Mount Elden Trailhead reopens and new mountain bike trail debuts as improvements continue in Mount Elden-Dry Lake Hills area

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., May 24, 2024 — An overhaul to Flagstaff’s busiest trailhead and a brand-new mountain biking trail are just two recent improvements in the Mount Elden-Dry Lake Hills (MEDL) area.

The Mount Elden Trailhead reopened Thursday following eight weeks of construction with a new parking lot designed to accommodate 50 vehicles as well as additional visitor services.

“We’ve been working really diligently on improvements in the Mount Elden-Dry Lake Hills area, and we hope that work is apparent,” said Patrick McGervey, Flagstaff Ranger District (FRD) Recreation and Wilderness Staff Officer. “We’re excited for the upcoming projects we have planned in the area for the coming months.”

The reconstruction of the Mount Elden trailhead was made possible by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

Coinciding with the re-opening of the Mount Elden trailhead is the debut of a new mountain bike trail: the Full Sail Trail.

The 2.5-mile Full Sail Trail is a directional, machine-built trail designed for mountain bikes. The trail, funded by a partnership with Flagstaff Biking Organization and support of the Flagstaff community, was constructed by Flagline Trails, LLC.

Full Sail Trail can be accessed from the top of the new Broadside Trail from Sunset Trailhead.

In addition to the Full Sail Trail, FRD recreation staff also recently opened the Meteoride mountain biking trail earlier this month.

The Meteoride Trail, which can be accessed from the Brookbank trail near Dry Lake Hills, incorporates rock slabs and unique topography to provide a unique rider experience new on the FRD.

More than 500 hours of volunteer work went into creating the Meteoride Trail.

The FRD is also soliciting volunteers for work on a new trail that will connect Schultz Creek to the top of Dry Lake Hills.

The trail, which will be aimed at hikers and trail runners, will be completed using portions of the old “Lost Burrito” trail in addition to newly constructed trail segments. Bicycles will be prohibited on the new trail.

Volunteer opportunities are posted on the Coconino National Forest’s website.

“All the work being conducted in this area is helping to provide diverse recreation activities that improve the quality of life for trail users,” McGervey said. “We strongly believe these projects support a healthy, happy and strong community.”

Ongoing work is part of a larger project to improve user experience, trail connectivity and sustainability in the MEDL area. MEDL work began in 2022, and more than 20 miles of trail have been constructed since implementation.

More information about the MEDL project is available on the Coconino National Forest’s website.

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