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  1. #1
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    Moving to Denver area...how realistic are after work rides?

    Hey guys, I currently live in Bozeman MT, small town where the trails are 15-20 minutes away.

    I work an office job so i go rip it after work pretty much whenever the weather allows.

    Now I am potentially moving to Denver at the end of the summer. I have heard a lot about riding in CO, but how close are they?

    If you work a 9-5 type gig is after work riding realistic? How far are good FR/DH type trails. I am used to pushing so that is not a problem.

    Curious about your experiences, and how far on average you need to drive to get into the wilderness?

  2. #2
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    Depends where you live. Denver is a big sprawling city. If you live/work close to the foothills you can easily ride before/after work. I live in Golden and work in Boulder. There are about 4-5 trails I regularly ride in the mornings before work. (That list could double, depending on where you live/work).
    "Serves you right to suffer." -The Wife (after being 2 hours late)

  3. #3
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    I work out by the airport which is about as far east as you can get and still be in Denver, and I can still manage some okay after work rides like Centennial cone or 3 sisters. A little bit of a haul (maybe 45 minutes to an hour drive) but it's doable.

  4. #4
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    Job is in Englewood, not sure where I would live yet, but within an hour drive of there.

  5. #5
    That guy
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    I live in boulder and have a dozen or so trails I hit on a regular basis after work.

  6. #6
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    After-work rides are kinda part of the summer riding culture here. No matter where you work, you can be at any number of trailheads by 6pm.

    Where to live to be able to ride from home is a separate discussion (with its own thread...).

  7. #7
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    You'll be able to hit up post-work rides just fine. You can pretty much access anything in Jeffco from Denver proper within 30 minutes. The closer you live to the mtns the better off you'll be making the ride happen. Between Denver and the mountains, you have Lakewood, Arvada, Golden, Wheat Ridge, Morrison & Littleton. All make accessing the mtns pretty easy.

    As for Shuttle-able DH/FR trails, the official parks are located about 1 hour from Golden (farthest most west suburb of Denver). Winter Park: 1 hour. Keystone: 1 hour. SolVista: 1:30. There are a number of Bike Parks under construction in the area: Boulder (Valmont), Golden (Golden Bike Park), Denver (Barnum), Castle Rock (Rhyolite/ridgeline?)... so finding something a little more advanced will be close. I know from building the Golden Bike Park that we'll have 2 designated DH trails.

    Give us a buzz when you get out here!

    ...and for what its worth,if you can swing it, live in Golden. TONS of riding out your back door. Hint: Many neighborhoods have a less than a 2 minute ride to single track.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyMT
    Job is in Englewood, not sure where I would live yet, but within an hour drive of there.
    I would suggest living west of the city or I-25 and then after work rides are no problem.. however, DH/FR in the front range is limited..
    BBZ

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  9. #9
    Mojo0115
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    One thing to remember. No matter where you live, generally after work drive time to riding is all about the drive from work.

    I would echo that living on the west side of Denver makes it much easier to get out of town, but working in englewood means you will be driving from there to riding areas.

    Personally, I ride 2-3 days a week in the summer after work and ride from about 5.30pm-9pm each time. I live and work in Westminster.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for all the feedback guys. I have been looking at Golden, and it looks really nice.

    I'm used to pushing up around here, and riding our local bike park (Big Sky) on the weekends.

    So aggressive all mountain trails is what i generally ride during the week.

    I was a little nervous on pursuing this work opportunity due to the bike scene - its just so easy to get in the mountains up here.

    Other question for you guys, how long is the season on the frontrange? When does the snow melt away and when can you start rippin it?

  11. #11
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    Riding season on the FR is going to be way longer than what you are used to in MT. Not so much for the DH/FR stuff, but overall I ride 9 to 10 months of the year here, sometimes more, just depends on the year. Really though aside from the resorts you are going to want a bike that goes up as well. A lot of climbing here....I am not really into the DH thing, but if you meet the right folks I hear there is stuff around that is dry most of the year for shuttle access.

  12. #12
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    yeah i bet. our season doesn't start till May if we are lucky. and our bike park just opened 3 weeks ago.

    I used to have a bike that went up, we have mostly XC trails around here. But I ditched it for a FR bike and ride a select handful of trails that are good in and out type push up, rip down deals. They are rare, but fun.

    So to summarize:

    West side of town is gonna be closer to the mountains in general. season is pretty long with potential to ride all year.

  13. #13
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    You've had lots of great advice in here, and working in Englewood, you'll be "over the hump". That means you won't have to deal with excessive big traffic jams between work and trails. Lucky you

    I work on the "other side of the hump", which means I have to take I-70 through the elevated mess and cross I-25. Basically, I have to sit in traffic to do trail rides after work. However, even with that I still make at least one after-work ride per week. If I worked on the west side of town, I'd live there also and probably go riding almost every day.

    If you like aggressive all mountain rides after work, check out Dakota Ridge. It's close, plenty of challenging terrain and optional lines, and without the normal drama of crowded trails.

