Dead Horse Ranch State Park Offers Mountain Bike Clinics

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Park rangers at Dead Horse Ranch State Park in Cottonwood will offer mountain bike rides and clinics on Saturdays and guided ranger-led hikes on Sundays.

The fee for the hikes are part of the $7 park car entrance fee, however, the mountain bike clinic and rides require an additional program fee of $5 per person.

Nature Walks will start at 9 a.m. every Sunday morning from March 24 through May 5 and last for one to two hours. The guided hikes will meander along riparian areas or stroll through the high desert trails within the park. Hikers need to bring plenty of water, sunscreen and wear appropriate clothing; sturdy shoes, and a hat.

Ranger Margie Sanchez says, “You might want to bring binoculars and a camera, too. These hikes are a great opportunity for wildlife sightings and photos.”

Most hikes will start at the Quail Loop Campground, so inquire at the gate when you come in for Nature Walk starting points.

Mountain Bike Basics will take place from to noon to 4 p.m. — “or when everyone gets tired” every Saturday afternoon from March 24 through May 5.

“These will be beginner trail rides on the dirt, with some instruction on the pavement,” according to Park Ranger Randy Victory, a certified cycling instructor, who will offer everything from basic riding techniques to trail etiquette. Although the rides are oriented toward adult beginners, the minimum age of participants is 15.

“There’s always a certain amount of interaction between riders,” explains Victory. “Group rides where the beginners are supportive of each other, and more experienced riders can offer their insight are an excellent way to build skills, and have a great time doing it. The focus is on fun!”

Riders must wear a helmet and complete an acknowledgment of risk form (parents must sign for riders under 18). Participants should also bring water and make sure their bike is in good working order. Flat protection (Slime tire sealant, for example) and riding gloves are recommended. The rides will start at the Raptor Trailhead at the top of Roadrunner Road in the park. There will be a program fee of $5 per rider collected at the time of the ride/class.

The Dead Horse Ranch State Park day use entrance fee is $7 or Annual Passes are $75 for a family.

For more information about these types of park programs call Dead Horse Ranch State Park at (928) 634-5283 or email rvictory@azstateparks.gov.

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