Video: Riding Silver Mountain Bike Park's Insanely Long Trails in Kellogg, Idaho - First Impressions

Feb 18, 2021
by Pinkbike Originals  

Silver Mountain Resort in Kellogg, Idaho, is home to North America's longest gondola which gives them a ton of vertical to build trails. With a mix of narrow, fast singletrack, jumps, and wood features, the variety of terrain and ride options feels endless. Join Angi Weston, Alli Gaertner, and Pinkbike’s Mike Kazimer as they take their first laps down Silver Mountain.

Silver Mountain Resort mountain biking trails

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Silver Mountain Resort


  • 63 4
 Want a real impression of Silver Mountain? Sign up for the North American Enduro Cup.
  • 38 1
 My hands still hurt from 2 years ago....
  • 9 12
 @RadBartTaylor: i was up last summer and all the berms are rutted out, soo soo painful even with one up bars
  • 4 3
 @jgainey Way ahead of you, my dude.
  • 5 8
 @Lukefuelex: Same experience here. So many ruts and rocks, it was unbearable. Awesome terrain though, my plan is to go early this year before it is destroyed.
  • 54 18
 @taythecoug: are you guys seriously complaining about rocks at a bike park? Sounds like you’re riding outside of your skill level or maybe you should take a class. There are techniques to ride ruts and braking bumps. Or maybe try the Hiawatha Trail, I’ve heard it’s pretty well manicured ????
  • 15 10
 @Jnicol08: Have you been there? I'm not sure the dozens of foot deep holes through nearly every corner qualify as "brake bumps" anymore. They have some cool terrain but it is crazy rough and doesn't get much trail crew attention compared to the traffic.
  • 9 4
 @Jnicol08: three years ago it was amazing but last summer it was so clapped out. They haven’t done any work to it for awhile. Sad!
  • 31 2
 @gafoto: You are wildly exaggerating. As a season pass holder who rides there pretty much every weekend all season long I thought the trail conditions were great. They even did a lot of work the last part of the season and it was riding really nice.

If people think it is too rough they need to either A. Ride more B. Hit the Gym, or C. Get their suspension tuned/serviced.
  • 31 3
 @DirtyHal: I also wonder if the people who had bad experiences showed up on lightweight 130mm travel bike with EXO tires to ride downhill bike terrain. Part of racing is bringing the right bike to the race. If you only have one bike to choose from, then swapping tires, changing suspension settings, and raising handlebars are all part of adapting your bike to a different course.
  • 7 5
 @TEAM-ROBOT: i don't think so. i usually ride silver 2-3 times a year, and it is the choppiest park i have been to. that being said, i obviously dig it enough to keep going. i recommend a trip with some CDA and Spokane riding for those that can make it.
  • 7 0
 I got a seasons pass last year and had the same "oh this is too rough" experience. I changed my suspension settings quite a bit to handle the terrain, learned to stay loose, and figured out how to stay off the brakes. By the end of the season, I could handle most of the park pretty well.
  • 5 0
 @DirtyHal: spent a couple of days there last year hammering laps and had an absolute blast. The length of a gondola run there is absolutely unreal, you can get so much riding done in a day. Lap or two up top, then rip down. And the long gondi ride back up is honestly the perfect rest period. After figuring out the trails, you can add so much diversity to a run. Some of the funnest corners and sneaky hits I’ve found in any bike park also. All on a Patrol with a coil. Definitely making a trip or two back this year with the big bike.
  • 3 3
 @mountainyj: the prob with the big bike is the ride back at the bottom. but i'm super lazy...
  • 1 0
 @thustlewhumber: I went up there late season last summer with some of the Rocky Mountain guys. I rode park all summer but after 8 laps down in one day my arms where shot. Should've adjusted my suspension as it was def set up for big hits not tech. Cant wait to ride there again this summer.
  • 2 0
 @savagelake: I’m not, haha. Not stressing the pedal, if it’s hot, I just jump in the river for the pedal back. Silver has proper trails to push the limits of a bike on, looking forward to seeing what the big bike can do there.
  • 35 0
 @gafoto: As somebody who has spent lots of time with the trail crew up there; They're always working hard on the trails. People will still be skiing up there and the trail crew will be working there way up from the very bottom, and they don't stop until the snow flies again. The thing is, it's gets really dry and there are a lot of loose rocks. The crew isn't huge, and they have a LOT of trail to cover. I've spent hours in the morning moving rocks off of some trails and ride down it late afternoon and the rocks are back. Some years we get lucky and there's a lot of summer rain and most of the year kicks ass, but the dry years are tough. Also keep in mind the NAEC brings in a lot of traffic.

