– Distance: ~ 3.9 miles
– Min/max elev.: 4596’/7000′
– Elev. gain/loss: 208’/-2575′
Time Warp is a downhill-only mountain bike trail that starts near the Rabbit Ears rock formation off the FS20-300 Rd and descends nearly 4-miles to the FS 2060 Rd. Time Warp features some expansive views of Mt Shasta, Mt Mcloughlin, the Rogue Valley and much more while offering the most descent (over 2,500′) available in a single Ashland watershed trail. Dropping down that much elevation means you can start in alpine meadows near the tree line and weave through conifer forests on the way down.
Most riders turn right (east) at the bottom of Time Warp to continue onto Four Corners and the option to descend further on Catwalk or Marty’s and then Caterpillar, Lizard and Jabberwocky. A few riders may choose to turn left (west) at the bottom of Time Warp to continue onto trails like No Candies and Horn Gap trail. This route requires a bit more climbing along FS Rd 2060.
This trail, dating to 1890, was originally called the Mount Ashland Trail. According to historian, Jeff Lalande, the trail part of a tourist route: they would take wagons part way up the West Fork of Ashland Creek and then horses to Mt Ashland. In 1909, the new road up Ashland Creek was promoted as “Ashland’s Grand Canyon.”
The trail and a spur east was also used to service the fire lookout built in 1922 on Mt Ashland (first called Siskiyou Peak, then Ashland Butte and Ashland Peak). Various mountain bikers and hikers re-discovered the trail in the 1980s and 90s and it has become increasingly popular because of its amazing elevation.
In 2009, AWTA asked permission from the Forest Service to work on Time Warp, the first time that the FS had “blessed” the trail with any kind of official status. AWTA added Time Warp to the Trail Master Plan for the Ashland Watershed in 2011 that became the basis for incorporation in the eventual 2015 Ashland Trails Plan. Approval of that plan cemented the trail’s status as bonafide system trail.
As of this writing, the lower part of the trail is being re-routed, per the stipulations in the above trails plan.
Written by Torsten Heycke 05/16/2020