54.0 miles
Distance
7,238 ft
Climb
-7,185 ft
Descent
1 mile
High Point

Epic ride requiring long distance endurance. Food, extra water, a first aid kit, tools, pump, spare tube are mandatory. The last section on Tom Snow was badly damaged in the 2005 and 2013 floods so should be pre-ridden a few weeks before attempting.

This is a classic 1990s Epic Cross country ride and is recommended for fit riders only. For a time, the Bow 80 bike race was roughly on this loop. Over 80 km of riding. Trail elevations and conditions vary wildly, so be sure to check the weather, bring extra layers and extra water and food and a printed map. A good option if you are riding in a group is to have a support vehicle to meet you at Station flats, Prairie Creek and Dawson trailheads to refresh and refuel. The best place to start the loop is from West Bragg Creek trailhead.

Starting up the Mountain Road you will climb for 5 km and take a left on Tom Snow. Take Tom Snow 5.4km all the way to Station flats. There are a couple of muddy spots, but don't reroute. The extra hills will hurt your endurance. Follow Diamond T loop for 900m. Station flats Parking lot is to the left if you want to take a break. Continue along Diamond T for 400m and keep left to link up with Elbow Valley Trail. You can follow Elbow valley trail 6.42 km all the way Powderface creek trail, or take Sulfur springs instead, adding 500m of trail and a nice view. Either way you take, You will end up crossing Canyon Creek, which is hopefully just a trickle. You may have trouble finding the trail after crossing the creek. Look out for little orange trail signs on the other side of creek and the adjacent gravel roads. If you can't find it, just find highway 66 and take it the 3.2 km to Powderface trailhead instead. At Powderface you can take either Prairie creek trail or Powderface Creek trail or a combination of the two. The shorter way with less elevation is Prairie Creek. Next up, take the Gravel Road, known as Powderface Trail road North for 5.4 km until the road takes a hard left. At that that hard left is a parking lot and Jumpingpound ridge trailhead. Across the road is a memorial for a plane crash. There are alternatives to taking the road, but the trails are in bad condition and overgrown. Jumpingpound ridge is difficult. It is steep, it needs a lot of walking and water and do not be ashamed to take a break.This part of the ride is by far the worst, 5.4 km of climbing. Followed by 3 km of mostly gradual, then you hop on to Cox Hill trail, which has 3.3 km of a few more hills to tire you out, followed by an epic 5.5km of descent. at the bottom of cox hill, there is a quick access to dawson trailhead, where hopefully you stashed some sandwiches and extra water. The rest of the way is on Tom Snow. This trail is muddy. Always muddy. but overall it is flat for 21 km back to mountain road, hanging a left on mountain road and cruising back to the parking lot. overall loop is 81km

Detailed Description
Around Moose Mountain Epic Loop is a 54 mile popular expert route located near Bragg Creek Alberta. This mountain bike only route can be used one direction and has a hard overall physical rating. This route includes 15 trails. This route climbs 7,238 ft with a max elevation of 7,184 ft then descends -7,185 ft.
Local Trail Association
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Moose Mountain Bike Trail Society (www.mmbts.com)
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43 Reviews & Comments

