Route of the Olympian and Save the Saltese Trestle

Saltese Trestle in Saltese, Montana
Saltese Trestle photo credit, Vo von Sehlen

The Saltese Trestle is an old railroad trestle smack along the course of the Trail Rail Run on the Route of the Olympian Trail.  The Route of the Olympian Trail has been a long and arduous effort to piece together what was originally continuous abandoned railroad grade.  After being abandoned by the Milwaukee railroad, the route was divided up into a myriad of private and public ownership, and has been recently pieced back together with a combined effort by the USFS and local organizations.

The Saltese Trestle is a critical component of the Route of the Olympian Trail as it connects the Route of the Olympian over private land.  Until recently the Saltese Trestle itself was owned by a private landowner, and it has not had any maintenance or structural work completed for many years.  The Saltese Trestle is in need of refurbishment to insure the trestle will be here for recreational use by generations to come.

The very real concern is this:  if the Saltese Trestle disappears, the Route of the Olympian will no longer be continous.  As noted previously, the trestle spans private land and without the trestle there is no way to connect.  The new owners of the Saltese Trestle, the Montana Nightriders Snowmobile Club, have been working with the Superior Ranger District to get the trestle repaired and ultimately handed over to the USFS.  To that end, individuals within the Montana Nightriders organization and other interested parties created Friends of the Olympian Trail.

You can help!  There is a new opportunity when you register for the Trail Rail Run to donate to the Friends of the Olympian Trail.  This non-profit group was recently formed to help maintain the Route of the Olympian Trail, with its first and foremost concern to Save the Saltese Trestle.   The mission statement for Friends of the Olympian Trail is this:

“To non-exclusively fund, maintain, and serve all aspects of the Route of the Olympian Trail system for all users.   In recognition that the Saltese Trestle is critical to the connectivity and a vital link to the trail system, an initial goal is to repair and renovate the trestle. “

50 Mile and 50K runners will have the pleasure of crossing the Saltese Trestle.  It is a beautiful and majestic component of the Route of the Olympian.  Enjoy!