|35 Miles||Out & Back System||17 Total Climbing Miles||1,302' Max||4.9% Avg Grade|
|83.3 Climb Index||100% Singletrack||15.4 Total Descending Miles||597' Min||37.9% Max Grade|
Overview: The Womble is considered the jewel of the Ouachita Mountains as far as trails go. This is by far the most famous trail in the state with folks driving in from all over the country to try this epic ride. It is also the key element of the Ouachita Challenge Mountain Bike Race held each year and is listed as an IMBA Epic Ride and even made it into a couple of the bike mags. The trail is mostly made up of loose rock with occasional areas of hard packed dirt. There is plenty of climbing and a couple of the climbs are steep and sustained especially as you get closer to the Ouachita Trail on the north half of the Womble. The downhills are a blast, some of which require a little nerve as the trail skirts in and out of coves just hanging off the side of the mountain. There are quite a few creek crossings but most are small and easy to cross", the larger creeks have bridges so they are not too much of an obstacle. There is one creek on the northern part of the trail that is rather large and can be a bit tricky to cross especially if there has been rain in the last few days. There are some technical areas out there but you don't have to be a trials rider to get around them. There is a lot of ridge riding and some areas with steep drop-offs to one side so if you are squeamish on narrow trails and heights you may want to walk these sections. The trail really offers up a little bit of everything from nice mostly flat terrain too rugged mountain terrain.
Recommended Route: Start at North Fork Lake and ride all the way to the Ouachita Trail. If you don't want to do that much in one day then ride from North Fork Lake to Hwy 27 and the next day pick up where you left off. You can always just do an out and back and ride in as far as you want and then turn around and head back. One of the rides we enjoy is to start at Hwy 298 trailhead and head east on the trail to Hwy 27. We turn around and head back to Hwy 298 and if some of us still want to ride more we continue on the trail heading west toward Northfork Lake.
Rating: This trail is good for everyone but not every section is good for everybody. A novice would probably enjoy the section right around Hwy 298 most of this is flat with really mild technical stuff. Whenever I introduce new folks to mountain biking I will usually bring them to the 298 trailhead and we will ride north for about 4 miles or so until the terrain gets too difficult and then turn around and head west of 298 for about 3 miles. Advanced riders are going to love this trail as well as intermediate and most beginners. There are enough forest roads and highways that intersect this trail so bailouts are numerous and loops can easily be made using these roads.
|Bear Creek||Hot Springs||45 miles||N/A|
|Big Brushy Complex||Mena||15.5 miles||Int|
|Buffalo Gap||Hot Springs||9 miles||N/A|
|Cedar Glades||Hot Springs||10 miles||Beg|
|Charlton||Mount Ida||4 miles||Beg|
|Earthquake Ridge||Mena||6 miles||Int|
|Fourche Mountain||Mena||26 miles||Int|
|Lake Ouachita Vista||Mount Ida||36.5 miles||Int|
|Ouachita Trail||Mount Ida||104 miles||Int|
|Possum Kingdom||Hot Springs||17 miles||Nov|
|Rich Mountain||Mena||8 miles||Int|
Mount Ida, AR