One of the most popular summer sports, mountain biking is an awesome activity to see the sights, get some exercise and access backcountry areas. Keystone has a wide variety of trails to blaze, everything from downhill to paved strolls around Lake Dillon and all that lies in between. Many of the ski resorts offer downhill biking on their glorious slopes and many of the local towns and cities have bike paths in between them. Frisco to Breckenridge is a very popular biking, hiking, rollerblading trail among locals and there are many more trails throughout Summit County to fit your needs! When it comes to the difficulty, it all depends on what type of biking you are doing. Riding on paved roads is generally considered to be easy, and flat trails/roads are best for certain groups. It is when you get into steep up hills or down hills that the difficulty increases. However, the type of biking you do will change the difficulty and the terrain is always something to consider. Mountain biking on rocky, bumpy trails can be technically difficult; whereas downhill is usually for experienced riders. Make sure you know what you are getting yourself into before you go for a ride. Additionally, bikers can be harmful to dirt paths if the paths are wet, so please be respectful and wait until the roads are dry after all the snow has melted or if it was raining, this keeps the trails in better condition for everyone. Also, many of these trails can be combined for all-day adventures, like Keystone to Frisco to Breckenridge and back!
There are many different companies in Keystone that offer bike rentals and sales. There are different bikes for different terrains and they vary in price, so be sure to get the right kind of bicycle for your activities. Also, don’t forget safety and always bring a helmet and, if necessary, pads (especially in downhill, you need body armor). Bringing water is recommended on longer hikes, as is bringing a picnic lunch and (if possible) a tire pump, light-repair equipment and a first-aid kit. On longer treks in mountain terrain you never know when you snag a rock and have a flat tire or fall off and hurt yourself, it is nice to have the proper equipment to deal with these issues (when you’re five miles from your car or civilization). Listed are some of our favorite trails in Summit County!
Keystone, Colorado Bike Trails
Keystone Resort is home to some of the best downhill biking terrain parks in Summit County and even Colorado! There are multiple trails to blaze on the mountain, all ranging in difficulty and length. Take a day to try our some of these amazing trails and some of them even include a area to access the abandoned mines in the high mountains. These trails are accessible through a variety of methods including park’n’ride, taking lifts, and some more unconventional methods.
Keystone Bike Path
There is a bike path that flows all through Keystone, everything from the golf course to Settler’s Creek; the bike path is expansive and incredible. You can run all over Keystone and back and still have time left in the day for some other adventures. Stop in at Lakeside Village or River Run Village for some lunch and continue on your way around the city! You can peruse around Lake Keystone and enjoy a nice, short and sweet family ride in the high mountains!
Keystone to Loveland Pass
This ride takes about 3-5 hours and is approximately 10 miles uphill. To get here from Keystone resort, continue east on Hwy 6 past Arapahoe Basin. From this point the switchbacks begin and continue till the top of the pass. As each curve in the road passes the views continually improve. Many cars travel this scenic route in the summer months, so be careful of tourists. As the road continues, the trees become fewer until a high alpine environment is met. At 11,990 feet above sea level you might begin to feel a bit light headed so be sure to drink lots of water and bring a warm coat for the ride down (it can get a bit chilly up this high). At the top is a convenient parking area for you to point-to-point bike, or you can turn around and enjoy the easy, but fast ride back to Keystone.
Keystone to Montezuma
To begin this ride you want to start in River Run Village where you can find plenty of parking in the Montezuma lot and follow the Snake River to the old mining town, some may consider a ghost town. The road to the top is about 5.8 miles uphill. The glimpses of high rocky ridgelines are amazing, as you ascend through pine forests. Montezuma was settled in 1860 and named after the famous Aztec conqueror for his hoards of golden treasure. Just upon reaching the town, you will see a wooden sign that reads Montezuma. This town is over 10,000 feet tucked nicely away in the forests secluded from the hustle and bustle of Summit County. There are more trails in this area or you can head back down to Keystone making this a 12-mile day trip!
Keystone to Frisco
The distance is an easy 10-mile ride with a constant grade. Another great ride for the kids and the scenery is amazing. This trail starts in Lakeside Village near the Keystone Lodge & Spa and wraps around and through the golf course and Snake River and eventually leads to run along Highway 6. Continue along this road and eventually you will run into Dillon Dam road which is scenic and gorgeous and has some stops with information about the area. After this, it heads into a forest of lodgepole pine with glimpses of the lake on every corner. The path winds around the shoreline of Lake Dillon passing the medical center and weaving around over the marshes and will eventually lead you into the Frisco Marina area where you can relax and enjoy the sights of Frisco. At this point you can ride back to Keystone or have someone pick you up! Another option is to have someone drop you off in Frisco and you ride back to Keystone following this gorgeous, scenic trail. If you are feeling brave, you can take the entire 18 mile loop around Lake Dillon and explore the entire area, just be sure to devote and entire day to this excursions!
