The Rickety Trail is less than 1 mile of downhill mountain biking trail section in the Horn Gap/ Hitt Road area of the Ashland watershed.
Driving – From Ashland Plaza head up along Lithia Park on Winburn Way. THis will turn into Granite Street and you’re still right along the park. Then the road becomes gravel, and the swimming hole and old dam are on the left. Continue straight when the main road forks to the left and park before you cross Ashland Creek.
Parking – There are dozens of dirt parking spots between the swimming hole and Ashland Creek, and a couple after the creek at the fairy ponds. After that there is no parking. Even if you think you can sneak your Mini Cooper somewhere off the road – not allowed.
The Trail – This 11 mile loop can be run, but it’s really more of a mountain bike trail. The first 6 miles is a constant uphill on a well groomed fire road. Start at the ubiquitous yellow pipe gate. At about mile 3 you may notice the Reeder Reservoir to the left but it’s not a great view. But it’s not a great reservoir (no boats, no fishing, no waterpark). At about mile 4 Horn Gap Road will split to the left but you need to go right.
If you are running uphill, you can go left onto Horn Gap Road and Rickety is quickly there to the right. Conversely, when you come down Rickety on your bike, this is where you will come out. Okay? Now back on your bike, we have 2 more uphill miles. Giddiyup!
Does it seem like we’re heading downhill finally?… Psych. Just for a second. In less than a mile you will pass Hitt Road (FS 300) on your right. Keep going. When you hit the next intersection the 200 road heads uphill to the right, and your Ashland Loop Road heads toward Horn Gap. Stay on Ashland Loop Road and you’ll see the “Hot Gap 2 Miles” sign on your right, and Rickety starts right there to your left. Take that narrow, bumpy monster downhill for less than a mile. Get out on Horn Gap Road and go home.
Rickety… it’s a lot of work.