“A road climb to an aggressive cross-country trail in the heart of Silver Falls State Park.
— Christofer Harris
This beautiful trail is fun for riders of all abilities and the aggressive features have go-arounds. Children may find the first mile or so of Catamount Trail to be difficult.
A road climb to an "enhanced" cross-country trail through a beautiful stretch of woods. The Catamount Trail
has turns, berms, and rock features that are fun, without being too difficult for average cyclists. This trail opened in early 2016 and has already become a fast favorite.
- Catamount Trail and Newt Loop are two-way multi-use trails. Expect traffic in both directions.
- Requires a State Park Pass to access ($5/day; $30/year). Can be purchased at one of the day use areas.
Need to Know
- Only Upper Catamount Trail is directional. Newt Loop and Catamount Trail are both multi-directional and see use by bikers, hikers, and runners. Please be aware of your surroundings, and courteous to others.
- This trail is closed to horses. If you encounter equestrian users, please politely remind them this trail isn't designed for horse travel, and let park officials know as well.
- The gate at the trailhead is open from May 20 - Nov 1, so shuttling by vehicle is an option. Be aware, however, that Lookout Mountain Road gets rough in places, so all-wheel drive is recommended.
- Dogs are allowed if they listen to voice commands; be aware of others on the trail if you have an "overly friendly" pup!
From the 214 Trail
, head through the gate and begin climbing up Lookout Mountain Road
for roughly four miles. There are a few steeper sections along the road, but the total elevation gain is minimal. When you see the sign indicating "Shellburg Falls" to the right, hang a left onto Lost Creek Trail
for a very short distance to the top of Upper Catamount Trail
Upper Catamount Trail
is less than a mile, but a great way to start off the ride. It's fast and flowy, with a few rollers and berms thrown in for good measure. It exits onto Catamount Access Road
with the entrance to Catamount Trail
directly across the road. The first mile of Catamount Trail
is the roughest section, with some large rocks and roots to navigate. This section also has a few nice kickers, though all are optional (i.e., there are ride-arounds). Salem Area Trail Alliance (SATA) has done a great job of bridging or rock-bedding the many creek crossings, though a low gear is advisable to make the hill climbs that follow a bit easier.
Over the course of the trail you'll encounter a few trail intersections, but Catamount Trail
is easily distinguished as the main trail; just follow the signs and you're sure to stay on track. Catamount Trail
technically ends at its junction with Newt Loop
, which you can follow in either direction. The majority of riders complete it counter-clockwise, as this provides some additional mileage and a few optional lines that add to the fun. At the end of Newt Loop
, turn left and follow 214 Trail
a short distance back to the parking area.