Distance: 12 km
Time: 1.5 – 2 hrs
Elevation Gain: 373 m
Elevation Loss: 372

Technical Rating: Intermediate
Physical Rating: Moderate
Season: June – October
Permit Required: No

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Powderface Creek to Prairie Link Loop is a shorter version of the Powderface Creek to Prairie Creek Loop, located in Elbow Valley. It combines the best of Powderface Creek and Prairie Creek trails, leaving out the torturous rocky climb up to Powderface Ridge; adding a great new section to this shorter loop that may be completed after work during the long summer evenings.

Ride Powderface Creek to Prairie Link Loop clockwise or counter clockwise, the choice is yours. However, I find that this multi-use loop flows best when ridden clockwise. Begin the ride from Powderface parking lot up Powderface Creek Trail. The first section of trail begins with a steep 500 metre incline most riders will find long enough to get their heart pounding and lungs gasping for air. Once this short steep section is complete, the trail will continue to ascend at a more manageable grade all the way up to the Prairie Link turnoff; about three kilometres from the parking area. Turn right (north) on to Prairie Link Trail and continue to climb up a narrow doubletrack through the thick forest, before descending down to Prairie Creek. Cross the well-constructed wooden bridge at the bottom of Prairie Link, turn right and head east along the Prairie Creek Trail. The remainder of the trip is mostly down, as the trail descends along the creek. You will be greeted with one last technical climb near the end of the loop, which will provide some incredible views of the canyon and creek below. The last two kilometres after that will descend back down towards Hwy 66, which you will pop out on to and ride southwest (right) for less than 200 metres to the Powderface parking area.

TRAILHEAD | N50 51.909 W114 47.561

From Calgary drive west along Hwy 22x, past the Bragg Creek turnoff. The Hwy turns to Hwy 66 at this point. Continue west along Hwy 66 until you reach Powderface parking area, north side of the Hwy across from Elbow Falls Recreational Area. Park and begin your ride up Powderface Creek Trail.

bikepirate rating: 5 Skulls