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  1. #1
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    Whitefish/Kalispell 'Big' ride?

    Planning a trip in August, looking for a 4-5 hour ride with 4-5k vert. Are there any 'must do' epics like that?
    I poked around on trailforks, but didn't see an obvious route.
    Thoughts?

    (Not that that is a particularly big or epic ride, but you know what I mean! )
    Last edited by rideit; 01-01-2019 at 09:28 PM.
    StokePimpin' ain't easy

  2. #2
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    Depending on what kind of ride you are looking for... This summer I did a ride from Herron park to the top of Blacktail Mountain and back. Was about 40 miles and Strava had the vert at 6500. A little bit of double track, but otherwise good fun singletrack with options to add additional trails at Herron park for a few more miles/vert.

    Alpine trail 7 also comes to mind.

    How much suffering do you want to do? I have a friend who really loves to climb and probably has a dozen or so that fit your criteria.

    Seth

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  3. #3
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    You might wanna wait and see what fire season is doing before you commit to anything. El Nio year.
    No longer stuck.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuckathuntermtn View Post
    Just an uneducated guess.

  4. #4
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    Alpine Trail 7 comes to mind. I'm sure that toast will chime in here and have better recommendations.
    It sucks to suck.

  5. #5
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    up 6 mile peak trail (1000ft double track, 3000 ft single track, mostly rideable.

    across on Alpine 7

    down Hall lakes
    https://www.trailforks.com/trails/hall-lake/

    then beer/ food in columbia falls at
    https://backslopebrewing.com/



    also worth emailing the staff at whitefish bike retreat for current conditions
    http://www.whitefishbikeretreat.com/


  6. #6
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    funny, I look at trailforks for that area and see weeks worth of big rides. I really need to get up to 10 lakes area next summer. Thayer & Alpine 7 sure look awesome. But yeah, local advice on trail conditions would be awesome. Seems like most epic rides might be point to point.

  7. #7
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    No kidding. Thought that was all Big W, but I guess I need to get up to the Swans.
    No longer stuck.

    Quote Originally Posted by stuckathuntermtn View Post
    Just an uneducated guess.

  8. #8
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    Mntlion's suggestion is a good one.

    If you can do a partial shuttle, napa point, north along alpine 7, and then down wire trail is arguably the best ride in the area. Sometimes the descent is brushy though.

    Also involving a partial shuttle: doris creek, north on alpine 7, and down the front side (west) of Columbia. It's a bit shorter with less climbing, but it's all open to moto so it'll be clear, and it's still a decent ride. Less remote than napa or hall, but very rideable and fun trails. And it's easy to pedal to backslope brewing from the finish.

    Ten lakes up towards eureka has a bunch of great options. Tbd whether it'll still be open to bikes next summer.

    Shoot me a pm if you want more details or other suggestions.

    Also check out flatheadamb.org - local bike club. Sometimes they set up rides / shuttles on rides noted in here. Usually free to anyone. Their stuff probably won't be on the calendar until early summer though.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 406 View Post
    funny, I look at trailforks for that area and see weeks worth of big rides.
    Yup, the trails are there...but without a little beta, you can get skunked...ride up the good dh, etc/etc.
    thanks, guys!
    StokePimpin' ain't easy

  10. #10
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    Think I found my ride. This looks amazing, 5k up and 8k down.
    Anyone wanna join?

    https://www.trailforks.com/route/nap...lpine-7-route/
    StokePimpin' ain't easy

  11. #11
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    Bump this when the time approaches. I have been wanting to do that ride for a few years.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Think I found my ride. This looks amazing, 5k up and 8k down.
    Anyone wanna join?

    https://www.trailforks.com/route/nap...lpine-7-route/
    Yeah, bump this when you're in the neighborhood. I'm always down to do that ride - it's a good one.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Think I found my ride. This looks amazing, 5k up and 8k down.
    Anyone wanna join?

    https://www.trailforks.com/route/nap...lpine-7-route/
    I'm definitely interested. Keep me posted as we get closer!

    Seth

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  14. #14
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    SUMMERBBIKALISPELL?
    StokePimpin' ain't easy

  15. #15
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    Massive potential in the north end of the Swan but most trails are fucked from absolutely no maintenance due to the awful rec program run out of Hungry Horse. South end of the Swan is good for sure. Some really good stuff around Eureka got nuked by fire and is slowly getting back into shape, but some of those trails are full on giggle fests when in condition! I dream of a full time non profit private trail crew in the Flathead/Kootenai. Place could be World class backcountry riding with some good saw teams.


