Ride #10: Blacksnake - Biscuit Ridge Loop
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Starting point: From downtown Walla Walla drive 3.5 miles east on Isaacs Avenue to the intersection with Mill Creek Road. Turn right and follow Mill Creek Road for 6.7 miles to where Blue Creek Road forks to the left. Take Blue Creek Road (paved then graveled) for 3.1 miles until you crest a hill and two other graveled roads (Blacksnake Road and Spring Creek Road) intersect. Park at this intersection which is known as "Five Points."

Ride Description: From Five Points, head east on Blacksnake Road (rocky dirt) which climbs 1980 ft. in 7.1 miles to the intersection with Biscuit Ridge Road (rocky dirt) in a large meadow at the top of the ridge. Turn left onto Biscuit Ridge Road which descends briefly to the headwaters of the south fork of Dry Creek before climbing 250 ft. to the crest of Biscuit Ridge. After 2.3 miles on Biscuit Ridge Road, a dirt road leading to the Intake Trail and Lewis Peak intersects on the right (see options). Continue straight ahead and descend Biscuit Ridge for another 6.4 miles until the road becomes paved as it enters the valley of the south fork of Dry Creek. Graveled Tracy Road intersects on the left 2.1 miles after the start of the pavement. Turn onto Tracy Road and climb steeply 0.8 mile back up to Five Points.

Remarks: Although the initial 7 mile climb on Blacksnake Road is somewhat arduous, it is not unrelenting. There are several relatively flat sections and even a short downhill where you can catch your breath. Once the initial climb is over, the rest is easy by comparison, except for the final 0.8 mile climb to Five Points, which may seem cruel and unusual. This ride features nice views, the road surfaces are generally good, and the access from Walla Walla is quick and easy. Avoid this loop on hot, sunny days and in late summer when the infrequent vehicular traffic produces choking clouds of dust.

Vital statistics:

Length: 18.6 miles

Total climbing: 3020 ft.

Time: 2-4 hours

Season: early June to mid November

Techno factor = 3; short, steep, rocky sections on ascent.

Grunt factor = 6; long climb with short steep sections.

Adventure factor = 1; you can drive it.

Some Options:

1) Ride the loop in the opposite direction. This ride begins and ends with a descent. The big climb in between is somewhat longer (9.3 miles) but the first 2.1 miles of climbing is on pavement. T=3, G=6, A=1.

2) Instead of descending down Biscuit Ridge, take the right turn toward Lewis Peak and ride 0.5 mile. Cross a fence on your right and intersect the Intake Trail. Follow the Intake Trail to the left (northeast) for 0.7 mile where a spur trail from Lewis Peak joins on the left. Follow the spur trail (single track followed by jeep trail) for 0.3 mile to Lewis Peak Road. Stay on Lewis Peak Road for 6.0 miles until you reach Beaman Road (unsigned) which intersects on the left on the edge of a large wheat field. Follow graveled Beaman Road as it descends to paved Upper Dry Creek Road after 4.0 miles. Turn left onto Upper Dry Creek Road and ride 2.5 miles gently uphill to the intersection with graveled Tracy Road. Turn right onto Tracy Road and ride 0.7 mile steeply uphill to Five Points. T=6, G=7, A=4.