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Tags:
Level: Advanced
Length: 11 mi (17.7 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +1,708/1 ft
Total: 77 riders
 

Mountain Biking Teocalli Ridge

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#82 of 1,359 mountain bike trails in Colorado
#703 in the world

Ride here if you want to combine mountain bike adventure with fantastic views. This loop is not for those looking for sweet single-track. It combines a double track ride up the valley with a lung bursting ascent at the top and then a steep and sometimes treacherous descent down the ridge back to the starting point. Count on spending two to three hours to cover the 11 miles of the described loop. The trail is well marked and easy to follow.

The ride up the West Brush Creek Valley is gorgeous, with stunning wildflowers toward the top. After about two miles the road crosses to the east side of the creek. If you want to keep your feet dry, ride another fifty yards past the creek crossing and you will find a log bridge in the trees. As you get toward the end of the road the pitch gets steeper and your heart pumps harder. When the road ends take a right on the Teocalli Mountain Trail (554). This trail is all rideable, if you have legs of steel. Otherwise, if you are an average rider like me you may decide to save your legs and push portions of it. I won't tell anybody if you decide to walk.

At the crest of the trail is the intersection for the Teocalli Ridge Trail (557) which goes to the right. It appears to go downhill, but don't get your hopes up yet. You still have another steep climb before you get to the top of the ridge. You will know when you are at the top. To the left (east) you will have a fantastic view of the Middle Brush Creek Valley, with Pearl Mountain at the end. A bit further down you get a view to the west that frames Mount Crested Butte. Continue riding downhill past the trail coming in from the left. The trail will get steeper and gnarlier as you go, with roots, ruts, and a couple belly-on-the-seat steep sections. Save yourself from pain and rehab by being alert and cautious while going down this portion of the trail. At the end of the ridge you will break out into an open steep grassy slope with a couple fast traverses. The trail then joins the Brush Creek Road. You will have dropped about a thousand vertical feet in the last mile.

If that was enough excitement for you can then ride the road west to the parking area to close the loop. However, most people who enjoy this kind of ride probably won't be satisfied after eleven miles, so I suggest continuing south across Brush Creek to hook up with the north end of the Farris Creek Trail (409). Soon after rejoining the road you should see single-track going down to the creek. Cross the creek and continue your adventure. You can add another easy four miles by staying low, cruising down the Canal Trail (408), and then riding back up the Brush Creek Road to where you parked. If you are a jock then you probably have the energy to go explore the trails around Strand Hill, or continue on 409 down to Cement Creek.

First added by bonkedagain on Aug 29, 2005. Last updated May 1, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
Take Brush Creek Road (738) east from Colorado Highway 135. Brush Creek Road is a couple miles south of Crested Butte. Around four miles out the road will start climbing out of the valley floor. Just up the hill will be an intersection with West Brush Creek Road (738.2A). You can park at the intersection, but there isn't a lot of room there so I suggest continuing to the right for less than a quarter mile to an informal parking area. Of course, locals are expected to ride out from town.
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Cody Scott (on Oct 4, 2019)
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Mountain Biking Teocalli Ridge Trail, Crested…
 
Teocalli Ridge Trail
 
Crested Butte - Teocalli
 
 
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Reviews

  • Jim Cummings
    *****

    The Teocalli ride is an eleven mile loop that gains (then loses!) about 1700 feet. The climb from the West Bush Valley to the crest of the ridge is steep singletrack. Unless you're very fit and strong you could walk as much as a mile. It's pleasant walking and the outlook is stunning! The ride down needs advanced skills but is at least half a grade easier than Doctor Park (a similar celebrated Crested Butte ride). There is some rock garden action near the top and some scary side exposure further down but overall the downhill ride is fun rather than threat! Nice switchbacks too. There are enough technical features or straight speed to keep you focused nearly all the way. It's a fabulous ride in an absolutely glorious setting. The Teocalli is 401 on steroids!

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  • stillfat
    *****

    Beautiful and really TOUGH climb that'll leave most of us hiking a few times. That's quickly forgotten on a downhill with a lot of fast, in your face gnar at the top followed by swoopy, tacky flow through big, cold spruce trees and then fast switchbacks through sunny aspen groves and meadows. Just great.

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  • dwfresh
    *****

    just did it today. amazing flowers and amazing new downhill. climb is still a bitch but its worth it. took me about 1 hour and 45 minutes parking at w. brush creek. (not really any breaks except for a shotblock/picture break )

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  • Benjamin Googins
    ****

    The description for this ride is out of date. The trail has had 14 switchbacks added to the descent, so not nearly as heinous as before. The ride up the valley is a good warm up for the deceptively steep single track heading up to the Ridge. Last weekend was my first time riding the new trail portions and it was a blast. My lungs and legs were definitely maxed out and I had to walk a few times, but well worth it. Hiking the ridge for the views alone are worth it, and throw in some sweet riding and you have heaven. Just spectacular piece of Colorado.

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  • Greg Heil   ✓ supporter
    *****

    Teocalli Ridge is features a heinous climb to the top that's guaranteed to test your lungs and your legs, as well as your bike handling skills. But once there, the Teocalli Ridge Trail is a ripping descent with both tech and flow all the way back down into the valley! Combine this trail with others in the area, such as Strand Hill, for a longer ride.

    PS: The views off the top are breathtaking and put 401 to shame!

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