6.7 miles
Distance
722 ft
Climb
-2,333 ft
Descent
1 mile
High Point

Helena Classic!

Four miles of the Continental Divide Trail lead to a locals' favorite downhill on the Switchback Ridge Trail. The CDT portion doesn't climb very much, but it is strewn with very challenging rock gardens. The downhill is relatively buff until the last few hundred yards.

Exit Highway 12 at the Cromwell-Dixon Campground, and drive up the hill to the Continental Divide overlook. The trail starts at the stairs. There is a gate shortly after entering the forest; be sure to close it behind you. As the CDT rises into an open meadow, stay left towards the trees to start the downhill.

During the summer months, Bike Helena and Vigilante Shuttles & Tours runs shuttles from bottom of Switchback Ridge up to the CDT overlook. This is a great way to do this ride, as it eliminates a shuttle run or a long road climb. The schedule is available at the Bike Helena website: http://www.bikehelena.com/index.php/trail-rider/

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Details

  • Featured
  • Riding area
  • Primary Activity
    Mountain Bike
  • Other Activities
    • Hike
    • Trail Running
  • Difficulty rating
    Black Diamond
  • Route Type
    Shuttled
  • Bike type
    DH, AM, XC, Fat
  • Direction
    One Direction
  • Physical rating
    Moderate
  • Ridelogs
    65
More Stats for MacDonald Pass mountain bike route
  • Altitude change
    -1,611 ft
  • Altitude min
    4,804 ft
  • Altitude start
    6,415 ft
  • Altitude end
    4,803 ft
  • Grade
    -4.6%
  • Grade max
    -67.7%
  • Grade min
    44.8%
  • Distance climb
    2 miles
  • Distance down
    4 miles
  • Distance flat
    1,115 ft
Avg: 5 (1 votes)
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Trail Conditions
  • Unknown
  • Snow Groomed
  • Snow Packed
  • Snow Covered
  • Freeze/thaw Cycle
  • Icy
  • Prevalent Mud
  • Wet
  • Variable
  • Ideal
  • Dry
  • Very Dry
Trail Ridden Direction
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  • > 90%
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  • < 50%
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Trail Ridden Direction
The intended direction a trail should be ridden.
  • Downhill Only
  • Downhill Primary
  • Both Directions
  • Uphill Primary
  • Uphill Only
  • One Direction
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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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ATV/ORV/OHV Filter
Max Vehicle Width
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Radar Time
Trail transparency
CDT Centennials part 2
CDT Centennials part 2
5:48 | 43 | comments: 0 | favs:
Oct 1, 2018
CDT
CDT Centennials
CDT Centennials
7:20 | 51 | comments: 0 | favs:
Oct 1, 2018
CDT Centennial Mountains

Recent Trail Reports Along Route

statustraildateconditiondescription
CDNST (MacDonald Pass to Switchback Ridge)
Sep 12, 2020 @ 9:31pm
Sep 12, 2020
All clear, get it!
Switchback Ridge Trail
Sep 12, 2020 @ 12:01pm
Sep 12, 2020
All clear, get it!
more reports »
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