Derek and I rode Lookout Mountain loop back in 2004 with Cogwild and instantly loved it. The loop is 19.5 miles with 3654′ of climbing up to 6931′. The weather was a bit iffy and we got sprinkled on at one point. This made for less than clear views but we enjoyed them anyway.
My only complaint with this ride is it starts with a 7 mile road climb. It goes fairly quickly and is a good warm up for the instantly steep pitches of the singletrack. The climb up Independent Mine tacks another 4 miles or so of climbing up to the summit. It was more ridden in than I remember and soon enough we stopped to eat our sandwiches before getting to the summit. It’s always windy up there and today was no exception. We snapped some pics and off we went for the insane downhill.
The first switchback or two are treacherous and then it’s a fast swoopy descent with lots of rocky sections to keep you sharp. We had an advantage here that we haven’t had in 3 years of traveling full time and riding new trails each day. Here we knew what we were in for. THE SNEAKY CLIMB. Yes, part of the way down what you think is a downhill is a little climb that zaps your legs. That passed quickly enough and we finished it off with swooping singletrack through the forest back to the start.