10.1 miles
1,938 ft
-2,340 ft
Avg time


  • Activities
    • Mountain Bike
    • Hike
    • Trail Running
  • Riding Area
    Canmore, Alberta
  • Difficulty Rating
  • Voted Difficulty
    Blue (3 votes)
  • Trail Type
  • Bike Type
    AM, XC, Fat, Adaptive MTB
  • Direction
    Both Directions
  • Climb Difficulty
  • Physical Rating
  • Dogs Allowed
  • Global Ranking
    #22102 in Mountain Biking [+]
    • #77396 in Trail Running
  • Local Popularity
    45 in Mountain Biking [+]
    • 5 in Trail Running
    • 5 in Hiking
  • Year Opened
  • Land Manager
    Alberta Parks

This section of the High Rockies trail begins from the Goat Creek parking lot and is the starting point if riding the entire trail from north to south. Descend the Goat Creek trail to the Banff park boundary, the first signed trail junction. As of May 2016 there was no sign indicating the trail to the left is the High Rockies trail, but it is. This section of trail primarily follows old service roads used to access power lines. The scenery is outstanding but the riding itself is fairly ordinary. There is a short, but beautifully built, boardwalk section just before Goat Pond. Traveling south one gains altitude fairly steadily but never steeply. Cross the dam at the north end of Spray Lake and keep right, the trail parallels the lake all the way up to the Driftwood parking area and comes out on the just south of the Driftwood parking area access road. The trail continues on the east side of the road with a very visible climb back up into the trees, the character of the riding changes to up and down single track. Let the fun begin.

The Original trail report was close, but it missed a large section in the middle and a suggested that you have to ride the gravel road. It's all one trail, no need to break it up. Strava has the correct trails as well.

Access Info

From Canmore follow signs to the Canmore Nordic Centre then keep driving past the Nordic Centre up the Spray Lakes Road (AKA Smith Dorian Road). This soon turns to dirt and cuts across the steep lower slopes of the East End of Rundle (EEOR). 10 minutes up the dirt road you'll level out and pass a long, narrow body of water, Whiteman's Pond. As you begin to descend slightly you'll find the Goat Creek carpark on your right. If it's a weekend it will be packed with cars as this is the starting point not only for the High Rockies trail but also the Goat Creek trail (drops you in Banff) and the hiking routes up both Ha Ling and EEOR.

More Stats for High Rockies - Buller to Driftwood bike trail trail
  • Altitude change
    -402 ft
  • Altitude min
    5,597 ft
  • Altitude max
    6,007 ft
  • Altitude start
    5,999 ft
  • Altitude end
    5,597 ft
  • Grade
  • Grade max
  • Grade min
  • Distance climb
    4 miles
  • Distance down
    5 miles
  • Distance flat
    3,033 ft
  • Avg time
  • Avg reverse time
  • view trail stats
on Aug 29, 2021
Avg: 4.4 (10 votes)

view (271)
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)
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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
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  • Both Directions
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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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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
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      Directions to high-rockies-buller-to-driftwood trailhead (50.874330, -115.343470)
      update trails status or condition

      High Rockies -... Trail Reports

      Aug 29, 2021 @ 8:47am
      Aug 29, 2021
      Hero dirt after some recent rain. Congrats to the builders. This is an awesome blue trail
      Jun 14, 2021 @ 6:41am
      Jun 14, 2021
      Hey again! Just another note regarding my last conditions report. My Beginner group and I rode from the Spray Lakes Day Use Area to just past...
      Jun 13, 2021 @ 8:34pm
      Jun 13, 2021
      Rode Three Sisters Dam to Buller today with a group of Beginners I was teaching a Mountain Biking skills course to. Conditions are ideal, and...
      Aug 28, 2020 @ 7:05pm
      Aug 28, 2020
      Bear Warning: Rode this today. Was making a lot of noise. Got charged by a grizzly about 1/2 way or so. A bit terrifying. Called it in to the...
      Jul 16, 2019 @ 7:32am
      Jul 16, 2019
      Rode July 15 in good condition, very little mud and nice and fast
      view all reports »

      Recent Ridelog Activity on Trail

      Past Week
      • 0 rides
      6 Months
      • 0 rides
      • 238 rides


      more »
      87 |
      Sep 5, 2020 @ 6:14pm
      Sep 5, 2020
      128 |
      Sep 5, 2020 @ 6:14pm
      Sep 5, 2020
      246 |
      Aug 17, 2018 @ 4:39pm
      Aug 17, 2018
      150 |
      Aug 17, 2018 @ 4:39pm
      Aug 17, 2018

