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General Information: After The Flume Trail, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride is probably Tahoe's most famous ride and for good reason. The descent from Tucker flat is a technical test piece followed by some fantastic single track riding down the Saxon Creek drainage. The trail combines expansive views, meadows, and forests into one special ride.

Where To Start: Pick up the "Toads" trail either at the Big Meadow parking area on Highway 89 (Luther Pass) or at the Tahoe Rim Trail marker near Luther pass on the north side of the highway near the beginning of Grass Lake.

Trail Description: Starting from Luther Pass, the trail climbs steadily up the mountain side through pine and fir forest with some short, technical moves up and over boulders. Most of the trail is rideable for an advanced rider, but we've never seen anyone ride the whole trail, so don't feel bad when you have to walk.

Environmental Concerns: Lots of bike traffic, steep terrain, and easily damaged meadows and stream environment zones make Mr. Toads especially suseptable to erosion and environmental degredation. If it gets too bad, the Forest Service will close the trail to mountain bikes, so your cooperation is not just requested, but critical. With that in mind: STAY ON THE TRAIL, walk your bike across wet areas in the spring, MINIMIZE SKIDDING by breaking before you need to, if you can, avoid riding Toads on the weekends during the summer. Lets work hard to keep this Tahoe treasure open to all.

After about 3/4 mile, the trail from Big Meadow parking lot joins the Rim Trail from the left. Stay right and continue to climb for another 1.5 miles. You will reach a prominance with a large boulder perfectly situated to take a break on top of and which offers nice views of Waterhouse Peak and Hope Valley. After this, the trail climbs a bit more through a more open, bouldery area, and begins to top out on the ridge. A short downhill brings you Tucker Flat where a wooden post points to the Saxon Creek drainage to the left (northwest) or towards Armstrong Pass (east).The trail to Armstrong Pass offers some terriffic riding, but to continue on Mr. Toads, turn left and begin 1.5 miles of very technical downhill. Lots of boulders, soft dirt, roots, and big, steep drop-offs make this a challenging ride even for experts. Most of us human riders walk at least a few sections of this trail. When the trail crosses the first stream, you know the worst (best?)of the technical downhill is over. The trail smooths considerably, although it is still possible to eat serious dirt anywhere along this trail! You will cross two more streams then climb a bit back out of the drainage. After just another 1/4 mile of windy, steep, soft dirt, the trail mellows and the smooth, banked single-track that Toads is famous for begins.

Two miles of perfect single-track with just enough windiness to keep you from killing yourself by going too fast. Still, speeds of 20 to 30 MPH are possible! The trail will eventually widen into a dirt road that climbs one last short hill before dumping you out on Fountain Place Rd. Turning left on this paved Forest Service road will take you to Oneidas and, if you made a shuttle, your car. In all, Mr. Toads climbs less than 1200' over 2 miles, yet descends nearly 2500' over 6 miles. For riders in good shape and shuttling a car, the ride takes about 2 hours (plus shuttle time).

Haven't had enough? When you reach the paved road (Fountain Place Rd.), turn right instead of left and head up to the Coral Loop or over to the Powerline Ride!

For riders in very good shape, make Mr. Toads a loop by parking your car at Oneidas, then heading out Pioneer Trail to Highway 50 turning left onto the bike trail. Ride this to South Upper Truckee which is past highway 89 (Luther Pass). This quiet residential road will intersect Highway 89, but head straight across 89 onto another small road. This road ends in the Big Meadow Parking Lot. Pick up the single-track for Toads at the east end of the parking area.

Advisory: Lots of potential for endos and injuries on this ride so it is best done with friends.

 

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