I don't mean to get defensive, I just hear out-of-towners say unfounded things and it hurts me knowing how hard these guys work on those trails in the dry, dusty summer heat. Some of the trail crew double as patrollers, as well, and are ready to patch you up when you go down hard. If you don't think the Silver Mt. trail crew/patrollers are awesome people, it's because you haven't met them yet! And if you do meet them, buy them a damn beer, they deserve it!
  • 17 4
 The guys bitching about the braking bumps are everything that is wrong with this community.
  • 15 15
 @skerby: guys is a gender specific pronoun, those aren’t allowed these days....try more neutral words such as people, or in this case pussies. Example. “The pussies bitching about the conditions of the trails is everything wrong with this community.”

You wanna see real brake bumps? Go to Whistler after crankworx week. If we ever get to have crankworx and the associated party again.
  • 2 0
 @mountainyj: having been to both Silver and Whistler the week after Crankworx, they can be pretty similar depending on the weather. I agree with everyone that Silver has a special kind of breaking bump, but it's still a blast to ride.
  • 4 0
 @mountainyj: you may get your 'man / boy' card pulled for posting on "pinkbike".....what would your friends say?
  • 4 0
 @RadBartTaylor: My friends don't associate the color pink with feminism. #realmenridepinkbikes
Don't be sexist now
  • 3 1
 @mountainyj: for some reason I highly doubt that
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flag mountainyj (Feb 17, 2021 at 9:10) (Below Threshold)
 @RadBartTaylor: why? because you're an inner area Portlandian, who speaks about how mask progressive they were in Idaho last summer? But then has numerous comments on this page comparing "PINKbike" to masculinity? You're fitting your liberal duty to be hypocritical perfectly right now.
If you're implying my friends don't associate the color pink with feminism. Many of my riding friends are girls who shred harder than you. As well as dudes who ride blue and pink sparkled unicorn bikes, that is a real statement fyi.
YOU are the problem with mountain biking and inclusiveness. You keep implying generalized stereotypes and ways things "are/should be" instead of just getting out and riding your bike with cool people.
  • 3 2
 @mountainyj: triggered much? I'm not comparing PINKbike to masculinity - I'm pointing out that how macho / badass you come across online may not align with what your friends think. It's cute you guys dress up like unicorns....

You think since I wear a mask I'm an inner Portlandian and a progressive? If we are stereotyping based on careful with that.
  • 4 0
 8 top to bottom laps at silver is a big day! I live 3 hours away, and I get about 5 in and then I’m gassed@ThorneMTB:
  • 4 3
 @Antron: What Antron said. Drew and the trail crew bust their asses to make Silver as rad as it is, and anyone who's been riding there since Otis was running the digger knows how much work they've put in. Unappreciative nancies like RadFart, with their weak, effeminate hands, can stay at Bachelor.
  • 13 0
 @mtskier: One thing that stands out to me about the trails at Silver Mountain is how many miles there are to maintain!!! The runs that go all the way down to the base area are miles and miles and miles long, plus all the upper mountain laps. It's would be a crazy task just to keep all the drainages working and keep the trails clear of downed trees, and that's before you talk about rebuilding berms and jumps and cutting out braking bumps. What a massive undertaking.
  • 2 0
 @mtskier: I thought / think the place is rad, that has nothing to do with my hands getting hammered and 100% appreciate it for what it is, not sure where or why you thought I don't? I raced the EWS qualifier there 2 years ago and had a grand ol' time and have the scars to prove it.

