Hawes: Big Sister Loop

The closest thing to a flow trail that you'll find in Arizona!

Mountain Biking Difficult

Distance
4.5 km
Ascent
115 m
Descent
115 m
Duration
0-1 hrs
Low Point
438 m
High Point
550 m
Gradient
Hawes: Big Sister Loop Map

The Big Sister Loop is now one of the most popular trails in the Hawes Trail System. This is the closest thing to a true flow trail you'll find in Arizona! This artfully-crafted flowy downhill mixes low berms, rollers, and jumps with optional rock ledge drops.

Description

It's basically impossible to build a true downhill flow trail in the loose decomposed granite and sand that comprises the soil at hawes, but the builders did the best that they possibly could. While the berms aren't huge, and you won't find any massive jumps, the flow the builders managed to achieve is downright impressive.

Adding to the appeal of Big Sister is the ability to make it more or less difficult, depending on your skill level. Big Sister is filled with optional hucks and jumps that can all be bypassed by intermediate riders or sent by advanced riders. The sightlines on most of these features are wide-open, allowing you to drop into the trail blind and still spot your landings quite easily (at least, most of the time).

If you're truly trying to rip down Big Sister, take care of the shifting decomposed granite trail surface. While it's quite typical of the region, the shifting sand and loose pebbles have a tendency to form pits that are just begging to wash out your tires.

Route Options

While you can easily ride Big Sister on its own, this loop forms a great addition to other rides in the Hawes Trail System, such as Red Mountain Rush.

Difficulty

Difficult

Mostly stable trail tread with some variability featuring larger and more unavoidable obstacles that may include, but not be limited to: bigger stones, roots, steps, and narrow curves. Compared to lower intermediate, technical difficulty is more advanced and grades of slopes are steeper. Ideal for upper intermediate riders.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Features

  • Flow
  • Singletrack
  • Drops
  • Jumps
  • Tabletops

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area