“Rugged Montana terrain, pretty steep going up but oh, the going back down is worth it!”
— Al Pendergrass
Bring your climbing legs, there is plenty of steepness, but strong riders can ride it all. (The rest of us may have an occasional push.) You'll ride through open meadows, beautiful wildflowers if you time it right, and pine forests, some green, some burnt. The views are pretty incredible up high. Rocks exist, especially on the upper sections of the trail. Did I mention it is kind of steep in places? Just remember you get to go back down!
Need to Know
You can do this as an out-and-back (as mapped) or you can connect with the West Pine Trail at the upper end, which heads to the northeast. You have to cross a couple of fence lines, be sure to close any gates you opened. The Forest Service road to the Lower North Dry Creek Trailhead is a bit rough in spots and when wet should only be attempted in an AWD vehicle. Early season (June-ish) you should expect significant deadfall, wet/muddy sections of trail and you will likely be stopped by snow drifts up high. The best source for local conditions is Timber Trails in Livingston.
The ride starts on the Eightmile Trail #132
which was rebuilt several years ago to take out the worst of the hike-a-bike but it is still plenty steep in spots. It is all manageable but don't be dismayed if you have to stop to catch your breath in the first mile or so - most of us do and more than once. The grade settles down a bit on the upper section making it easier to appreciate the spectacular country through which you are riding.
Continue west onto the North Dry Divide #135
which was also substantially rebuilt and rerouted over the last few years and is now a class ride. The lower sections of the trail are in pine forest, steep in places but good trail tread. The upper sections are mostly above treeline, very rocky in spots but manageable if you bring your A game. And of course, going back down is a hoot.