4.5 miles
1,748 ft
-961 ft
Avg time

Prairie View Details

  • Riding area
  • Difficulty rating
  • Trail type
  • Bike type
    AM, XC
  • Trail Usage
  • Direction
    Both Directions
  • Climb Difficulty
  • Physical rating
  • Season
    May - November
  • Global Ranking
  • Land Manager
    Alberta Parks

This is an old school XC classic that's also incredibly popular with hikers on weekends. Weeknights are the best times to avoid dodging walkers.

The Prairie View trail begins at the Barrier Dam trail head, and follows a gravel road over the top of the dam and around the north side of the lake before heading up hill. At the top of the first short climb, cross the powerline trail and keep heading up the gravel. You'll eventually come to the junction with the Stoney Trail. Keep going up the very wide dirt and gravel path, and enjoy the 11 switchbacks. Side note: the last switchback is also the start of the Camp Chief Hector DH.

The first major viewpoint is not quite to the top of the mountain, but it's a good place to stop and collect stragglers. Follow the trail around to the right and ride as far as you can up the steep slope before doing the hike-a-bike up and over the top. Time to drop seats, tighten straps and check tire pressure before plunging down the other side! It starts off as scree and abruptly changes to roots of all sorts. Erosion has had its way over the years, and there's plenty of root steps, loose rocks and abrupt corners [it was originally a hiking trail], all of them taken at speed. Things start to level off at the bottom, and the start of the Razor's Edge trail is on the right. The end of Prairie View is at the junction with Quaite Valley and Jewell Pass trails. QV goes north to Hwy 1, and JP goes back toward Barrier Dam via Stoney Trail to close the loop.

Access Info

This trail is in Kananaskis Country. Take Hwy 1 to Hwy 40 turnoff, head south. The Barrier Dam trail head is a right turn off of Hwy 40 westbound.

Local Trail Association
More Stats for Prairie View mountain bike trail
  • Altitude change
    787 ft
  • Altitude min
    4,521 ft
  • Altitude max
    1.1 miles
  • Altitude start
    4,526 ft
  • Altitude end
    1.0 miles
  • Grade
  • Grade max
  • Grade min
  • Distance climb
    2.4 miles
  • Distance down
    1.5 miles
  • Distance flat
    3,393 ft
  • Avg time
  • view trail stats
on May 8, 2017
Prevalent Mud
Avg: 4.2 (5 votes)

view (275)
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Trail Style
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Directions to prairie-view trailhead (51.032622, -115.038548)
update trails status or condition

Prairie View Trail Reports

May 8, 2017 @ 5:32pm
May 8, 2017
Mud and snow from Camp Chief Hector all the way up.
Jan 29, 2017 @ 4:10pm
Jan 29, 2017
Rode this Jan 29 Ascent was great. Mostly smooth with excellent traction. Studs not necessary but seemed helpful
Nov 13, 2016 @ 4:06pm
Nov 13, 2016
Dry. Perfect riding condition. Bad weather in the forecast, so ride it soon!
Nov 11, 2016 @ 11:22am
Nov 11, 2016
Dry, good to go. no snow no puddles, beauty
Oct 30, 2016 @ 8:02pm
Oct 30, 2016
Climb is clear. Still small patches of slushy ice before the Razor's junction and a few hundred metres of greasy and slushy trail near the Quaite...
view all reports »


more »
154 |
Mar 3, 2017 @ 12:36pm
Mar 3, 2017
Prairie View, Calgary
150 |
Oct 17, 2016 @ 8:30pm
Oct 17, 2016
Prairie View, Canmore
122 |
Aug 16, 2016 @ 6:52am
Aug 16, 2016
| 1 comments Prairie View, Banff
275 |
Dec 13, 2015 @ 6:48am
Dec 13, 2015
Prairie View, Calgary

Routes with this trail

more »
Prairie View to Jewell Pass Loop featured
9.9 miles
Camp Chief Hector Loop
8.8 miles
Prairie View/Jewel Pass
14.2 miles
Bow Valley Extreme
162.3 miles

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