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The Tour of Idaho (T1) Challenge

No support, no back slapping spectators, no cheering crowds - just you, your bike and your wits.

by Martin Hackworth 

Photos: Martin Hackworth

For trail conditions and fire updates, please visit us on Facebook

Last update: 8/02/15.  
T1 Mile Marker 1
Mile 0.0

    The Tour of Idaho Challenge is our response to the oft-asked question "What exactly constitutes the Tour of Idaho?" Though we think our basic description - start in Jenkins Hollow and ride 1400 miles north to Sundance Mountain along the route or variants we describe - is pretty clear, there is evidently some confusion about all of this as evidenced by discussions out there on the interwebs in sites other than our own. The Tour Challenge is our attempt to shed some light on this curiously enigmatic topic by way of the most unambiguous means of communication known to man - mathematics.

     Although we are very reluctant to question the skill or integrity of any of our wonderful and enthusiastic motobrothers and sisters, years of bitter experience has made us less bashful about questioning their math. We wonder, for instance, how some manage to cipher 80% of a ride that appears to be 60% of the Tour of Idaho into "We did 95% of the whole thing." 
Weston Peak
Weston Peak. 
     To us the Tour of Idaho is about more than just riding a bunch of trails. To be clear - anyone is welcome to use any of the information on this site in any manner that they please. But the event known as Tour of Idaho is equally as much about the spirit in which the endeavor is undertaken as it is just following a line on a map.

     The Tour of Idaho was created for small, unsupported groups who deal with the various catastrophes that invariably crop up along the way with skill and wit. Anyone with a bike, money and enough time can ride most of the trails along the Tour - especially with large numbers of fellow riders and/or support. It's stringing together 1400 miles of at times difficult riding, day after day, along the intervals we've created, that makes the Tour unique. That and dealing with the vagaries of travel in very remote backcountry with limited resources. You must adhere to these traditions in order to complete The Tour of Idaho. 
Robbers Roost
Robbers Roost. 
      Again - you should absolutely feel free to do what you want with our route and have all of the fun that you can handle in any way that you please. All that we ask is that you respect the tradition that The Tour of Idaho is reserved for those who ride in the spirit of those who preceded them.  

As easy as all of this ought to be to comprehend, even the most lucid explanation of it all seems to create nary a dent in the neutron-star cranial density of many who arrive at the start of the Tour. So for further clairification, we've devised a scoring system that reduces all of the look-at-me jawboning and chest thumping to something that tends to be a bit more difficult to misinterpret.  

     Here's how it works. You are expected to ride the entire Tour as described in the route description. That means no days off between Pocatello and Wallace. You are allowed a single day off in Pocatello that we recommend you take. You must make it from place to place as we describe in each days description. We've established a few landmarks and prominent trails to keep track of your progress. Each trail section or landmark counts as one challenge point (CP). If the point is earned by riding a section of trail you must ride the entire section of that trail to acquire the point. For landmarks, the challenge point is acquired by reaching the landmark.

     Where alternative main routes (highlighted in red without waypoints) are shown on the maps one is as good as the other. Routes highlighted in purple (no gps data) are bypass/bailout routes. No off-route penalty assessed for these but no challenge points are earned either. Routes highlighted in yellow are special challenge sections. Soloists are not required to ride any of the special challenge sections, but groups of two or more must complete at least one or suffer a CP penalty. Though the special challenge sections generally are without challenge points, when a special challenge section bypasses CPs on the main route, the special challenge is worth the same number of CPs missed.

     You must acquire points in the order they would be encountered by through riders. 
No backtracking or poachingIf you skip a section of the route by riding something not marked in red, yellow or purple, you subtract one point for leaving the route and lose any points available in the bypassed section. Skipping out and back segments or loops - where you start and end in the same place - does not invoke an off-route penalty, you just don't earn any points in that segment. 
     You will be required to submit, in advance of your trip, the names of the riders in your group, the bikes they will be riding and a beacon link that we can track while you are on the Tour. Each rider is required to carry a saw. After you are finished you'll have three days to submit a GPS log and photographs to document your accumulation of challenge points.

