|17 Miles||Loop System||7.7 Total Climbing Miles||1,286' Max||4.2% Avg Grade|
|32.34 Climb Index||95% Singletrack||7.7 Total Descending Miles||1,070' Min||30.1% Max Grade|
Overview: The trail system is made up of a bunch of trails connected by a paved trail all varying in length and skill level.
Phase I of Slaughter Pen includes the following trails, Medusa, Tatamagouche, Armadillo’s Last Stand and Seed Tick Shuffle. Seed Tick Shuffle is probably about the easiest trail in the Phase I collection. It is relatively flat with hardly no technical stuff on it. Seed Tick Shuffle runs along the edge of the skills area so you can jump off the trail and try some of the features out if you so desire. It also runs pretty close to the paved trail so it makes for an easy ride for any novice riders out there. Some of Seed Tick Shuffle is out in the open which can make for a warm ride on a really hot day but there are areas of shade as well.
If you follow Seed Tick Shuffle all the way to the east you will come to the junction of Armadillo’s Last Stand and Tatamagouche. We always head up Tatamagouche to the junction of Medusa and then head on up Medusa. There is a little bit of a climb but nothing severe. Heading west on Medusa expect to find some nice fast flowing trail, lots of up and down, a few natural technical spots consisting of rocks and roots and a few man made features such as ladder bridges and skinny’s, all of the manmade features have a bypass in case a rider decides not to attempt them. Once you make it to the west side of the trail get ready for some really fast and fun downhill as the trail makes its way back to Tatamagouche. On the way down the trail becomes a downhiller’s delight with huge banked turns and table top jumps along the way. Medusa to me is an advanced beginner and up trail. Some riders may have to get off and walk spots but there are not that many technical spots and are fairly short lived.
At Tatamagouche we usually head back east on it until we come to the junction of Armadillo’s Last Stand and Seed Tick Shuffle. The Tatamagouche trail offers up some pretty nice natural technical sections composed mostly of rocks and roots. There are a couple of good little drops along this trail to launch off of as well as some nice little jumps. Just like Medusa and many of the trails at Slaughter Pen the builders have added little manmade skill features along the trail side such as ladder bridges, wooden berm and skinny’s all of which can be ridden around. There is not much climbing on this trail but it does do some up and down along the way. This trail is good for the advanced beginner and up.
Once we get to Armadillo’s Last Stand we will head west on it. Armadillo’s Last Stand is a pretty fast trail, it has a little up and down on it but for the most part it is down when heading west. There are a few minor technical sections along the way but nothing really bad. There are however some great sections to get a little air as you make your way west and back toward the trailhead. I think most riders will like this trail, we even seen a little tyke out there riding and having the time of his life.
The Phase II section includes The Urban trail, Angus Chute, Razorback Ridge, Free Time, and Rocky Ridge. . The Urban trail was pretty mild when compared with some of the other trails located at Slaughter Pen. It is made up of a lot of small up and downs that has a pretty good flow to it. This trail follows the paved trail so if a person has had enough they can easily bailout if they so desired. This trail will also hook you up on the Free Time and Rocky Ridge loops located on the other side of NE A Street. This trail would be good for someone just cutting their teeth on trail riding.
Razorback Ridge was a little more technical and required a little more physical exertion than the Urban Trail but was still pretty mild as far as some of the other trails located out there. There is a little ridge riding on this section with some really nice scenic spots. I would say that most beginners and up would feel comfortable on this trail. There is a really cool bridge that connects Razorback Ridge to one section of the Angus Chute trail, you can tell someone really thought these trails out and put in a lot of work building them when you see the detail paid in building these bridges and other wood works.
Angus Chute trail is the real leg burner out there if you follow it all the way through. This is the only trail at Slaughter Pen that is an out and back, but if you want to do some climbing then don't miss this trail. Angus Chute is a lot like Razorback Ridge up until you cross an old dirt road and then from there expect to find one really good climb up to NW A Street. The trail ends at the road so you have to turn around and head back down, but it is one awesome downhill and a real blast to ride.
If you take The Urban Trail as far south as you can, you will see where it ends at NE A Street. Look straight across the road and you will see the entrance to Free Time. Free Time is a lot like the Urban Trail with a few more places that are bit more technical. Free Time is the lower half of a loop that is made up of Free Time and Rocky Ridge. Rocky Ridge is a really fun section, lots of technical stuff there, plenty of ridge riding, it's fast and has a great flow to it. This trail is for the more advanced beginner and up, not really any big climbs, but mostly narrow side hugging trail. There is one little section there called Scott Allen Alley that has one really big drop so be careful if you go flying down this little section of trail.
Once back at the paved trail you can either head over to Phase II or head on down the trail to Phase III. Phase III is a little bit of a ride on the paved trail from Phase I and II. Every time we go out there I hardly ever see anyone at Phase III riding I don’t know if it is because we are going at the wrong time or that people just don’t like riding the paved trail to get to these trails but if you got the time shot on over to Phase III and check them out. The trails in Phase III are Rocking Horse, Spinning Top, Botte Stopper, Cry Baby, Big Wheels, Peek a Boo, Boo Boo, Patti Cake, Choo Choo, Rim Trail and All American. All these trails are located in a small area together with the exception of The All American Trail. This group of trails with the exception of All American are located on a small hill on the west side of the paved trail. Most of these trails are short and basically you ride to the top of the hill and decide which trail you want to go back down. All of them are a blast to ride because they all have good flow to them and some really berm turns on the way down. There are a few technical areas but they are very short. The All American trail is a fast flowy trail with some mild natural technical sections as well as a few manmade. If ridden from north to south it has a slight downhill feel to it. All the trails in Phase III would be good for the advanced beginner and up but lean more toward an Intermediate.
Overall this trail system offers something for everyone, not into trail riding then you can enjoy the nice paved trail that runs the length of the park. The trails are built for all experience levels from the beginning trail rider to the experienced free rider, they will all find something that fills their teacup. Slaughter Pen is a great addition to the trail works in NW Arkansas and if you are in that area be sure to check this trail complex out, you won't be sorry. I don't want to leave out the fact that Slaughter Pen also has one of the best free ride parks in the state.
Recommended Route: There really is not a certain route. Get a map and then mix it up the way you like.
Rating: Everyone should find something out there that they will enjoy. I would imagine you could bring the whole family out there if you wanted to.
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