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Top 10 Bike Trails in Idaho

Map of the top 10 biking trails in Idaho.

Idaho bike trails are about as diverse as they get! Whether you’re looking for rural, urban, mountainous, or waterside routes, you won’t be disappointed with this state’s fantastic array of options. On the same note, with so many great choices, it can be hard to know where to bike! Here are our top 10 picks for Idaho’s best bike trails.

1. Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes – Plummer to Mullan, ID

Aerial view of Coeur d’Alenes in Idaho.

The Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes is located in Idaho’s northern panhandle. This massive 72-mile trail follows a former railroad route, beginning in the historic Silver Valley and ending in Plummer. The path is completely paved and offers a scenic route past Lake Coeur d’Alene, wooded canyons and peaceful farmlands, and through small historic silver mining towns. It also features 20 developed trailheads, making it easy and convenient to hop on the route at many different points.

Tips: The Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes is also part of the Idaho Birding Trail. This statewide trail spans more than 2,000 miles and offers opportunities for cyclists to view about 300 different species of birds in Idaho.

2. Boise River Greenbelt – Boise, ID

Lake at the Boise River Greenbelt.

The Boise River Greenbelt is a 25-mile path in southwest Idaho that follows the Boise River through the city’s heart. Lined with beautiful trees, the scenic trail meanders through several popular riverside parks, called the Ribbon of Jewels. Featured parks along the route include Barber Park, Municipal Park, Julia Davis Park, Ann Morrison Park, and Kathryn Albertson Park. Many cyclists on the Boise River Greenbelt also enjoy the diverse wildlife, featuring Canada geese, great blue herons, and bald eagles.

Tips: If you’re traveling and need a bike to ride the greenbelt, there are several nearby hotels and other locations where you can rent a bike.

3. Route of the Hiawatha – Mullan, ID

Bridge on the route of the Hiawatha.

The Route of the Hiawatha is a popular rail trail in northern Idaho. It begins at Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area and features a 15-mile downhill route full of ten exciting train tunnels, seven sky-high trestle bridges, and fantastic views all along the way. Trail passes, mountain bike rentals, and additional gear are available in the ski area. Group rates and seasonal passes are available.

Tips: Plan carefully, as the trail is only open from mid-May through mid-September.

4. Osberg Ridge Trail – Ketchum, ID

A mountain biker on the Osberg Ridge Trail.

You’ll find the fun and fast Osberg Ridge Trail tucked away in the Sawtooth National Forest. This 11-mile alpine trail for mountain bikers is just outside Sun Valley. The route lies along a ridgeline that offers stunning views and some of the best backcountry cycling in the state. But don’t be fooled; you’ll enjoy plenty of significant climbs and descents along this trail too. The incredible views all along the way merit a photo or two, so make sure to have your camera or phone ready.

Tips: This point-to-point trail is difficult to get to, and you’ll need a shuttle service. 

5. Coeur d’Alene Parkway – Coeur d’Alene, ID

View of Coeur d’Alene Parkway next to the lake.

The Coeur d’Alene Parkway sits on the north shore of Lake Coeur d’Alene, featuring a 5.7-mile route for bikers to enjoy. The trail is a part of the North Idaho Centennial Trail system (featured below) and features Higgens Point, where you can enjoy a fantastic view over the lake. You can also take advantage of the route’s exercise course, public bathrooms, picnic tables, benches with scenic lake views, and the Veterans Memorial Bridge.

Tips: Class 1 and 2 E-bikes are allowed on the Coeur d’Alene Parkway.

6. Snake River Canyon Rim Trails – Twin Falls, ID

View of the Snake River Canyon Rim Trails.

The Snake River Canyon serves as a natural boundary between Twin Falls and Jerome counties in southern Idaho. The deepest parts of the canyon are 500 feet deep, but there are more than 10 miles of developed trails along the canyon and throughout Twin Falls. You can access the bike routes via the Twin Falls Visitor Center or Shoshone Falls Park. The sights are incredible, and the main rim trail in this area offers about 8.2 miles of cycling distance, broken up into a few different segments. Along this main route, you’ll also enjoy magnificent views over the canyon from the Perrine Memorial Bridge.

Tips: This is a popular tourist spot for hikers, cyclists, and pedestrians, so be prepared for crowds.