Never ridden at Bachelor...but I have ridden outside of Bozeman and in Whitefish....I'd go back if you'll treat me nice.
  • 1 0
 @RadBartTaylor: I'm just f*cking with you, come say hello next time you're cruising around the Silver parking lot.
  • 4 0
 @TEAM-ROBOT: A great point indeed. The other thing that people need to keep in mind, especially those from the coastal areas of the PNW, is that northern Idaho, like my home in Montana, is essentially high desert and receives very little moisture over the course of a year. No matter how good the dirt is (and coming from the decomposed granite I ride at home, I tend to think Kellogg has awesome dirt) it's going to get beat after two months with nary a drop of precip. As a longtime Silver patron I can also personally attest to the fact that there is A LOT more traffic there in the last few years. This increase in users is due in no small part to the hard work of the trail crew up there, though I think people overlook these things on the occasional visit.
  • 1 0
 @TEAM-ROBOT: Exactly, why do people bring an all mountain bike to a bike park.
Wrong tool for the job.
  • 1 0
 @savagelake: We have a place in Moyie, BC, not being able to get into the panhandle last year stunk.
  • 2 0
 @Antron: thanks for what you guys do up there! it’s a pretty amazing place. people that even ride there don’t really realize the amount of trail there riding or the maintenance that it requires to keep up on something that scale. i’ve rode there early season and on the last day. any bike park you go to is going to be in bad shape at the end of the season. (dont say what about whistler because the dirt there is is really good and have a massive trail crew) when i ride there later in the season i take multiple breaks going down the mountain. ya i want to straight shot it but if i take some breaks i find myself having a great time and not completely breaking my body. keep up the good work !
  • 25 1
 I love the audio contrast between Mike and Angie. Angie could do voice work for a kids show for sure!
  • 7 0
 Ha! I'd be totally up for this if anyone is hiring for voice-overs. Smile
  • 4 0
 @Angi: my daughter (4.5 years) was watching and said “she is having so much fun, daddy let’s go ride there!”
  • 8 0
 Went last September for my birthday weekend. It was 50 and raining so I'm headed back this spring when the dirt isn't moon dust and hopefully I'll have some sunshine! Dirtbaggers can camp in the lot, so f'n rad, and the little pump track/skills spot is directly off the parking lot. Definitely a great destination! Also, you can get 2 beers down easy on that gondola ride, 3 if you're trying to hydrate.
  • 4 2
 FYI, Schweitzer also let’s you RV camp in the Gatway lot. Free in the Summer months. The bike park is growing, but add in the trail network off the backside and you can link together a 4,000’ descent.
  • 9 1
 @kungfupanda: Shhhh.... don't tell people the secrets....

Here tell them like this - the best riding at Schweitzer is only accessed via lift.

See how hard that was Wink
  • 4 1
 @taythecoug: I’ve been hearing rumors that Schweitzer is going big 2021. Fingers crossed!
  • 1 0
 @kungfupanda: I see you reside in Sandpoint. I'd love to see them expand! I keep hearing rumors from other mountains in the area, but they've been threatening us with bike parks for so many years so I don't hold my breath anymore.
  • 1 1
 @Antron: POP is doing some amazing trail work in the coming years. Schweitzer (the resort) may not be devoting resources to mountain biking, but at least the local trail builders are!
  • 11 1
 Silver is a great time. great seeing it get some more love
  • 9 1
 Spent a lot of time at Silver when I was in college, the bike park, town of Kellogg, and North Idaho in general is the best.
  • 20 3
 Park is great...but the town?!? lol, not so much...
  • 19 1
 The town is meh at best, it's got some character in the same way the weird homeless guy down the street does.....I see the potential there, could be a cool place with a few more businesses....but it's a few poutine stands away from Whistler
  • 1 0 the summer months. Agreed! Winter not so much.
  • 23 4
 @RadBartTaylor @MikeyMT Eh, I kind of enjoy kellogg more than I enjoy Whis. I'd rather chop it up with a silver valley local than somebody you'd meet at the whistler village. parking lot beers and dogs are what I am more down with.
  • 5 0
 @nskerb: Sometimes simple and low key are best for sure.
  • 6 0
 @nskerb: If by 'town' you mean the parking lot, I don't disagree - but going to guess Dave Smith isn't going to drop by for a beer in the lot, or any local for that matter...the actual downtown, outside of the brewery, has absolutely nothing going on unfortunately
  • 4 1
 @nskerb: lol. you're describing bros hanging in the parking lot that are from out of town riding the park...not locals. But who knows...perhaps the meth heads I've met there and been robbed by are 'tourists'
  • 36 8
 As someone who lives here, North Idaho is... yes, the best, but also in other ways not the best?

