Elk Butte Lookout

Total Miles


1,742.11 ft



Technical Rating



Best Time

Summer, Fall

Trail Overview

This is a short trail up to the Elk Butte Lookout Tower. The trail begins at Captain's Cabin which can be accessed by riding up Aquarius Road and then Elk Butte road. From Captain's Cabin you'll ride a wider dirt road until you reach a gate where the trail begins to narrow. Once the climb up the Butte begins you'll be on tight 2 vehicle wide trail that has many dips, water bars, and some ruts as well as mud puddles in wetter times of the year. The trail ends at the top of Elk Butte at an old fire lookout and cabin. This trail is very difficult to ride up until mid-late June when the snow has melted for the season. Summer and early fall are the best times to ride. This trail is a groomed snowmobile trail in the wintertime. Elk River is the nearest town with amenities like fuel, a general store, restaurants, and bars. There are plenty of camping options in the area with several developed sites to choose from. Cell service is slim to none in this area, you may get extended service depending on your provider. However, at the top of the butte some providers do have decent cell service. This trail is a popular one in this area so you will likely encounter other riders.

Photos of Elk Butte Lookout

Elk Butte Lookout
Elk Butte Lookout
Elk Butte Lookout


The trail is relatively easy going, a little rough in places but nothing too difficult. Weather conditions and snow can make it difficult to ride so use caution if the trail is still snowy.

Technical Rating


Status Reports

Zac Carscallen
May 28, 2023
Deep Snow

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