Two-Wheeling it in the Kootenay Rockies

By Meghan Tabor

Mountain biking in the Kootenay Rockies is an experience like none other! Here are some of my favourite Kootenay rides that you’ll want to rip this summer! In no particular order…

Kuskanux
This trail, located in Nakusp, is 16 km out-and-back (8 km each way) through a beautiful lush green forest, above a rushing river. The trail can have some technical climbs and descents, but for the most part, it would be fun to ride for any intermediate mountain biker.

Hot tip: Start at the Nakusp Hot Springs side of the trail, because then you get to end with a well-deserved soak! 

7summits

7 Summits
Shown above, this Rossland trail is world famous, and for a good reason! Not for the faint of heart, this point-to-point 30-km technical trail takes you into the alpine across the Rossland Range with 360-degree panoramic views for almost the entire grunt. For those keeners wanting more, tack on the Dewdney Descent (adds an extra 5 km to the day and will have your hands crying for a breather by the end)!

Hot tip: Park at the end of the trail, and set up a shuttle with Mountain Shuttle Rossland to get your group to the trailhead.

Keystone

Keystone Standard Basin
This trail in Revelstoke is a 22-km out-and-back hiking turned (mostly) biking trail in the Selkirk Mountains, 50 km north of Revelstoke. The trail starts about 16 km up a logging road, so you’ve already gained quite a bit of elevation from the get go with your vehicle. A short (but steep and techy) climb will get you into the alpine relatively quickly, and then you’re cruising beautiful single track for about 10 km to the cabin.

Hot top: This trail has a short riding window due to snow, and if you hit it right (mid-August/early Sept), the alpine wildflowers will be in full bloom. 

Galena

Butter
This New Denver trail is a tough one to find, but definitely worth the search. None of the locals seem to have any idea that it exists, but it’s a great trail that hardly ever gets ridden. It begins at the Rosebury Provincial Park Campground with a ride (or shuttle) up a seemingly endless logging road. Note that this trail is unsanctioned, so ride at your own risk!

Hot tip: For a family friendly ride, head into downtown New Denver to tackle the Galena Trail, a flat and wide mountain bike trail that includes a cable car river crossing (with your bike)!

Canyon Creek
Part of the Moonraker trail system, the Canyon Creek trail in Golden is a must ride for anyone bringing their bike to town. This is a fast and flowy descent along the edge of a 200-m deep canyon, which starts with a 5.5-km climb on Talus Creek FSR. Ride the whole trail down to the end of Canyon Creek Road, or cut off half way to make your way back through the Moonraker trails.

Hot tip: Watch out for goats on the canyon edge.

Johnson

The Johnson and Kloosifer Trails
These Invermere trails are great for those just getting into mountain biking, or for those wanting something a bit smoother than the trails mentioned above. Shown above, the Johnson Trail takes you above the Toby Canyon, offering spectacular views. When you combine it with the Kloosifer, you’re looking at about a 20-km buff and flowy ride.

Hot tip: Make sure you bring enough water for these trails, as there is none available anywhere close by.

Photos: courtesy of Destination BC and Meghan Tabor.

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