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Trail Conditions
  • Unknown
  • Snow Groomed
  • Snow Packed
  • Snow Covered
  • Snow Cover Inadequate
  • Freeze/thaw Cycle
  • Icy
  • Prevalent Mud
  • Wet
  • Variable
  • Ideal
  • Dry
  • Very Dry
Trail Flow (Ridden Direction)
Trailforks scans users ridelogs to determine the most popular direction each trail is ridden. A good flowing trail network will have most trails flowing in a single direction according to their intension.
The colour categories are based on what percentage of riders are riding a trail in its intended direction.
  • > 96%
  • > 90%
  • > 80%
  • > 70%
  • > 50%
  • < 50%
  • bi-directional trail
  • no data
Trail Last Ridden
Trailforks scans ridelogs to determine the last time a trail was ridden.
  • < 2 days
  • < 1 week
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  • < 1 month
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  • > 6 months
Trail Ridden Direction
The intended direction a trail should be ridden.
  • Downhill Only
  • Downhill Primary
  • Both Directions
  • Uphill Primary
  • Uphill Only
  • One Direction
Contribute Details
Colors indicate trail is missing specified detail.
  • Description
  • Photos
  • Description & Photos
  • Videos
Trail Popularity ?
Trailforks scans ridelogs to determine which trails are ridden the most in the last 9 months. Trails are compared with nearby trails in the same city region with a possible 25 colour shades. Think of this as a heatmap, more rides = more kinetic energy = warmer colors.
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Radar Time
x Activity Recordings
Trailforks users anonymized public ridelogs from the past 6 months.
  • mountain biking recent
  • mountain biking (>6 month)
  • hiking (1 year)
  • moto (1 year)
Activity Recordings
Trailforks users anonymized public skilogs from the past 12 months.
  • Downhill Ski
  • Backcountry Ski
  • Nordic Ski
Jump Magnitude Heatmap
Heatmap of where riders jump on trails. Zoom in to see individual jumps, click circles to view jump details.
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      Welcome to North America's premier natural laboratory for testing tire performance on loose-over-hard conditions. The South Hills are Helena's backyard. With nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown, the South Hills trail network offers rides ranging from 3 to 50+ miles. The network is spread out across a series of four ridges separated by gulches.

      It's not uncommon to go for a ride without seeing anyone else, but you should expect to encounter other trail users. Trail etiquette is an evergreen topic, so please ride with respect and be courteous with other users. Slow down when you encounter hikers, yield if you're approaching them from the front, and be pleasant. These open lands are a patchwork of public and private ownership, and good trail etiquette helps maintain and expand our access.
      View region descriptions for other activity types
      Generic
      The South Hills are Helena's backyard. There are nearly nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown. The network is spread out across a series of four ridges that are separated by gulches.

      It's not uncommon to venture out without seeing anyone else, but you should expect to encounter other trail users. Please be courteous with other users as you enjoy our trails. These open lands are a patchwork of public and private ownership, and good trail etiquette helps maintain and expand our access.

      Mountain Bike
      Welcome to North America's premier natural laboratory for testing tire performance on loose-over-hard conditions. The South Hills are Helena's backyard. With nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown, the South Hills trail network offers rides ranging from 3 to 50+ miles. The network is spread out across a series of four ridges separated by gulches.

      It's not uncommon to go for a ride without seeing anyone else, but you should expect to encounter other trail users. Trail etiquette is an evergreen topic, so please ride with respect and be courteous with other users. Slow down when you encounter hikers, yield if you're approaching them from the front, and be pleasant. These open lands are a patchwork of public and private ownership, and good trail etiquette helps maintain and expand our access.

      E-Bike
      E-bikes aren't allowed on City of Helena or USFS trails in the South Hills. Sorry homie.

      Hike
      The South Hills are Helena's backyard. With nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown, the South Hills trail network offers day hikes ranging from 1 to 10+ miles. (Camping is not allowed on City land or on USFS sections adjacent to the city.)

