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  1. #1
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    Good DH near Denver

    So I looked at other threads and couldn't find any good answers but I was wondering where some good DH techy trails are near denver.

    I've been biking the front range for a while now and would like to find something with tacky dirt and steep decents with fewer xc bikers and hikers.

    Thanks for your input!

  2. #2
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    Yeah... there's none of that. Winter Park & Keystone are your best bets.

  3. #3
    zrm
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    Go to the ski areas that are designed for that sort of use. Otherwise, you're going to have to deal with the "hikers and XC riders" who are in your way.

  4. #4
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    Shuttle apex.

  5. #5
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    Keep searching, they exist, however imo, tacky dirt and technical don't usually go together.

    PM me

  6. #6
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    Seems legit.
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  7. #7
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  8. #8
    Living the High Life
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    I heard there's some great shuttle DH near...wait a minute...


    Good DH near Denver-admiral_ackbar_says_its_a_trap.jpg
    You have just been mentally Rick Roll'd. Yup you're thinking about it right now aren't you? Don't fight it.

  9. #9
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    There is an obvious demand for a DH trail close to Denver but those in power like their trails groomed to to keep the spandex wearing set safe. They then complain if anyone dares ask if there are any shuttle worthy trails.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitecrwlr View Post
    There is an obvious demand for a DH trail close to Denver but those in power like their trails groomed to to keep the spandex wearing set safe. They then complain if anyone dares ask if there are any shuttle worthy trails.
    "Shuttle worthy" is one thing. "Trails that you could/should shuttle" is quite another. Like zrm mentioned, there's just all those hikers and other bikers who keep getting in the way, darn them.
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MCS5280 View Post
    Shuttle apex.
    Please don't. There are already enough A-holes not yielding on that trail.

  12. #12
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    There are hiking only trails. Why can't there be biking only trails? There is a demand. I've seen full face helmets on Mt Falcon, Apex and even Dakota Ridge.

  13. #13
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    Go buy a dirt bike and ride rampart. With an engine, every trail is DH.

    Or ride up the public trails and yield to climbers, hikes horse riders etc.

    Or go to WP/SV and make friends. You just might learn the double secret DH handshake and gain access to endless miles of super gnar trails.

    Or go buy some land and roll your own.
    Happiness is a warm 2 stroke.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitecrwlr View Post
    There are hiking only trails. Why can't there be biking only trails? There is a demand. I've seen full face helmets on Mt Falcon, Apex and even Dakota Ridge.
    Open Space organizations don't work by the classic supply/demand rules.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitecrwlr View Post
    There are hiking only trails. Why can't there be biking only trails? There is a demand. I've seen full face helmets on Mt Falcon, Apex and even Dakota Ridge.
    I agree, why not? There are directional and bike only trails in Grand Junction and Fruita(free lunch, pucker up, pbr).

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn W. View Post
    I agree, why not? There are directional and bike only trails in Grand Junction and Fruita(free lunch, pucker up, pbr).
    Because BLM. There is very little BLM land around here...

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Rizz View Post
    Please don't. There are already enough A-holes not yielding on that trail.
    I ride Apex regularly and everybody I run into(hikers, xc riders, and dh riders) has been very courteous. Maybe you're the A-hole if you're having a hard time getting along with people. If people going down hills bothers you that much, just ride Apex on the odd days.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by snowskilz View Post
    Wow, that trail looks really fun.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryan12210 View Post
    I ride Apex regularly and everybody I run into(hikers, xc riders, and dh riders) has been very courteous. Maybe you're the A-hole if you're having a hard time getting along with people. If people going down hills bothers you that much, just ride Apex on the odd days.
    I can see the front side of Apex from my back yard. I see A-holes everyday that don't yield. Yesterday some asshat in a bright pink shirt and full face helmet (that you?) made three hikers literally jump off the trail. Smooth move....making friends.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn W. View Post
    I agree, why not? There are directional and bike only trails in Grand Junction and Fruita(free lunch, pucker up, pbr).
    GJ and Fruita also don't have the population base like the Denver area does. Waaaaaaay less recreational hikers going to probably the same amount of trails as Denver Metro.
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Rizz View Post
    I can see the front side of Apex from my back yard. I see A-holes everyday that don't yield. Yesterday some asshat in a bright pink shirt and full face helmet (that you?) made three hikers literally jump off the trail. Smooth move....making friends.
    You must have had a real busy day...watching people ride bikes.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Rizz View Post
    Please don't. There are already enough A-holes not yielding on that trail.
    I shuttle Apex. And Chimney. And Mt Falcon. And anywhere else I can get a vehicle to the top of.

