All new 2014 Smartphone Maps

Click here for's all new 2014 Smartphone Trail Maps...'s Ultimate Galbraith Mt. Guide
Click for Galbraith weather & webcams. You must be connected to the Internet...

Oly, Bottle Openner & Keystone -- 
The Mid-Mountain Connection

luca2_080802_500pix.jpg (58775 bytes)
Oly + Bottle Openner + Keystone = Singletrack from Arsenio to The Tower Area

ABOVE LEFT -- The entrance to the clearcut-ravaged Oly.
ABOVE RIGHT -- Trillium and mushrooms on the still silvan portion of Bottle Openner

BELOW LEFT -- Jim Fricker, he of Fricker's Skinny on Cedar Dust,
BELOW RIGHT -- Mark Belles, author of the old Wonderland.

Trail name(s): Oly, Bottle Openner, Keystone
Difficulty rating: There are a few stunts scattered along the sides of these trails (including the long log ride on Oly), but these trails about getting you from here (the Arsenio area) to there (the Towers area), and vice versa
Elevation gain/loss: 100 feet
Best riding direction: Rides well either way
Best seasons: Gets heavy use all year long
Video: Mark Belles rising the Long Log Ride on Oly, Jimmy Breitenstein riding the Long Log Ride on Oly the other way

See trail map at right. Click here for Map Set Index.

Click here for Driving Directions from Interstate 5 to Galbraith, plus MapQuest maps and live WebCam shots of Galbraith and the main freeway exits for Galbraith.

WE'RE TREATING Oly, Bottle Openner and Keystone together because one of these trails is rarely ridden without the other, and because together they constitute the main singletrack route between the Arsenio area and the The Towers area of Galbraith.

Old Galbraith hands may choke at this convention, though, because each of these three trail is distinct and different than the others, with its own character and history.

At this point, Oly is a fast, scabby clearcut with a couple interesting stunts; Bottle Openner is a mild-mannered stroll on the dank side, and Keystone is a rough combo -- half clearcut, half forest.

A few noteworthy technical features grace these trails. The most extreme is on Keystone -- a very gnarly, badly eroded root drop into the creek bottom when you cross the deep ravine. Mark Belles swears he saw a guy ride this on a cyclocross bike in the early '90s, but these days it's strictly the arena of the big, big bikes and big balls, er, I mean big rubber.

Keystone's other serious technicality is the climb up to the 4200 Rd. and the bottom of Naughty Nellie. If you're headed toward The Towers, this staircased hump features several log punchups and a heartbreakingly steep section at the end with loose stuff on top (sweet!).

Oly, meanwhile, boasts the Long Log Ride, an alternative route on the fork that dumps into the 2722 Rd. closest to Kaiser. There's also what's left of a nifty cedar stump drop on Oly (visible in the background behind Legendary Cathy BELOW) near the bridge that Galbraith speedster Jeff Cummins (BELOW RIGHT) built after the area was clearcut.

The new kid on the block here is Bottle Openner. Legendary WHIMPs major domo, Mark Peterson (pictured BELOW LEFT making a seriously slick punchup on Cedar Dust, back in the days when real men wore real bike shorts), spearheaded the volunteer trail building effort and set the sweet line that both climbs and descends very well.

There are a couple minor low bridges on Bottle Openner, but the coolest thing about Bottle Openner -- apart from the fact that it eliminates a short gravel road ride between Oly and Keystone -- is that it's loaded with mushrooms in season.

Throw in a host of lesser treats (like the old growth cedar log ride in the Keystone woods, pictured with Smokey, above) that was in an article in Mountain Bike in 2000 -- and you have three sweet and useful trails that are important to know if you want to get around on Galbraith.

Great Galbraith Mt. Riders: Mark Peterson on Cedar Dust in the snowGreat Galbraith Mt. Riders: Jeff Cummins at the Blue Rock in 2000

ABOVE LEFT -- Mark Peterson led the volunteer effort to build the new Bottle Openner
ABOVE RIGHT --Jeff Cummins built the crucial bridge on the north end of the new Oly that allowed this important connecting trail to be reclaimed.

Legendary Cathy Crouch on Oly on Galbraith Mt. in Bellingham, WA

ABOVE -- Legendary Cathy Crouch cuttin' through the clearcut that devistated the old Oly in 2001. The has been rebuilt and now features a couple long log rides...

ABOVE -- Here's a sequence of video grabs showing Mark Belles riding the long log on Oly. Click here for video.
BELOW -- Here's Jimmy Breitenstein riding it the other way. Click here for video.

Maps    Trails    Technical    Reports    Gallery    Gear    Bikes    Video 

Please read's Terms of Use.

© Copyright 2000-2010 by All rights reserved. and are trademarks of BF Communications Inc.

BF Communications Inc.
P.O. Box 393
Sumas, WA 98295 USA
(360) 927-3234

Website by Running Dog

Vert Quest -- excerpts from Mongo's World Record Journal by Bruce Brown
Days: 365 Rides: 220 Total vertical feet climbed: 404,900

Click here for Map Set Index.

Click here for Driving Directions from Interstate 5 to Galbraith, plus MapQuest maps and live WebCam shots of Galbraith and the main freeway exits for Galbraith.