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Salt Lake City Mountain Biking: 4 Best Trails In the Salt Lake Foothills

Discover the best Salt Lake City mountain bike trails with this guide written by a local shredder. Explore DH tracks, flow trails, and more.

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Salt Lake City is the capital of Utah and it sits at the base of the Wasatch Mountains. It’s known for its incredible outdoor access to some of the best mountain biking and skiing in the country. But while most mountain bikers head up into the mountains for most rides (such as the iconic Wasatch Over Wasatch, or WOW tour), the foothills around the city are home to some great Salt Lake City mountain biking singletrack and should definitely be on your bike-it list for when you visit

Whether you’re looking for rowdy downhill tracks, flowy singletrack, or cross-country terrain, there are options for every rider.

1. Bonneville Shoreline Trail (BST)

  • Trail difficulty: Beginner/Intermediate
  • Mileage: 15 miles one-way
  • Elevation gain: 2,500 ft south to north
  • Elevation loss: 2,222 ft south to north
  • Trail type: Out-and-back
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks, MTB Project (middle section)

The Bonneville Shoreline Trail, or BST for short, is one of the most popular trails in the Salt Lake Valley. This multi-use trail runs from the Idaho border in the north to the town of Nephi in central Utah, totaling 280 miles in length.

There are 15 miles of the BST Trail in the Salt Lake Valley and since it’s one of the most popular trails near SLC, it is heavily trafficked. But don’t let that deter you! BST is the backbone of the Salt Lake City mountain biking trail network and provides great views of downtown Salt Lake, making it a must-ride.

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It’s common to find hikers, trail runners, mountain bikers, and gravel bikers all on the same section of singletrack. The BST is also how you access the majority of the trails mentioned in this post.

There are a number of access points on the BST so you can choose to do a portion of the trail or do the full out-and-back. If you do the full out and back, it’s about 30 miles and 5,000ft of climbing.

2. Bobsled

  • Trail difficulty: Intermediate/Expert
  • Mileage: 1.6 miles
  • Elevation gain: 68 ft
  • Elevation loss: 922 ft
  • Trail type: One-way downhill
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks, MTB Project

After the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, the second most popular mountain bike trail in Salt Lake is Bobsled. This is a black diamond trail and rightly so. It is called Bobsled because of its high-speed banked turns. The top of the trail is moderately technical and at the bottom, you are greeted by a mixture of jumps and drops over old rusted out cars. It is a great mixture of tech and flow riding.

This trail is heavily trafficked and it’s common to find a handful of mountain bikers queuing up at the drop-in at any time of the day.

Dry Creek to Bobsled Loop

  • Route difficulty: Intermediate
  • Mileage: 5.6 miles
  • Elevation gain/loss: 1,106 ft
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks
  • Route directions: To access Bobsled, park at Popperton Park and climb up the BST trail then descend down Bobsled.
  • Do more: If you are feeling up to it, add in a lap of Terror Ridge (see below) to extend your ride.

3. Terror Ridge

  • Trail difficulty: Expert
  • Mileage: 1 mile
  • Elevation gain: 75 ft
  • Elevation loss: 760 ft
  • Trail type: One-way downhill
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks

Out of all of the Salt Lake City mountain biking trails, Terror Ridge is by far the most difficult. It is rated a black diamond, but it is could easily be a double black diamond. This trail is very steep and descends along the ridgeline of a hill. There are technical rock gardens at the bottom, but there are no mandatory jumps or drops.

Terror Ridge provides great views of Salt Lake City and is best ridden early in the season or in the fall after some rain. In the middle of the summer, it becomes very dry and loose making it tough to get traction on the very steep fall line descents. That being said, if you’re up to the challenge and have the brake control it’s a must-ride!

Terror Ridge Loop

  • Route difficulty: Advanced
  • Mileage: 10.2 miles
  • Elevation gain/loss: 2,381 ft
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks
  • Route directions: Park at Popperton Park and pedal up BST to Twin Peaks Access. Once you’ve skidded your way to the bottom, pedal back up BST and add on a quick lap of Bobsled to maximize your descending!
  • Route notes: the route above starts at a slightly different parking area nearby

4. Lost Lad

  • Trail difficulty: Beginner/Intermediate
  • Mileage: 1.2 miles
  • Elevation gain: 75 ft
  • Elevation loss: 649 ft
  • Trail type: One-way downhill
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks

Lost Lad can be accessed from both Salt Lake and North Salt Lake. This Salt Lake City mountain biking trail is a great precursor to Bobsled, so if jumping over old cars doesn’t sound like fun to you (yet), give Lost Lad a try. It’s very flowy and has a bunch of 1 to 3-foot gap jumps to practice your skills on.

Lost Lad doesn’t get ridden too often, so it tends to stay in good shape. When you are descending through the trees it’s easy to forget just how close you are to the Salt Lake metropolitan area!

Lost Lad Loop

  • Route difficulty: Intermediate
  • Mileage: 5.7 miles
  • Elevation gain/loss: 1,002 ft
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks
  • Route directions: There are several ways to access Lost Lad. The route above starts at the Wild Rose Trailhead and climbs up Wild Rose Loop to Eagle Crest. From Eagle Crest, descent Lost Lad and finish the loop on BST.
  • Make it longer: If you want to add miles and climbing to your route, descend Nsl Flow to Wild Rose Dh and then climb back up to Wild Rose to connect back into Eagle Crest.

Salt Lake City mountain biking offers unparalleled access to outdoor recreation in the Wasatch Mountain Range east of the city.

However, if you are a mountain biker it is worth exploring the Salt Lake Foothills because there are some great trails just minutes outside the city that stay rideable at least 8 months out of the year!

Have you explored any Salt Lake City mountain biking trails? Which are your favorites? Which trails did we leave out? Let us know in the comments below!

Discover the best Salt Lake City mountain bike trails with this guide written by a local shredder. Explore DH tracks, flow trails, and more.
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