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  1. #1
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    Need ideas for colorado trail ride

    Sadly I have never been on the Colorado trail. Going to be changing that at the beginning of next month. My girl, a friend from Cali, and I will be spending six days on the Colorado trail. We only have one car so will be doing three days in three days out.

    What section would you all recommend?

  2. #2
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    Unless your hell bent on bike packing, I would do three separate rides from different trailheads. The CT is awesome but we certainly have other great trails as well to explore.

    Section 1 to the river/back
    The section out of Breck + lots of other trails in the area.
    Buffalo Creek, CT runs through it.
    Salida

  3. #3
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    We are set on bike packing it. My lady is making custom frame bags for all the bikes. It will be our trial run to see what works and what doesnt for future trips.

    So far I have been thinking of starting at Breck and heading south. Salida was my second choice.

  4. #4
    zrm
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    The thing to consider about going south from Breck is the CT goes over the Ten Mile Range. It certainly spectacular - you're above treeline for a long time, but there's lots of pushing involved. If you had three days and are comfortable covering 40-50 miles a day (not that tough if you have all day) I'd do this:

    Start at Kenosha Pass. Go over Georgia pass and camp somewhere around Horseshoe gulch (the dredge trailhead). Second day take the CT to the Peaks trail then go down to Frisco via the peaks and take the bike path to Copper Mtn and bypass the over the Ten Mile section (unless you are totally set on doing the big climb/long push but expect it to add 2-4 hours vs taking the bike path) get back on the CT at Copper Mtn and climb to the Searle Pass area. (you can even rent a couple beds at Janets Cabin Summit Huts Association Home) The third day do the long above treeline traverse to Kokomo pass then down to Camp Hale and on over to Leadville.

  5. #5
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    Bike-Packing the CT

    If you're bike-packing, guessing you'll want to ride the entire section you choose even if you hike-a-bike some. I'd wear bike shoes with grippy, hike friendly soles. Here's a couple of resources with CT bike-packing info:

    www.ColoradoTrail.org/bike (midpage, the link for PowerPoint worth a look)

    www.singlespeeding-on-thecoloradotrail.com

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by zrm View Post
    The thing to consider about going south from Breck is the CT goes over the Ten Mile Range. It certainly spectacular - you're above treeline for a long time, but there's lots of pushing involved. If you had three days and are comfortable covering 40-50 miles a day (not that tough if you have all day) I'd do this:

    Start at Kenosha Pass. Go over Georgia pass and camp somewhere around Horseshoe gulch (the dredge trailhead). Second day take the CT to the Peaks trail then go down to Frisco via the peaks and take the bike path to Copper Mtn and bypass the over the Ten Mile section (unless you are totally set on doing the big climb/long push but expect it to add 2-4 hours vs taking the bike path) get back on the CT at Copper Mtn and climb to the Searle Pass area. (you can even rent a couple beds at Janets Cabin Summit Huts Association Home) The third day do the long above treeline traverse to Kokomo pass then down to Camp Hale and on over to Leadville.
    This is a pretty good plan.

    And since you're doing it as an out-n-back I'll throw in the idea of riding the section from Copper to Breck (the part you skipped going over the 10-mile range) on the way back if you've got the legs. There's still gonna be some hike-a-bike in there, but the views from the 10-mile range are rad and the descent down Miner's to the Peaks trail is worth doing. Also on the way back, there are other routes you can take from Breck back to Kenosha Pass... so you can mix it up a little and ride some different trails. Maybe climb Galena Gulch instead of West Ridge, for instance. And then descend Jefferson Creek from Georgia (instead of the CT) headed back towards Kenosha.

    Another idea is the last few sections of the CT, from Molas Pass to Durango. There's some really good stuff down there, and I recently saw a trip report from someone that did this... okay found it! Trip Report - Bikepacking the CT from Molas Pass to Durango (Pic heavy, xpost)

    EDIT: Looks like a quick search in the Bikepacking forum is gonna yield some good beta as well. And if you can arrange some sort of shuttle service, so you can just do all your days in one direction, that might not be a bad way to go either. Another thread that looked decent:
    Colorado Trail bikepacking beginner pics

    EDIT #2: Another idea for the Durango area might be to follow something along the lines of the Durango Dirt Century route, which would loop in quite a bit of the Colorado Trail. Start and end in Durango. Not sure how many miles you're thinking you can knock out in a day, but 20 miles/day would be five days of riding on a 100 mile route.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Full Trucker View Post
    This is a pretty good plan.

    And since you're doing it as an out-n-back I'll throw in the idea of riding the section from Copper to Breck (the part you skipped going over the 10-mile range) on the way back if you've got the legs. There's still gonna be some hike-a-bike in there, but the views from the 10-mile range are rad and the descent down Miner's to the Peaks trail is worth doing. Also on the way back, there are other routes you can take from Breck back to Kenosha Pass... so you can mix it up a little and ride some different trails. Maybe climb Galena Gulch instead of West Ridge, for instance. And then descend Jefferson Creek from Georgia (instead of the CT) headed back towards Kenosha.

    Another idea is the last few sections of the CT, from Molas Pass to Durango. There's some really good stuff down there, and I recently saw a trip report from someone that did this... okay found it! Trip Report - Bikepacking the CT from Molas Pass to Durango (Pic heavy, xpost)

    EDIT: Looks like a quick search in the Bikepacking forum is gonna yield some good beta as well. And if you can arrange some sort of shuttle service, so you can just do all your days in one direction, that might not be a bad way to go either. Another thread that looked decent:
    Colorado Trail bikepacking beginner pics

    EDIT #2: Another idea for the Durango area might be to follow something along the lines of the Durango Dirt Century route, which would loop in quite a bit of the Colorado Trail. Start and end in Durango. Not sure how many miles you're thinking you can knock out in a day, but 20 miles/day would be five days of riding on a 100 mile route.
    I'd second this recommendation to do Molas -> Durango. Hitch a ride back to Molas after finishing. Or for bonus points, start this ride in Silverton and take the train back up.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkaredShtles View Post
    I'd second this recommendation to do Molas -> Durango. Hitch a ride back to Molas after finishing. Or for bonus points, start this ride in Silverton and take the train back up.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Full Trucker View Post
    This is a pretty good plan.
    And since you're doing it as an out-n-back I'll throw in the idea of riding the section from Copper to Breck (the part you skipped going over the 10-mile range) on the way back if you've got the legs. There's still gonna be some hike-a-bike in there, but the views from the 10-mile range are rad and the descent down Miner's to the Peaks trail is worth doing.
    The 10 mile range section is totally worth doing. I did it when out of shape on a singlespeed and didn't walk "that" much. Now I know my view of "that" much is skewed having done the AZT and the CTR but really it's not that much pushing for a really cool section of trail.
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