Fantastic outdoor recreation. Biking obviously, plus camping etc. Even during COVID when I saw more people camping than ever before this summer, there were still plenty of places to find a good spot. A good argument for some of the best hunting and fishing in the lower-48 if that's your deal.

There are also some neat communities. I wouldn't personally choose to live in Kellogg, but Sandpoint would be near the top of my list if I were moving, I have friends and family that are happy in the CDA/Post Falls/Hayden area, and I love living in Moscow.

But, speaking of COVID, it's sort of brought to the surface some of the North Idaho crazy that's always been here. Some places have a shocking amount of confederate and "Trump 2020 F**** Your Feelings" flags. The outright COVID denial here is on an impressive level. Not in just in a "we need to keep the economy open" way that has perhaps a valid viewpoint behind it, but in a "BILL GATES' 5G VACCINATIONS ARE MAKING THE FROGS GAY!!!!" completely nutter butter way.

Obviously all that's way easier to ignore outside of COVID, but it's still there. Or rather, here.

That also varies a ton from town to town. My COVID personal-social-experiment has been keeping track of what percentage of people are wearing masks as I go to different grocery stores in the region. Moscow Organic Food Coop? 100%. Atholl Super-1? Basically no-one besides me and a couple of employees. Most of the rest of the region? Somewhere in-between, but generally closer to the Atholl side than the Moscow side of things.

Real estate is absolutely insane right now in the greater CDA-area. It was growing quickly pre-COVID, it's almost impossible to find a house right now. It'll be interesting to see what happens after COVID, if the transplants fall in love with the region, or if they miss what they left other places.

For bike parks, Silver is great, Schweitzer could be great if they'd invest in their trail network, but so far they haven't. It's kind of a waste of a mountain with tons of potential in the summer.

For trail associations and networks, Sandpoint and Moscow have probably the most "mature" MTB orgs in the region. CDA's riding areas are a bit more of the Wild West, but that's changing as well. And what's already there is great. I've heard there's some trails being built up around Bonner, but haven't ridden up there yet.

TL;DR: I love it here, but it's not perfect, and it's not for everybody. Also, it's changing, and it'll be interesting to see what those changes bring.
  • 10 3
 @atourgates: it’s sad that all these nice places are slowly being over run by grouchy city people tho
  • 9 0
 @Lukefuelex: Totally, what a bunch of Atholls.
  • 2 0
 @coldfront-media: I dig the Mike Tyson impression. Haha
  • 2 0
 @joedave: Athol.... as in Athol, ID the town. Although associating with Tyson was a good connection!
  • 1 0
 @JcHc513: such a true statement
  • 10 0
 @Lukefuelex: Yeah, CDA where most of the transplants are landing has never been my cup of tea. There’s sort of an aggressive “watch me do burnouts in my F1500 brodozer” culture that’s more prevalent up there than I like.

Obviously lots of great stuff too. But CDA has been more like Orange County than any other part of the state for years, and wherever people are moving from, I think they’re moving in part because they like that culture.

You sort of see the same thing in most of the state. People who move to Moscow mostly want to live in a small progressive University town. If you’re a prepper who wants to be self-sufficient in the woods while you await the apocalypse, you’re probably going to end up in Bonner County.

It’s really popular to blame transplants for whatever you don’t like about Idaho. But I don’t see the transplants so much changing the place, as magnifying what’s already there.

Well, except for soaring real estate prices. They’s one issue you can at least squarely blame on transplants.
  • 2 1
 @atourgates: My exact experience when I took a road trip through N Idaho and into Montana this past summer. I thought Montana would be LESS progressive than ID, but it was quite the opposite, obviously highly dependent on the town. I strolled into an outdoor store for some stuff just N of CDA and I was the ONLY person with a mask on and got some very strange looks. With that said in the 11 or so months we've been living with masks and Covid, a dude in Boise called me out for my mask slipping down while I was ordering a beer.

