Golden opportunities on the trails of Snowmass as the bike park opens |

Golden opportunities on the trails of Snowmass as the bike park opens

Snowmass Village offers mountain biking variety in a vast valley-wide network of Gold-Level riding

Bikers hit a small jump on Viking during the opening day of the Snowmass Bike Park and Elk Camp Gondola on Monday, June 21, 2021.
Kelsey Brunner/The Aspen Times

Snowmass Village’s 90-plus miles of dirt roads, cross-country trails
and downhill-only routes are part of a Gold-Level mountain biking
experience in the Roaring Fork Valley — literally.

The valley was the first region in Colorado and the seventh in the world
to earn the International Mountain Bike Association Gold Level Ride Center
honor back in 2020. Criteria for the designation include the variety, mileage and quality of trails, as well as destination best practices and local services.

“I think that Gold-Level designation helped boost the recognition of the
Roaring Fork Valley as a whole — not just Snowmass,” said Brandon Hawksley, who works for the town of Snowmass Village parks and trails department in Snowmass Village. “I believe that that’s drawing some of that diehard mountain bike group to at least come and explore what we have here in Snowmass and the Roaring Fork Valley.”

In addition to all of the cross country trails in the village, the Snowmass Bike Park, managed by Aspen Skiing Co., offers plenty of lift-served downhill routes for riders of all abilities. It reopens Tuesday, along with the Elk Camp Gondola, Elk Camp Chairlift and other on-mountain experiences like the Lost Forest adventure park.

“It’s got a ton of variety and differences in trail style and level of difficulty of those trails,” says Tyler Lindsay, the event marketing manager at Skico. “And, it’s a great place to branch out and just kind of improve your riding ability for every other area of the valley.”

The newest addition in the Snowmass Bike Park is the difficult Squeezy trail, which completes a three-trail skills progression zone with the beginner “E-Z P-Z” and intermediate “Lemon” trails underneath the Meadows chairlift.

This year, town of Snowmass Village crews are focusing most of their efforts on making connections between the existing network of trails and some neighborhoods in the village, Hawksley said.

Down the line, keep an eye out for potential updates to the Airline Trail in Sky Mountain Park, which is the main access point to that trail network from the Aspen side of the park.

Editor’s note: A version of this story also appears in our “Cycling’ and “Summer in Aspen and Snowmass” magazines.


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