The Monroe trailhead is located at the south end of Main Street next to the EMS building. This trailhead is very popular as you can leave in several directions with either big or small machines. You have your choice of heading southwest toward Marysville or southeast toward Monroe Mountain.
Trail #78 is our recommended trail. It heads southeast onto Monroe Mountain and will take you both up and back and offers an easy ride to Manning Reservoir.
There are also plenty of side trails you can visit on the #78. The first is Fitzgerald Park or the Monroe Peak overlook. You will also come to Paiute #01 just before reaching Manning Meadows, where you can fish, kayak, and camp. There’s also a brand new restroom at Manning Meadows.
Less than 2 miles further on the #01 heading south is a turn-off to beautiful Barneys Lake, which has tiger trout and asks anglers to use flies and lures only. If you’re lucky, you may get to see the cutthroat trout spawning in the stream in the middle of the west side of the lake in early June.
EXAMPLE GPS Coordinates: 41°24’12.2″N 2°10’26.5″E
This area is also home to the state record elk shot in 2008 and named Spider Bull. So, don’t be surprised if you see really nice bulls and large herds of cows. Mule deer are also abundant in this area, and evenings are the best time to catch a photograph of either one.
If you’re hungry when you come off the mountain, check out Bullies for lunch or dinner. There’s also one gas station in Monroe. If you don’t have an OHV or you need to rent an extra one, there’s an RV park near the trailhead that rents them.
Another option from the Monroe Trailhead goes to the same places but is only open to machines 50” or less. You’ll leave south from the trailhead on trail #24 and ride to PST #65, also known as the Sawmill Trail and which is narrow with steep drop-offs. One of the nice things about this trail is all the signage along it that tells the history of the trail and how it was the original trail on and off the mountain. In the spring, the upper hills are aglow with wildflowers.