Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm pretty new to MTBR, I started lurking around a year ago when I got interested in biking last summer. After 1 year of riding local trails (Arkansas) I'm finally getting a break from school that I'm gonna use to break out and go ride some really sweet trails in the rockies... That's where you guys come in.

I've been skiing plenty of times, but have never been to Colorado during the summer. Right now the plan for my trip is for me and a buddy to load our bikes, tents, and camping gear (this trip is on the cheap) and spend July 6-July22 biking in the rockies (want to be in Chicago the 23rd for Lollapalooza), that's pretty much all we have planned out.

I know we really don't have enough time to see much of the multitude of trails up there, so I'd like to max out the time I've got. We're planning on hitting up a major ski park (lifts easy) and I'd like to go to Fruita, or even drive out for an early morning ride at MOAB (if the weather looks cool enough) but I'd really appreciate any tips, locations, or advice from people who have had some experience biking up there.

What are some of the favorite trails up there?
good areas where camping amenities are offered?
how does the altitude usually mesh with riders from near sea level?
Any non-biking activites to reccomend, or night-life areas?
What stuff will I not think to pack that I will want when I get there?
Are the bugs bad at that time of year?

Any info or advice you can think of would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for your help!

Clay
 

·
Arrrgggghhh!!
Joined
·
281 Posts
Depending on snowpack you should plan on hitting:

Monarch Crest (Salida)
Crested Butte
Kenosha Pass to Georgia Pass

All 3 are high altitude areas so you might want to get some acclimation prior to hitting them.
 

·
Domestic Fowl
Joined
·
869 Posts
Might want to try posting this in the two Colorado regional forums (Front Range and Western Slope) here on MTBR.



If you were coming in the spring or fall I would highly suggest spending a significant amount of time in Fruita and Moab, but it gets f-ing hot out there in the desert in July and your time may be better spend in the mountains where it will be cooler.


There are lots of trails in Summit County(lots of ski areas... Breckenrige, Keystone, etc...). People in the local forums can probably name some trails for you. I've ridden up there a bit, but can't remember any names. Some place like this would be good because there's a high concentration of trails in the area.

Crested Butte is really beautiful, but some of the trails may still have snow on them when you come out. Altitude is rather high for someone coming from the midwest. It is worth a the trip, though.

Maybe try a few of the front range trails(lower altitude), then move on to Summit County(moderate altitude), then Crested Butte(higher altitude) toward the end of the trip. This will allow you some time to aclimatize to the altitude gradually.

There's a really great Hostle in CB, if you want a real bed to sleep in for a decent price. It still gets nippy up there at night.

Good luck.

FRC
 

·
Bad Case of the Mondays
Joined
·
4,009 Posts
virtualperson said:
What are some of the favorite trails up there?
good areas where camping amenities are offered?
how does the altitude usually mesh with riders from near sea level?
Any non-biking activites to reccomend, or night-life areas?
What stuff will I not think to pack that I will want when I get there?
Are the bugs bad at that time of year?
Spend some serious time in Fruita and Crested Butte. Also plan on doing some lift-aided rides at the ski parks (Winter Park, etc). You could also have a couple good days on the Front Range doing stuff like Palmer Park in CO Springs, then stuff around Golden then up further north like Boulder and into the foothills.

I moved to CO from Oklahoma and I have struggled a ton with the altitude. Be prepared to stop and recover, the thin air and long climbs spike my HR in a hurry.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Plan your route and go from there

I'd recommend maximizing your riding time by doing a horseshoe route around the state. Since you're coming from the South (Ark) I'd start w/a couple of days in the C-Springs or S. Denver area ... adjust to the alititude for a couple of days. Then head west. I'd second the Monarch Crest/Salida area. Then head towards Gunny/Crested Butte .. next, I'd go for Durango. I'm actually surprised no one mentioned it yet. The Colorado Trail in this area is not to be missed ... assuming they're melted out. Telluride area would be worth a day perhaps. Then north to GJ/Fruita and perhaps a side trip to Moab ... warning: this will be a 100 oz. Camelback type of ride. Then head for Summit County or Winter Park and do some lift-served stuff ... finally head for the Northern/Western Front Range ... JeffCo, Boulder/Lyons, Loveland/FC for some great low altitude stuff. Then you're close to I-80 for the 'quick' trip to Chi-town.

Colorado is really great for getting by on the cheap. You should be able to hit most FS campgrounds for less than $15/day. My advice would be to stay in campgrounds during the week and schedule yourself a cheap hotel/hostel on the weekends. Seems backwards, but alot of locals take advantage of the campgrounds and they can fill up pretty fast on weekends.

The above itinerary would let you stay 1-3 days in each area ... assuming one ride in the morn and one in afternoon/evening you could cover quite alot of stuff.

I'm jealous ... I live here (FC) and it sounds like an awesome trip. have fun and report back with results

-j
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
180 Posts
July is NOT the time to go to Fruita. Why miss the rocky mountains in their summer splendor with the crisp cool air at high altitude to ride in insane heat?

late fall and early winter is ideal for Fruita, or spring (just very crowded in spring)

What rides to do depends completely upon physical condition. The very well known monarch crest/Rainbow trail is an incredible ride, and allows for many miles of singletrack w/o as much climbing as a true loop, since you can take a shuttle 18 miles up the highway. You start at 11400', and although there is still quite a bit of climbing, there is tons of wonderful downhill. Very nice views as well.

Crested Butte is classic Colorado, with incredible scenery and narrow singletrack. Alot of the rides there can be physically challenging at high altitude. Just get a guidebook and you're set.

Someone mentioned Kenosha Pass to Georgia Pass, this is another nice high altitude ride. Alot of fun, but do it during the week as its crowded on weekends.

As for camping, you don't have to pay $15 a night as someone stated, there are tons of places with free camping that offer seclusion and amazing scenery. I personally prefer this as it is more desirable than a crowded campground, and also much cheaper. Crested Butte has some great spots, as well as some good spots below monarch pass for the crest/rainbow.

There are tons of other places (Durango, anwhere between Salida-Gunnison-Buena Vista) just to name a few. I guess I'd recommend driving right past the front range, as it is crowded and exactly what you go on biking/camping trips to get away from.

Get a mountain biking colorado guidebook. That would help out alot. Happy trails!!!
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top