Doctor Park

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↑ 3,400 ft
↓ 5,000 ft
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5.00 out of 5
About This Trail
added by bonkedagain Gnarly on August 8, 2006
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Doctors Park offers some fantastic downhill on the Gunnison Spur of the Colorado Trail. This trail can be ridden as a loop or you can use a shuttle if riding up eight miles of road doesn't appeal to you. Most people park at the bottom (North Bank Campground) and ride or shuttle up Spring Creek Road to Doctor Gulch (trail 554). After going about eight and a half miles up the road, where the canyon starts opening up into a wide valley, look to the right (southeast) and you will see doubletrack crossing thru Spring Creek and going up the gully. At the time of this writing there was a trail sign on the south side of the creek for 554. After leaving Spring Creek Road, at exactly one mile there is a right hand turn; trail 554 continues to the right. Go right and continue up, winding your way on the doubletrack to the top of the ridge. After about three miles you will come to heavy forest. This section of the trail can be a miserable root-infested mud pit after it rains so be prepared to grind and grunt your way thru slop if there has been rain. The misery is compounded if cows or horses have recently used the trail. Continue working your way along and after another mile you will break into a large open meadow; this is Doctors Park, and this is where the real singletrack and the fun begins. From here you have five miles of fast downhill. The top section is a bit steep and rocky, but it is a lot of fun. After a mile or so you get into some fantastic cruising thru aspen forest; this is the best part of the trail and probably some of the sweetest singletrack you will ever find. Fast, flowy, and full of variety. It rocks! Let your bike run and enjoy the miles. About a half mile from the bottom the trail gets steep and rocky with fun switchbacks on a steep sideslope. If you are tired, stop and take a break so that you are ready to work your way down the steeps. The trail can be a bit technical and the drop-offs are severe, so the penalty for mistakes is high.

Now, about alternate routes, the top of the ridge is crisscrossed with a few trails, and you really can't go wrong exploring as long as you remember that you want to work your way to the southwest corner. Just remember that most of the other trails allow motorized access so they are going to be more chewed up.

If you want to have an epic ride combine this ride with the Flag, Bear and Deadman trails (see review for "Reno / Flag / Bear / Deadman"). Instead of crossing Spring Creek to go up Doctor Gulch continue riding up Spring Creek Road past Spring Creek Reservoir until you get to the bottom of the Flag trail. Go a short distance up Flag and turn left on the Bear trail. Follow Bear to Deadman Trail where you take a left and follow it back down to Spring Creek Road. From there it is a .7 mile ride back up to Doctor Gulch where you can resume the ride described above. This makes a figure eight loop that tallies up to 34 miles of riding with almost 4,000' of vertical. Yeah, that qualifies as an epic day.

If you are into camping there are many formal and informal places to camp near Spring Creek, or the whole Taylor River Valley, for that matter. I highly suggest getting the Latitude 40 map for Crested Butte.
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System Trails (5)
Doctor Park: Classic Descent, Road #544 to Taylor River Road
Doctor Park: Loop
Doctor Park: Dinner Station Campground to Matchless Trail
Doctor Park: Matchless Trail to Road #544
Road #544
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Brendan Kohler on October 25, 2014
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Review: Super fun challenging trail. Gear up for a long climb. Its a long climb and a long downhill.

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Greg Heil on October 1, 2014
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Review: Doctor Park is a ripping descent with high speed flowy sections, rock gardens, jumps, whoops, drops, and more. Hands-down one of the top descents--if not THE single-best descent--in Crested Butte.

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bikesrockswaves on August 24, 2012
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Review: Gorgeous empty fireroad climbs in amazing scenery followed by Jedi Joy descent in Aspen laced glory.

Similar Trail: n/a

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kuala_tahan on August 6, 2012
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Review: Rode up Spring Creek from North Bank. The 8ish miles up the road is easy, not steep. Once you take a left, cross the stream and get on some doubletrack it gets a bit steeper, still not too bad except like 2 steep sections. Then you get on trail (rooty), and where I thought the downhill started, it's still up and down for a mile or so. Then you come into a clearing and the super fun downhill starts. A mile or so of relatively technical riding (fun) with a bit of exposure. Then blasting through aspens for a while, Jedi-style and tons of fun, then to steep rocky switchbacks to finish it off. All in all, an amazing trail. I'm not sure that all the road riding (10ish miles) makes the 5 miles of downhill worth it or not, still haven't made up my mind. A shuttle would be nice for sure, but the road riding really isn't hard, which is why I can't make up my mind. It's a lot of road for 6 or so miles of trail. So, really up to the rider whether you're interested in doing the road or not. It's a big ride.

