Arizona Mountain Biking

Pass Mountain Trail, Usery Park

Pass Mountain GPS tracks Pass Mountain kmz file.  You must have Google Earth installed for this file to work Pass Mountain reviews on MTBR forum Pass Mountain TOPO by MTBikeAZ

View Usery Mountain Regional Park in a larger map

The trailhead sign for Pass Mountain says “Mountain Bikes not recommended”…just what I like to see…less riders on the trail more technical action…Pass mountain proves to be a sweet ride. Yes, it is technically challenging, but just enough to remind me I’m not superman.

I’ve ridden this trail clockwise from the Crismon gate as well as counter clockwise to the saddle (almost) then back down. Counterclockwise is a brutal climb. Clockwise is easier on the lungs and legs, not easy, just less hard.

Park on the southwest corner of Crismon and McKellips, pay the 1 dollar ride-in fee at the access gate and you’re set to go. You can also drive in at the main entrance and pay the $6.00 fee. It’s your money.

A lesser known access point is off Usery Pass Road. A short mile climb through a sandy wash puts you right on the Pass Mountain trail. See the TOPO. This access point is on the Tonto Forest side so there is no ride-in fee, but you sure pay for it in sweat — pushing up the sandy wash. This is my favorite access point and acts as a connector from Wild Horse, which leads to Twisted Sister and the Hawes Trail System.

The Usery Mountain Regional Park trails are all pretty flat, with the exception of Pass Mountain and Cats Peaks. It’s a good place to take your friends who are just beginning to ride.

u2metoo’s Pass Mountain ride report and awesome video

Usery Park Trail Map (PDF)

MTBR Forum Review of Pass Mountain posted in the Pass Mtn. Loop thread.

9 thoughts on “Pass Mountain Trail, Usery Park

  • Rode it today! Pretty tight and techy. A lot of fun and beautiful scenery! Trail takes longer than it looks so get an early start because it is pretty slow going, hike and bike a few spots. Ended up riding the last hour in the dark! Rode it on a new enduro 29er and needed the travel and could have used a few degrees slacker in the head. Not a good trail for full on XC bikes.

  • Jordan

    Didn’t love this trail like everyone else seems to. Great hike with small chances to ride a bike. The scenery is beautiful on the backside of the mountain, that’s about it. I am by no means a beginner on a bike, I love biking National trail at South Mountain but this made me feel like a moron. Lots of loose, bowling-ball sized rocks to throw you off an already difficult line.

  • Michael,

    Thanks for the comment, but not many riders visit this particular page for group ride meet ups. Your best bet would be to post to the MTBR AZ forum looking for riders.

    I would not recommend Pass Mountain unless you are a seasoned rider. Great trails for beginner to intermediate riders are Hawes, Gold Canyon, and Desert Classic at South Mountain.

  • Michael Will

    Looking to go on some rides I just got a new bike anyone down to show me a few trails? ??

  • tom cagle

    I’ve ridden this both ways…clockwise today…not as brutal but definitely technical and tight climb and white knuckle downhill.

  • Mitchell B

    i love the descriptions. especially the kids playground, cause thats exactly how my family parties are too. haha
    I think ill be heading out that direction this week or next. thanks for the review! ill post my thoughts after i ride.

  • Good friend of mine and I rode the trail 1-31-09. Even though you pay the price during the initial uphill its worth every drop of sweat once you get to the back side of the mountain and bomb the killer downhill. Lots of hikers, clockwise is recommended, where your gear and there is no question that it can be dangerous for beginners.

  • Mike in Mesa

    Pass mountain is a pretty gnarly trail. I’m by no means an expert mountain biker, and while I wouldn’t say it was over my head, it was definitely pushing my limits. I went over the bars a few times, crashed into cactus multiple times, walked the bike plenty, etc. (yes, I left a blood trail)..It was fun, and I’ll do it again, just not on a regular basis…The views are spectacular, and 80% of the trail is just perfect…

  • Road Pass Mtn for the first time last weekend, and I gotta say it was a total hoot. The climb up didn’t hurt to bad, and for the decent I was sure glad I put on my armor.

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