    I also smile and thank people as I pass by.

    Not everyone with a full face is an Asshat...

  23. #23
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    There's plenty of land. Of all the BLM land available, I'd guess that .01% is actually used. You look at the square footage of any area and subtract a 3' path across it? Still plenty of space left.

  24. #24
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    I'm more of a xc rider, so don't do it often, but there are some places that fill the bill without the sarcasm of of some other responses. An unnamed by me trail exists that is a 2700 ' shuttle with no hikers or xc riders, easy to do 2 or 3 laps in a session. I'll let others in the dh world spell it out or go talk to those guys, they're hitting a variety of things. Yes there are trails that are too steep for xc riding, not popular with hikers and do not have moto traffic that are suitable for shuttling close to town. Good luck with your search!

  25. #25
    zrm
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitecrwlr View Post
    There's plenty of land. Of all the BLM land available, I'd guess that .01% is actually used. You look at the square footage of any area and subtract a 3' path across it? Still plenty of space left.
    Well, aside from the fact the bikes are restricted to designated trails, even on BLM land all land is used and needed by some living thing. There are no vacant lots in nature. Before you go riding your bike anywhere you want, you might want to think about more than your immediate, short term gratification.

  26. #26
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    The same could be said to any human alive taking up space. Why should an XC rider be allowed to displace nature? Why don't we all just kill ourselves in the name of preserving the environment? I think 7 billion people on the planet is enough.

  27. #27
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    Why should we have to sneak around like criminals?

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by zrm View Post
    Well, aside from the fact the bikes are restricted to designated trails, even on BLM land all land is used and needed by some living thing. There are no vacant lots in nature. Before you go riding your bike anywhere you want, you might want to think about more than your immediate, short term gratification.
    He is talking about a trail, not a building a Walmart.... It isn't that hard for animals and people to use the land. Unless you subscribe to the Sierra Club's definition of environmentalism = remove people from the environment.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitecrwlr View Post
    There's plenty of land. Of all the BLM land available, I'd guess that .01% is actually used. You look at the square footage of any area and subtract a 3' path across it? Still plenty of space left.
    The point is - there is almost no BLM land anywhere near Denver.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by zrm View Post
    Well, aside from the fact the bikes are restricted to designated trails, even on BLM land all land is used and needed by some living thing. There are no vacant lots in nature. Before you go riding your bike anywhere you want, you might want to think about more than your immediate, short term gratification.
    Oh, you mean like how you gratify yourself with your self serving, condescending, hippie comments. I get it now, thanks.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by bismirle View Post
    Unless you subscribe to the Sierra Club's definition of environmentalism = remove all non-hikers from the environment.
    - Fixed that for you.

  32. #32
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    This thread like so many has moved into a land use conversation vs finding front range DH trails. But I like that conversation also. I like the idea of widening our cycling opportunities, but often I feel we come off as a bunch of whiny kids that can't get their way. The reality is we are much more high impact compared to hikers. The distance, speed we move make it less enjoyable for hikers out there, while they don't impact our experience near as much. We don't have to sneak around as criminals, we have dozens of places with legal trails, and miles of trails to enjoy. There are biker only trails, Cent Cone has designated odd/even days as hiker or biker only. Would love to see more of that. I'm enjoying some of the one way designation at Buff Cr which helps with congestion and the riding experience, again, would love to see more of that, even if its only "suggested direction of travel". Lots we can do to ease congestion and make a lot of these places more pleasant for hikers and bikers alike. And if you haven't realized it yet, Colorado is a different state mid week compared to weekends. Did Bergen Peak this am and saw 3 other riders the whole time out. PS Sierra Club guy since the 70's, but love to mtb!

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woolbury View Post
    This thread like so many has moved into a land use conversation vs finding front range DH trails. But I like that conversation also. I like the idea of widening our cycling opportunities, but often I feel we come off as a bunch of whiny kids that can't get their way. The reality is we are much more high impact compared to hikers. The distance, speed we move make it less enjoyable for hikers out there, while they don't impact our experience near as much.
    Are you talking about actual trail impact? Or something more... subjective?

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woolbury View Post
    The reality is we are much more high impact compared to hikers. The distance, speed we move make it less enjoyable for hikers out there, while they don't impact our experience near as much.
    I also love to hike/climb and understand the hiker's point of view, but don't let the Sierra Club (and of other hiking groups) propaganda skew the truth.

