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Trailblazer Tuesday: John's 99 and more!

My last blog post talked all about the things to do in Park City in the summer. But, I didn’t go too much into any particular activity, so I am very excited to take the opportunity to tell you about some of my biking adventures in the new “Trailblazer Tuesday” series Samantha introduced last week.  

Let me first give you a brief introduction into my biking love affair that started about three years ago. I love biking, seriously love it, but sometimes I forget. I probably bike about 20 times a year, which may seem like a lot, but it’s not. There are certainly times when it is a struggle to get all the gear ready and start to peddle, but I am quick to remember that I do really love biking.  Now, let’s go for a ride.

This week, it’s John’s 99 accessed off either Town or PayDay lifts. Funny enough, this ride was one of those that didn’t go out exactly as planned, but hey, that’s part of the fun of biking!

Trails: John’s 99, Little Chief, Mid-Mountain, Link, Speedbag, Empire Link to Daly Grind – I’d recommend doing this a little different – John’s 99 to Empire Link to Daily Grind and then maybe hitting Prospect out.

Duration: 2 hours including Town Lift ride, 7.75 miles of biking

Difficulty:  Beginner, Intermediate and Difficult

Don’t Forget:  Water, sunscreen, trail map and a snack to enjoy as you take in the scenery. Oh, and a Mountain Trails Foundation might come in handy if you are like me.

Mine Shaft

To access John’s 99, head as you were heading to the Bonanza lift and continue left once you pass the lift, the trailhead is marked, but somewhat hard to follow for the first few minutes. Don’t be discouraged; once you pass the old mine buildings you quickly enter a beautiful single-track surrounded by pine trees. After a few minutes of ups and downs on this first section you’ll find yourself at quick bit of double-track before entering yet another amazing bit of single track through a grove of Aspens with beautiful pines intermixed. After about a mile, you’ll hit the first uphill section of the trail, but don’t fret, it’s only about .25 mile and just enough to wake your heart up a bit. 

Here is where things got a little tricky for us. Once you cross the dried up river bed and head back up, you have some options…continue heading up John’s 99 or access Empire Link. We chose John’s 99, but we should have chosen Empire Link. We took John’s 99 up to Little Chief and before we knew it we were at the Montage, which forced us to take Mid Mountain and then wind back around to hit Empire Link at the same spot we had passed earlier. All in all close to 8 miles and 1 hour and 15 minutes of pedaling left us with smiles on our faces, a few good stories and some battle wounds for me, but as most of my biker friends would tell you, that is fairly typical for me.  While it wasn’t exactly as planned any time biking is a great time, know your limits and don’t be afraid to hike-a-bike, I call it cross training!

I’d love to hear some of your favorite trails for the Trailblazer Tuesday series. Now, get out there and enjoy the trails.

John's 99 and Empire Link Split

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