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Adams Rib Trail #142
Details (5/26/2024)
Status: Partial
Difficulty: Expert
Uses: Mt Biking & Hiking & Equestrian
Length: 9.3 miles
Start: 8,642'
End: 6,200'
Min: 6,197'
Max: 8,674'
Gain: 960'
Loss: -3,403'
Elevation Profile
// track pieces: 755, // elevation pieces: 755
Trailhead Forecast (5/26/2024)
Description / Access Information
Adams Rib Trail #142: Such a great trail. It's long, and it climbs aggressively from its low point in Adams Gulch to its high point on Warm Springs Ridge. The trail is 9.3 miles long from its low point in Adams Gulch to its intersection with Osberg Ridgeline and Rooks Creek trails.

In Adams Gulch find the bottom of the trail a little over a mile up the drainage. Here, at the intersection of the #142 and Sunnyside-Lane's Trail #316, the trail starts up, and doesn't let up for some time. Its a real challenging climb. This low section of the Adams Rib Trail #142 is nicknamed "Pork Chop". Take it to Harper's Trail and turn right to descend toward the Adams-Lake Creek Connector and a loop back to the Adams Gulch Trailhead, or a return to town. Or at Harper's, stay left and continue on the #142 Trail. Doing so will mean more climbing, and will take you to a saddle where you can take the Griffin Butte Connector Trail to do the Griffin Butte Loop and end up back at the Adams Gulch TH., or at that intersection, turn right to stay on the #142 once again. Like I said, it's a long trail. Yahoo!

Many people utilize the Adams Rib Trail as a return to the Adams Gulch area, on their return toward Ketchum - getting on the trail near to its high end, off of the Osberg Ridgeline Trail, or off of the Fox Peak Connector Trail and East Fork Baker Creek Road. This is not an easy downhill affair. Yes, you loose a lot of elevation over the course of riding down the trail, but there are a lot of uphills along the way, some of them steep. This is a very old trail. Back when people primarily approached it on horseback, no one was really concerned with trying to make the trail follow a reasonable and sustainable grade. They just went as directly as things would allow.

The trail offers incredible views into the various side drainages making up Adams Gulch. In the other direction the Boulder Mountain chain is often in view. You will often come across excellent displays of wildflowers in the spring and early summer. The trail passes through areas of open country mixed with areas of shady woodlands.

The high end of the trail is way up on Warm Springs Ridge. The #142 makes connections with several trails there, including the unmaintained Upper Old Adams Gulch Road Trail #177 (this intersection is near some shallow ponds, but there is no longer a sign marking the faint #177 trail), the Fox Peak Connector Trail #938, and the Osberg Ridgeline Trail #147.

While most all of the trail is closed to motorcycle and ebike use, the most westerly segment of the trail, between the trail's intersection with the Fox Peak Connector Trail, and Osberg Ridgeline Trail, is open to motorcycle and ebike use from May 1 - Aug. 29 of each season.

As mentioned earlier in this trail description, you can access the low end of the Adams Rib Trail (Pork Chop section) from the Sunnyside-Lane's Trail #316. The #316 trail is most easily accessed from the Adams Gulch Trailhead. To get to the trailhead, follow the bike path or Highway 75 north to Adams Gulch Road on the left. This intersection is about 0.7 miles north of the stoplight intersection of Hwy 75 and Saddle Road in Ketchum. Follow Adams Gulch Road west as it crosses the Big Wood River and twists and turns through the neighborhood to a stop sign. Turn left at the stop sign and continue on the road. The road takes you past several more residences, so please drive cautiously and show respect to the neighborhood. The road becomes a dirt/gravel road before entering the trailhead.

Facilities at the trailhead include a kiosk with affixed maps and route suggestions. (Tip - use your phone to take a picture of the maps and directions - having a few shots might be a good backup to the maps or other trail/route information you're taking along.) There is a vault toilet and a couple of picnic tables at the trailhead.

Please keep in mind that the Adams Gulch Trailhead is one of the busiest trail access points on the Ketchum Ranger District. Good management of such a wide variety of uses here requires everyone to abide by a few rules. There is no overnight camping allowed at the Adams Gulch Trailhead. Developed camping facilities are available on the forest, or you can camp in a dispersed manner in many areas of the forest. Check in at the ranger station in Ketchum - they can give you the info you need to find good camping - plz leave a clean site. Dogs must be on leash at the trailhead. Once dog owners are down the trail 200 feet from the trailhead parking area their dogs may be off leash.  Please check with the Ketchum Ranger District for more information by visiting the Ranger Station in Ketchum (the ranger station is on Sun Valley Road, on the north side - near  the churches there, and before you get to the red Sun Valley barn (if you are headed east on Sun Valley Road). You can also call the front desk at (208) 622-5371.