  • + 1
RockiesMarc (Oct 17, 2022 at 7:16)
Big Moose Loop, rode this Oct 16. Started at WBC parking lot. All trails were nice and dry, even on Tom Snow from Dawson to Kestrel. Excellent trail work done on this section with new trails (including Moose creek trail) eliminating the old permanently wet sections. Jumping pound South ridge was predictably hard but was inspired by some riders cleaning the climb, go guys!! Had placed a supply drop where prairie creek meets the Jumping pound road but still was thin on water by Tom Snow finish. Awesome ride!
[Reply]
  • - 1
revystoked (Jul 24, 2022 at 13:51)
Erosion continues to have its way with this trail. The rut on the first descent has become fairly deep. The switchbacks at the top of the main descent are riddled with loose rock, but it gets better the farther you go down. The trail/creekbed root steps are bigger than they were in the 90s, and there's more exposed rock. Watch those corners - lots of flat shale over gravel/sand.
[Reply]
  • + 1
Bnmiles (Oct 27, 2021 at 7:27)
Rode full loop clockwise from Powderface Creek Trail to PF pass, down west side to Creek Trail, along PF Road to Prairie Creek Trailhead back to Powderface parking lot. Total time 4 hrs. Nice tour with some hard work along the way.
Notable: After passing the link to Prairie Creek, as noted, the trail is a constant rock covered steepish grade trail till near the pass. Unless one is determined and very fit, pushing through a good part of this should be anticipated. Heading down the West side is technical, but manageable. The Creek Trail is a clean sporty ride ending at the road. Due to time of day, opted to follow road to PCT. PCT is single track and a good ride. On last 1/3 of trail one will be confronted with a series of short steepish climbs as you make your way back to PF parking Lot.
[Reply]
  • + 1
lenscape (Sep 27, 2021 at 12:32)
I rode this trail yesterday, and it was full of loose rocks and steep climb.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Nomolos2006 (Sep 11, 2021 at 15:11)
Brutal Climb in the middle of the trail after already climbing lusk, tech all the way down, not a flow trail
[Reply]
  • + 1
Zakalwerides (Aug 16, 2021 at 13:51)
Rode from WBC to Dawson, was dry and in great condition. Used gravel bikes as we were doing a bigger loop on powderface road, and they were more than capable.
[Reply]
  • + 0
RockiesMarc (Jul 15, 2021 at 5:18)
Just ride Tom Snow from moose loop to Kestrel and there are several sections that are very muddy and horse damaged. Lots of runoff has created swamped section that are wet and muddy to try and get through, get those feet wet! Kind of kills the flow of a Tom Snow to Kestrel loop but still ok. Nice to see recent work on TS, it'll get there.
[Reply]
  • + 0
iphonefreddy (May 28, 2021 at 21:53)
Trail Tom Snow
A mix of really nice trails and mud bogs. With some boardwalks to cross the bogs this trail would be sweeto
[Reply]
  • + 0
iphonefreddy (May 28, 2021 at 15:40)
Trail Elbow Valley
Station flats to Moose Mountain Road was nice a dry. You need good legs to get up but it’s a nice horse trail
[Reply]
  • + 0
iphonefreddy (May 28, 2021 at 15:40)
Trail Elbow Valley
Station flats to Moose Mountain Road was nice a dry. You need good legs to get up but it’s a nice horse trail
[Reply]
  • + 0
iphonefreddy (May 28, 2021 at 15:40)
Trail Elbow Valley
Station flats to Moose Mountain Road was nice a dry. You need good legs to get up but it’s a nice horse trail
[Reply]
  • + 0
galejda (Dec 9, 2020 at 8:27)
Boring especially if you choose wrong way from elbow falls to little Elbow (neverending uphill).Did this 8 Dec and with melting snow it was one of the worst trail experience what I had in Canada .
[Reply]
  • + 0
Justinlegal6 (Sep 30, 2020 at 12:32)
Trail Tom Snow
To the riders who helped me during my stroke on July 11th 2020. Thank you so much. Thank you for trying to get me out of there on your bike and stopping your ride. You called the rangers and then EMT came and drove me to foothills hospital. I don't remember what you all look like or names but I will anyways remember how helpful you all were. Thank you all again. And I how to see you on the trails again.
[Reply]
  • + 0
bigdog48 (Sep 20, 2020 at 20:17)
Epic fall ride today. Trail was grippy and in good shape. Highly recommend this to all intermediate and advanced riders.
[Reply]
  • + 0
mneuner (Sep 19, 2020 at 9:06)
Surprised by the few bad reviews for running this trail. If you feel up to pushing through a few steep spots, it is runnable from car to top of Powderface and back. To me, this makes it a great run for the distance and proximity to the city.
[Reply]
  • + 0
TheRJ (Sep 3, 2020 at 18:29)
Just ride this from kestrel to where it hooks back to Merlin. In its current state it is certainly not a green, at least the farther north you go the gnarlier. Deep trenches, bomb holes everywhere and, tons of mud. Made what I thought was going to be a quick rip back to the west Bragg parking lot a long, hard, bumpy ride. But if you’re like me and that’s your idea of fun, it is totally rideable!
