I planned a trip to Breckinridge 20 years ago and it fell through. So I’m finally making it a priority this year to make it out there. Call it a bucket list type of trip. I live in Wisconsin so its gonna be a real treat. My crosshairs are on Breckinridge again. My question is, am I making a big mistake going to one destination? Or is the Breckinridge area a good mix of what Colorado has to offer? I’m planning on driving out there so travel isn’t an issue but I don’t want to spend my vacation driving neither. If anybody knows of a great place to stay, let me know. Thanks everyone.
I think it depends on how long you plan to stay and what kind of terrain you’re looking to ride while you’re here. I think if you make a real trip of it and stay for 1-2 weeks Breckenridge is not enough.
I’m planning on spending a week. So I could easily split it up. Hoping to at least do Kenosha pass and Monarch Crest. A mix of easy rides and more difficult would be good. I’ll be going in August. Thanks for the advice!
Any trip to Colorado should include the Monarch Crest Trail near Salida. I consider the Monarch Crest to be one of the great Epic rides. Salida also has other great rides, a historic downtown, and rafting on the Arkansas river.
Durango is probably the best destination Mountainbike town. If you stay in town you can access dozens of great trails without having to drive your car to the trailheads. Just ride from your hotel. In addition, there are lots of other things to do in Durango besides riding like steam engine train rides, rafting, Mesa Verde, historic main street, and five brewpubs.
My third favorite place to ride in Colorado is Fruita which has some of the best slick rock and desert riding in Colorado.
Ultimately, I think you’ll have more fun riding in these places than you will at the high altitude ski resorts like Breckinridge, Winter Park, Crested Butte, etc.
There is so much great riding out here that you can’t go wrong. You could easily spend a week riding in any number of places – Crested Butte, Durango, Fruita/Grand Junction, Salida, Steamboat Springs, etc.
If I was coming to Colorado from the east, I would start with a warm-up ride at Buffalo Creek. Little Scraggy is a really fun 13 mile loop with a little bit of everything.
Salida is two hours from Buffalo Creek and I would spend a couple of nights there. If you’ve got the legs and lungs, you can ride Monarch Crest the next day. If not, hang out by the river or hit some of the trails that are accessible from downtown. Salida has good restaurants and several options for accommodations.
Crested Butte is another two hours from Salida and I would spend the rest of my time there. Colorado has so many epic places but the scenery, the town, and the trails make Crested Butte hard to beat. Personally, I will not be disappointed if Heaven is summer in Crested Butte. 401 is a great place to start. After that, just ride as many trails as your body can handle. You won’t regret it.
Fruita is around 3 hours from Crested Butte. The riding here is totally different, but Horsethief Bench is worth the drive if you have the time, or just need to spend a day off the bike. You could easily spend the entire week around Fruita and Grand Junction, but it can be really hot in August.
This is just my opinion. As Bike Nerd said, Durango is a great town with awesome trails. You could easily spend the entire week there, but it may not be worth the extra drive on a trip from Wisconsin. You could also spend a great week in Steamboat Springs.
The only real mistake you can make is not staying for two weeks. Enjoy!!