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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. on: September 23, 2013, 09:41:56 AM
the tortoise


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« on: September 23, 2013, 09:41:56 AM »

Tim,

Thanks for the Flagstone route file you sent me!
Really excited about this route.
Do you plan on setting a date for a race?? I and many others would be interested in doing this.

Attached is a file for preview in Google Earth:

* flagstone500split.kml (261.71 KB - downloaded 221 times.)
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #1 on: September 23, 2013, 02:28:46 PM
AZTtripper
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« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2013, 02:28:46 PM »

Rich

At this point Mark Caminiti and I are planning to start at the same time as this years Coco 250. My plan is to gather any of the missing info for a cue sheet while riding. I have been finding a lot of it on maps, I am into Phx already with only a few things missing.

I have been thinking about making it a race but I want to know that the cue sheet is a good as I can make it. So I wasn't thinking of setting a race date until next year. I've talked to Chad and emailed with Scott about having on the same day as the Coco. I am thinking we should start at least an hour earlier so as to not overrun "The Place". For sure the first stage will be a time stop zone like the Coco. I can't see a full stage race maintaining group camps for 9 nights. Tho maybe stages points could be set and used at different times by riders on different paces. All of the stage points can work out to about 50-70 mile days like the Coco.

So it looks like 10/10/14 for the first Flagstone 500, the Coco has usually been the second weekend in Oct starting on a Friday. So we'll go with that for now.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2013, 02:34:06 PM by AZTtripper » Logged

  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #2 on: September 24, 2013, 06:55:16 AM
aaron w


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« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2013, 06:55:16 AM »

Hey great to see a dedicated thread for this topic.  Much thanks to Tim for putting this together. 

My plan is to race the coco with the group on Oct 11.  Then when I'm back in Flag I'm going to ride Casner road and get back down to Cottonwood where I will pick up the Flagstone track.  Once in Tucson I'll have to see how I'm feeling but I'm considering either reversing the Flagstone to get back to Flagstaff, or perhaps use the AZT race route to get back.  If I do the AZT route I'll probably detour around some of the big HAB like Oracle Ridge. 

I've got a couple route questions that I'll ask later once I've done a bit more route study. 
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #3 on: September 24, 2013, 08:09:51 AM
AZTtripper
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« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2013, 08:09:51 AM »

Once in Tucson I'll have to see how I'm feeling but I'm considering either reversing the Flagstone to get back to Flagstaff, or perhaps use the AZT race route to get back.  If I do the AZT route I'll probably detour around some of the big HAB like Oracle Ridge. 

Aaron

No need to go back over the Lemmon, better to loop all the way around. Once you get here we can plan your route back. There's single track on the west side of the mountain that will get you up higher for a camp and then on your way north thru Willow Springs (24 Hour Town single track). Then roads will get you to the Gila just west of the AZT. The old jeep roads north of the Gila are also very interesting, or the trail. Then the AZT is road to Payson and if you skip the course north of Payson, to the Rim, you can save a bunch of HAB. Once your on the Rim the AZT is sweet stuff. The rest of the way to Flag is a mixed bag of good trail and boney roads (beware the mud/muc). You could always take the Lake Mary road on into Flag at any point.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #4 on: September 24, 2013, 08:38:51 AM
schillingsworth

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« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2013, 08:38:51 AM »

Tim,
Are either of you carrying a tracker this go-round? If the timing works out, maybe I'll join you for a bit around PHX if you don't mind.

I think I'm going to put this one on the 2014 schedule, I may start just north of Flag at the AZT/FR418 crossing just to get that sweet Snowbowl downhill in for starters!!
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #5 on: September 24, 2013, 10:31:15 AM
the tortoise


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« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2013, 10:31:15 AM »

I am thinking of doing this in April of 2014. Might do it South to North and continue on to the South Rim.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #6 on: September 24, 2013, 11:03:37 AM
AZTtripper
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« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2013, 11:03:37 AM »

Mark and I will be on one Tracker on the same page as the Coco. No track showing where we're supposed to go tho. We'll be a different color then the Coco riders.

John, I was thinking about doing some of Aspen Corners the day before, just depends on how my ride works out.

