out and back; loop
$7 per person 13 and older/day use (annual pass available for $70)
Elm Fork Trail | Center
Loop | Jordan Park Trail | Nature Trail
• Primitive campsites
• Campsites w/ tent pad, picnic table, fire ring, grill, and lantern holder
• Campsites w/ electric and water hookups
• Group Primitive Area
• Group Picnic Pavilions
Ray Roberts Lake draws cyclists from the DFW Metroplex and elsewhere, with its jeep roads, paved trails and new singletrack looping through the hills as well as a limestone greenway for family cycling. ~TPWD
I remember the first time
I rode Isle Du Bois on a hard tail I wanted to choke the guy that brought
me there. Its not the kind of place for hard tails and flat pedals,
yet there's some local quacks that ride it on rigid 29rs. The trail
head has a DORBA sign indicating where to park and the trail is in front
and to the left of it, just stay clockwise.
The trail starts out on loop A-B with some nice winding singletrack through the trees that run up some small hills. You'll find some dips as you near the sidewalk that separates the two sides of the trail. After the sidewalk you'll notice the rocks get a lot more common; this is loop D. Less than a half mile in you'll see a split off to the right for the first of two expert sections. Before you jump in, notice the trail starts to climb and there's more rocks on it; get used to that type of thing. The two expert sections are the best part of this trail. They contain some real choppy climbs that go through and around some pretty nice rock outcroppings.
Once your done with these two sections you'll be back on the D main loop which will take you down towards the lake loop E. This is the more scenic stretch and has one nice climb with some more rocks at the top and the bottom. There's several sections in here where a wheelie will get you farther up the hill than anything else. E will bring you back into D where you'll find a lot more rocky climbs and technical sections. Finishing D will bring you back to the sidewalk and then your on C if you stay left. Always stay to the left and go clockwise and you'll end up with an 11 mile loop.
D has some nice flowing singletrack and an incredible sandy climb that is murder in the summer time. Once you're at the top of the climb you'll find a few more climbs as you near the end, but none as long. Note: this trail has a lot of trees and doesn't get much wind. I prefer not to ride here when the temps are above 90 as it makes breathing really difficult. The best time of year to ride it is October through June.
I wouldn't say this is a super technical trail, there's only one drop and its probably about a foot deep, but there are rock gardens through the entire trail which makes the climbs challenging. I've lost two mech hangers, a rear mech, a front wheel, an axle, and a seat while crashing here. I have friends that have never crashed here though, so maybe its a balance thing. I'd recommend 4-6" of travel and really fat tires. Its only eleven miles long but when your done you'll feel like it was twice that.
If your in the DFW area I highly recommend it over North Shore as it's a loop and never crowded. Bring your racer boi buddies here on your 30# rig and leave them in the dust. Its a place where technical skills and confidence shine. If you're planning a trip, post up on DORBA and I'll be happy to show you around.
~ Toby (Oct 2009)