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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by hick View Post
    Massive potential in the north end of the Swan but most trails are fucked from absolutely no maintenance due to the awful rec program run out of Hungry Horse. South end of the Swan is good for sure. Some really good stuff around Eureka got nuked by fire and is slowly getting back into shape, but some of those trails are full on giggle fests when in condition! I dream of a full time non profit private trail crew in the Flathead/Kootenai. Place could be World class backcountry riding with some good saw teams.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    I'm trying to line up funding through the bike club to do exactly that.

    The club owns a saw and a nice brushcutter. We just need to find the funding to pay someone to run them. We've done some stuff with volunteers, but most of the trails in the swan would require a multi-day mission.

  17. #17
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    If the trails are open to Moto, Steve from PencoKalispell has a crew that cuts out those trails regularly. Btw, Alpine7 from CreviceLks N gets cleared by motos... He and his crew do a good job!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by tellybele View Post
    If the trails are open to Moto, Steve from PencoKalispell has a crew that cuts out those trails regularly. Btw, Alpine7 from CreviceLks N gets cleared by motos... He and his crew do a good job!
    The moto guys do great work, but most of napa to wire is closed to moto.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    I'm trying to line up funding through the bike club to do exactly that.

    The club owns a saw and a nice brushcutter. We just need to find the funding to pay someone to run them. We've done some stuff with volunteers, but most of the trails in the swan would require a multi-day mission.
    Fuck ya, Toast!! Good for you guys, pretty overwhelming backlog, but there has to be a way to turn it around. Id like to do a similar thing here in Park county but have just been clearing on my own as it is easier just to get shit done.


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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by hick View Post
    ...Park county but have just been clearing on my own as it is easier just to get shit done.
    I haven't ridden at all in Park County despite living in BZN for 18 yrs, and plan to change that this summer...

    I would be happy to provide some additional hands/labor and beer for a ride or two in exchange for the opportunity to pick your brain over which trails to explore first (based on giggle factor and amount of downfall.)

  21. #21
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    Shit I'd prob be down for an excuse to head north.

    Also echo statement above that I need to explore more on the Livingstoned side. Been meaning to hit that newish section over off trail ck.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    I'm trying to line up funding through the bike club to do exactly that.

    The club owns a saw and a nice brushcutter. We just need to find the funding to pay someone to run them. We've done some stuff with volunteers, but most of the trails in the swan would require a multi-day mission.
    You need a volunteer weekend party/ride. We get the Lionhead area cleared that way, 50 ish people turned out last year. I'd love an excuse to come up and ride in the Swan.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by panchosdad View Post
    You need a volunteer weekend party/ride. We get the Lionhead area cleared that way, 50 ish people turned out last year. I'd love an excuse to come up and ride in the Swan.
    We do quite a few volunteer days, but those are pretty limited to reasonably accessible areas. Trails that need brushing 10+ miles from any access point pretty much need a paid crew. Or maybe some very dedicated volunteers who are willing to put in an overnight, but so far those people haven't surfaced.

  24. #24
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    Alpine 7 trail is really special, it feels like you're riding in Glacier Park. I wouldn't recommend it unless a saw crew has been through or its more like a 20mi hike, you should be fine by August if its on the calendar for the year. And as Toast mentioned, all the trails off the ridge can be very brushy, those enduro hand guard things would be pretty prefect. It also holds some pretty big drifts late in the year, but again- you should be fine in August. Theres water up there all summer.

    The Blacktail-Herron trail is a different sort, I don't know that I would recommend the whole trail as an out and back- lots of up-down, and a longish road section in the middle- though it makes for a short shuttle, either way some cool sections and plenty fun, maybe a good ride for the day after alpine 7?

  25. #25
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    There are trails like this all over NW MT. The tread is still there it will just take a few weeks of hate sawing to properly brush out. This trail is super close to Columbia Falls and accesses an awesome ridgeline trail.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    It just took packing my bike through 12 high alder and Yew brush to get there. The Smokey Ridge (I think that was the name) National Rec trail had enormous potential for loops and a through ride, but... Its fucked.
    Fuck MAGA, Make Our Trails Great Again!


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