[Reply]
  • + 1
Brobrahma (Aug 23, 2020 at 7:26)
Bone dry with lots of trail erosion, roots, rocks, and steep drops. Fun and challenging. If you're not on a downhill bike you better keep your wits about ya.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Jaylefevre (Jul 27, 2020 at 21:08)
Not great for beginner bikers. Muddy spots and lots of spots require you to get off your bike and push it uphill.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Gonnad (Jul 27, 2020 at 15:58)
To add to my comment above the trail to good to ride to Mountain view west tail ( not shown on this map) a nice easy ride.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Gonnad (Jul 27, 2020 at 15:54)
I have just ride the part between moose loop and the mountain road. My advice on this don’t. Muddy and overgrown and lacking signs. I did it as this is one trail I haven’t done so thought I’d give it a go. It’s a shame but there are better and more exciting trails to do. Think about it but don’t do it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
zaklucas (Jul 26, 2020 at 10:14)
This is without a doubt an epic ride BUT unfortunately due to extremely poor condition of Tom Snow North trail, it is no longer rideable. Yes, technically speaking Tom Snow North is passable (first 5.6km of the trail is excellent), but the bulk of the trail is exceptionally difficult to follow due to lack of signage, extensive cattle damage, major erosion as well as water intrusion/standing water. Despite a new bridge and a staircase structure found in the middle of the trail, that part of Tom Snow North trail appears to have been abandoned (at least at present time). It took us just over 15.5 hours to complete the ride.
[Reply]
  • + 1
flyin-ryan (Jul 24, 2020 at 18:26)
Still awesome.
Back in the day it was hard tails, V brakes and 3 inches of front travel on a downhill trail that was buff.
Now its 7 inch front and rear travel and disc brakes on a downhill that is full of ditches, rocks and roots.
So ya it's still awesome.
[Reply]
  • + 0
jerryssskwan (Jul 24, 2020 at 8:02)
Very rocky. Lots of loose rock.
[Reply]
  • + 0
hertsy22 (Jul 12, 2020 at 8:10)
Big props to anyone that can clean this
[Reply]
  • + 1
hizzity (Apr 12, 2020 at 15:21)
Trail Prairie Link
Classic old school K-country decent, has it all, fast, roots, rocks and some wet spots. Get out and ride it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
hizzity (Apr 12, 2020 at 15:19)
When its dry its a lot of fun. fast and awesome, but if it has been wet you will be covered in mud head to toe.
[Reply]
  • + 1
pinkrobe CMBA (Jan 16, 2020 at 18:19)
This is very much a horse trail, and not really recommended for any other users unless you need to check it off a list or something.
[Reply]
  • + 0
mtnranger (Aug 8, 2019 at 22:28)
Not fun. Straight up and down, loose and eroded, no curves
[Reply]
  • + 0
funkybuddha (Jul 18, 2019 at 22:31)
Closed due to animal carcass
[Reply]
  • + 1
FoodieJ (Jun 11, 2019 at 15:16)
If biking, best to go left at trailhead and push your bike up a steep hill but enjoy the rest of the trail down. But if you want to climb and climb some more with a somewhat messy steep horse trail at the end, then go right at trailhead. Mud holes bog you down at the low points, just where you want to get a head of steam up for the next hill, you have to slow down/stop at the mud holes. This seems to be more of a horse trail, path doesnt appear to be used much by bikes.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Deinarson (Jun 10, 2019 at 15:24)
Some great views up here!
[Reply]
  • + 0
Deinarson (Jun 10, 2019 at 15:21)
Trail Elbow Valley
If you feel like pedaling up for a lap on Race of Spades or 7-27, this is a nice alternative to get you there instead of riding along the highway. It’s a multi-use/horse trail so not super designed for biking but it gets you where you need to go.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Deinarson (Jun 10, 2019 at 15:21)
Trail Elbow Valley
If you feel like pedaling up for a lap on Race of Spades or 7-27, this is a nice alternative to get you there instead of riding along the highway. It’s a multi-use/horse trail so not super designed for biking but it gets you where you need to go.
[Reply]
  • + 0
Deinarson (Jun 10, 2019 at 15:21)
Trail Elbow Valley
If you feel like pedaling up for a lap on Race of Spades or 7-27, this is a nice alternative to get you there instead of riding along the highway. It’s a multi-use/horse trail so not super designed for biking but it gets you where you need to go.
[Reply]
  • + 0
tylerbernardd (Jun 2, 2019 at 16:21)
Lots of deep snow in the trees this weekend on this section
[Reply]
  • + 0
jgc932 (Jul 27, 2018 at 9:29)
Road it to JP south trail from Dawson. Would recommend JP Summit as South is a rootfest.
[Reply]
  • + 1
psingbeil (Jul 26, 2018 at 6:26)
Trail Tom Snow
Bear Closure - Tom Snow Trail from Mountain Road to Moose Loop
July 24, 2018
Effective Date: July 24, 2018 until further notice
Where: Tom Snow Trail from Mountain Road to Moose Loop
Why: Bears feeding on carcass

