High in the Monashees is an incredible trail that flows through the alpine, fast and smooth past meadows of wild flowers and sub alpine forest…with stunning 360 degree views of 2 mountain ranges and alpine lakes for quick cool off dips.
The Frisby Ridge trail is what mountain bike dreams are made of and is as close to singletrack perfection that I’ve ridden anywhere. Designed as an intermediate trail by mountain bikers for mountain bikers - it is considered Revelstoke’s signature alpine trail. The trail is 18.6 km one way if ridden to the end offering up almost 40kms of out and back high country stoke.
The trail starts out at 1300m and begins climbing through a cutblock with stunning views of Revelstoke and the Columbia River. Then slowly winding its way through big mountain hemlock and sub alpine forest. When the huckleberry season is on, you may find yourself stopping often to snack on these trailside treats. Oh and the bears like them too! Just as you might start to feel the climb, the trail breaks out into alpine meadows. If timing is right and the wild flowers are in peak, the trail starts to feel as if you’re biking through endless flower gardens with colors that are off the charts. After about 10km you’ll hit the high point in the trail. For some, this is a great turn around point if looking for a quicker ride and a little less climbing. Otherwise continue on and descend further to the alpine lake and onto the new 5.7km Frisby Vistas extension added in 2018. The reward is more alpine flow and what I consider to be s the best trail view in Revelstoke with the stunning Selkirk Mountains on one side and the mighty Monashees on the other.
The descent back down feels like a endless luge track weaving around buff corners and small rollers for air. Heads up though, this trail sees lots of uphill traffic at prime times.
The season for the trail begins July 15th due to a caribou closure. While the season can be short, its one of the best rides in Revelstoke both in the summer and fall. My favorite time is in the fall when the dirt is perfect and there is less traffic on the trails. Best to stay away from the trail during periods of big rain, as the trail has seen lots of wear and tear during some wetter than average seasons.
If you think you might still have juice in the tank, be sure to set up a shuttle vehicle at the bottom at the start of the day so you can finish up on the Frisby DH (UFC Trail & Ultimate Frisby Trail) adding an extra 4km of descending to the valley bottom. This is what locals like to call The Whole Teriyaki – it leaves you full and satisfied to say the least.
Once back at the vehicles, pop a cold one and enjoy the afterglow of ripping some of Revelstoke’s best singletrack.
PPhotos and Editorial by Ryan Creary