Colorado’s Front Range is treasure trove of epic mountain bike trails waiting to be explored. There are around 1,200 rides and trails within striking distance of downtown Denver alone! Whether mountain biking is your long-time passion or a new-found hobby, these mountain bike trails are sure to satisfy your craving for adventure, speed, and new terrain.
North Table Mountain is the perfect place to ride when you don’t have much time on your hands but still want to feel somewhat remote. Choose between a mellow ride which circles the base of the mesa or make the ascent to the top for something a bit more challenging. On your way up you will encounter some steep, rocky sections. Once on top, take in the incredible views of Denver from the Rim Rock Trail. It’s a fun, easy addition to any route you take, but is only open from August 1st – January 31st. The Waterfall Trail is a more advanced decent featuring a rock garden and a small waterfall beside the trail.
The West Magnolia Trails are located just southwest of Nederland and have been repaired within the last five years. This trail system features forested single tracks and double tracks with a few access roads mixed in. Aggressive climbs lead you to fast and twisty descents. Technical and non- technical spots create a trail system that has something for everyone. Fall is a wonderful time to ride West Magnolia and watch as the Aspens change.
With more than 2,400 acres of open space, Hayden Park is the second largest park in Lakewood. It features a network of mixed-use trails. And the summit, at 6,800 feet, offers stunning views of the Denver metro area, the flatirons, and high mountain peaks to the west. The area is perfect for those in need of a quick ride or who are just learning. With the exception of Box o’ Rox, none of the mountain bike trails are particularly challenging. You can also combine some of the trails to create a longer ride if you are out looking to explore.
The mountain bike trails at Buffalo Creek offer some of the most fun riding near Denver, and are arguably some of the coolest rides along the Front Range. There are possibilities to link up all kinds of trails to create everything from short, family-friendly rides to full day, epic adventures. Buffalo Creek truly has something for everyone and generally offers mellow climbs rewarded with fun, fast, flowy descents. Stunning rock formations are often worked into the trail, making each ride a unique. The Buffalo Creek Recreation Area also offers camping so you can spend the weekend exploring everything this trail system has to offer!
Sitting just 30 minutes northwest of Denver, White Ranch has some fun mountain bike trails for advanced riders. The trails here have mostly sandy soil with smooth spots mixed in, very typical of Colorado Front Range rides. The embedded rocks and technical sections are what make these trails well suited to advanced riders who are in good shape and ready to climb hard. The downhills can get pretty gnarly with lots of rock and log drops to watch out for.
Apex Park provides a popular, accessible foothills experience just minutes from downtown Golden. A stream runs alongside a trail in part of the park, and dense forest provides shady areas on the west end. The Apex, Arogs, and Enchanted Forest trails are directional use trails where bikers are required to ride in one direction only on odd-numbered calendar days.
A popular trail for many Boulder natives, Betasso blends into pine forests with open sections of mountain meadows and a few stream crossings. The climbs sustain only moderate angles – just enough to test the lungs of any rider. While the fast sections are smooth and the trees become a blur as you settle into the flow of the ride. You can make this ride a quick spin by doing the 7.4 mile version or make a days ride out of the full 16.2 mile loop.
This multi-use trail sitting just west of Morrison is a fun, intermediate ride with mostly flowy single track. You’ll encounter rock ramps and other rock features, tight turns, and even have to squeeze through trees in some places. Even the most experienced rider will be hard pressed to ride everything challenge free. The rolling terrain offers frequent “whoop-and holler” descents with a few testing climbs.
This ride is a great example of a modern, purpose-built trail. It’s smooth, flowy, and not eroding as lots seem to do in the Front Range. The single track takes you high up on the ridges above Clear Creek, offering incredible views with a near back-country feel. Long climbs and precarious drop-offs will challenge your stamina. But you may be rewarded with an elk (or other wildlife) sighting. During the weekends, bikers are only allowed on even numbered days.