This four-mile classic climb-and-drop (two miles up, two miles down) doubletrack loop can be used as the starting point for at least 12 more singletrack miles adjoining it. Thrift Cove has been described in some guides as easy, but it's misleading to reach this trailhead expecting an easy ride. The technical requirements on the wet and rocky western downhill demand skill, strength, and agility. The opening climb lasts long enough to make most bikers work moderately hard.
The shady cover provided by the thick forest of mixed hardwoods and evergreens stays unbroken nearly to the source of Thrift Cove Creek, located at approximately the halfway point. Once on top, the trail seldom strays far from this rocky, rushing mountain stream. At times, the trail slides over into the shallow creek bed, making the descent on the western portion of the loop a potentially slippery affair. Riding this trail in both directions is legal, but the counterclockwise direction allows the wettest, steepest, and rockiest section to be ridden downhill. This ride follows the curve inside a mountain cove; creeks and springs are prominent, as are expansive views through a mixed hardwood forest.
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