Amazeing. This trip is a little harder than it's next door neihbor, Jumpingpound Ridge, but much more exciteing. You start with a good ~7.7km warm up along Powderface Trail...if you can arrange a shuttle to the trailhead, might as well. From there, the rocky widetrack switch backs up Jumpingpound Ridge for about 4.2 km. It can be really loose, so leave your semi-slicks at home ;). Watch for bikers screaming down here, mostly on the weekends. At the junction take a left (right is jumpingpound ridge). There's a nice teaser downhill into the saddle between the ridge and Cox. Now you have to ride (and push) your bike up to the cox summit. Once you're up there, be amazed at the veiw, take a picture, have a snack, and get ready for an awesome experience! You ride the ridge a bit and then drop in. If you're used to smooth hardpark, you in for a rude awaking, it can get rough, but that's part of the fun! The trail is a mix of rocky technical sections, and smooth packed pine needle widetrack. The latter can become the former in a heartbeat so watch out!! The slope settles a bit and you'll come to a junction, turn left and soom you be back at the dawson creek trail head. I would recommend letting your front rim cool down before touching it...mine gets too hot to touch...seriously! :) The downhill is about 6.7km
Overall, plan for 2-4 hours.
You CAN do Jumpingpound Ridge first. This add's about 19km, most of it not really worth it unless you a mad climber IMHO. There is some good ridge rideing though.
Going West on the number 1 out of Calgary, take the 68 (Sibbald Creek) going South. You come to an open area to your left with a large meadow and a road going through it, this is your turn off onto powerface trail. In about 3km you hit the Dawson Creek trail head, this is where I park. You can also drive ~7.7km father on powderface trail to the North Jumpingpound Ridge trail head if you wish, however I prefer to start the trip with road and end with the downhill.
Summary: This one's gotten a little worse for wear over the last few years. Path erosion has left the downhill a solid 6 km of rock garden. I can clean it on a 4" full suspension but it lacks some of the nice flow that it used to have.
I'd still recommend it because it is very technical (which I enjoy) and the view from the top is one of the best. For mere mortals, plan at least 4 hours, the switchback hike-a-bike up and powderface road slog back to the starting point eats up a lot of time.
Recommended Route: Depends if you want road to begin with or end with. I've done it both ways, prefer road first (cooler earlier in the day, less dust, get to end the ride on the dh).
Other recommended trails in the same area: Prairie Creek trail is still my fav.
Review Date June 7, 2003
Overall Rating 4 of 5
Ridden Trail: Ridden Once
Reviewed by: Adrian
, from Calgary
Summary: Okay, so I rode this ride around the June 1, 2003. I read all the reviews off this website and found that it had to be a must trail. The first 7km on the gravel road was a breeze, plus we ran into a black bear, which was amazing. Once you start the the initial 3km's of switchbacks up, you will wonder what it's all for, trust me you will find out. Before you drop the 1km you can actually see across the valley and onto the other side of the mountain. Look way up as this is where the path goes. The views once on top of the mountain are fantastic, and the descent is nice and technical, which is great. I think the only draw back is that for a 12-15km push up, I don't think it's really worth the payoff of the descent. Just my opinion, but hey you have to check out the views (amazing!). Adrian.
Other recommended trails in the same area: Prairie View, Sulphur Springs, Moosepackers (try and shuttle this one).
Review Date May 26, 2003
Overall Rating 4 of 5
Ridden Trail: Once a year
Reviewed by: Quick Fix Bicycle Service Shop
, from Calgary, Alberta
Summary: Don't let the word "hill" confuse you. When you're riding this it feels like a serious mountain. Brutal climb that's worth every swear word you mutter to yourself. Don't bother trying too early in the season because the snow can be pretty thick in a couple sections (probably good in early/mid June most years). The part that seriously sucks about this ride is riding the gravel road at the end of the day. Good rides should finish with ripping downhills, not 5km of gravel road, so arrange for a shuttle to make this a perfect ride. Wear a helmet and pay attention on the way down. I'm almost scared to do this downhill again, because in the heat of the moments excitement you can get going soooo fast. Great expert ride (expert conditioning to get up the hill, expert handling skills to appreciate the downhill). Good ride to make beginners want to quit riding. Way too strenuous for novice riders and they don't appreciate the downhill anyways. Remember: If your bike doesn't work properly, even the best rides will suck. Get your bike repaired or tuned in 3 days or less at Quick Fix (beside Heninger Toyota on Macleod Trail) phone: 686-7040
Other recommended trails in the same area: Jumping pound ridge.
Review Date June 26, 2001
Overall Rating 5 of 5
Ridden Trail: Once a month
Reviewed by: Chris
, from Calgary, Ab, CAN
Summary: Holy crap. This ride is definitely my favorite in the West Bragg Creek / Sibbald are. All the up hill hammering at the start is well rewarded with a superior, mind-blowing downhill to follow. Do this ride. Even if you're not in the conditioning to complete the uphill, push/ carry your bike up and enjoy!
Recommended Route: Do it as a loop with part of Powderface.