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BLM Opens two New Trails Near Bellevue
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Saturday, November 11, 2023
 

STORY AND PHOTO BY KAREN BOSSICK

Hikers and bikers now have two more trails to access in the southern part of the valley, in addition to the Silver Lining trail near Hailey, which was completed a few weeks ago.

The two-mile Belle and one-half-mile Vue 2.0 trails, located on the north side of Slaughterhouse Road  east of Bellevue, are open to Class 1 eBikes, mountain bikes, equestrians and hikers. They can be used as out and backs or as a loop connecting to the Belle and Vue trails to the south. Those trails were constructed a few years ago.

The new trails join the 3.5 mile long Silver Lining trail located east of Hailey. That trail can be accessed from the parking lot at the Quigley Pump Park. It takes hikers and bikers up a portion of the Quigley Canyon Loop over the ridge into Olympia Gulch above Keefer Park. Hikers and bikers can return to the parking lot via a newly constructed portion of the Toe of the Hill trail or park a shuttle car near Olympia Gulch.

The entire loop is about 5.5 miles.

The new trails help to meet the need for additional trails as outlined in both the Hailey and Bellevue city comprehensive plans and the Blaine County Comprehensive Plan, said John Kurtz, BLM Shoshone Outdoor Recreation planner. They also make BLM-managed public lands more accessible.

“These trails offer people a great way to be close to nature while exercising,” said Kurtz. “They also offer spectacular views of the Wood River Valley. Many people who live in the neighboring communities will be able to access these trails without even having to drive to a trailhead.”    

Because the trails are new they are susceptible to damage, particularly during wet conditions. Users are encouraged to use the rails when the trail tread is dry or frozen.

"While all users need to be aware of their impact on newly constructed trails, equestrians should take extra care. Large animals can leave hoof tracks several inches deep in a fresh, unconsolidated trail,” said Wood River Trail Coalition member Sara Gress. “We kindly ask the equestrian community to be extra aware of the trail surface and please wait until the surface has hardened enough to support a horse or mule."   

The BLM completed construction of the trails in partnership with the International Mountain Biking Association and the Blaine County Recreation District.

The construction is part of the BLM’S Recreation Strategy, Connecting with Communities. Learn more at https://www.blm.gov/sites/default/files/docs/2021-09/Connecting-With-Communities.pdf.

Funds for construction were generated from the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act recreation permit fees, an Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation grant and the Wood River Trails Coalition.

Questions? Call the BLM Shoshone Field Office at 208-732-7200 or visit the Blaine County Recreation District Summer TrailLink at https://summertrailink.bcrd.org/.

DID YOU KNOW?

John Reagle, Jeff Mintz, Alison Kinsler and other motorcycle volunteers with the Wood River Trails Coalition have cut down more than 650 trees from trails in Greenhorn, Deer Creek and Warm Springs this summer. Many of the trees were downed during last winter’s massive snowfall.

The BLM Lake Creek Trailhead parking lot now has a new vault toilet, thanks to financial support from the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation.


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