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Aspen Snowmass Mega Loop

Aspen & Snowmass, CO

Incredible Colorado classic trails, epic mountain views, and miles of fast descending await those who take on the challenge of riding 60+ miles while climbing and descending nearly 10,000 ft in the mountains surrounding Aspen and Snowmass Village. From aspen and dark timber forests to sage fields and grassy meadows bursting with wildflowers, the ever changing landscape on this route serves as a worthy canvas for a continuous procession of modern and classic trails. From flowing on ribbons of smooth dirt, to negotiating the rock gardens of the famous local classics, finishing this ride in a day rewards those with patience, fitness, skill, and experience.

This loop ride is designed to start and end in Aspen, but quickly takes you towards the backcountry above town, including Smuggler Mountain, Hunter Creek, Van Horn Park, and Red Mountain. While the middle segments of Sky Mountain Park and the Rim Trail may have easier access to civilization, along with a couple good places to fill up with water, the final segment across Snowmass ski area and the deep forests of the Government Trail will keep you in natural and remote areas for a majority of your ride.

While rocks, roots, steep ups and downs, and tight turns can be found throughout, miles of smooth singletrack in-between make this ride a smile fest for significant portions. The major challenges are concentrated on a few of the area’s most famous classic trails. Sunnyside has narrow tread along impossibly steep mountain slopes and red rock gardens closer to the valley floor. The Government Trail’s numerous stream crossings and rock strewn tread will require your constant focus and true expert level skills to get to the finish line.

With Aspen sitting at just about 8,000’ above sea level, and a highpoint of the ride rising above 10,000’, altitude may be just as big a factor as the miles of climbing required… to enjoy nearly 10,000 ft of fast descents.

This loop is 95%+ primo singletrack, with just a few sections of paved bike paths, dirt roads, and a couple short paved road sections required to link it all together. Some recently constructed connector trails make this long singletrack journey possible. You’ll have to negotiate some roads in downtown Aspen, but you’ll find bike lanes and plenty of bike racks at your post-ride restaurant of choice.

Local Chapter: Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association

Length: 
23
Units: 
m
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