe? Fruita seems far away for riding I should be doing with my wife.

    Still having PTSD flashbacks on technical terrain though and thinking more-mellow=more-better.
    Yeah Holy Cross has some sneaky stuff you come into blind - part of what makes it such a fun trail

    Depending on where youíre staying in town it may not be too much further to go to Horsethief tomorrow and the views are pretty epic. But if you wanna stick in GJ just plan another ride in LL that does all of Gunny Loop and youíll have fun - thereís tons of trail in there. As said earlier Iím a big fan of Andyís and you get some of the cool scenery you see on Ribbon but itís not for everyone

    Havenít ridden Palisade yet this season but from my memory the rim trail is cool but isnít as fun as lunch loops


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    Quote Originally Posted by other grskier View Post
    well, in the three years i've been skiing i bet i can ski most anything those 'pro's' i listed can, probably

  18. #18
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    Lunch loops > horsethief > palisade rim > 18 rd > rabbit valley is how I personally rank the riding areas I know in the grand valley.

  19. #19
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    Iíve ridden horsethief a fair amount. And 18rd too. Rabbit Valley just as part of the Kokopelli.

    Itís either between LL and palisade tomorrow.

  20. #20
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    In terms of gnar/tech, how does palisade rim compare to Holy Cross?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tech Tonics View Post
    In terms of gnar/tech, how does palisade rim compare to Holy Cross?
    Far less iirc. I think thereís videos of both on mtbrproj if you just want to pretend you are rode both and drink a beer. The difficulty on the rim is the climb up to it. Been a while since Iíve ridden it though.

    Holy cross is built to be techy and it is built for bikes. Palisade rim is moderately difficult hiking trail that allows bikes.

  22. #22
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    Pet-e-Kees to tabeguach to gunny is a great one that will keep you off anything sketch. Any beta on Bin 707 Foodbar? I've heard good things.
    "If we can't bring the mountain to the party, let's bring the PARTY to the MOUNTAIN!"

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tech Tonics View Post
    In terms of gnar/tech, how does palisade rim compare to Holy Cross?
    Other than the initial climb to the rim, it's way less techy overall IMO.

    If you do Palisade Rim, I believe you can also link up the lower 3-4 miles of the new Plunge trail as an out and back.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by smmokan View Post
    Other than the initial climb to the rim, it's way less techy overall IMO.

    If you do Palisade Rim, I believe you can also link up the lower 3-4 miles of the new Plunge trail as an out and back.
    Yup and yup.

    Put me in the camp of everyone should ride the ribbon at least once. It's a different sort of experience.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by smmokan View Post
    If you do Palisade Rim, I believe you can also link up the lower 3-4 miles of the new Plunge trail as an out and back.
    True, or at least that was the case last fall.

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