ElevationAscent: 1,661' 506 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 7,653' 2,333 m
Low: 5,993' 1,827 m
GradeAvg Grade: 8% (5°)
Max Grade: 19% (11°)
Current trail conditions
Popular rides nearby
South Cottonwood Creek to Fox Creek Ranger Station
12.2 mi 19.6 km • Out and Back • 978 ft Ascent 297.98 m Ascent
Singletrack Four Corners, MT( 6 )
20.4 mi 32.8 km • Out and Back • 1,473 ft Ascent 448.92 m Ascent
Singletrack Bozeman, MT( 7 )
9.2 mi 14.9 km • Loop • 1,826 ft Ascent 556.5 m Ascent
Singletrack Bozeman, MT( 8 )
Sypes Canyon to Middle Cottonwood
7.6 mi 12.3 km • Point to Point • 2,331 ft Ascent 710.55 m Ascent
Singletrack Bozeman, MT( 2 )
Bangtail Divide - IMBA EPIC
25.0 mi 40.2 km • Point to Point • 3,611 ft Ascent 1100.51 m Ascent
Singletrack Bozeman, MT( 39 )
North Fork Loop
8.2 mi 13.2 km • Loop • 1,450 ft Ascent 442.05 m Ascent
Singletrack Big Sky, MT( 2 )
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“A challenging climb on a fun trail.”— Colin Tuttle
If you head up South Cottonwood Creek Trail for about 2.6 miles, you'll see the turn for Wheeler Gulch Trail.
The up and down nature of riding the South Cottonwood Creek Trail changes character on the Wheeler Creek trail, where you'll climb for about 5 miles.
The first mile or two is beautiful, smooth trail in the woods. It looks like some people use it for freeride/downhill, so keep an eye up the trail.
After that, you'll hit some newly cut trail and head up rocky switchbacks for what feels like a long way. As the trail becomes newer, the bumpier and rockier it becomes. Enjoy the views, because they are few and far between, but they are breathtaking.
Once you hit the saddle below Wheeler Peak, the trail switches from rough singletrack to a fire road. I think most people stop here, but I felt like I was cheating if I didn't hit the high point of the saddle. To reach the summit, head up the road a little more and take a right. You'll come to a clearing in the woods and BOOM! You made it! While not spectacular, the summit is a satisfying end point.
If you plan on going over 10mph on the descent, it's recommended that you have a little suspension. I've made some poor choices in my life but riding down this on a hardtail was probably #1 of all time.
Either way, enjoy the solitude all the way back to South Cottonwood Creek Trail, and the parking area.
Biked this trail?
We need help with the following missing trail information:
Need to Know, Features, E-Bikes Allowed
Land Manager: USFS - Gallatin National Forest Office