Mountain biking at Glacial Hills can best be described by the 3 "f's" - fast, flowy and fun. All 31.5 miles have been professionally designed and carefully built to provide the most enjoyable experience possible. Even better, all riders can find appropriate and fun trail that meets their skill level. While Glacial has some impressive elevation changes for the Midwest (several loops have high points more than 400 foot above the trailhead), the sustainable design "hides" the climbing by incorporating flat rest zones and even some shorter downhill sections. As an example, one stretch of trail takes two miles to ultimately climb 300 feet and includes 5 downhill sections on the way up.
Visiting Glacial Hills for the first time or looking for a new loop to experience? While every stretch of trail has great features, the following suggested loops have become particular favorites:
Family/Warm up Loop - The flattest of the Glacial Hills trails provides a great introduction to mountain biking for novices and also serves as a nice warm-up loop for bikers entering the trail system from the Eckhardt parking lot. The shortest loop (A-B-short C-D) totals about .4 miles with relatively straight and wide trails. Adding the .35 mile long B-C loop adds two small hills and a few tighter curves to help new bikers practice shifting and bike control.
Rolling Hills Loop – This loop serves bikers who want all the hilly fun of Glacial without the longer climbs and faster declines found elsewhere on the trails. The approximate 6.5 mile distance works well for those out for a fun ride.
The Outside Loop – For those seeking the longest climbs, fastest descents and tightest trail simply follow the Outside Loop. From any parking lot, consistently stay left or right (depending on direction of travel) at each intersection. Distances vary from 12 miles to almost 20 depending on whether riders choose to head east of Orchard Hill Road.