There is a Mecca for almost every particular group of interest; filmmakers flock to Hollywood, wine lovers fly to Tuscany to taste wine, and cyclists band together in Colorado.
Colorado is chock full of scenic trails, bike-friendly towns, and bicycle enthusiasts. Every summer, countless cyclists install bicycle racks to their cars and head for the Rockies for some of the best bicycle tours of their lives.
It’s hardly a surprise that many view Colorado as the Mecca for cyclists, given that Colorado has everything – mountains, flat land, lakes, rivers, waterfalls, paved trails, unpaved trails, woods, plains, and so much more. It’s the perfect place to embark on a multi-day tour!
Luckily for us cyclists, there are many great bike routes around the state, including long, long trails that span over a hundred miles. If you ever make your way to Colorado (or, even better, live there), you should try out one (or two, or all) of the three best multi-day mountain bike trails in the Rockies.
Great Divide Mountain Bike Route – 548 milesYou better install some top-quality mountain bike tires and wear a good helmet, because this bike route is the longest off-pavement bike route in the world! It’s 2,745 miles long (548 miles in Colorado alone), and it stretches from Canada all the way to Mexico. It passes right through Colorado and some of its most scenic cities, including Steamboat Springs, Breckenridge, and Platoro. Colorado is also home to the route’s highest point (a whooping 11,910 feet), which is situated at Colorado’s Indiana Pass (near Platoro).
Colorado Trail – 486 milesThis trail really takes you through Colorado. If you complete the entire trail, you will have gone through the big city (Denver), the backwoods, and beautiful mountain towns like Durango. The trail’s lowest point is in Denver at 5,500 feet, and it goes all the way up to 13,271 feet in the San Juan Range (a little bit more than halfway to Durango)! Its difficulty level ranges between moderate to expert, depending on which part of the state you’re in. If you’re looking for an easier ride, you might want to start in Durango, and zoom all the way down to Denver! The Colorado Trail is maintained by the Colorado Trail Foundation.
Tabeguache Trail – 144 milesThe west side of Colorado is mostly made up of raw land, and what better way to explore it than to ride the Tabeguache Trail? Pronounced “tab-a-watch”, the Tabeguache Trail offers all kinds of scenery, including woodlands, mountains, and deserts. Be careful, though, because the area between Whitewater, CO and Placerville, CO is believed to have the largest population of bears and mountain lions in the Rockies. The trail’s highest point tops out at 9,500 feet. If you ever ride this trail, be sure to bring a map!
Have you ever ridden any of those trails?
If so, please share your experiences with us! Stories, advice, and photos will be received with pleasure!