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South Cottonwood Creek to Fox Creek Ranger Station

Intermediate/Difficult
 3.4 (7) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A ride along and through the creek for hot days.


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Map Key

12.2

Miles

19.6

KM

100%

Singletrack

6,611' 2,015 m

High

5,756' 1,754 m

Low

978' 298 m

Up

977' 298 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

18%

Max Grade (10°)

Dogs Off-leash

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Overview

This is an intermediate length and technical ride that is great for days when it's hot out. You'll cross through the creek 4 times (or carry your bike across a log bridge) and pedal through the woods, providing much-needed coverage from the heat of the sun throughout the vast majority of the ride.

Need to Know

This is bear country; bring bear spray!

Description

To get there, follow South Cottonwood Road out of town and take a left onto Cottonwood Canyon Road (dirt road) for about two miles to the trailhead, which will be on your right. There is a small parking lot that can hold about 10-15 cars; if this fills up, you can simply park along the road.

Start at the parking lot trailhead and make your way up the switchbacks and through the woods. The first 2.5 miles to the first junction (with the Wheeler Gulch Trail) is highly used by hikers, equestrians, and mountain bikers alike so is best utilized during off-peak times. The singletrack is wide and non-technical for this part.

After the first junction (continue straight to stay on the South Cottonwood Creek Trail), the next 3.5 miles has rocky sections, especially around the 4-4.5-mile mark, but then opens up again to smooth singletrack in and out through the woods and fields of flowers.

After 6 miles of riding, there will be another junction with the History Rock Trail. From here, if you take a left on the Fox Creek Ranger Station Connector, following the signs for the cabin, in about 0.5 mile you can come across a forest service cabin and have lunch and relax for awhile, before turning around and coming back the way you came.

Contacts

Shared By:

Drew Kilz

Trail Ratings

  3.4 from 7 votes

#2853

Overall
  3.4 from 7 votes
5 Star
0%
4 Star
57%
3 Star
29%
2 Star
14%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#44

in Montana

#2,853

Overall
109 Views Last Month
3,002 Since Jul 2, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
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75%
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25%
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Photos

Alpine Glow South Cottonwood
Aug 27, 2018 near Four Co…, MT
2nd creek crossing, at high water time of year.
Nov 20, 2018 near Bozeman, MT
Heading back home
Jul 2, 2015 near Bozeman, MT
Riding the smooth portion of the trail in the dense, cool forest
Jul 2, 2015 near Bozeman, MT
One of the numerous creek crossings (there are also log bridges).
Jul 2, 2015 near Bozeman, MT
Riding through one of the few open field sections on this trail.
Jul 2, 2015 near Bozeman, MT

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Check-Ins

Aug 9, 2019
Chris Pierce
Super wet. Mellow early descent, some hike a bike about half way up. Would be fun on hot day - lots of shade
Jul 7, 2018
Bruce Kingham
Jul 20, 2017
Warren G
Jul 16, 2017
Lee Randall
Feb 25, 2017
Michelle Clark-Conley