Our area is known for its scenic beauty, and there’s always plenty to do for outdoor recreation in breathtaking surroundings all year round. Today we’re turning our focus to one of favorite pastimes Western Colorado has to offer: Mountain bike trails near Grand Junction, Fruita, Orchard Mesa, and Palisade. While our list certainly won’t be exhaustive, we want to highlight a few well-rated (and a few underrated) trails to give you an idea of some places you might like to take your mountain bike for a spin.
Fruita is home to some of the most exciting, scenic, and challenging trails in the area. Make sure to do your research on these and other options in the area to determine the right trail for your group’s skill level, endurance, and desired length.
Starting in the Kokopelli parking area, this 17.3 mile ride gives you access to some of the best trails in the region – Mary’s, Horsethief, Steve’s, and Wrangler’s. Not a lot of shade, and the ride can be arduous. Pack plenty of food and water.
18 Road Trails – Zippity Loop
Beautiful scenery is the big payoff here, and riders should be aware of steep descents on this singletrack loop. Plan to ride it clockwise, as most do, and keep in mind that some of the descents can be sandy. The loop totals out at 8.8 miles.
Chutes & Ladders Loop
As the name suggests, this 7-mile loop flows from steep climbs to easy, breezy trail, and provides loads of fun for experienced riders. It’s ranked Intermediate/Difficult due to the considerable challenge of the climbs, but they are relatively short and the payoff is great. Must be ridden clockwise.
While most of what we’ve covered so far in this section has been for experienced riders, Fruita doesn’t leave beginners out of the loop (well, some loops, maybe)! Rustler’s Loop, located off the aforementioned Kokopelli trailhead, provides a great chance for folks to get a non-intimidating introduction to mountain biking in the area. It’s 3.7 miles, and you should ride it clockwise.
Holy Cross is a short, difficult trail, but it will give you a challenge if you’re already at an appreciable skill level and looking to put your abilities to the test. At just 2.7 miles, Holy Cross will give even advanced riders a thrill – and a workout.
This singletrack trail is just the right length – and plenty challenging – all while providing exhilarating swoops, views, and an overall great time for those who are up for it. Butterknife is 6.7 miles and rated Intermediate/Difficult.
Here’s an 8.5 mile ride that’s got a good level of difficulty, and riders should bear in mind that it can also be dangerous, with trail running along the edge of steep cliffs at times. There will be plenty of challenges and plenty of payoff with this one. Bring plenty of water.
West Bench Trail #501
This 5.5 mile intermediate ride has a good amount of downhill, pleasant scenery, and easy access. The major downside is that it’s often snow-covered and subsequently muddy well into the warmer, so finding the right time to hit this trail might prove challenging.
Just 2.9 miles in length, this intermediate/difficult singletrack ride has plenty of challenges, great views, and is just the right length for a quick, fun excursion. Be aware that the trailhead can be tricky to find if it’s been a wet year.
We know there are so many more great trails in our area, but we wanted to highlight a few to help get you started, whether you’re new to the area, just visiting, or just getting acquainted with this local favorite pastime.
Please keep us in mind for your current and future automotive needs in the Grand Junction area – We’re always happy to order and install bike racks!