Jeez. We don’t even know where to begin when it comes to mountain biking in Durango. There are just SO. MANY. OPTIONS. Durango, Colorado, is a quintessential mountain town where the Great Outdoors are just outside your door (including your door at the Quality Inn Durango), so it’s tough to even know which trails and rides to highlight. But we’ll give it a go.
First off, we got a lot of this information from TrailHead: Durango Area Mountain Bike Guide as well as MTB Project, so props, kudos and credit to them because we can’t claim to be experts in the area of Durango mountain biking.
There’s a nice collection of trails just off U.S. Highway 160 a few miles west of Durango that include Cliffrock Loop, the Twin Buttes Trail, the Upper Twin Buttes Trail, the Lower Ed & Flo, the Upper Ed & Flo, Upper BC&F and the Lower Loop trails. Most of the trails connect in one way or another, so there’s quite a few options for mountain bike rides ranging from short distances and mellow rides to more challenging, technical terrain. The trails will take you through meadows, along an old railroad bed and to hilltops with stunning views.
Even closer to town, in the Overend Mountain Park area west and north of Greenmount Cemetery, another grouping of trails offers a riders a host of combinations for mountain biking in Durango. Trails include Ella Vita, Spirit Trail, Hogsfoot, Falcon, Brown’s Ridge, 8 Bells, Perins Gulch Trail, Star Wars, Test Track, Engleharts, Hidden Valley, Graben’s Loop and the “exceptionally steep downhill run” Ridge Walk (sort of like a black diamond ski run).
Another network of mountain bike trails criss-cross the mountains east of town and offers riders a range of options. Grandview Ridge, Horse Gulch and Telegraph trails give hardcore, adventurous riders 16 miles, most of which is well-maintained single track with a couple miles are along paved roadway.
Finally, for the, uh, less athletic among us — those who maybe want to stop their ride for an iced latte or a cold beer — the paved Animas River Trail stretches nearly 8 miles through the center of town, mostly paralleling the Animas River and the Durango train. It is currently a continuous trail from the south end of town near Home Depot to 32nd Street (it runs just across the river behind our hotel, the Durango Quality Inn at 29th Street and Main Avenue). Along the trail, riders will find parks, art, rest stops, restrooms and easy access to downtown.