On another trip I spent 6 days in S Idaho outside Featherville riding moto, same deal, rolled into a pizza joint / bar, shoulder to shoulder people, me and my buddy were the only ones with masks on sitting in the corner feeling a bit self conscious.
  • 2 3
 @atourgates: Move somewhere else dude.
  • 12 15
 I never realized how many grown men could be scared and personally threatened by trump flags and people enjoying personal liberties. Sounds like a lot of the people in my comment are the exact type of people Idaho doesnt need. Keep enjoying 18 dollar citrus beers in Bozeman and Whistler.
  • 3 4
 @nskerb: your the guy posting on "PINKbike" - better not let yer friends know
  • 1 0
 @skerby: No you.
  • 4 0
 @atourgates: I miss the co-op...and Moscow Mt. I wish they had more Somalia-esq trails.
  • 2 0
 @atourgates: Real Estate is something like 15-20% of BC's "GDP". Washington, Idaho, and Montana are going to be there soon enough.
  • 1 0
 @atourgates: All I know about CDA is from KAYU FOX 28, and that's to come check out the Casino!
  • 7 0
 How TF is Mike's bike so quiet!? Must be trickery with the mic or something.
  • 5 0
 Quietest bike ever. Please tell us how that is done
  • 2 0
 @schlockinz: ya no kidding, I want to know
  • 1 0
 Prolly using a foam GoPro windscreen... doubt he’s running Onyx hubs, least I still heard a bit of a buzz
  • 1 0
 @Eatsdirt External routing on the Privateer.
  • 8 1
 It's a fun park for sure.
  • 4 16
flag DoubleCrownAddict (Feb 16, 2021 at 10:48) (Below Threshold)
 Are e bikes allowed there? Looks like it would be a great place for them because some of the trail networks seem to be separated from others by some distance.
  • 16 1
 @DoubleCrownAddict: username does not check out
  • 4 0

"3. Buy an extra E bike. This will allow you to have a backup in case your motor or some other component goes bad, and also allows you to loan an E bike to a friend and get them hooked."

