Looking to up your game when it comes to your mountain bike? Well, look no further. We have you covered with a list of the most amazing, daring and beautiful destinations that will have you packing up your bike and helmet in no time. These areas offer new trails, outdoor recreation and a bike-friendly atmosphere for everyone, no matter if you are just starting out or are an experienced biker. So start packing. You can thank us later!
They say the best way to experience the beauty of this red-rock landscape is to ride it. You can choose to ride the area's popular trails such as Porcupine Rim, Slickrock and Whole Enchilada (which starts above 10,000 feet) or opt for lesser known trails that surround the area. While it's possible to ride this area all year long, the best time to ride is in the spring and fall, which is also when cyclists from most ski towns in the West show up.
With more than 750 miles of singletrack, this area has a week's worth of quality rides just waiting for you. From buff trails that wind through wildflowers, to rugged backcountry rides that climb to 13,000 feet, these trails offer you some of the best scenery in the country. The beginner-friendly Lupine Trail follows the path from town, north to the ski area and back again. The Evolution Bike Park at Crested Butte Mountain Resort has more than 30 miles of downhill and cross country trails.
This area has several trail options that suit beginners and expert riders. The trails include long, flat cruises, intermediate terrain and alpine singletrack trails that have challenging climbs and daring descents. You can even get lift-assisted riding here, which allows you access to the higher alpine trails.
Although no one knows why, it's said that this area remains low on the radar for bike enthusiasts, which could be good for you if you don't like cycling with several other people. With more than 400 miles of singletrack, including lift-assisted downhill trails and 30 miles of paved bike paths – not to mention gorgeous scenery - this place won't stay hidden for long. If you stay close to town you can ride smooth, although fast, trails. If you venture out farther, the trails become rockier and more difficult. On Bald Mountain, riders can cycle down 3,400 vertical feet of mountain terrain.
They say this is the best mountain bike destination in New England – and one of the best in the entire country. In fact, Bike magazine readers rated the area's Kingdom Trails the best mountain bike trail network in the country. The area is home to one of the best cross-country descents, Skydive to Swan Dive. There is also the lift-accessed Q Burke Mountain Bike Park on the ski area that offers 2,000-vertical-foot downhill trails.
Located in southwest Colorado, Durango has the perfect climate for a long mountain biking season. It's also a popular spot for biking enthusiasts because of its variety of trails, easy access and famous cyclists that biked here – including riding legends such as Ned Overend, Juli Furtado, Myles Rockwell and Tom Danielson. Among the famous trails are the rock-free Meadow Loop in Horse Gulch and the challenging downhill Haflin Creek shuttle run. Hermosa Creek Trail, however, is one of Colorado's best rides and includes a 26-mile backcountry descent from Durango Mountain Resort back to Durango. While Durango is known mostly for fast cross-country trails there are more downhill and enduro-style trails being developed.
This area is becoming popular quickly because it caters to every rider out there – from beginners to hard-core mountain bikers. Novice bikers can start off on the green loops at Hillandale Park and bike up to the intermediate and advanced trails. You can also ride the lift at the Gravity Logic-designed Bryce Mountain Bike Park for downhill trails or test your skills on the Sountern Traverse or Spruce Knob. The new technically advance Table Rock trail navigates through rocks that will test your balance. What's also neat about this area is that many of the locals will come together to clean up and maintain the trails.
Located in Central Oregon's high desert, Bend offers about 300 miles of easily accessible trails that are linked together. After you finish with this area there are more than 700 more miles of trails within a 90-minute drive. From the west side of Bend, you will find flowing trails such as the Whoops Trail. In between town and Mount Bachelor Ski Resort, you will find the Wanoga trail system, which includes popular trails such as Tyler's Traverse. You can also get a shuttle ride or guided trip to Mount Bachelor, where you can ride up to 35 miles of singletrack through meadows and along lakes and waterfalls.
This area is located more than an hour's drive from the nearest interstate in the Sierra foothills. Only about 350 people live here but it is a popular spot for adrenaline-seeking mountain bikers. Here you will get to explore about 500 miles of trails, most of it challenging, steep and rugged. Some of the trails reach elevations of 8,000 feet.
Bike magazine actually called the trails around here America's Best Kept Secret and it's easy to see why. The nearby Pisgah National Forest offers an endless amount of technical riding trails, including between 200 and 1,000 miles of singletrack. DuPont State Recreational Forest has about 100 miles of machine-built flow trails and granite slick rock.