The sign that shows the closure is not well marked, A small notice that has a map is posted at the entrance of Tom Snow from the Mountain Road. We looked at it and thought it was in the South direction and proceeded on the trail going North. We encountered yellow closure markings by Ab parks at the base of the large hill and some of us encountered a strong smell. We turned around and retreated back up the trail.
[Reply]
  • + 0
kluks (Jun 25, 2018 at 13:26)
Wet, with a large tree across trail towards the bottom
[Reply]
  • + 0
Lauraannebock (Jul 3, 2017 at 20:52)
Rode with Howie July 3rd.
[Reply]
  • + 0
psingbeil (May 24, 2017 at 14:26)
Trail Tom Snow
Rode it yesterday evening. Lots of mud and fallen trees
[Reply]
  • + 1
ek4086 (Mar 28, 2017 at 11:46)
Easy hike and short loop, Close to Calgary (1 hour drive), good for families and beginners, there is a long hill if you go clockwise. There isn't any awesome view! just trees.
[Reply]
  • + 2
danny (Jun 2, 2015 at 8:58)
The Road is still closed, so a road pedal is required. it might open this year, but official opening date is spring 2016
[Reply]
  • + 2
CraigHinCA (Sep 3, 2016 at 10:42)
Road is open now.
[Reply]





Details

  • Riding area
  • Primary Activity
    Mountain Bike
  • AKA
    bow 80
  • Difficulty rating
    Black Diamond
  • Route Type
    Loop
  • eBike Allowed
  • Bike type
    AM, XC
  • Direction
    One Direction
  • Physical rating
    Hard
  • Ridelogs
    4
More Stats for Around Moose Mountain Epic Loop mountain bike route
  • Altitude min
    4,611 ft
  • Altitude start
    4,685 ft
  • Altitude end
    4,738 ft
  • Grade max
    -52.7%
  • Grade min
    59.4%
  • Distance climb
    27 miles
  • Distance down
    24 miles
  • Distance flat
    4 miles
Avg: 4 (1 votes)
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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
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Cox Hill Trail
Cox Hill Trail
3 | comments: 0 | favs:
Oct 8, 2022
Best view ride in the Canadian Rockies. 45 West of Calgary.
Cox Hill Trail | Sibbald MTB
Cox Hill Trail | Sibbald MTB
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Recent Trail Reports Along Route

statustraildateconditiondescription
Prairie Link
Nov 30, 2022 @ 10:58am
Nov 30, 2022
3-4 inches of new snow.
Tom Snow North
Oct 17, 2022 @ 7:23am
Oct 17, 2022
Rode Tom Snow from Dawson to WBC parking lot to finish the Big Moose Loop. Trail is dry and in ideal condition. One tree down, I was expecting far more. The trail work in the area is quite amazing. First there is a new trail (Moose Creek trail?) that's really ridable and avoids any marshy areas. Then the rebuilt Tom Snow stay higher on the left slope that keeps you away from any wet or marshy areas.
Prairie Creek
Oct 9, 2022 @ 2:01am
Oct 9, 2022
Powderface and prairie creek - perfect conditions.
Cox Hill Trail
Oct 1, 2022 @ 9:03am
Oct 1, 2022
Tom Snow
Sep 19, 2022 @ 8:22am
Sep 19, 2022
rode section paralleling Ridgeback 3 for something "easier" and it was in good condition for Tom Snow. Only complaints would be 1 tree, 2 boggy sections and bushes are beginning to encroach on the trail. Not a bad cruise for a beginner-intermediate rider.
more reports »
  • By strongcyclisttype & contributors
  • #3642 - 2,371 views