The experience of mountain biking last year across Northern and Central Idaho has left a permanent dent into my being. I became addicted. After leaving such a good impression, I had to say yes to exploring the mountain biking and family activities at Grand Targhee which is located in Wyoming but only accessible from Idaho. It was epic and the trip fueled my love of hitting the trails on a bike. It also reinforced the idea that Idaho is a state worth adding to your family bucket list. Idaho also happens to hug the bottom of Canada which means quick and easy access to biking adventures for Canadians.
Full Disclosure: This post was possible after multiple collaborations with Ski Idaho. I am so excited to be able to share this biking road trip with you. All the opinions in this post are my own.
Silver Mountain Resort
Located close to the British Columbia border and only six hours from Calgary, Alberta and five hours from Kelowna is Silver Mountain Resort. The resort boasts North America’s longest gondola ride and the downhill mountain biking is exhilarating. The trails are more extreme and will satisfy those seeking an adrenaline rush. For those not interested in downhill biking, there are hiking trails, a playground at the top of the gondola and an indoor waterpark accessible to the public and those staying at the resort. Learn more about Silver Mountain Resort here.
The Hiawatha Trail
Not far from Silver Mountain is the Hiawatha Trail. Do not let 15 miles scare you from bringing your family on this scenic cross country trail. This beautiful biking trail goes slightly downhill across seven train tressels and through 10 train tunnels. It is the perfect ride for most abilities. Our three and five year old had a blast on the trails. Learn more about biking the Hiawatha Trail here.
Located five hours south of Silver Mountain near the quaint beach town of McCall is Jug Mountain Ranch. Jug Mountain Ranch has a series of cross-country and downhill trails for varying abilities. They even have a shuttle during the summer to transport you to the trail system at the top. Learn more about biking at Jug Mountain here.
City of Rocks
The next stop is the City of Rocks just another 5 hours away. On your drive, stop by Reed’s Dairy in Idaho Falls for some ice cream or one of their milkshakes that is enhanced with potato shavings. Make sure to go around the building to check out the farm animals while you stretch your legs!
I first heard about the biking at the City of Rocks after adventuring in Grand Targhee. When we visited this unique alien-looking landscape we went climbing. It was epic and we keep on trying to find ways to make it back to the area. Apparently the biking at the City of Rocks is just as good as climbing which makes it worth mentioning in this post. Make sure to bring your own bike to explore the biking trails as there are not many amenities nearby. Learn more about mountain biking in Idaho here.
Kelly Canyon Resort
Just three hours north of the City of Rocks is Kelly Canyon Resort. It is worth a quick stop for more experienced mountain bikers looking for something a little different. The trails here are raw and slightly wild as the new resort just started building their trails. There is lots of promise as the community has come together to work to build up a trail system of over 18 miles. If possible bring your own bike as they currently only rent out hardtail bikes. Learn more about biking Kelly Canyon Resort here.
Grand Targhee Resort
Finally, just a one and a half-hour drive northeast you will find Grand Targhee Resort. Although the resort is located in Wyoming, it is only accessible from the town Alta in Idaho. Grand Targhee is the perfect place to take the whole family and it is worth spending a few days exploring the trail systems and the resort. They even have free trails for little kids on balance bikes to use! Pay to use the chairlift and bike down their downhill mountain bike trails or explore the cross-country trails for free. There are a ton of other activities for families and I mention them all in the Grand Targhee post. Learn more about visiting Grand Targhee Resort here.