Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report (Chris Wilson)

Our friend Chris Wilson took on the Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender route a couple weeks ago and made a great video to document the ride. Watch it here and find a few photos he took along the way…

Coming off a tiring week, Chris Wilson didn’t make time for planning an unfamiliar route. Instead, he decided to repeat a ride that he’s done before: The Mount St Helens Epic Weekender. This was Chris’ third time riding the route, once in 2017 and again in 2019. Both times it was challenging, and this time was no different, although he was mentally prepared for what was to come. Watch the full video report below and scroll down for a photo gallery and trail notes from Chris.

“I really like this route. It’s physically challenging, showcases some of the most beautiful areas in the PNW, and it just feels rugged. This is my third time riding it… and it certainly won’t be my last.”

  • Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report
  • Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report
Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report

Trail Notes

I started at Swift Creek Reservoir went clockwise, heading up the Ape Canyon trail and across the Plains of Abraham.

The route starts with a lot of climbing, leading to stunning view of Mount St. Helens.

The Ape Canyon Trail is mostly smooth; there are a few roots every now and then to trip you up, but it’s all ridable. There’s a lot of traffic on this trail both hikers and mountain bikers so be cautious and don’t get too rowdy.

Once you reach the plains of abraham there are amazing views all around. On a clear day you can see Mount Adams, Mount Rainier, Mount Hood, and obviously, Mount St. Helens. The landscape is other worldly. You’ll ride across barren pumice field eventually leading you to Windy Ridge.

The Boundary Trail is tough. It tricks me every time. The beginning starts with fun smooth singletrack, enough to make you think this is going to be a cakewalk. That doesn’t last long though. You’ll eventually find the steep rutted out kitty litter. A strong fit cyclist could probably ride most of it…

The Lewis River Trail is outstanding with smooth singletrack that’s not highly trafficked in my experience. There’s also easy river access and Great fishing..

  • Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report
  • Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report
  • Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender Video Report
Bikepacking The Mount St. Helens Epic

About the Route

The Mount St. Helens Epic Weekender features around 80 miles of diverse and rugged terrain, connecting some of the Pacific Northwest’s most well-known and unique singletrack — including the Ape Canyon Trail, The Abraham Trail (Plains of Abraham), and the Lewis River Trail — and making an excellent weekend escape into the heart of Washington state mountain bike country. Find the full guide here.

Chris Wilson

About Chris Wilson

Chris Wilson was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest and is based out of Vancouver, Washington. He started backpacking, then moved to climbing, and after riding the White Rim Trail, got hooked on bikepacking. Find a few more of Chris’s videos documenting various routes in the related content grid below.

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