From Keystone, turn right onto Montezuma road and in about 4 1/2 miles after crossing the Snake River, turn left and park at the Peru Creek trailhead. You can increase the length of this ride by parking at the free parking lots and biking to the trailhead (if you are feeling brave). Ride up Peru Creek road, drop into a meadow, and pass a fork to the right. Continue on the main road, you will encounter the Shoe Basin Mine to the left. Past this mine, the road increases in difficulty and steepness. Remain on the main route until you reach a junction near the head of horseshoe basin. Take the left fork to an immaculate alpine pond, which is an awesome place to stop for lunch or at least a snack. When finished admiring the beauty, return, as you came, back to your vehicle and enjoy a second glance at this gorgeous area. Otherwise, just continue on down to Keystone and enjoy the paved road and gorgeous descent.
Montezuma is just east of Keystone. Just take Montezuma road (which is near River Run Village) and follow it down to Montezuma. Take on right turn onto 2nd St. from Montezuma Road and you’ll be in business, very straightforward and easy to find.
This is a dirt road the entire way so it can either be done on mountain bike or a dirt bike. At the end of the town of Montezuma is a rocky jeep road. Begin the ride here and turn left at the Deer Creek / Webster Pass sign. The climb begins through beautiful high alpine valleys and surrounding peaks and is a truly exquisite area. Cross the Snake River and climb a bit more to a junction. Turn left to begin that last of the climbing to the top of Webster Pass. The other direction will lead you to Teller Mountain. At the top of Webster Pass the road continues down to Hwy 285. Your best bet is to turn around and come back the way you started unless you are looking into a very long ride and this is about a 5 mile round trip adventure.
Saints John Trail
Begin this ride the same you would begin the Webster Pass ride. At the junction after you cross the Swan River, you want to turn right toward Teller Mountain. Atop Teller Mountain, drop toward the Deer Creek drainage. At the first junction, turn left and follow this road till you merge with another road and make a left, climbing above the drainage to a three way junction. You will want to make a right and follow the ridge top road to Saints John continuing straight. The General Teller Mine is your next landmark on the right. Climb over a ridge and drop toward Saints John Creek. A very rocky decent brings you to the old mining town of Saints John past the Wild Irishman Mine. Continue on the main route as you switchback to the town of Montezuma. This is a more advanced ride and is about 3.2 miles roundtrip.
Frisco Colorado Bike Trails
Frisco is one of the nearby cities, just passed Dillon and Silverthorne. From Keystone, take Highway 6 back towards Dillon, hop onto I-70 going west and it is the next town at the end of Dillon Lake, only about 15 miles away. Frisco is a gorgeous area and tours around Lake Dillon can start in Frisco.
Frisco to Breckenridge
The distance is 9.5 miles with a moderate grade. This is a perfect ride to take the kids on because the trail is flat and safe. During the peak summer months, the trail can become quite busy with other bikers, inline skaters, and hikers so use caution when traveling. To access this section of the bike path from Frisco, park in the park and ride next to Fiesta Jalisco and you will see the bike path right there. A sign will direct to Breckenridge to the left. The trail begins through the wooded area behind the main street of Frisco. The path climbs a series of hills to a brief rest stop at the top. A gentle downhill with a sharp corner leads to a parallel to highway 9 for a moment. As the trail approaches Farmer’s Corner, it veers to the right around Summit High school. A bit further down is a horse ranch and retaining wall elevated above the highway. At the base of Gold Hill, is a bridge over the Blue River. To the left you can see remains of the rock piling from the mining days. The path then crosses a few roads and driveways that have large truck traffic from the Stan Miller Construction Company so use caution. Eventually the path mirrors the Blue River. In the distance is the Breckenridge Recreation Center. The path passes Kingdom Park, the Summit County Justice Center and Commercial shops. Congratulations, you made it to Breckenridge!
Frisco to Vail Pass:
The distance is 14 miles uphill with a vertical gain of about 1500 feet. The ride becomes difficult toward the top of the pass with step switchbacks but is a moderate climb from Frisco to Copper Mountain. Park in the park and ride next to Fiesta Jalisco and you will see the bike path right there. Turn right toward Copper/Vail Pass along Ten Mile River. The trail is quite unique in that it is hidden in the woods in Ten-Mile Canyon. About halfway up to Copper is a rest area on the right side of the path perfect for a picnic lunch. Continue on till the climb flattens out and Beaver ponds are on either side. If you are lucky you might see a Beaver crossing the trail. Upon reaching a parking area and a gas station cross the road into Copper Mountain Resort. Continue through the resort, as the road curves around look for the bike path on the right. The path then continues through the valley between I-70 east and west bound. Enjoy the stunning mountain flowers and views of snow covered peaks as you ascend to the top of Vail Pass. Congratulations! You have reached the summit at over 10,000 feet. Now get ready for a very long downhill back to Frisco (which is the adrenaline junkies favorite)!
