Mt Baker Trail

The “Baker Trail” is a fine outing and a local favorite. The 1100m descent winds its way down the west ridge of Mt. Baker from the summit to valley bottom. The ride up is the crux for most people. **Unsanctioned trail – Use at own use**

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Total Ride: 25km, if riding the loop

Singletrack: 25%

FSR: 75%

Ascent/Descent: +/- 1250m

Season: June ‘till the winter snow arrives


Where to start:

Pick up the Gold Creek Forest Service Road south of Cranbrook. Just before the 5km marker you will pass the dam structure that is part of the City water system. Leave a vehicle here for a shuttle or start pedaling for a 25km loop. Continue on the Gold Creek Road for 7kms to the large “T” intersection near the ‘12km’ marker and turn left. Continue on this road for a further 2kms and then take a left hand branch that marks the start of the Mt. Baker road and the serious climbing. Three kms up the climb the road may be gated and closed to vehicles. After the gate the road gets steep. Good luck to the riders!

Ten switchbacks and lots of climbing later the road forks just below the summit. Left fork goes to the summit. Right fork goes to the start of the trail which is marked by a large cairn. This point can also be reached from the summit by riding due north down to the lower of the two buildings.


The ride:

This west ridge is the right hand skyline when viewing the mountain from Cranbrook. Don’t descend other trails you may see to the north or east or you will end up a long way from home. Although not overly difficult, this trail is for riders with some advanced skills. There are a few occasions where descending loose rock, cranking sharp switchbacks and dealing with exposure needs to be in your bag of tricks.

Be warned that sections of this trail are shared by motor-cross and as such may be loose or rutted.

The first part of the trail has some flat sections and short climbs as it bobs and weaves along the ridge. The next part is steep with some loose rocky sections and tight switchbacks. At times, the twisty mountain bike trail intermingles with the motor-cross route which tends to straight line. Keep your eye out for markings indicating the preferable direction for descending cyclists. Generally speaking, keeping left will ensure you stay on the mountain bike trail. If you fail to encounter two long log rides, a scree field and some sharp switchbacks then you missed a turn.

About 4.5km down, turn left when you reach an obvious “T” intersection with another singletrack. This is the motor-cross trail and it traverses for a bit. Just before it turns into double track and heads downhill take a right; the trail dips hard and then climbs steeply out of a small gully. About 0.5km later look left for a singletrack that leaves the motor-cross trail. Another 1.5km of fun descending deposits you at your vehicle.