Somewhere in the middle of a nearly 3,000 vertical foot descent (mostly singletrack). In Fall, 2012 the US Forest Service opened the Star Lake Connector trail- miles of switchbacking goodness through incredible fields of granite. It’s rideable in both directions too (though quite the climb to around 9,000′ elevation). Ride it in the fall, and you’ll also find blazing golden aspens. Yeah, Tahoe Sux.
Looks like it would be an amazing ride. Those are some beautiful colors in the photo. How many miles is the trail?
I’ve only done it as a loop. I think we did 26-28 miles in total, including a few miles on the road. We did a road burn up to Kingsbury summit, then across Monument Pass (around 9000′ elevation with expansive views into the Nevada desert scrub). We’ve done a couple of different options, and each is a long ride.
The Star Lake Connector trail is 3-4 miles of switchbacking descending (it replaces a straight up jeep road). Then it connects to Cold Creek Trail, which has another 3-4 miles of descending. Cold Creek Trail is another new trail that has many lines specifically built for downhill mountain bikes. There are a couple spots with very large jumps and drops (out of my comfort zone). Really fun riding in summer and fall. Under several feet of snow in the winter.
When the snow melts I’ll get out and write up one of my favorite MTB routes- Armstrong Pass, which is one valley to the west. It features a 10-mile switchbacking all singletrack descent from 9,400′ elevation down to 6300′. In my top 3 rides of all time.
How does the trail start? Does it start at the top of a hill or what? That is the only thing I would hate is if you parked at the boottm of a trail, walked your bike 2 hours to the top and the trail was only like 20 minutes to get to the boottm then you would have to take another 2 hours hike to the top! I would be awesome if there was a cable car (some similar at a ski resort) to take you to the top so you can simply enjoy the ride and not worry about the tiring climb.
The top of the trail is only accessible by riding up there (3 different access points to ride up there). The nearest paved road is 6+ miles away. That is one of the things that makes it awesome!