     You must contact us in a window of between a month and a week
in advance of your trip, either through email or our Facebook Group, to establish your intent to attempt the Tour for challenge points. It is during that contact that you should be prepared to send us your beacon link and the names and bikes of everyone in your group, along with your itinerary.

Please note that all coordinates, while pretty close, are approximate.
Dry Creek.
Day 1 (You must finish D1 in less than 18 hours or suffer a one CP penalty)

1) Weston Peak Trail: 42,06.306 N,-112,03.258 W to 42,11.648 N,-112,03.258 W
2) Oxford Ridge Trail: 42,12.588 N,-112,03.631 W to 42,20.487 N,-112,07.195 W
3) Sedgwick Peak Trail: 42,28.869 N,-111,56.751 W to 42,30.910 N,-111,55.391 W
4) Robbers Roost Trail:
42,42.435 N,-112,09.078 W to 42,45.998 N,-112,05.481 W
5) Inkom Pass: 42,48.206 N,-112,08.419 W
6) South Fork Inman:
42,48.341 N,-112,07.614 W to 42,50.704 N,-112,08.609 W
7) Blackrock Canyon: 
42,51.694 N,-112,20.236 W
8) Flagpole: 42,51.367 N,-112,23.648 W*

SC) Reed Cyn/Girl Scout/Robbers Roost
* You must sign the register to acquire this point.
Slate Mountain. 
Day 2 (You must finish D2 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)
9) Slate Mountain Trail: 42,47.567 N,-112,25.723 W to 42,44.022 N,-112,24.412 W
10) Crestline Cycle Trail: 42,44.276 N,-112,22.327 W to 42,39.819 N,-112,20.184 W
11) Scout Mountain:
(waypoint 2D136) 42,40.668 N,-112,20.728 W*
12) Racetrack Trail: 42,39.373 N,-112,20.435 W to 42,40.846 N,-112,24.687 W
13) Desert View: (waypoint 2D515 - on top of knoll) 42,31.267 N,-113,02.410 W
14) Sand Dune: (waypoint 2D651 - on top of the dune)
42,44.725 N,-113,01.051 W  
15) Lake Channel Entrance: (from waypoint 2D668, ride to earn it) 
42,43.331 N,-113,03.966 W
16) Sand Whoops:
42,42.858 N,-113,04.370 W to 42,45.778 N,-113,06.106 W
17) Big Southern Butte: (waypoint 2D915) 43,23.783 N,-113,01.310 W

SC) Bell Marsh/Mormon Canyon

* Out and back.
** Out and back.

*** Out and back.
Slate Mountain. 
Day 3 (You must finish D3 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

Beverland Pass: (waypoint 3D24) 
43,44.920 N,-113,16.925 W  
19) White Knob: (waypoint 3D184) 43,51.182 N,-113,44.490 W

20) Wildhorse LO: (waypoint 3D298) 43,55.637 N,-114,05.066 W
21) Smoky Mountains: (waypoint 3D564) 43,37.408 N,-114,46.913 W
22) Snowslide: (waypoint 3D640) 43,44.508 N,-114,49.979 W

23) Smoky Creek: (waypoint 3D676) 43,46.262 N,-114,44.571 W
24) Sawtooth: (waypoint 3D683) 43,46.999 N,-114,45.393 W

SC) Big Peak Creek
** Out and back.

