Ruby (South)

5 Star Route / Ridden and Reviewed by Gravel Girl & Captain ‘O

Ruby is a historic ghost town just 4 miles north of the Mexico border, with a caretaker and surrounded by the Coronado National Forest. There’s two roads leading into Ruby – one from the southeast and one from the northwest; local gravel cyclists will tell you that they are both amazing gravel routes.  We found the road from the south, moving east to the west to be stunning, punchy, and scenic. Check the Ruby website to find out all the details for when you can have a tour. (You can’t just show up and expect to get in.) The town is loaded with awesome history — a mining camp from the early 1900s, with the first strike of gold in the late 1870s, and real wild west drama.    

Ride Details
If you know bike math, you know this is not going to be a speedy course: 29 miles and 3,700 feet of climbing (maybe 4200 feet, depending on which GPS device you trust). All gravel. Some washboarded, some cobblestone … mixed with a few shallow wash crossings.   **Read More

Adventure / Gravel Route

– Out & Back: 29 miles / 3700 ft gain
– Surface: ~ 100% gravel
eBike Friendly: Yes
– Location: ~ 1 hour, 5 min south of Tucson, Arizona
– Course by: Captain “O”
– Published: December 2019

Difficulty / Strava Metrics

Moderate. There are no long climbs with several thousand feet of gain along the route. Instead, it is a continuously rolling course with little “sit and spin” time. Your mind and body are “on” all day long; picking the best line to avoid washboard or rock cobble. But at times, you just need to ride through it. **Gravel Girls ride metrics.

When we like to ride this …

Late fall to early spring when the skies are clear and the temps are moderate. We would avoid this route in summer as it is very exposed to the sun. Wind could also make this route brutal. Do the route when the ghost town of Ruby is open for touring, otherwise the turn around point will feel a bit anticlimactic.

The Start

White Rock Campground. Pit toilets.
Lat / Long: 31.393659, -111.089540

Food / Water

None


Downloads

Cue Sheet / GPX FileTCX File

Legend

Red = paved road
Brown = gravel / dirt road

For help with GPS files, the RideWithGPs mapping app and to learn how to download our routes for free, see the “Using Our Rides” page.

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