Breckenridge Colorado Bike Trails
Breckenridge has some awesome biking trails to blaze, simply take Highway 6 west (from Keystone) and connect with Swan Mountain Road and follow this down on Highway 9 until you have reached Breckenridge. There are numerous exits and signage for parking and trails. Please be sure you have a map or are at least familiar with the area, Breckenridge is much bigger than Keystone.
Breckenridge Resort has numerous biking trails on the mountain including: Watson Trailhead, Riverwalk Trailhead, Snowflake Trailhead, Illinois Creek Trailhead, Carter Park Trailhead, Iowa Hill Trailhead, and Valley Brook Trailhead. All of these trails differ in difficulty and length and are all accessible by the resorts free parking areas. Downhill biking is also available and Breckenridge is one of the best places in Summit County to do some mountain biking. Breckenridge also offers some bike clinics to master techniques in mountain terrain, downhill and more. The clinics also discuss maintenance and repair on your bicycles if anything should happen on the mountain.
This section of the Colorado trail is beautiful and full of great scenery and fun single track. Many people use this trail for hiking and biking, so encounters with other travelers in not uncommon. You can either make a loop or do an in/out ride. The trail will be covered with snow until sometime in June; please do not ride until it is dry. The best place to park is either in the town of Breckenridge Free parking or at the Breckenridge Golf course off of Tiger Road. Follow Tiger Road up until you come to a fork in the road (approx. 5 miles). Turn Right onto the Middle/South fork of the Swan. At the next junction head to the Middle fork. This steep hill heads to a campground. Before the campground, look for a single track trail on the left-hand side and follow that up. As the trail switchbacks up the mountain you will see some old clear-cut sections of forest, past a few streams, and up to the top where you are rewarded with an amazing view of the outback of Keystone. From this point the downhill begins. It starts off rolling and then glides around tight corners through forested hillsides above the Swan River Valley. The trail will come to a T. To the right will take you to Keystone and to the left back to your car. Continue left (or right if you got dropped off) and when you come to a meadow the trail becomes a bit difficult to see. Look for the trail on the other side of the river (there are two wood planks to cross). After another hill the trail descends all the way to Tiger Road RV Resort right off of Highway 9. The whole loop is about 25 miles and well worth it!
The Wheeler trail is very difficult and should be biked with a partner. Be prepared for all types of weather changes because most of this trail is above tree line and is not maintained regularly if ever. However, if you are an advanced mountain biker and wish for a long challenging ride, the Wheeler Trail is it! Park at the free parking lots in the town of Breckenridge and begin riding toward Peak 9/Beaver Run. At the base of the ski area is a dirt access road. Stay on this trail to the very top of the mountain. This trail has switchbacks up the entire way and toward the top becomes filled with loose rocks and ruts. At the top is a sign that intersects with the Wheeler Trail marked by rock piles. If you go left, you will end up in Blue River, if you go right, you will climb up and over the 10 mile range to Copper Mountain. The road continues to Peak 10 where glacier snow lasts sometimes all summer long. Take a right, and stay on a faint trail across the tundra. Be careful of getting off the path and damaging vegetation. The trail will then head straight up to ride difficult switchbacks to the other side of the mountain range, you will pass Miners Creek Trail on your right which will take you to the Peak’s Trail and into Frisco. There is over a 3,000 ft vertical gain during this ride, so you might choose to take the Wheeler trail to Copper Mountain, have lunch, and the take the bus back to Breckenridge from Frisco Main Street, or if you’re hardcore, you might take the Peak’s Trail or the paved bike path back to Breckenridge and complete the day with a great finale.
Due to the proximity to the town of Breckenridge, this trail can be busy with hikers, dogs, and other cyclists. The best place to park is in the large free lots on the east side of Park Avenue. From here head up toward Peak 9 and Beaver Run Resort. Begin climbing onto the dirt access road until you see a single track trail sign Burro trail. Follow this trail through forest and streams crossing crystal lakes jeep road. A bit further you will merge with Spruce Creek Road. You can either turn around and return the same way you came, take spruce creek road left back to highway 9 and Breckenridge, or continue up (right) Spruce Creek Road loop. The road reaches a 4 way junction. Turn right on the Wheeler trail will take you over a ridge and into McCullough Gulch. Take the road to the left through a gate. Continue on this trail and at each fork take a right to finish out the loop.