      Routes with this trail

      more »
      High Rockies Bikepacking Loop85 miles
      Driftwood to Peninsula Point-to-Point33 miles
      Kananaskis bikepacking Route133 miles
      Day 3 - GravelFest202177 miles

      12 Reviews & Comments

      • + 1
      GregandStaish (Jul 9, 2016 at 18:49)
       Lost a Suunto watch on the High Rockies bike trail Saturday July 9th, 2016 near driftwood area. It has a bright purple wristband. If found please contact 403-679-1266. Thank you! - Beer reward if returned.
      • + 1
      tbkfan (Sep 25, 2016 at 10:01)
       Rode Buller to Driftwood yesterday with a few younger/beginner riders. There is a fair amount of climbing involved for beginners, but none of it is steep or sustained. The trail is beautifully built and the scenery is pretty hard to beat for such an accessible trail.
      • + 1
      teleskier (Jun 18, 2017 at 8:46)
       We rode it June 16th from Driftwood, 35 km return and 3200 vertical feet. Amazing trail conditions, wouldn't classify this as green due to it's length and some of the corners may present challenges to beginners. Really flowy and great for an all day in the saddle ride! Can't wait for phase 2 to be smooth and complete to Elk pass. I posted some recent photos of the truly amazing day out.
      • + 1
      ayoun (Jul 20, 2017 at 13:35)
       Is it better to start from the Goat Creek Trail?
      • + 3
      warrenmacdonald (Aug 25, 2017 at 21:52)
       I've now ridden most of this trail on a Lasher Sport ATH (all terrain handcycle), and have to say with front wheel drive some sections are super challenging. I couldn't have done them without my partner pushing me up a bunch of the steeper hills where I just couldn't get traction on the front wheel. Will post in more detail at some point section by section, but would say that a rear wheel drive HC, like a One-Off, Reactive Adaptions "Bomber" or SportOn Explorer would do just fine, though in my mind these bikes are just not as enjoyable for this type of XC riding.
      • + 2
      shaungair (May 19, 2018 at 19:21)
       South of driftwood its definitely not a green trail. Rates a blue from there on - steeper sections with lots of loose rock.
      • + 0
      dingoboy (Dec 19, 2018 at 16:43)
       3 bikers rode from driftwood lot to avi closure sign at spray lakes day use juntion and back on fat bikes yesterday. Great riding 90% of the trail. Some soft spots with sugar snow that didn't want to pack. Set decent tracks so should be easy going. Last 2km south was pretty tough as there was one old bike track to follow. Like riding a 2x4. Need more traffic there to pack things down and widen the track. Other than that it was awesome. Studs not needed but fat tires a must. Wont get anywhere on skinnys. Too much snow and snowing the whole time we were out.
      • + 0
      Kingofthepeaks (Jun 2, 2019 at 18:32)
       Not sure why this trail on gets a 35 in popularity, and according to the app, it's rated as easy.
      This trail is seriously under rated for its popularity, it deserves at minimum a 75 for popularity, and should be considered intermediate (not easy as trail forks suggests.)
      This trail is a gem, and I can't wait to complete the full trail.
      • + 0
      bproch (Jun 24, 2019 at 22:01)
       Rode yesterday. MINT CONDITION. Trail flowy and fun. Nothing technical doubletrack. People posting it's difficult I dont understand? Make sure you read the accent and decent numbers.
      • + 0
      Tjaspera (Sep 5, 2020 at 18:16)
       Trail is in great condition!
      • + 1
      toizzz (Aug 29, 2021 at 8:41)
       This is not a green trail. Its blue. We rode from the lower end out to the 8.3km mark and back. The bottom first 1k is all shattered rock and not much fun. Then it turns into awesome forrest single track. Not bush style single track. As in no undergrowth that wants to constantly obscure the trail and wack your legs etc. There are many man made and natural jumps spread along the trail. Even a few nice berms. The trail will let you rip a little down hill section and then you have to sit and spin again for awhile. The climbing will knock you back into your biggest easy gear. But you have 16km one way so you should conserve your energy. The views are the real letdown. Imo they remind me more of ridding past a big gravel pit. Dont come here for the view is all. The climbs are steep enough that a novice rider with a heavy bike or not enough gears will do a lot of pushing. Which is why its not a green trail. Imo you would need to be an well conditioned rider to ride this trail out and back without the dreaded bonk. We did out and back half way. 16km total. It was a good ride. But i kind of dread the idea of the full out and back.
      • + 0
      toizzz (Aug 29, 2021 at 8:50)
       The lower section of trail doesnt break the trees except two small views. The higher sections may offer better views.


      more »
      FatBiking High Rockies Trail | Dec 2016
      1307 | Jan 16, 2017 , Canmore
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