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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: arctic slalom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009

    Driving from PHX to MSP -where to ride?

    memorial day weekend I'm leaving PHX and moving back to the midwest.

    my brother is flying a one-way down and we're going to take about 8 days to ride/hike/camp on the way home (back) to MN.

    Option A; Flagstaff, Moab, Fruita, Winter Park, Laramie, Rapid City, MSP.

    Option B; Gallup, Farmington, Durango, Gunnison, Winter Park, Laramie, Rapid City, MSP.

    We've got free lodging/friends in both Winer Park and Laramie, WY.

    Any thoughts on these two routes? I've ridden Moab and Winter Park b4...but it was about 10 years ago. My younger bro is a strong rider, but he's mostly a road and commuter guy....we can both climb pretty decent.

    any thoughts or detailed camping/trail information would be greatly appreciated.

    will the high elevation stuff around Gunnison/Durango/Winter Park even be open memorial day weekend....I've heard they are still gettting dumped on???

    Maah Daah Hey

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: PatrickTX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Sounds like a fun trip, and I'd say it's a toss-up between the two routes. If you're not acclimated to altitude, I'd recommend riding in Fruita, Cortez (near Durango), and Gallup. None of these are terribly high, and they're all fun. Fruita is 100% quality (but fairly technical), Cortez's Phi's World is more fun than you'll ever imagine, and Gallup's High Desert Trails are actually quite good.

    I wouldn't bother with Farmington. I've ridden the Road Apple Rally and it was so-so. Maybe a local can point you somewhere else. Durango is legendary, but as I mentioned, Cortez is surprisingly awesome.

    I'll also let a local tell you about the snow situation further north. I think some of the higher trails will still be snowed under. All of trails I mention are low enough that they should be clear.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    You might get lucky and some of lower elevation riding might be melted out by Memorial Day weekend. Rage in the Sage at Gunnison should be OK, and perhaps even Reno/Flag/Bear/Deadmans/Doctors Park in Crested Butte. Portions of the Colorado trail near Salida may be rideable such as: Raspberry Gulch or Agate Creek as an out and back (I doubt you'd make it all the way up to the divide to descend the sublime Greens Creek). Also, the Peaks trail in Breckenridge may be OK by then. There are also lots of possibilities along the front range near Denver, on your way to Laramie. Start monitoring those snotel sites!

  4. #4
    Black and Sticky
    Reputation: Bituman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Laramie places to ride

    Right by Laramie is Happy Jack trail system, think Pemberton in the forest. Nothing too difficult, just crusing smooth forest paths. Here are some pics I posted in 2008:

    But the best in Laramie area that I have ridden is Curt Gowdy State Park, roughly half way between Laramie and Cheyenne, think T100 from mild to tech. You might want to check with some locals to see whether Memorial Day is good, I've only ridden them in July. These places are pushing 8000 ft elev, with HJ a little higher than CG, I think. Others may disagree, but if I could only do one ride near Laramie, it would be CG.

    Have fun, and good luck back in MN.

    "Some people follow their dreams, others hunt them down and beat them mercilessly into submission." - Neil Kendall

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