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1.2 mile 2.0 kilometer point to point


Ascent: 59' 18 m
Descent: -98' -30 m
High: 1,014' 309 m
Low: 949' 289 m


Avg Grade: 2% (1°)
Max Grade: 6% (3°)


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Trail shared by Randy Rasa


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A wide gravel trail that traverses the majority length of the Lehigh Portland Trails property.

Randy Rasa

Electric Mountain Bikes Unknown

Features -none-

Family Friendly Easy grades, wide, smooth trail surface, lots of interesting things to see.


The Backbone Trail is a wide gravel trail that traverses the majority of the Lehigh Portland Trails property. The trail is about 11 feet wide, and is surfaced with fine limestone screenings. The surface is smooth and fast, and handles rain well. Even when the singletrack is muddy, the gravel trails can still be ridden.

The Backbone connects the Eastern Trailhead to the Western Trailhead, and passes through a variety of terrain, from densely-packed cedars, to hardwood forest, to riparian woodlands, to flat grassy stretches along Elm Creek. There is a lot of nice scenery along this trail, including expansive views of both Lake Lehigh and Elm Creek. Part of the path runs atop on old railroad line, the Missouri Pacific, which serviced the Lehigh Portland Cement plant back in the day.

Most of the other trails in the network branch off from the Backbone, including the East Loop, the West Spur, Creekside, Mt. Lehigh, the South Loop, the Mountain Goats, and Lakeside West. At the western trailhead, it connects to the Connector Trail leading to the Southwind Rail Trail through Elm Creek Park South.

The Backbone Trail is a great trail for families, walkers, those with limited mobility, and bicyclists lacking mountain bikes suitable for the singletrack trails. There are a couple of nice downhills headed west (and the corresponding uphills headed east).

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We need help with the following missing trail information:

ADA Accessible, Need to Know, Dogs Allowed, Features, Electic Mountain Bikes Allowed


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in Kansas


1 Views Last Month
36 Since Jun 16, 2016



This fantastic bridge was moved from another location and placed here by the volunteers that built the trail!
Jul 25, 2016 near Iola, KS
The "Backbone" trail is flat and great for a family ride!
Jul 25, 2016 near Iola, KS
This is a great family trail!
Jul 25, 2016 near Iola, KS
The rock cairn, a small arch, and a rustic bench on the Mt. Lehigh Trail at Lehigh Portland Trails.
Jun 15, 2016 near Iola, KS
A young boy prepares to test his skills on a short drop-off along the South Loop Trail at Lehigh Portland Trails.
Jun 15, 2016 near Iola, KS
There's a short climb along this part of the trail.
Jul 25, 2016 near Iola, KS

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