Colorado’s Front Range has world-class mountain biking from the single-track trails of Boulder to the spectacular hills of Magnolia near Nederland. Colorado is a premier destination for mountain bikers from all over the world who come to test themselves on challenging trails, exciting terrain features, and breathtaking views overlooking Boulder’s iconic Flatirons, the Indian Peaks Wilderness, and Rocky Mountain National Park. Check out some of our favorite half and full day mountain bike rides across the Front Range!
Half Day Mountain Biking
The trails around Marshall Mesa explore some of South Boulder’s most exquisite hills, with exciting single-track climbs and descents with a Flatiron background rising in the distance and a hill-laden ride across bumpy trails with a variety of variations for beginner and intermediate riders alike. The trails start just across the highway from Eldorado Canyon, riding through the eastern plains with views overlooking Boulder, the Flatirons, Longs Peak, and soaring all the way to Denver in the distance. This is a great ride for those who are looking for something more than just a beginner trip and a great way to improve crucial mountain biking skills!
Near Marshall Mesa, the Community Ditch Trail is an easier option for beginner riders in a gorgeous 3.3-mile loop that explores the grassy hillsides with a Flatiron Vista rising in the background. After a moderate climb over rocky trails, the path joins with the community ditch and then follows a long downhill on the grassy slopes. The trail is exposed and un-shaded and it’s a wonderful ride for early in the morning or late in the afternoon. There’s nothing like riding long downhills with wind in the face after a long and sweaty climb! This is a great option for beginner bikers and a great place to learn new skills!
North Boulder Loop
Exploring the vast farmland of North Boulder, the North Boulder Loop is an 8-mile excursion, exploring some of the best of North Boulder, which has a different flavor from the hills of South Boulder. North Boulder is more accessible for beginner riders, with gently rolling hills, flatter trails, farmland, and views that stretch all the way to the northern foothills. This is also a great place for those who are looking for color, with mellow trails but chockfull of brilliant wildflowers. The North Boulder Loop is great for those who want a rural feel without having to travel too far out of the city. For those who are looking for adventure further out, the similar but more rural East Boulder Trails and Niwot Trails offer a variety of options, some with some advanced steps thrown in for more adventurous riders.
Full Day Mountain Biking
For those who want to explore the spectacular mountains of the Indian Peaks Wilderness, test themselves on rowdy trails, and see an area of Colorado with a ‘locals only’ feel, Magnolia offers some of the best biking in the Front Range. With a mix of forests, open spaces, wide open mountain views and fun riding over a variety of terrain, Magnolia takes riders away from the crowds and into fun single-track terrain. Covering from 7 to 15 miles, the trail starts on the edge of Nederland and explores dense forests with exciting trails running down the side, plus rock gardens and thrilling tight curves. This is a wonderful ride for experienced intermediate riders looking to test their skills far into the mountains.
Centennial Cone is one of the best rides in the Front Range, with easy to navigate trails, spectacular views, and fun biking. The trail starts in Clear Creek Canyon, alongside the rushing creek and quickly climbs into the forest, onto grassy hillside trails that offer views looking far into the distance. Centennial Cone offers moderate to intermediate biking intercut with trail systems that up or lower the intensity based on the biker’s preference. The trails ride between leafy trails and then climb onto the hillside, with some features in between the exciting single and double track trails. This is a great ride for those who are looking for fun all day trails.
The Buffalo Creek Loop is one of the most classic routes in the Front Range and a certified Epic by IMBA. The trail starts on easy terrain and climbs through the forest to a burned out landscape of tree husks from a fire, and crosses over a variety of terrain including slickrock type features, large boulders to take jumps from and fun singletrack options. The ride is great for intermediate to advanced riders who are looking for a thrilling ride outside of the major city centers. There are plenty of technical and non-technical variations for all sorts of riders.