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Jim OP | 04.27.2016

Pushing up against the Front Range, the Denver metro area is uniquely fortunate to have countless miles of single-track trails perfect for traditional cross-country style, fast-track mountain biking. Popping in and out of ponderosa dominated forests and wildflower-filled meadows, and passing historic homesteads and craggy outcroppings, Denver is a truly incredible place for mountain bikers.

With so many trails to choose from, here is a list of 10 classic Denver area rides which will be fun for mountain bikers of all skills and a must-do for anyone new to the area.

Some of these, like the Mount Carbon Loop within Bear Creek Lake Regional Park, are only a few minutes drive from southwest Denver, while others, like the West Magnolia Trail, take just over an hour to drive to. Be sure to check trail restrictions. Given the proximity to a major metro area, certain parks will restrict mountain bike use to certain days, such as Centennial Cone, where the trails are only open for use on even weekend dates, and on odd weekend dates the trails are reserved for hikers.

Trails listed in order from proximity from downtown Denver:

  1. Mount Carbon Loop, Bear Creek Lake Regional Park (8 miles of trail, located 14 miles from downtown Denver)
  2. Waterton Canyon (13 miles of trail, located 25 miles from downtown Denver)
  3. Centennial Cone, Centennial Cone Park (12.1 miles of trail, located 26 miles from downtown Denver)
  4. Elk Meadow + Bergen Peak Loop (8.2 miles of trail, located 27 miles from downtown Denver)
  5. Evergreen Mountain Loop, Three Sisters/Alderfer Park (7.9 miles of trail, located 30 miles from downtown Denver)
  6. Mule Deer Loop, Golden Gate Canyon State Park (11.3 miles of trail, located 30 miles from downtown Denver)
  7. Betasso Preserve Loop, Boulder County Open Space (7.7 miles of trail, located 35 miles from downtown Denver)
  8. West Magnolia Trail, Nederland (7.2 miles of trail, located 42 miles from downtown Denver)
  9. Sandy Wash Trail, Buffalo Creek Recreation Area (2.7 miles of trail, located 48 miles from downtown Denver)
  10. Little Scraggy Trail, Buffalo Creek Recreation Area (10.2 miles of trail, located 52 miles from downtown Denver)



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