    Mtn bikes have no greater trail impact than hikers, and way less impact than horses. There are obviously trails that should be hiker only due to use or conditions (most Colorado 14er come to mind). But, if a horse is allowed on a trail, a bike should be allowed there too.

    Perhaps the most widely accepted research on trail impacts of different users is the Seney/Wilson Study as it compared all the user groups together in one study (hikers, motorcycles, mountain bikes, and horses). Some of the findings from the Seney/Wilson Study include:

    "The sediment yields reported in part B of Table 4 indicates that horse plots produced significantly more sediment yield than the bicycle, control, or hiker plots." "Hiker and bicycle plots were not significantly different from each other or the control plots." " Indeed, hikers produced the second largest increase in sediment yield following the horse treatments, and overall the horse and hiker plots suggest that hooves and feet make more sediment available for removal than wheels on pre-wetted soils. The results in Part D of Table 4 indicate horse traffic produced significantly more sediment than other users on dry plots as well". (Erosional Impact of Hikers, Horses, Motorcycles, and Off Road Bicycles on Mountain Trails in Montana- John Wilson and Joseph Seney - Mountain Research and Development 1994)

    Impacts of trail users, bike, foot, equestrian horse, research

  35. #35
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    I took Woolbury's comment to mean that the impact of bikers on hikers (not the trail itself) is greater than the impact of hikers on bikers. Which is subjective, of course, but pretty much true.

  36. #36
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    Yes that's what I mean. Not that we tear up the trails, but a family going for a walk on a busy riding morning gets their experience impacted more than we do cruising by on our bikes. So in that context, I just like to what I can keep their experience positive. I slow down, say something nice, kiss ass a bit. The parks up here in Evergreen are really more hiker parks, and on a busy Sat or sun morn you encounter lots of trail users as you head out, a lot fewer up top. Almost all smiling , friendly folks, but it wouldn't take more than a bad experience or two to change their attitude.

    As for actual trail damage, I'm impressed how we police ourselves a bit and refrain from riding when it's super muddy and we can actually rut things up. Rode M Crest Sunday, and shuttle guy asked us to use good sense on Rainbow if it rained all day. It did and we rode it anyway, but I like that self policing attitude that exists. Hope that continues and we don't face restrictions base on trail damage. That would suck in my book.

  37. #37
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    Wow, this thread has taken a few turns. Since your question pertains to DH, I'd say just stick to the parks like Keystone and Winter Park (as previously mentioned). There are a few shuttle-able trails, but that's a whole different story and can spark multiple pages of debate. There are also XC trails, that require uphilling to get to mild DH, but your question regarded DHing near Denver...so the parks are my best answer.

  38. #38
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    Yes Alex, hijacked! Guilty! And you're right, if you want to dh, go to WP and have a fun day. Many folks I ride with are now 2 bike people, pedal bikes for trail rides during week, and gone on the weekends with the big bikes to WP. If you like the gravity thing, you won't be happy with the few shuttle offerings I alluded to.

  39. #39
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    I'll give the original poster one:

    Red Cone road. Shuttle will take a *really* long time but the descent back down the road is a friggin' hoot.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by joshsnk View Post
    something with tacky dirt and steep decents
    not quite sure that combo exists in CO, but do tell whatcha find!
    the drugs made me realize it's not about the drugs

  41. #41
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    South Saint Vrain, upper and lower, near Brainard Lake. It can be shuttled or ride the road to Little Raven. Not too many hikers, very few cyclists. If you can ride it all, you are macho.
    Tequila tonight, tomorrow we ride!

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Train View Post
    South Saint Vrain, upper and lower, near Brainard Lake. It can be shuttled or ride the road to Little Raven. Not too many hikers, very few cyclists. If you can ride it all, you are macho.
    Super fun trail, but certainly a trail for a trail bike and not a DH bike, requires pedaling a lot as its not steep except for in a few places.. Combined with Buchanan Pass trail, it makes a great day.
    BBZ

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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by WKD-RDR View Post
    not quite sure that combo exists in CO, but do tell whatcha find!
    Sure it does... but it only exists .49 hours after a heavy rain storm. Pick anywhere
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  44. #44
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    A friend of mine was saying to come check out the I-35 trails in CS. Havent been out there yet but the videos I saw made it look pretty fun.

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