Scout MountainScout Mountain.
Day 4 (You must finish D4 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

Grand Prize Gulch:
(waypoint 4D44) 43,55.335 N,-114,39.017 W
25b) Germania Creek: (waypoint A47) 43,58.886 N, -114,37.972 W
26) Big/Little Boulder Divide: (waypoint 4D141) 44,05.511 N,-114,33.223 W
27) Railroad Ridge:
(waypoint 4D211) 44,08.309 N,-114,35.703 W
28) Custer: (waypoint 4D306) 44,22.036 N,-114,36.331 W

29) Squaw Creek: (waypoint 4D356) 44,27.423 N,-114,30.828 W
30) Buffalo Ridge: (waypoint 4D397) 44,24.355 N,-114,24.967 W
31) Ramshorn: (waypoint 4D432) 44,25.396 N,-114,21.441 W

SC) Custer LO Loop (counterclockwise)

Wildhorse LO
Wildhorse LO.
Day 5 (You must finish D5 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)
32) Twin Peaks LO: (waypoint 5D70) 44,35.566 N,-114,28.587 W*
33a) Pat/Eddy Creek: 44,34.896 N,-114,20.779 W to 44,41.325 N,-114,20.117 W
33b) Darling Creek: 44,37.308 N,-114,17.667 W to 44,41.325 N,-114,20.117 W
34) Camas Creek Divide: (waypoint 5D164) 44,40.975 N,-114,21.507 W
35) Van Horn to Alder Creek: 44,47.443 N,-114,20.538 W to 44,48.274 N,-114,15.715 W
36) Hat Creek Lakes Trail: 44,50.681 N,-114,14.173 W to 44,54.270 N,-114,11.642 W

SC) West Fork Morgan Creek (4143)

* Out and back.
sand dunes
Lake Channel Dunes
Day 6 (You must finish D6 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

Blue Nose LO: (waypoint 6D56) 45,28.392 N,-114,21.519 W*
Horse Creek Pass:
45,30.209 N,-114,23.744 W 
39) Nez Perce Pass: 45,43.007 N,-114,30.160 W 
40) Magruder Road: 45,44.076 N,-114,45.545 W to 45,43.340 N,-115,02.089 W
41) 505 Trail
45,42.088 N,-115,14.705 W to 45,46.574 N,-115,12.534 W
42) Anderson Butte Trail :
45,46.877 N,-115,17.033 W to 45,57.828 N,-115,25.460 W 
43) Selway Falls: 
46,02.494 N,-115,17.698 W

SC) Razorback Mountain

* Out and back.
Boulder Creek Divide
Castle Peak.
Day 7 (You must finish D7 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

Pete King Trail:
 46,09.940 N,-115,35.320 W to 46,11.921 N,-115,36.002 W 
45) Walde LO: (waypoint 7D88) 46,14.777 N,-115,38.125 W

46) Fish Butte: (waypoint 7D199) 46,19.880 N,-115,23.793 W*
47) Fish Butte Trail: 46,19.736 N,-115,24.343 W to 46,20.022 N,-115,21.000 W
48) Windy Ridge: 46,30.637 N,-115,09.308 W to 46,34.271 N,-115,15.400 W
49) Windy Bill: 46,34.352 N,-115,14.190 W to 46,40.994 N,-115,07.590 W
50) Scurvy Mountain LO: (waypoint 7D381) 46,41.340 N,-115,08.003 W*

SC) Sherman Creek

* Out and back.
Railroad Ridge
Railroad Ridge.
Day 8 (You must finish D8 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

53) Lunde Ridge/Cayuse Creek: 46,37.936 N,-114,55.112 W to 46,40.024 N,-115,04.074 W
54) Gospel Hill: (waypoint 8D373) 46,58.228 N,-115,12.386 W
55) State Line Trail: 47,03.695 N,-115,07.267 W to 47,06.569 N,-115,10.396 W
56) Cliff Lake: (waypoint 8D441) 47,08.167 N,-115,11.760 W
57) St. Paul Pass (waypoint 8D592)47,23.387 N,-115,38.955 W
58) Moon Pass (waypoint 8D659) 47,25.062 N,-115,51.716 W

SC) Heller/Simmons Loop

Hat Creek
Day 9 (You must finish D9 in a calendar day or suffer a one CP penalty)

59) Moon Pass: 47,36.012 N,-116,02.619 W 
60) Spyglass Peak LO: (waypoint 9DSP) 47,50.505 N,-116,11.785 W 
61) Hoodoo Mountain: (waypoint 9D518) 48,04.735 N,-116,57.238 W*
62) Sundance Mountain:
(waypoint 9D699)  48,29.440 N,-116,45.152 W**

SC) Independence Creek

* Out and back.
** End of route
French Creek
French Creek. Photo: Martin Hackworth
Tallying the above yields 60 challenge points for 2015.