  14. #14
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    more crowds

    I suspect whether pushing or pedaling, it will be more crowded here. Lots of threads on user conflict too.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmy
    I suspect whether pushing or pedaling, it will be more crowded here. Lots of threads on user conflict too.
    Lots of threads on user conflict doesn't mean there is lots of user conflict. I've been here since early '97 and have yet to experience any major conflicts.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyMT
    Thanks for all the feedback guys. I have been looking at Golden, and it looks really nice.

    So aggressive all mountain trails is what i generally ride during the week.

    I was a little nervous on pursuing this work opportunity due to the bike scene - its just so easy to get in the mountains up here.

    Other question for you guys, how long is the season on the frontrange? When does the snow melt away and when can you start rippin it?
    The season can be all over the place. Denver is warmer than most usually think during the winter months. Some seasons we've ridden right through the winter, some stop (yes, STOP) in late march for the spring snow. Some seasons end in November.

    What most riders don't do is take to the concrete and DJ scene. There are a few of us that start digging (DJ's) when the trails are in snow. We ride Urban (Trials, FR, Aggro, DJ bikes) in the winter to keep up the skills and creative interpretation... many riders find urban creativity difficult, but to each their own.

    I'm beyond burnt out on skiing and do enjoy riding year 'round here. If you know where to look, you can make a 2 - 3.5 hour journey for a whole day of single track; desperation sets in in the colder months.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyMT
    yeah i bet. our season doesn't start till May if we are lucky. and our bike park just opened 3 weeks ago.

    I used to have a bike that went up, we have mostly XC trails around here. But I ditched it for a FR bike and ride a select handful of trails that are good in and out type push up, rip down deals. They are rare, but fun.

    So to summarize:

    West side of town is gonna be closer to the mountains in general. season is pretty long with potential to ride all year.
    Places to live:
    Golden, Lakewood, Ken Caryl and Roxborough. I live in SW Littleton and have singletrack 30 seconds from my front door into Deer Creek and South Valley

    You will want a bike that climbs though. Almost every ride starts with a good climb on the front range.

    Leaving MT will be hard though. Loved it when I lived in the Flathead Valley. So much cool stuff to do there.
    Proud Tribe member since 1992 - looking for better singletrack to be ridden year round

  18. #18
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    As far as FR/DH on the Front Range...some of the trails can be shuttled and are rocky enough to be fun on a big bike. But they are multi use / multi direction trails. You really can't get going fast enough to take advantage of a big bike anyway. Crap I can't take advantage of my 6" bike on weekends. Anyone who says they need a big bike for Front Range trails is probably going to fast.

    Its a big city and the trails can get busy during the summer. But Jefferson County does have great trails that are open for roughly 9 months a year. I've rode in January before
    You have just been mentally Rick Roll'd. Yup you're thinking about it right now aren't you? Don't fight it.

  19. #19
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    pushing?

    You know, many FR trails are climbs. A good number take a while to pedal to the top. You are going to push your bike up these climbs? How far do you push? A few hundred yards? A mile? Several miles? There is not enough time after work to push your bike a few miles. Just curious.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyMT

    Other question for you guys, how long is the season on the frontrange? When does the snow melt away and when can you start rippin it?
    Depending on the weather, I ride year round here.
    Cold weather gear really helps as do good lights.

    I regularly ride at night because of my kids' schedules - starting near or after sundown most nights. That could really help your "pushing" after work.
    “Me fail english? Thats unpossible.” - Matt Groening

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmy
    You know, many FR trails are climbs. A good number take a while to pedal to the top. You are going to push your bike up these climbs? How far do you push? A few hundred yards? A mile? Several miles? There is not enough time after work to push your bike a few miles. Just curious.

    I push 2-4 miles after work depending on the trail I ride. Doesn't take much longer than pedaling a heavy bike IMO. No good shuttles here, so we are forced to push. Once you get in shape to push you can knock out a few miles in no time.

    The trail I ride most often is 2.4 miles, takes just about an hour to push.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyMT
    I push 2-4 miles after work depending on the trail I ride...The trail I ride most often is 2.4 miles, takes just about an hour to push.
    Um, wow. You must really like thrashing the gnar, eh?
    This is what happens when you find a stranger in the Alps!

  23. #23
    zrm
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    You might be happier with a bike you don't have to push. You'll have a lot more options.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by hojiman
    Um, wow. You must really like thrashing the gnar, eh?
    You make due with what you got. Everyone here who rides FR/DH pushes, there are no shuttles so we push. People think it's out of control, but it does not take much longer than pedaling a big bike.

  25. #25
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    Pushing your bike at a place like Mt Falcon...full on crazy talk. A decent time up that climb is like 37 minutes from the bottom parking lot. It is only 2.5 miles but pushing a bike, having to stop for hikers, people with dogs and just the heat beating down on you would easily take about an hour.

    Pushing your bike up Apex, Chimney Gulch, Dear Creek, White Ranch...thanks but I will ride up.
    Proud Tribe member since 1992 - looking for better singletrack to be ridden year round

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