Bear Creek Trail and Loop Professional Review and Guide
"Bear Creek Trail is one of my favorites! In any season, the surroundings are beautiful. The lower, first section of trail runs along Bear Creek, crossing back and forth several times. The creek is noisy and beautiful, and the surrounding forest is dense and almost primeval. At mile 2.9 take a gander at the Gennett Poplar. This old tree’s immense size gives you a good idea of what the forest must have been like before the area was logged earlier this century. The fading roadbed that the trail follows is one of the few remaining signs of that logging. Once the trail leaves the creek, it climbs on open forest roadbed, with mostly moderate grades. The extra effort to get to the overlook is well rewarded with a view of the surrounding mountains, and a great view of Fort Mountain in the distance. If you look off to your left from the overlook in the valley far below, you can see part of the road you drove in on. The knowledge that the ride back is mostly downhill makes the view even sweeter. The descent on the return loop is a wide, open, gated forest roadbed with the singletrack line conveniently worn in for you. Put it on autopilot and hang on. One last steep downhill, and a technical creek crossing before the parking lot will wash any pesky bear scat off the bikes. Check out the campground on your way out. Tread: 3.1 miles on singletrack, 6.9 miles trail on roadbed, and 4.7 miles on gravel forest road."