Next there are style modification points that may add to or subtract from your total.
The Tour of Idaho involves more than just following a red line on a map. It's also about the spirit in which the event is undertaken. The following modifiers reflect this.
Van Horn
Van Horn/Alder.
  • Deviation from (red) Tour route (-1, each time).*
  • More than 10 total days (-1)
  • Riding signed closed trails except as noted in the route description (-1 for each infraction, potential disqualification).
  • Self-supported. Scrounging along the way is fine (no messaging your friends for information). (+1)
  • Group of 2 (+2)
  • Solo (+5).
  • No pre-ride of any section (+1)
  • Group of more than 3 (-1 for each additional person). 
  • Chase vehicle anywhere along the route (disqualification).**
  • Caching gas, water, oil, filters, tires, clothes or any other supplies along the way (-2 per item, per person).
  • Trail Maintenance (+1).***
  • Misrepresenting your effort (disqualification)
  • Failure to make a daily goal (-1)
  • Failure to complete at least one special challenge (soloists excluded) (-5)
These may adjust your prior tally from -5 (or more) to +11. 
Twin Peaks LO
Twin Peaks LO. 
* Getting lost, then finding your way back and proceeding from where you got lost, does not invoke a penalty - as long as you wander no more than a few miles from the route.

** No chase vehicle support anywhere along the Tour. Parking a rig in Pocatello and returning to it after the first day is OK. Parking a rig anywhere north of Wallace is OK. Parking a rig at the start and/or finish is also OK. Shuttle to and from either end is OK. Please note that no support means no support. Your wife, kids and golden retriever are not to meet you anywhere between Pocatello and Wallace. You are not to be shadowed by a chase vehicle even if you don't use it. Any of this completely changes the way the you prepare for each day's ride. The only potential exception to this is support prompted by fire closures. 

*** This applies to maintenance requiring more than a few minutes of effort, e.g., sawing big trees, major trail clearing. Documentation required. Maximum 4 points. 
White Clouds
Boulder-White Clouds.
     Each summer portions of the Tour are closed by fire or other calamities. This provides an opportunity to encourage each of you to do something that you ought to be doing already - interacting with people who help make the Tour possible. The following supplemental points may be substituted for those unavailable due to trails being closed by fire or other official reasons (as in posted closed signs). The maximum number of points earned from this list may not exceed the points unavailable due to closures or missing an interval. Please note that in some cases these points may be substituted for those lost for other issues beyond your control.
  • Picture with Jason Smoot at Redwing Shoe in Pocatello (+1).
  • Picture with any employee at Pocatello PowerSports (+1).
  • Picture with any employee at The Sand Trap (tip well!) (+1).
  • Receipt from College Market for the "Tour of Idaho" brew or sandwich/pic with any barrista (tip well!) (+1).
  • Picture with anyone at Lost River Honda (+1).
  • Picture with Mike McGowan. (+1)
  • Picture with anyone at Wild Side Sports (+1)
  • Picture with Dan at The Shoup Store (+1).
  • Picture with anyone at Three Rivers (+1)
  • Receipt from Ryan Hotel in Wallace (+1)
These may add to your prior tally by as much as +10.
West Fork
West Fork, Morgan Creek.
Finally - here's your Tour of Idaho Score:
  • 68+ points - Studliness is next to godliness (email us).
  • 60+ points - You are a Tour of Idaho alumnus (email us).
  • Less that 60 points - nice ride, what did you decide to call it? 
If you managed to accumulate 60 or more challenge points, email us with your photographs and gps tracks within 3 days of finishing. It generally takes us a few days to evaluate these. If it all checks out, we'll assign you a finish number. Congrats!

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Fish Butte Trail
Fish Butte. Photo: Martin Hackworth
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