7. North Idaho Centennial Trail – Coeur d’Alene to the Idaho-Washington State Line

Shores of the Lake Coeur D'Alene on the North Idaho Centennial Trail.

The nationally famous North Idaho Centennial Trail stretches for 24 miles from Higgens Point State Park to the Washington border. Although it begins just six miles east of the city, the trail offers a peaceful and serene setting for a bike ride, clinging to the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene and the Spokane River. As you ride, you’ll also pass two college campuses, several convenient rest areas, and unbeatable views over the water. If you bike this route in November or December, you can also catch hundreds of bald eagles flying in from up north.

Tips: You can extend your ride further by continuing along the Liberty Lake Stateline Trail, which meets up with the North Idaho Centennial Trail at the Washington-Idaho border.

8. Ashton to Tetonia Trail – Ashton to Tetonia, ID

Gravel trail going up a hill on the Ashton to Tetonia Trail.

The Ashton to Tetonia Trail is a 29.6-mile gravel and dirt trail that follows an abandoned railroad line from Ashton to Tetonia. It’s truly a magnificent bike ride, featuring three old train trestles, several small bridges, and beautiful scenery all along the route. The trail meanders through tranquil farmland with sweeping views of the distant Teton Mountains. The route also has convenient amenities like designated parking areas and public restrooms.

Tips: The Ashton-Tetonia Trail is also a part of the Greater Yellowstone Trail, a developing 180-mile route that connects Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to West Yellowstone, Montana, showcasing several small eastern Idaho communities along the way.

9. Bear Basin – McCall, ID

Two bikers on the Bear Basin Trail.

The Bear Basin trail system is nestled in Payette National Forest and is home to 24 routes for mountain bikers. The area is ideal for cyclists of all experience levels and offers about 25 miles of adventure for thrill seekers. Most trails are connected, so you can easily create loops with your favorite routes. This popular trail system also features switchbacks, thickly forested areas, big berms, and significant rocks to navigate, but the consistent signage throughout the system will help you find your way around. We recommend taking on the Upper Drain or Westy trails first for beginner mountain bikers.

Tips: The Bear Basin Trails may not be open until June. Do your research before heading out to ride!

10. Weiser River National Recreation Trail – Weiser to Rubicon, ID

A cyclists on the Weiser River National Recreation Trail.

This 84-mile trail reaches all the way from Weiser to Rubicon, snagging the title of the longest rail trail in the state of Idaho. Although you can bike the whole route in two days, most cyclists prefer to take it slower. The journey follows an old Union Pacific Railroad Line, passing through Midvale, Cambridge, and Council, where you’ll have plenty of options for food, rest, and lodging. The trail also features 62 historic rail trestles, plenty of wildlife, and fantastic scenery, including canyons, evergreen forests, alpine meadows, and peaceful rural landscapes.

Tips: Try biking this route in the fall. You’ll enjoy some of the most beautiful fall foliage along the way!

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  1. https://parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/trail-coeur-d-alenes/
  2. https://visitidaho.org/things-to-do/rail-to-trail/trail-coeur-dalenes/
  3. https://idfg.idaho.gov/sites/default/files/idaho-birding-trail-fact-sheet.pdf
  4. https://visitidaho.org/things-to-do/rail-to-trail/boise-greenbelt/
  5. https://www.cityofboise.org/departments/parks-and-recreation/ribbon-of-jewels/
  6. https://visitidaho.org/things-to-do/rail-to-trail/route-of-the-hiawatha/
  7. https://www.mtbproject.com/trail/5281547/osberg-ridgeline-147
  8. https://parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/coeur-d-alene-parkway/
  9. https://www.traillink.com/trail/snake-river-canyon-rim-trail/
  10. https://visitidaho.org/things-to-do/rail-to-trail/snake-river-canyon-rim-trails/
  11.  https://www.traillink.com/trail/north-idaho-centennial-trail/
  12.  https://parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/ashton-to-tetonia-trail/
  13.  https://www.singletracks.com/bike-trails/bear-basin/
  14.  https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/payette/recarea/?recid=27075
  15.  https://www.traillink.com/trail/weiser-river-national-recreation-trail/

Photo Sources:

Robert Ashworth from Bellingham, WA., USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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