Bike or hike. Which is worse?

elkohalic

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I'm going into scout in the next couple of weeks and have two options to get to my intended location.
Option A is about a 4 mile mountain bike ride sidehilling along on a very steep hillside that has a motorcycle trail. (I don't have a motorcycle or else I would be using it). I have not been on the trail before so I am not certain of its usability.

Option B is a 2 1/2 mile hike where I gain 2200 feet in elevation. I would be going up through a very good basin and have lots of opportunity to scope for wallows, rubs, etc. Both options will kick me out at the same vantage point.

So the question is which would be less painful route? I'm leaning toward options B as I don't know if the trail is even possible at this point, but what are your thoughts?
 

pipelake

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I would bike, but if you run into a lot of downfall, pm me so I can delete this post.
 

Ben Long

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I am pretty pessimistic about this kind of stuff, so I would go with B. At least that way, you won't be stuck in some godawful brushy, blowdown nightmare, lugging a bicycle. But then I would do more recon to see if Route A is an option. Also I would want to know if there is a relatively easy motorized route into the elk country. That could be an important factor to know.
 

elkohalic

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I am pretty pessimistic about this kind of stuff, so I would go with B. At least that way, you won't be stuck in some godawful brushy, blowdown nightmare, lugging a bicycle. But then I would do more recon to see if Route A is an option. Also I would want to know if there is a relatively easy motorized route into the elk country. That could be an important factor to know.

I have looked into an easier motorized access route and there isn't any. That is part of the reason I picked this area. The trails get shut down in Aug.:hump:
 

jryoung

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Unable to determine due to velocity
Hike, less variables, more flexibility, slower pace to keep an eye out for additional sign. The vertical shouldn't be an issue as you'll need to be prepared for it when hunting season arrives.
 

elkohalic

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even thogh its longer,,,Id go plan A as I would think it would be decent trail,,maybe more gradual inclines?

Gradual inclines yes but literally the whole way if I loose my balance once I go bouncing all the way to the bottom. Not to excited about that..
 
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Depending on the cover 2 1/2 miles of hiking with that elevation is maybe an hour and 15 minutes.

Depending on your bike and skills its not hard to make 6 mph on a mountain bike with obstacles so 45 minutes but the deviation might be way faster or way slower.

Back when I was mountain bike racing we were doing 12-13 mph average on technical trails, doing half that is pretty reasonable even with a few sections of hike a bike.
 

Dan O

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Well since your main intention is to learn the area. I think you would be good with walking in on the bike trail and then walk out the other route. This way you will have first hand knowledge of what is reasonable to expect this fall.
Just my opinion, either way have fun.
 

JLS

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I'm doing the same thing in August. I'll be opting to mountain bike, just because I like to do so. It may or may not be more efficient.
 

Sawtooth

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I would hike in the way you plan to go this fall. If they are closing the road to bikes in the fall, you might as well be familiar with the route you will be using during the hunt. If your scouting shows you that there is a possibility that you could harvest an animal near the bike route, then take that trail on the way out. You may find that most game sign leads you away from the bike trail and you will then want to be able to return back to your vehicle on a route that does not have bike access. If you bike in, you are then stuck with a bike at the top of a hill having to return back through unproductive terrain. Did I just make a confusing situation even more confusing?
 

thomas89

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I'd have to trust my own two feet to hike in on that one.

A buddy and I biked about 4 miles back into some elk country and his derailleur broke. 4 miles of walking isn't anything, but pushing a bike 4 miles was certainly a pain.
 

elkohalic

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Unfortunately I am only able to make it up for one day so it is an either or situation. I am going with option B and round trip it should be about a 7 mile loop. Looking forward to some new country and using the 65mm Razor.
 

hank4elk

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Same here.I do have a bike but for riding around my place now.
Did a couple deer hunts out of my Sierra cabin a few times,on easy FS roads. Along walk back with one on the back and on bike, a pain.
@ 60 forget it,I'd crash and burn.
 

MinnesotaHunter

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IMO, the problem with biking into an area the way you describe is that your situational awareness while biking will be severely degraded. You essentially have tunnel vision. Especially when you are scouting an area out, you don't know what you are going to run into, and having your head on a swivel, so you can soak it all in, is best done on two feet.

I think bikes can be good when you need to co ver ground on a closed logging road to get to your jump off point, but biking though an area where you anticipate seeing game, seems like a bad idea.
 

Festus

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IMO, the problem with biking into an area the way you describe is that your situational awareness while biking will be severely degraded. You essentially have tunnel vision. Especially when you are scouting an area out, you don't know what you are going to run into, and having your head on a swivel, so you can soak it all in, is best done on two feet.

I think bikes can be good when you need to co ver ground on a closed logging road to get to your jump off point, but biking though an area where you anticipate seeing game, seems like a bad idea.

This is what I was thinking ^^^
When I'm biking, I'm concentrating on not losing it - maybe just me.
I would ride to a spot and then scout, but don't feel like I would be scouting effectively if riding through an area (especially for the first time).
 

elkohalic

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Well the trip was somewhat of a success. Some pretty good looking country however the recent fires have done a number on it. Extremely glad I decided to hike as it gave me a chance to really observe the lack of sign. I ended up seeing one cow, six bucks, and two Billie goats. when I got to the top of the basin first thing in the morning I stumbled into a camp of three guys who were just as shocked to see me as I was to see them. LOL good trip, but still looking for plan B. If I can figure out how to load picks I'll at them but so far I'm scratching my head
 
AMK Sportsman

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