Two weeks after closing for the winter, A-Basin is opening for MTB with a brand-new climbing trail

The new "Up at Arapahoe" trail provides a pleasurable uphill climb to reach one of the highest elevation flow trails in the world.
Photo courtesy Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

Update July 1, 2024: A-Basin’s original press release turned out to be too optimistic, and at this time the mountain still isn’t open for mountain biking. “With a snowy spring, our trail crews still need time to dig out and let the trails dry,” said Liam McDonnell, Events & Social Specialist for A-Basin. “The team is working diligently to get Wheels Up open as soon as possible and the upper mountain trails open soon after.”

The seasons change quickly at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area in Colorado. This high-elevation resort boasts one of the longest ski seasons in the state, and this year they’re switching from skiing to biking with less than two weeks in between. Winter operations concluded on June 16th, and the mountain will open for two-wheeled riding on June 28th.

On opening day this year A-Basin will unveil a brand-new mountain bike trail: “Up at Arapahoe.” A-Basin doesn’t run their lifts for bikes in the summer, so for decades, riders have had to grind their way to the top via a brutally steep dirt road. Thanks to this new climbing trail, “there’s no more suffering to the summit,” said Shayna Silverman, Communications Manager for Arapahoe Basin Ski Area. The bike-optimized climbing route features switchbacks and a reasonable grade for a much more pleasurable ascent.

Building Up at Araphoe. Photo: Ian Zinner, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

At the top of the climb, you’ll be able to access the classic Lenawee trail, which leaves the resort and descends the backside of the mountain. Or, you can choose to rip back down one of the highest elevation flow trails in the world: Beaver’s Loop. This purpose-built, downhill-only mountain bike flow trail drops over a thousand feet of elevation in three miles before connecting to Wheels Up, which drops an additional 700 vert in two miles.

Since you have to earn your turns at A-Basin, this top-tier high alpine loop with ripping flow trail descent is free to ride. However, you do need to stop at Guest Services to sign a waiver and pick up a bike pass before riding.

If you want to say “thank you” to A-Basin for building such superb, professionally built trails, be sure to patronize their restaurants and bars. Classic establishments in the base area like 6th Alley are open during the summer season, as is Steilhang at mid-mountain.

Mid-climb beer, anyone?!


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