“An eight mile loop with challenges, climbs, technical descent, scenery, and a cruise along the creek.”
— Phil Hess
This loop highlights some climbs, scenery and challenges representative of Big Sky riding. All in one compact package.
Need to Know
Watch for hikers and horse traffic as you descend beside North Fork creek. It's a popular route for multi-use along this corridor.
This ride begins at the North Fork Trailhead, and starts with a climb up Road #166B. After about two miles the singletrack begins with the Ridge Trail #403
. The trail involves several steep, but thankfully short climbs, interspersed with some flatter cruising and views to the alpine terrain above Bear Basin.
Where the Ridge Trail #403
ends on a Beehive subdivision gravel road, turn right then take the next right on another road. Almost immediately, look for a trail to the right, which is North Fork Tie #402
. It's easy to miss. This descends steeply at times with some tight and sometimes loose switchbacks. Watch your speed as there are sometimes downed trees along the way. Don't forget to take in the views up into Bear Basin from the open meadows. At the bottom, there is a log bridge across the creek.
From here, continue right and downhill along North Fork Trail #16
. Going left heads shortly heads up to a Wilderness Area that's closed to bikes. Continue right for a descent along the creek. It's mostly fast, flowy and smooth. After crossing back over the creek, follow the doubletrack, and signed route back to the North Fork trailhead.