Boreas Pass Bakers Tank
The Bakers Tank single track is a great easy-to-moderate ride that is perfect for a short day with the family. This road was the path of the abandoned narrow gauge rail bed to scenic views and historic remains. Continue on this road till you come to a parking area and dirt road. You can begin your ride there, however, I prefer to park at the Breckenridge Ice Rink and climb up Boreas Pass Road, take a right on the dirt road cut off, and arriving at the parking lot. This is an excellent road for a novice in the sport of mountain biking, for it is wide and the views are incredible. The ride passes beautiful aspen groves and is my favorite ride when the leaves begin to change in autumn. The road continues up to an old water tank on the left hand side, take the dirt road to the left of the tank and follow it to a single track to the left. You will continue on rolling hills until junction in the road. If you head straight you will end up on Baldy Mountain Road. But to continue the loop head left. This trail glides through the forest back to your car if you parked in the parking area. If parked by the Ice Rink, look for a dirt road that heads down from the parking lot. From there you can connect to the remaining part of the trail. This section is great as you pass historic mining relics and decent down old mining tailings. The trail will spit you out on the first tight corner of Boreas Pass Road and a mile from the Ice rink. This is an ideal trail for more experienced beginners or intermediate riders, even advanced riders will take pleasure in the numerous sites of this area.
Breckenridge to Hoosier Pass
The distance is approximately 11 miles to the top of Hoosier pass. This ride shares the road with cars up a switch back pass, so use caution, especially on the downhill when bikes can reach speeds faster than cars. Starting at the South end of Breckenridge, continue heading south on Hwy 9 towards Blue River. On the left side of the road you will see a small lake and cabins tucked away in the woods. This flat road continues past the entrance to the Quandary Trail head. Climbing begins with steep switchbacks around small streams flowing alongside the road. Views of the mountains can be seen from every direction and the mountain floral is usually spectacular in the summer. Once at the top the mountains of Lincoln, Democrat, and Bross are seen looking over toward Alma. Congratulate yourself for a great climb all the way to 11,541 feet! This ride is more difficult than some of the others, but is perfect for intermediate and advanced riders looking for an afternoon trek.
Copper Colorado Bike Trails
Copper Mountain is a resort town just passed Frisco, simply follow I-70 West from Keystone until it wraps around to Copper Mountain. This is also a ski resort area and has some great downhill biking areas.
Copper Mountain Resort
Copper Mountain Resort is full of hiking and biking trails in the summer and you can take a lift up to the different areas to bike. The different trails differ in difficulty and length and a lift will take you to the top of the mountain for some downhill biking adventures. Some of the trails are out-and-back only, where some let you coast down the mountain side to the bottom of the mountain, only to ride up again and again. There are free parking lots in this area, just bring yourself and your equipment to enjoy a great day of riding.
Dillon and Silverthorne Area Colorado Bike Trails
Dillon and Silverthorne are the two of the closest cities to Keystone, just take Highway 6 west and you’ll run into Dillon before you reach I-70, Silverthorne is just on the other side of I-70 and Dillon Reservoir is right next to both of these cities.
Silverthorne to Ute Pass
This ride is approximately 20 miles one way. This is one of my favorite rides, but I continue over Ute pass to Winter Park (50-65 miles). This adventure begins heading north on Hwy 9 from Silverthorne. Even though this ride is on the road it is simply impressive, following the Blue River. At times it almost feels like a bike path. While heading north, you will notice on the left a big stone crushing operation. Further down on your right is metal art formation. Ute Pass turn off is about ¼ of a mile from here. The turn-off can be missed, but you just need to look for the Henderson Mine sign. The green meadows and rigid rock formations make this an unbeatable road bike ride. You reach the top of Ute pass at the Summit/Grand County divider and a parking area at 9,524 feet. Heading toward Grand County look around at the destruction from the Pine Beatles in the last couple of years. There are few green trees left. If continuing on down the hill in about a mile or two you will come to the Henderson Mine. At this point you may want to continue back up the hill because the pavement ends shortly and enjoy the views of the jagged mountain peaks of the Gore range on the ride back to Silverthorne or you can continue onto Winter Park, but you better have a ride waiting for you at the other end.
Silverthorne to Heeney
To get here, simply go to Highway 9 (off highway 6) and head north on the road to Green Mountain Reservoir. The distance of this ride is approximately 35 miles one way to Heeney. Views of the Gore Range and the Williams Fork Mountains giveaway to lush farm land. The road follows the Blue River for miles that eventually empties into the reservoir. Just before Green Mountain Reservoir, make a left turn before the bridge at the sign pointing to Heeney onto Storm Mountain Ranch and an immediate right onto Heeney Road/CR-30. Why not have lunch at one of Heeney’s many eateries or take a swim in the reservoir. This secret hamlet of Heeney is a relaxing venture for any road bike enthusiast and it is a relatively easy ride, you can make it a round trip from Keystone making it about a 60-mile round trip affair. Just follow the bike path from Keystone to Frisco, but head towards Silverthorne instead of Frisco and you’ll be well on your way!