All of the Park & Ski Trails are marked so well it is virtually impossible to get lost. The parks dept. has recently (2003) installed new trail name markers and trial maps at all trail intersections. Park at the restroom/Information Center at the Banner Ridge Park & Ski then ride up the Elkhorn Loop road for 1.5 miles to the beginning of the single-track portion of the ride. There is a short section of this road that is a bit steep and can stop those not in shape for a climb. Continue on out the ridge road following the blue trail blazes and arrows on the trees and posts. Here is where the fun begins. From this point the trails are nearly all single track or some of the finest, very old, overgrown fire roads you have ever been on. Ride 1 mile down this trail through dense timber, open meadows and over water bars to a short steep climb up to the intersection of the Cougar Trail and then turn off to the Elkhorn Yurt. Follow the Yellow trail blaze markers to the Yurt. After taking in the magnificent views of the Sawtooth Mountains, Follow the signs leading to the water supply for the Yurt back to the Cougar Trail, or go back to the Cougar/Elkhorn Trail intersection and follow the signage to Lehn's Loop. The Lehn's Loop system is loop within a loop. It is combined with the Cougar Trail and the Elkhorn Trail to create a variable number of opportunities. The entire system is a series of short rolling hills with straights, switchbacks; several hairpin turns and bridged water crossings. There are deep forest and open sections for great views. These loops are great for every skill level. The faster you ride, the wilder it gets. These trails define "mountain biking". When you have had all the fun you can handle, ride back to the parking area via the Alpine Trail. Another single track down an old overgrown road with a ton of water bars, high speed riding and semi-blind corners to keep the adrenaline pumping. This trail connects back to the lower Elkhorn Loop trail and leads back to the parking lot. Do as many miles as you can stand.
How to get there:
64 miles from Boise on Idaho 21 past Idaho City. Or, half way between Idaho City and Lowman at the Banner Ridge Cross County Ski Park and Yurt System