Eastern Sierra Mountain Biking Report & Information Guide

Friday, April 12th, 2023 @ 8 AM – Happy early Spring to all the local and traveling Mountain Bike Crowd. The current snowline in the southern eastern Sierra is up to around 7500 feet in elevation. That means the dirt roads around Crowley Lake and the Hot Creek Area are mostly melted out now. Just beware that the lake is 100% full, so many of the roads near the shoreline are not ridable or driveable at this time.

Starting this upcoming week, I will be out and about getting photos and video clips of what it’s like for Mountain Bikers from Mammoth Lakes to Smokey Bear Flats, to the Mammoth Scenic Loop / Inyo Craters and down to Lower Rock Creek and the Buttermilk’s and of course Poleta Canyon OHV Area outside of Bishop.

This year’s snowpack looks to be around 92% of the average, so Mountain Bikers can look forward to a full riding season in the high country. You can expect the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park to have some lower runs open by the end of May, with just about the entire park expected to be open by the July 4th weekend this Summer. .

4-7-2024 - Riding an Old OHV Moto Enduro Trail
4-7-2024 – Riding an Old OHV Moto Enduro Trail with Bishop in the back ground.

Video Player: In the player above, you will find some great trail videos of places you might have never thought of to ride a Mountain Bike. Videos featured will be from the Snowman and other creators who are producing watchable content here in the Eastern Sierra. Make sure to pick the 4K options to avoid grainy trail footage. >>Mountain Biking Disclaimer Alert<<

What can you ride now in the Eastern Sierra?

(LRC) Lower Rock Creek Trail is open.  The best time to ride here is midday, as mornings are still below freezing. You can learn more about the LRC Trail at this link.

The Sunny Slopes / Upper Gorge Loop is now ridable. I would also advise a mid-day ride here, as it’s cold during the morning.

The Poleta Canyon OHV Area is located at the end of E Line St and has miles of open, ridable terrain. Poleta Ridge and Poleta Canyon Trail are open, as are all the OHV Roads and other unnamed single-track trails in that area. Last I heard, the Black Rock Mountain road was still a mess and is not recommended at this time.

White Mountain Road to the White Mountain Single-Track Trail is now open. Conditions are much better than the average winter we have had this year. Be aware that this area offers some very steep climbing in spots; if you plan to ride this area, you better be in mid-season shape or on a class 1 E-MTB.

The Buttermilk Country and the Tungsten Hills are also melted out and ready for a great early Spring ride. This is a great time to explore these areas as the weather is still cool and perfect for riding and exploring the mix of OHV roads and off-the-cuff single-track trails you will find in this area.

Mill Pond to the Foothill areas of Western Bishop is in great shape as of this post, with miles of OHV roads and hidden single-track trails you can ride. Here is a link to the Google Maps for these areas. To find a place to park and ride on that map, zoom in, and you can see all sorts of open dirt roads. Many of these roads have single-track trails that break off from the road you can explore.

That map’s roads and trails are on BLM, DWP, and Forest Service Land. You can ride in these areas if they are not signed as closed. On Forest Service roads that are closed, you can check with the Forest Service, as many times you can still ride a mountain bike or Class  1 peddle-assist E-MTB on those roads. I advise you never to ride by a road closed sign; check first, and don’t get ticketed.

Up at the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park, there is about 3-5 feet of snow on the trails at Little Eagle and Canyon Lodges. Above the 8500-foot level, there is a solid 6-8 feet of snow with 8-12 feet from MC Coy Station up to the Top of the Mountain.

Based on past years with a similar snowpack, the lower mountain trails near Eagle and Canyon Lodges should be open around Memorial Day. During the month of June, the snow around the Main Lodge melts quickly, which should allow mid-mountain trails to start opening during the month.

Once the calendar rolls around to July 4th, I would expect most but not all of the Bike Park to be rideable at that point in time.

Winter of 2023 was so large that last Summer, as the snow melted out, the Mountain Bike Park Staff literally had to rebuild most of the wooden features. All that work and the lack of a massive snowpack this spring will allow for a long mountain bike season at Mammoth Mountain this Summer.

>>> The Footloose Bike Shop should be reopening in mid-May this year for Rentals and Services. I will post a date as soon as I hear from them, sometime in April.

Arrowhead Bike Shop is open for service in Bishop. Call before you drive down, as they can be very busy and might not have what you need in stock.


Riding an older OHV Trail outside of Bishop
Riding an older OHV Trail outside of Bishop

Footloose Sports Bike Repair and Rentals Mammoth Lakes

Welcome to Eastern Sierra Mountain Biking. If you’re looking for a unique place to go for a Mountain Bike adventure, you must check out the Eastern Sierra Region.

There are countless opportunities to ride here, from Traditional Mountain Bikes to the new Mountain E-Bikes. You will find everything from single-track action to motocross trails, OHV trails, and forest service roads that lead deep into the back country.

This website is here so you will know where to ride, current trail conditions, and what to expect from the local weather on your next Mountain Bike Trip to the Eastern Sierra.

We cover most of what you can ride at the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park, in the Inyo National Forest, and in the Bishop and Big Pine areas. There are miles and miles of mountain biking to be had up here.

While you will find a lot to ride on this site, there are countless roads and off-shot single tracks that are not mapped or marked that you will discover as you investigate this area on your mountain bike.

During most years, there are only a few days when you can’t find a place to ride in the Eastern High Sierra and the Northern Owens Valley. If you’re into Mountain Biking, we hope to inspire you to come up and ride in the Eastern Sierra sometime soon. 

**This website is being built from 2023 into 2024; once we get all the content in, it will be an excellent resource for Mountain Bikers and E-MTB riders. Keep checking back for fresh ideas of where to ride.

To get the best quality viewing, choose the 4K setting. **Videos this Spring, Summer and Fall 2024 are made possible by the Footloose Sports Bike Shop

If you’re looking for an E-MTB or Regular Mountain Bike Rental check out Footloose Sports. They are located at the Corner of Old Mammoth Road and Main Street at the entrance to Mammoth Lakes. 760-934-2400 is their landline.

Website Author – Steve Taylor from Mammoth Lakes & Bishop, California

Steve has been Mountain Biking in the Mammoth and Bishop areas since 1985. At Eastern Sierra Mountain Biking, he is offering up his years of knowledge on where to ride and what the trails are like, along with videos and photos so you can see for yourself. Steve moved to Mammoth Lakes in 1990 and down to Bishop in 2019. He currently rides six days a week and is excited to share his local Mountain Biking knowledge with you.