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JerryC on July 21, 2012
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Review: Yes, skip the shuttle, but if you are low level flat lander as I am, you may want to consider saving you engergy for the climb the starts just as you cross the creek. While this may be ridable at times, we took our shoes off and walked through the very cold creek. If you skip the shuttle as some have recommended, it is mostly a 3% climb for just over 8 miles. As soon as you make a hard right, pass over a cattle gard, look for a hard right turn down, to a small parking area. The trail will be a fire road just on the other side of the creek. There will most likely be fly fishermen parked in that area. I am a sea level flat lander so we shuttled. For excellent local trail info, talk to the fly fishing guy at Almont Resort, i think his name is Mark. About the Almont Resort, they have cabins, bar/lounge, and a good restuarant. Highly recommend Almont Resort if you plan to ride Crested Butte area trails such as Doctors Park and Trail 401. About the trail, after you cross the creek, there is a the 2+ mile 6%+ climb on fire road and then you pass through the Aspen. This can be very muddy and it was in mid-July becuase of late day thunderstorms. About the thunderstorms, they come fast and the temps drop 25 to 35 degrees, be prepared if riding late in the day. After you pass through the muddy high section, there is a very rocky/tight switchback section that starts the downhill. If you are not use to cliffs, rocks and switchbacks, this can be very unsettling. Be carefull. Then starts the sinlge track down hill, good times. The trail is very deeply dished so stay on the tail, you wil pic up a lot of speed. The last half mile, steep drop to the finish is also very rocky and lots of switchbacks, be careful as you wil be tired. If are on out of town rider, traveling to epic trails as I did, this rail is a must ride but the two rocky sections can ruin your day.

Similar Trail: Trail 401

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stillfat on September 25, 2011
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Review: I'd give this one six stars if I could - GREAT trail. (skip the shuttle).

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jmonnahan on September 22, 2011
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Review: It throws a little bit of everything at you with lung busting climbs, raging narrow singletrack, and puckering switchbacks

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Jeff Barber on August 16, 2011
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Review: Classic Colorado riding! The jeep road climb is worth every drop of sweat as you zoom down the back side. The singletrack offers up a mix of loose, rocky stuff with stretches of singletrack so fast and smooth it's as if the soil was designed specifically for bike trails. Gorgeous wildflowers and aspen tree cover yields to ponderosa pine and a steep, tricky descent back to the trailhead. My 2-cents on the shuttle debate? I was exhausted at the start of the ride and would have gladly shuttled a vehicle. But in hindsight the portion that is shuttle-able really isn't the hard part - it's just time consuming. Still, the scenery is great and it's exercise so I say skip shuttling this ride.

Similar Trail: Sorta reminded me of Mt. Herman in Monument, CO.

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david_darling on July 22, 2011
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Review: A big ride. No shuttle. Sack up and ride the 8 plus miles up Spring Creek to the jct. with trail 554. The climb up is sustained with no real steep parts but you are at 10,400 feet with more climbing to go. A traverse through dense woods opens up to a meadow and the start of a major descent. There are some steep and rocky sections but mostly super buff and super fast. The last mile or so down the swithbacks is very sketchy. Call the doctor cause this trail is sick!

Similar Trail: Reno/Flag/Bear/Deadman's

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baber3000 on September 7, 2010
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Review: A shuttle to the top was the way to go for some guys who had been riding for 9 straight days. once to the top we climbed for about 200 yards and dropped into the most flowy technical steep downhill trail we could have imagined. Sections looked like 401 and others were technical switchbacks down the side of an exposed mountain!!! Loved every second of it!!!

Similar Trail: 401 and Deadman Gultch

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LoboApo28 on August 22, 2010
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Review: I rode this mid-day after 40 miles of riding the previous day on a heavy hardtail 26", so I was pretty worn. BUT this is maybe the most fun you can have on a fast, smooth, winding downhill. The 8.5 mile climb up the dirt road is no problem, gradual and smooth - but the steepness starts after you cross the creek for the next 4+ miles. When you're in the forest at about 12 miles into it, be sure to go right at the sign marked "Spur" as it is the main route to take. This is FUN fast/technical downhill to begin with whooping fast smooth aspen cruising in the middle. The beginning of Trail 401 is more scenic and easier, but for pure awesome mountain bike riding this downhill is second to none! High alpine, to aspen groves, to rocky sand at the bottom - this trail's downhill has it all.

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Doctor Park MTB Trail 5.00 out of 5 based on 11 ratings. 11 user reviews.
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Trail Features
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  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
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Long Miles, Huge Climbs, and Fast Descents During Day 2 of the Crested Butte Ultra Enduro
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