Rails to Trails bike paths are the best! Mostly flat, these trails typically go for miles and have lots of parking options and access points. That means you can have an easy stroll, long distance bike ride, or anything in between.
Summer thunderstorms are a common in the mountains. Knowing that a long distance ride with would take our family all day, we thought we chose the perfect day for it. However, even with the best plans things don’t always go as planned.
Rails To Trails – Teton Valley
The Ashton to Tetonia Trail was completed in 2010. Following an old Union Pacific rail route that was built in 1912, this trail is almost 30 miles long! Furthermore, it will soon be connected to the Greater Yellowstone Trail which is already 180 miles long! The G.Y.T. goes from Jackson, Wyoming all the way to West Yellowstone in Montana. There is a yet-to-be-built section that will go over Teton Pass and connect the Wyoming side to Idaho.
For the best views, start from the northern end of the trail and head south. While this is technically the uphill direction, because it’s an old rail line the grade is gradual. You will also have views of Grand Teton almost the whole way. Another bonus from starting on the north end is that two of the three historic train trestles are in the upper half of this trail. The longest one at Conant Creek is a whopping 672 feet long. Standing over 100 feet above the rivers below, riding over these rail bridges really adds to the experience.
Keep in mind the weather out here is unpredictable. On top of that, much of the trail is pretty exposed. It might be wise to start your day a bit earlier than we did. Your best bet is to just keep an eye on the forecast.
Don’t let that deter you though. Because this ride is really worth the effort!
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