YT has an e-bike, you should get that one for your extra. Just make sure it doesn't have a skull!
  • 2 1
 @DoubleCrownAddict: ebike not needed. peeps usually take the gondola up, do hot laps using chair 3, then ride all the way to the bottom for lunch and end of the day. 1.5 mile flat ride back to resort/gondola.
  • 8 0
 Dave Smith
  • 4 0
 This guy Kellogg's.
  • 3 0
 Ride there regularly. The locals are from coeur d'alene/ Spokane area. Bike patrol is rad people too.
For people complaining about chop. There is smooth lines, if you spy them out!
  • 2 0
 First time I ever rode top to bottom was by accident. Made a few runs on the upper trails when my wife took a break. My 8 year old son and I took a wrong turn and next thing you know we were on our way to the bottom. A LONG way down. It was sweet except I had no cell phone to let my wife know. She thought we were just doing one quick run up top on a short trail. When we finally got back to the top and out of the gondola, my wife looked frantic and had been thinking the worse because we'd been gone so long. My son was dying to to the trail again, but we couldn't. He and I came back the next year specifically to hit the trail. One of our favorites.
  • 2 0
 Had the “pleasure”of signing up for a 2 day enduro race last minute at Silver Mountain having never been there. Absolutely was blown away ripping the long stages, and the weekend definitely left a huge impression. I had no idea about Silver Mountain before then nor had any idea what to expect. SO SICK
  • 2 0
 Discovered this place a while back completely by accident. I was on the way back to Denver from Whistler. Made a pit stop in town because Trailforks showed some trails to ride. Found out at the bottom it was part of a park. Bought a ticket and rode the entire day. Been back every year since.
  • 2 0
 Last time I rode Silver I rented a demo DH bike and it had schwalbe tires with the thinnest sidewalls imaginable. I ended up getting 4 flats that day, with one time flatting both tires at once and crashing the bike. Love the mountain though.
  • 7 2
  • 1 0
 Love people who complain about how rough trails are ;
F’n weak . Silver was one of very few places open during covid and this is my local park and one of my favorite places to ride .If you can’t handle it go ride elsewhere . Yes it gets blown out but who gives a f ,makes you a better rider .
  • 1 1
 Looks like fun! I know the difficulty of the terrain can be deceiving, but the black trails did not seem very scary. I stay off (some of) the black trails at most bike parks. Keystone, for instance, is rough and technical. Their green and blue bike trails are a blast, but you won't see me on Sanitarium!
  • 2 0
 That's a shame bud. You're missing out. Sanitarium is one of my fav trails at Keystone. The corkscrew feature is a blast. So easy to ride, but it freaks a lot of people out, I'll admit. That's one thing I love about riding in the central mountains of CO. You want fast, flow and jumps? Ya got Trestle. Ya want tech? You got Keystone. And only a two hour drive from one to the other.
  • 10 0
 Silver has got the goods. I'd say Silver is actually fairly stout compared to other bike park ratings. Not necessarily because it has huge drops and jumps (it does, just not shown in the video), but mostly the off camber rough nature of the trails make it extremely technical to ride at speed. I've ridden nearly a dozen parks in the US, and non match the technical nature of Silver.
  • 3 0
 @snowbummer: sneaky trails at big sky are the only other US resort trails I’ve ridden that compare. Targhee has Blondie, which is on a similar level, but doesn’t have the same amount of “holy shit” trails that Big Sky and especially Silver have.
Honorable mention to the Canyons DH trail, when they were still a bike park. As well as Captain Jack at Crested Butte.
  • 3 0
 @mountainyj: man, you know what’s up. The sneakers at Big Sky are incredibly rad and some of the better and gnarlier trails at all bike parks in the states(at least western side of country). CB also has some good and Captain Jack is such a rad trail. Hope they open this year!
  • 3 0
 @stormracing: Big Sky is where its at if you like tech. We have one jump line but apparently there are plans for more intermediate style jump lines in the future.
  • 1 0
 @MikeyMT: aww yeah. I love it!
Ninja Marmot is rad but I’m all about the rough and raw. Tech is the best! Big Sky has a good solid bit of it and I absolutely love it. If that border doesn’t open up yet again, I’ll be rippin Big Sky a lot this season
  • 2 0
 @stormracing: You and me both my friend. See you out there
  • 1 0
 @MikeyMT: You don't say? Lots of tech and not a lot of jumping? My cup of tea! I might make a road trip to MT this summer. Is there a good green for the wife to ride?
  • 2 0
 When last there, the city park had boxing rings set up with fights going on. That and the wacky metal sculptures are a nice touch.
  • 4 0
 Would love to see more of this POV footage in the bike reviews!
  • 3 0
 Fun to see/hear Mike's riding after reading so many bike reviews.
  • 5 2
 Bro you got to ride with billie eilish?
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer Your bike is eerily silent! What hub were you riding? I've always loved a loud hub but I really loved the vibe of no hub sound in that clip!
  • 1 0
 Yes, noticed that too. Much more than her bike. What bike was it? Looked like a privateer, no?
  • 1 0
 Sick vid and great idea for the first impression series! Let us know when you head down toward Boise!
  • 3 0
 We have a Boise video coming next week.
  • 1 1
 Silver is so fun been going there for 2 years. They haven't done any trail work because of covid-19 so very brake bumped out, still very fun.
  • 2 0
 They typically don't do trail work unless it rains because without water it it's pointless. They did a bunch of work late in the season and the park was riding amazing.
  • 3 2
 This place sucks don't ever go there. Definitely don't do 2 weeks of summer vacation in Idaho.
  • 2 0
 After watching this clip I feel like in know Angie so well....
  • 1 0
 Mike has the quietest brakes ever recorded at a bike park. What are those???
  • 2 0
 Billie Eilish bike edition
  • 1 0
 Kazimer, that bike sounds really quiet! How are you liking it?
  • 1 0
 @MikeKazimer, we’re you riding the privateer 161 or 141?
  • 1 0
 all the trails are closed.
  • 1 0
 Mike Kazimer is the Dick Proenneke of mountain biking.
  • 1 0
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