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Cold Springs Trail #328
Details (5/26/2024)
Status: Closed
Difficulty: Intermediate
Uses: Mt Biking & Hiking
Length: 7 miles
Start: 8,280'
End: 5,700'
Min: 5,699'
Max: 8,280'
Gain: 100'
Loss: -2,580'
Elevation Profile
// track pieces: 396, // elevation pieces: 396
Trailhead Forecast (5/26/2024)
Description / Access Information
Cold Springs Trail #328: The Cold Springs Tr. is available for uphill and downhill non-motorized use. Watch for others and downhill mountain bikers yield to others. Cold Springs Trail traverses the south slopes of Baldy, crossing several large, sage-covered bowls.

The route is a rolling contour trail that climbs at grades suitable for intermediate strength riders, but it is a long pull. After a while the trail breaks out of the trees to cross a number of huge sagebrush and grass covered bowls. If it's sunny and hot out this section can be a scorcher.

This trail can be used to descend off of the mountain to the Cold Springs side of the area. Doing so deposits you at the Wood River Trail (paved non-motorized multi-use trail) where you will have a 2.5 mile ride back up the mellow trail to the River Run base area - if that is your destination. 

Considering the trail's character, at its low end, where the Cold Springs Trail is in the trees, it turns and twists and rolls and bucks. Where it is out in the open the route is quite straight and direct. Much of the trail is over firm surfaces, but some sections contain quite a lot of loose angular rock that can throw bike tires around. As is useful on any descent, watch for others who may be approaching from around blind corners. 

The Cold Springs Trail is the more southerly portion of the Bald Mountain Perimeter Trail #328. The other side of the Perimeter Trail is made up of the Warm Springs Trail leg. The Cold Springs Trail is used for the “Cheeso Double" portion of the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation Baldy Hill Climb. This aspect of the famous SVSEF "suffer-fest" sees riders mountain biking up the Cold Springs Trail, and the Broadway Trail, to the top of Baldy, then the racers download on a ski lift to join the traditional "Baldy Hill Climb" footrace back up to the top. The footrace portion starts at the Warm Springs base area of the mountain, where the racers run/hike directly to the top by-way-of the Warm Springs ski run. Brutal.

Mountain bike riders have many options for enjoying great trail experiences on Bald Mountain. The Sun Valley Company has been developing and improving all of its mountain bike trails on the mountain. At the start of the 2018 season they opened two more directional flow trails on 
Baldy. Mindbender is a mid-mountain 3.5-mile freeride trail with an intermediate rating. Pale Rider is low on the River Run side of the mountain. It's a black diamond freeride hybrid that is steep, fast, and technically demanding.

Pedaling up Baldy can be approached on several trails. The Bald Mountain Trail is the most direct route, and it is open to uphill bike traffic only. Riders can also climb up on the Warm Springs Trail, or on the Cold Springs Trail. Both lead to the Broadway Trail, which is the last leg in the climb to the summit. Combining the Warm Springs Perimeter Trail #328, and the Cold Springs Perimeter Trail #328, provides for the possible circumnavigation of the mountain.

(Note: The Perimeter Trail #328 does not open to the top of the mountain until July 1 to protect calving elk.) Both the Warm Springs and Cold Springs trails are open to two-way bicycle traffic and other allowed shared uses.

The trails on Baldy are non-motorized and therefore closed to electric mountain bike use. The mountain service roads that are not part of Baldy's trail network are closed to bike traffic.

Hikers have a great many options on Baldy Mountain, with the Bald Mountain Trail being perhaps the most popular hiking route on the hill. It's a direct route that starts out along the Big Wood River, out of the Sun Valley Resort's River Run Base Area. The trail climbs through the woods to the base of the Frenchmen's lift area before entering an area of sunshine, grasses, and, in the springtime, wildflowers. Many hikers branch off onto the French Connection Cat-track Trail, or the Roundhouse Connector Trail, to make for a shorter outing. Others climb the Bald Mountain Trail to the top of Baldy. That involves over 3000 feet of climbing, but it is still a very popular option for many hardy souls.

In the summer the Sun Valley Resort runs the Roundhouse Gondola and the Christmas chairlift to the top of Bald Mountain. This provides easy access to downhill mountain biking, dining at the Roundhouse Restaurant, or simply enjoying the spectacular views from the summit.

*For more detailed descriptions, topo maps, and information on the history, geology, and wildflowers of the Wood River Valley pick up a copy of Exploring Sun Valley online or find it at one of several local shops.