If you can join us along the way that would be great. Hoping to ride from Anthem to Lost Dutchman camp ground in one long day.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #7 on: September 24, 2013, 01:34:47 PM
schillingsworth

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« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2013, 01:34:47 PM »

Sounds good, if I'm around I'll try and track you down!! Yeah, that's a big day, but I think it's doable. Lots of fast sections in there.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #8 on: September 24, 2013, 07:52:21 PM
aaron w


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« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2013, 07:52:21 PM »

Tim, that sounds great.  Being so unfamiliar with the area this is a lot to wrap my head around! If you have any tracks to show me what you're suggesting, send them my way!  I love playing around in topofusion.   

Regarding the Flagstone route....  What do you consider to be the hard/crux section?  It looks like Apache Junction to Oracle is a long ways with no services...

Can't wait to start touring   thumbsup
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #9 on: September 25, 2013, 06:00:39 AM
AZTtripper
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« Reply #9 on: September 25, 2013, 06:00:39 AM »

Aaron

I need to send you an updated resupply file, I realized I had left a few things out.

AJ to Oracle is a tough section, no food on route, you could go into Superior and get anything, Boyce Thompson Arboretum has water and snacks (soda and candy mostly). At the right time of day the highway might not be that bad at the wrong time it's crazy. There is the LOST Trail but its a long and convoluted, no highway, way to go. If you stay on Hewett Station rd past the AZT you get to within .75 miles of the BTA. If you take the LOST you can get to a point where all you have to do is jump the fence.

Then there's a cache on the AZT at Freeman rd about 30 miles out of Oracle, also at Kelvin Bridge you can get water (and some one might feed you). The people at the Kelvin trailer park have really taken to the AZT races you can get water during reasonable hours (private residence not a store). There's also an ADoT water spigot closer to the course if their open.

The ATA list a couple of other water sources but none look good to count on nobody has reported anything since spring and some of those don't look promising. I plan to go to the cache on Freeman rd on the 6th so we'll know we have water there. Hikers usually leave food there as well, and since I am driving out there I think I'll drop off food as well.

The actual crux of the ride is the last part, first you have to climb to almost 9000 feet then after Summerhaven you'll have 27 miles of the most technical HAB trail of the whole course.

The cue sheet should be done soon. I have found most of the trail names for the PHx passage. Sure as hell hope we have GPS for it (knock on wood), there's two pages worth of turns to make. Once I am out of Phx it should go faster. I'll get it posted somewhere.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #10 on: September 25, 2013, 06:56:17 AM
schillingsworth

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« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2013, 06:56:17 AM »

Tim,
I did a Ripsey Loop this past weekend, pretty sure we were the first tracks of the season. Catclaw is beginning to encroach a bit. There was about 5+ gallons of water stashed on the trail at the Kelvin TH. I took out a few empties and tried to clean up the area a bit, the sun just crumbles those plastic jugs.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #11 on: October 11, 2013, 08:22:08 PM
the tortoise


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« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2013, 08:22:08 PM »

I have been messing around with google earth (my new addiction!) and the more I think about it the more I am leaning towards loop rides due to logistics. It is nice to leave a car in one place and be able to come back to it at rides end. I am creating a loop from Cave Creek AZ going north (east of Hwy 17) and then west into Sedona. I don't have the second half mapped out yet but it will follow the route from Sedona south that Tim put together. Attached is the Google file of the part I have mapped out. Any feedback? It looks like google maps took their pictures during the spring when the Verde River was really flowing. Is crossing the Verde River where I have it mapped generally doable?

* cave creek to sedona.kmz (33.57 KB - downloaded 127 times.)
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #12 on: October 12, 2013, 11:54:12 AM
ScottM
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« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2013, 11:54:12 AM »

Looking like an interesting route, there Rich.  Just out of the wilderness.

Hurrah for Loops!  No shuttle logistics!

I think the Verde varies, but most of the time you *could* get across, but it won't be easy.  You'll need to wade / get wet, and it could be deep and moving fast.

Here are some shots of packrafting just upstream of where you have the track crossing: 

http://www.topofusion.com/diary/2013/01/15/an-average-week-in-arizona/

That's in January.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #13 on: October 13, 2013, 12:30:19 AM
dream4est


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« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2013, 12:30:19 AM »

Tim and I are camped at about 1.5 miles past the Mingus spigot
. Mud on day 1 and thorns flats pain on day 2
. We are at about mile 101 out of 490. Having a blast hope to ride a good bit of BCT later tomorrow.

