Mountain Biking

Rio Grande National Forest

Contains countless riding opportunities for everyone from beginners to advanced cyclists. There are many trails within a couple miles from town, and some are designed for multi-use, including cycling…plus, hundreds of miles of forest service access roads that are open to cyclists of all skill levels. Multi-use means hikers, horses and ATV’s all share the road.

When you choose to ride on any of the trails, remember that at over 8,000 ft. on the valley
floor, you’ll need to be physically fit enough to hit the harder, higher altitude trails. You will
find countless well-maintained and beautiful trails throughout the area.

If you use any trail in the South Fork area, you are asked to follow IMBA rules which are as

Ride on open trails only
Leave No Trace
Control your bicycle
Always yield trail
Never spook animals
Plan ahead

Here are our favorite mountain biking trails:

Deep Creek #806 (F3-4)

LOWER: 4 miles, 2-3 hrs • Beginner
Smooth, sweeping single-track.

UPPER: 7 miles, 4-5 hrs • Intermediate
Few water crossings and rocky sections.

TOP: 9 miles, 2-3 hrs • Advanced
8750-11,400ft • The entire upper section is challenging.

Middle Frisco Creek #879 (J6)

LOWER: 4 miles, 2-3 hrs • Beginner
Start out in the lower section, it’s fairly smooth.

UPPER: 7 miles, 3-5 hrs • Intermediate

9500-12,000ft • Advanced

Contains a few stationary rocks and tree roots to work on your switchback skills!

Penitente Canyon (K3)

A LOOP • 2.75 miles • Intermediate
Starts out with a short climb, then levels out on the ridge where it’s faster.
Plenty of ‘rock options’ for expert riders.

B LOOP • 2.75 miles • Beginner
Great place to learn the basics of mountain cycling on single-track. Mostly smooth trail with a couple rocky spots. Also great for intermediate riders to improve form and speed.

Trout Creek #831 (G-H5)

4 miles to the creek • Intermediate, Advanced
Fun, just watch out for exposed areas. For experts, the trail is fast and
great for racing.

Palisade #761/Alder Bench #799 (H4-5)

7 miles, 2-4hrs • Advanced
Expect rock gardens and loose rock.

Lake Fork #836 (G6)

7 miles, 4-7hrs • Advanced Comprised of entirely of expert-level high alpine single-track, plus some rock slides & climbs to high alpine meadows. Features some of the most amazing mountain vistas.