Bozeman area trail recommendations- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    jones'in
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    Bozeman area trail recommendations

    Hey all,
    I've just recently started getting back into biking after about a 10 year hiatus. 10 years ago, I wasn't married and rode really hard all the time. Now that I'm getting back into it, I've ramped up pretty quickly. The current dilemma is that I got back into biking as a fun way to spend some time exploring the mountains with my wife. She's never ridden (until just recently) and I'm having trouble picking good trails for her to learn on. I grew up in the Missoula area and I'm pretty familiar with the variety of trails available over there. Now that I live in Bozeman, however, it's been really hit or miss picking trails for her to ride with me.

    For example:
    I'd recently heard about the Bangtail Divide trail, with descriptions centered around the nice 'rolling' hills and gentle climbs. So, sight unseen, I took my wife out to the Stone creek trailhead on Sunday and we proceeded to start the climb up the switchbacks. Well, after about a mile of switchbacks, she'd had enough and we turned back around. Was this a bit ambitious? Is it easier to ride this trail from Brackett Creek -> Stone Creek vs. the way we started? I'm going to go back by myself this week and ride the trail to scout it out, but recommendations are welcome.

    Any other trail recommendations for beginners would be welcome as well. My wife's really excited about learning to ride and I'm afraid that the route's I'm picking (blindly, for now, until I get more familiar with the local trails) are scaring her away.

    Thanks,
    --Ben
    Last edited by venom600; 08-21-2006 at 09:00 PM.

  2. #2
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    The climb up to the divide is probably easier from the Bracket Ck end than from the Stone Ck (switchbacks) end.

    Easier yet would be to ride up Olsen Ck road then go north over Grassy Mtn, down to Bracket and then ride the paved road back to your car. You could also go south to Stone Ck etc but the ride down to Bracket is just so much fun...

    Even easier to drive up Olsen Ck and do an out and back, in which case going south is probably more scenic.

    Up in Hyalite Canyon, Hood to Lick Ck is an easy 10 mile ride except for the last 1/4 mile which gets rocky. Also the History Rock trail is pretty beginner friendly as long as you ride up Langhor road and come down the trail. Almost all the rides around here have long climbing dirt road stretches which can be disoncerting to a beginner although the alternative is a more technically demanding climb up the trail portions.

    Congrats on bringing someone new into the sport.

  3. #3
    jones'in
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    Quote Originally Posted by dir-T
    Easier yet would be to ride up Olsen Ck road then go north over Grassy Mtn, down to Bracket and then ride the paved road back to your car. You could also go south to Stone Ck etc but the ride down to Bracket is just so much fun...
    Thanks for all the recommendations. I actually got impatient and ended up doing this ride tonight by myself (a scouting mission). Parked at the bottom of Olson Creek and rode up the road then took off out over Grassy Mtn and down to Bracket Creek. You're right, the ride down into Bracket Creek was a frickin' blast. The view from the top of Grassy Mtn was pretty nice too (see below). I think the ride up Olson Creek road might be a bit much for her for now, but we might either try some out and backs from the top of Olson creek or just do a shuttle w/ 2 cars if we go up with a group of people.

    Here's a couple of pics I snapped at the top of Grassy Mtn. (self portrait )




    --Ben

  4. #4
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    venom do yourself a favor and buy a beartooth publishing mapthe one you want is the bozeman, big sky, west yellowstone out door rec map. its got all the ride dir-t is talking about plus a bunch elevation profs and shaded and contoured topo. this will get you started and then you can begin to explore and mix and match good luck

  5. #5
    jones'in
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    Will do, thanks for the recommendation. I bought a copy of Topo! and I've been using that a bit, but sometimes it's hard to pick trails off of the topo maps without knowing what's *actually* there, ya know. So having some trail descriptions to cross reference with the USGS topo maps would be good.

  6. #6
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    Venom youll be surprised this guy is putting togather top quality stuff. The only map youll need. I am familliar with the full range of 15 min quads, but this lil beartooth pub. map is great. grab one youll see what I mean.
    He just put out one for the beartooths and he has one other out for the B/T bridger teton.
    local guy out of billings, wheather proof paper the whole nine real quality product. jeebus i sound like a sales men anyways im sure youll love it

  7. #7
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    Dir-T is right about driving up Olson Creek and doing an out and back to the south. Ride out to the point where you find the overlook into Stone Creek. That's 6 miles from the top of Olson Creek and makes a great beginner ride.

    Another beginner ride starts at about 4 miles up the Fairy Lake road. At a kink in the road, another road tees in from the north. This road actually goes only around the corner to a gate where about 3 cars can park. Ride beyond the gate. It will take you out to Flathead Pass road if you stick on it long enough. Nobody goes out there, and the road pretty much stays level, without much elev gain or loss. The land was logged a few years ago, but the views are real good anyway. Fairy Lake road is nasty, drive something high clearance.

    PM me if you want the goods on some secret stuff. Greg

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