      These open lands are a patchwork of public and private ownership, and good trail etiquette helps maintain and expand our access. Don't cut switchbacks. Reconsider your hike if trails are soft, and stay on trail to avoid widening it. It's not uncommon to venture out without seeing anyone else, but you should expect to encounter other trail users. Please be courteous as you enjoy our trails - yield to overtaking users, whether on foot or bike. Remember that dogs must be under control at all times, and the City of Helena requires leashes within 100 yards of a trailhead.

      Trail Running
      The South Hills are Helena's backyard. With nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown, the South Hills trail network offers runs ranging from 1 to 40 miles. The network is spread out across a series of four ridges that are separated by gulches.

      These open lands are a patchwork of public and private ownership, and good trail etiquette helps maintain and expand our access. Don't cut switchbacks. Reconsider your run if trails are soft, and stay on trail to avoid widening it. It's not uncommon to venture out without seeing anyone else, but you should expect to encounter other trail users. Please be courteous with other users as you enjoy our trails - yield to overtaking users, whether on foot or bike.

      Horse
      The South Hills are Helena's backyard. The trail network features nearly 80 miles of singletrack and trailheads in many neighborhoods, even downtown. The network is spread out across a series of four ridges that are separated by gulches.

      Horses are not allowed on City of Helena trails, but they are allowed on the USFS trails farther south. Equestrians on these trails should be prepared to encounter other users, especially mountain bikers, runners, and hikers.

      Dirtbike/Moto
      There are no motorized trails in the South Hills, only roads. Farther to the south, the Lava Mountain Trail is motorized.

      Observed Trials
      There are no motorized trails in the South Hills, only roads. Farther to the south, the Lava Mountain Trail is motorized.

      ATV/ORV/OHV
      There are no motorized trails in the South Hills, only roads. Farther to the south, the Lava Mountain Trail is motorized.

      Snowshoe
      The South Hills offer excellent snowshoeing opportunities whenever there is enough snow. More reliable snowshoeing options are MacDonald Pass (outside the groomed area) and Stemple Pass.

      Backcountry Ski
      Mount Ascension and Mount Helena offer some popular glade skiing options on the infrequent occasions when Helena receives enough snow.

      Nordic Ski
      The South Hills offer excellent Nordic opportunities whenever there is enough snow. Deford Trail and the lower slopes of Mount Ascension are popular Nordic options. The rest of the trail system provides the general outline for challenging backcountry tours.

      More reliable XC skiing options are MacDonald Pass and Stemple Pass.

      Primary Trail Type: Cross-Country
      eBikes Allowed: No
      Shuttleable: YES
      Eddye McClure Parking Lot google parking directions
      Access Info:
      The most popular starting point for riding in the South Hills is South Park Avenue. Many people park on the street or in a city parking lot near the library. The Park Avenue Building parking lot is another popular off-street option.
      Activities Click to view
      Region Details
      • 21
      • 11
      • 47
      • 84
      • 18
      • 4

      Region Status
      Open as of 3 days
      Local Trail Association

      Stats

      Avg Trail Rating
      Trails (view details)
      185
      Trails Mountain Bike
      186
      Trails E-Bike
      15
      Trails Hike
      179
      Trails Trail Running
      179
      Trails Horse
      21
      Trails Dirtbike/Moto
      18
      Trails ATV/ORV/OHV
      18
      Trails Snowshoe
      173
      Trails Backcountry Ski
      1
      Trails Nordic Ski
      177
      Total Distance
      149 miles
      Total Descent
      30,170 ft
      Total Vertical
      2,542 ft
      Highest Trailhead
      6,453 ft
      Reports
      9,390
      Photos
      678
      Ridden Counter
      29,200

      Photos of South Hills Mountain Bike

      32 |
      Sep 24, 2021 @ 1:58pm
      Sep 24, 2021
      44 |
      Jun 19, 2021 @ 4:35pm
      Jun 19, 2021
      49 |
      Jun 19, 2021 @ 4:35pm
      Jun 19, 2021
      54 |
      Dec 10, 2020 @ 4:25pm
      Dec 10, 2020
      39 |
      Dec 10, 2020 @ 4:20pm
      Dec 10, 2020
      189 |
      Jul 24, 2017 @ 7:34pm
      Jul 24, 2017
      251 |
      May 29, 2017 @ 5:23pm
      May 29, 2017
      287 |
      Oct 26, 2014 @ 2:49pm
      Oct 26, 2014

