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Sunday, August 18, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Outdoors blog

Hiawatha Trail attracts bicyclists beating heat in record numbers

Mountain bikers ride through Tunnel No. 26 – one of nine tunnels visitors enter on the Route of the Hiawatha rail trail. (Rich Landers)
Mountain bikers ride through Tunnel No. 26 – one of nine tunnels visitors enter on the Route of the Hiawatha rail trail. (Rich Landers)

TRAILS -- Driving to the Montana-Idaho border to ride a 15-mile rail trail over nine trestles and through 11 cool tunnels appears to be even more popular in hot weather.

The Route of the Hiawatha has set a new monthly visitation record with 15,663 riders during July, says Phil Edholm at Lookout Pass Ski Area

"Sunny skies and cooler mountain temps have made for an enjoyable experience on one of the most scenic stretches of rail-to-trail in the country,” he said.   Rentals, tickets and other gear area available at Lookout Pass but bikers must drive farther into Montana on  I-90 to the Taft Exit and head up the road to the north trailhead.

Lookout Pass is the first ski resort in the nation to register a Bike Patrol with the newly formed Bike Division of the National Ski Patrol, Edholm said.  "Our initial membership includes 32 Ski Patrol members from the Inland Northwest who will supplement our staff on the Route of the Hiawatha in aiding our guests and providing information and assistance on the trail."




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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