Mark C.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #14 on: October 13, 2013, 09:47:33 PM
dream4est


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« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2013, 09:47:33 PM »

Well things did not go well today. About 4-5 miles after hwy 169 we encountered the worst goatheads ever- like pick up 100 per tire kind of ugly. We backtracked to the highway, got rides and limped down I-17 to cordes junction. We are at a hotel fixing bikes. Gonna ride up hwy 69 to the BCT and continue the ride.
Tim thinks the goatheads are probably not there in spring, but it looks like in fall the only way to connect to the northernmost trailhead of the BCT is impossible to get to.
Oh we'll it is what it is- we only will miss a bit of the trail and should be running good again tomorrow.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #15 on: October 14, 2013, 10:02:00 AM
markphx


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« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2013, 10:02:00 AM »

Well things did not go well today. About 4-5 miles after hwy 169 we encountered the worst goatheads ever- like pick up 100 per tire kind of ugly. We backtracked to the highway, got rides and limped down I-17 to cordes junction. We are at a hotel fixing bikes. Gonna ride up hwy 69 to the BCT and continue the ride.
Tim thinks the goatheads are probably not there in spring, but it looks like in fall the only way to connect to the northernmost trailhead of the BCT is impossible to get to.
Oh we'll it is what it is- we only will miss a bit of the trail and should be running good again tomorrow.

Saw two bikepackers cruising Southbound down the jam-packed I-17 yesterday afternoon while driving back to Phoenix after a couple of days spent exploring the Paria Plateau. Had a feeling it was the Flagstone duo. Have fun on the BCT today and enjoy the excellent temps during the day and the warmer evening temps in the desert. Keep on truckin' fellas.

-Mark
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #16 on: October 15, 2013, 04:43:19 PM
ScottM
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« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2013, 04:43:19 PM »

Nice bikepacker siting, Mark.  Gotta be Tim and Mark.

FYI - since everyone on Coco is done now, I added the Flagstone 500 route as a green line on the Coco tracker, so we can see how it goes for them.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #17 on: October 15, 2013, 09:49:55 PM
B_Bock


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« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2013, 09:49:55 PM »

I drove by Mark and Tim today on I-17on my way from Flag to Phoenix. I tried going back to see if they needed help, but could not find them. Looks like they're making good progress now. 
BTW, any recommendations on good rides near phoenix?
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #18 on: October 15, 2013, 09:56:55 PM
rhino

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« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2013, 09:56:55 PM »

@ mark and Tim
You are correct there were NO goatheads in the spring. I traveled the route solo from Cottonwood up Mingus down to the BCT and didn't have any issues.
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  Topic Name: Flagstone 500 thread. Reply #19 on: October 17, 2013, 09:31:53 AM
schillingsworth

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« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2013, 09:31:53 AM »

Tim and Mark are about to enter a rough stretch along the Jacob Crosscut Trail, could be a few miles of level HAB before dumping out onto the super fun Gold Canyon Trails. I was going to try and meetup with them today, but they will be a bit farther along than I have time for. Keep the pedals turning fellas!!

@Blake: What kind of riding are you looking for? XC, tech, etc. If you haven't been out to the Arizona Trail by Picketpost Mtn, I'd highly recommend that one. Start at the TH, near milepost 221 on US60 east of the valley just before Superior. Head south on the AZT for 14.5 miles, fantastic overlook & return. If you feel you're up for a 6+ mile 2000' climb, keep going and drop down to the Gila River & return for a total of 42 miles & 8k of climbing. You won't be disappointed.

On the west side of town, check out the Black Canyon Trail. a long XC type trail that roughly parallels I-17. The now defunct AES race out there was a nice loop. Start at the Rock Springs TH & ride the dirt road, Maggie Mine rd. north for about 21 miles. At the top of the second decent climb, enter the BCT at Antelope Creek and take the trail all the way back to Rock Springs. It's about 50 miles & 5-6k.

Shameless plug, but check out my blog as I have ride reports for both of these, plus tons of other PHX area rides.
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