      Videos of South Hills Mountain Bike

      Helena Ridge First Drop Attempt
      63 | May 20, 2022
      Helena Ridge First Drop Attempt
      | May 15, 2022
      Singletrack in Montana's Capital
      1:00 | 224 | May 14, 2020
      Helenduro X Stage 6 Course Preview

      2:34 | 373 | May 21, 2018
      Helenduro X Stage 1 Course Preview

      7:56 | 743 | May 21, 2018
      Helenduro X Stage 5 Course Preview

      6:26 | 367 | May 21, 2018
      Warm up Drop
      0:10 | 37 | Mar 15, 2018
      Daisy Hill Quik Edit
      1:02 | 37 | Jul 22, 2017

      Recent Trail Reports

      Activity Feed

      usernameactiontypetitledate
      user #1364512MoquinwishlistrouteMount Helena Ridge to Show-Me-the-Horse and 1 more
      Jun 29, 2022 @ 4:28pm
      2 days
      user #603372evasiveriddenpoiDrop
      Jun 28, 2022 @ 9:39pm
      2 days
      user #603372evasiveaddreportWest Main Street and 1 more
      Jun 28, 2022 @ 7:06pm
      2 days
      user #2259877john311tranriddentrailMini Ridge Trail and 3 more
      Jun 28, 2022 @ 9:22am
      3 days
      user #603372evasiveupdateregionSouth Hills
      Jun 28, 2022 @ 9:07am
      3 days

      Recent Comments

      usernametypetitlecommentdate
      user #2222240chance-3trailBig Dorothy TrailSick trail indeed, loved this one
      Apr 9, 2022 @ 3:38pm
      Apr 9, 2022
      user #2222240chance-3trailEddye McClure WestThis trail is a lot of fun, GREAT flow with...
      Apr 8, 2022 @ 6:18pm
      Apr 8, 2022
      user #2742295MT36trailDazed and ConfusedThe top section of this trail is a lot of fun,...
      Jan 31, 2022 @ 7:32am
      Jan 31, 2022
      user #2742295MT36trailShow-Me-The-Horse TrailOverall great trail. Like so many other...
      Jan 11, 2022 @ 4:07pm
      Jan 11, 2022
      user #2742295MT36trailEmmett's TrailOverall sick trail. On this trail, compared...
      Jan 11, 2022 @ 4:05pm
      Jan 11, 2022

      Nearby Areas

      namedistance
      Tenmile Creek Park3.6 km
      Clancy OHV Area 115.7 km
      Priest Area 8 107.3 km
      Scratchgravel Hills 30 12 5 18.7 km
      North Elkhorns 28 23 8 19.3 km

      Local Badges


      Activity Type Stats

      activitytypetrailsdistancedescentdescent distancetotal verticalratingglobal rankstate rankphotosreportsroutesridelogs
      Mountain Bike185149 miles30,171 ft66 miles2,543 ft
      #157#666629,4142313,542
      E-Bike1543 miles3,196 ft13 miles2,267 ft
      #1,4798,69516
      Hike179147 miles29,229 ft64 miles2,543 ft
      #110#55169,379936
      Trail Running179147 miles29,229 ft64 miles2,543 ft
      #109#549,3791226
      Horse2124 miles5,289 ft11 miles1,969 ft
      #39#347,425
      Dirtbike/Moto1849 miles4,331 ft17 miles2,303 ft
      #3597,4203
      ATV/ORV/OHV1849 miles4,331 ft17 miles2,303 ft
      #3257,4202
      Snowshoe173133 miles28,688 ft62 miles2,379 ft
      #9#63,61313
      Backcountry Ski1400 ft10 ft367 ft10 ft
      #27213,2363
      Nordic Ski177140 miles28,976 ft63 miles2,379 ft
      #3#33,611214
      • By brenthillier NSMBA TRAILFORKS & contributors
      • Admins: MONTANABIKERMAN, evasive, wyomont, MBG, BikeHelena, wyomont, PPLT
      • #3445 - 35,012 views
      • south hills activity log | embed map of South Hills mountain bike trails | south hills mountain biking points of interest

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