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Aspen

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J F M A M J J A S O N D

341 mi 550 km of trail 16 Rides

Easy Trails 30 Trails Intermediate Trails 60 Trails Hard Trails 36 Trails

Aspen is an old silver mining town located on the Roaring Fork River, halfway between its source, 40 miles upvalley at Independence Pass (12,095 ft.), and its confluence with the Colorado River, downstream in Glenwood Springs.

Nearer to town the local trail network is continually improving. Increased connectivity keeps you off the roads as much as possible and improved signage, information kiosks, and trailhead parking make everything visitor friendly. A new network of trails in Skyline Park can be looped for miles and offers an alternate way to connect Snowmass and Aspen. Additionally, Snowmass ski area has been aggressively developing their on-mountain trail network for runners, hikers and bikers alike.

Provided by: Ted Mahon. Check outStuckintheRockies.com to follow Ted's adventures in the Elk Mountains and beyond.

Visiting Tips

The snowfall that qualifies Aspen and Snowmass as desirable ski destinations during the winter months effectively shut down much of the trail network for riding during that time of year. Through the dark days of winter there are some paved bike paths that are clear, but much of the singletrack and jeep roads are packed with snow. The trails are all still accessible and open, but only a handful of the summer trails see visitors in numbers enough to keep the snow packed adequately for riding. The trails closest to downtown Aspen or Snowmass are the best options this time of year. Trails further away would be better served by either snowshoes or skis. It's quite popular to uphill hike/run/snowshoe the four area ski mountains on the packed groomed surface, and download on chairlift or gondola. The rules vary on each mountain so be sure to check in advance about suggested routes and allowable times.

In April, some of the lower elevation trails or those on sunny, southern aspects begin to melt out. Winter snowpack levels and springtime temperatures factor into when the trails dry out for riding to a point, but in general terms, it isn't until early June that many of the popular trails near Aspen are clear of snow. The remote Wilderness trails at higher elevations take even longer.

Camping & Lodging

Hotels and lodging can be pricey in Aspen, but there are exceptions. The St. Moritz is a few blocks from downtown and offers private and shared rooms for very reasonable rates. Other hotels that might be within reach cost-wise for most visitors would be the Tyrollean Lodge, the Limelight Hotel, or the Molly Gibson Lodge. If you want more options, contact Aspen Central Reservations or visit online (www.stayaspensnowmass.com), where a searchable database of hotel and residential rental information can be found.

There are several USFS campsites near town as well, three along Highway 82 on the way up Independence Pass (Difficult, Weller, Lost Man), and three on the road up to the Maroon Bells, just past the entrance gate (Silver Bar, Silver Bell, and Silver Queen). Call the Aspen Ranger District Office for more information. The sites are usually quite busy and some advanced planning is often required to reserve a spot.

Food & Drink

Aspen has more restaurants than a town of it's size should be able to support. As one would expect, there are numerous high-priced options but for the rest of us who are simply looking for a good place to eat or drink after a long day on the trails, consider The J-Bar at the Hotel Jerome, The Red Onion, Hops Culture, 520 Grill, or NY Pizza. You might also just walk through the few blocks that make up the downtown core and see what else looks good. Higher end restaurants offer bar menus that are more reasonably priced. Aspen Brewery doesn't serve food but is centrally located downtown with a sunny patio and is a perfect post run spot for a beer.

If you're looking for breakfast/coffee, try Jour de Fete next to City Market, Cafe Ink, Peach's Cafe, Poppycock's, or the Hickory House out on Main Street.

Other Activities

Rest day? Bad weather? There's plenty do in and around Aspen-

Aspen Mountain Gondola-aspensnowmass.com/ - take a ride to the top of Aspen Mountain for lunch, or to meet others who may be running or hiking up.
ACES - Aspen Center for Environmental Studies -aspennature.org/
Wheeler Opera House -wheeleroperahouse.com/
Aspen Music Festival -aspenmusicfestival.com/

Rides in Aspen - 15

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Favorite Grinding up Rim Trail's second hill.
Intermediate

Rim Trail Loop

11.0 mi 17.7 km • Loop • 1,729 ft Ascent 526.92 m Ascent

(56) Snowmas…, CO
Favorite Topping out after the steep climb from Van Horn Park on the Hobbit Trail!
Difficult

Smuggler-Hunter-VanHorn-Hobbit-Secret-Sunnyside Loop Ride

18.6 mi 29.9 km • Loop • 3,015 ft Ascent 918.94 m Ascent

(32) Aspen, CO
Favorite amazing climb trail - makes climbing fun
Intermediate/Difficult

The Snowmass Loop

24.0 mi 38.6 km • Loop • 3,799 ft Ascent 1157.94 m Ascent

(16) Snowmas…, CO
Favorite Power of Four Race - Morning on the sublime Government Trail
Difficult

Aspen Snowmass Mega Loop

59.9 mi 96.4 km • Loop • 8,190 ft Ascent 2496.28 m Ascent

(5) Aspen, CO
Favorite Power of Four Race - Morning on the sublime Government Trail
Difficult

Snowmass Trails to Aspen Shuttle Ride

17.9 mi 28.9 km • Point to Point • 2,529 ft Ascent 770.7 m Ascent

(8) Snowmas…, CO
Favorite Feeling the Flow on Deadline
Intermediate

Sky Mountain Park Loop

18.4 mi 29.7 km • Loop • 1,948 ft Ascent 593.75 m Ascent

(15) Aspen, CO
Favorite amazing climb trail - makes climbing fun
Difficult

2019 Power of Four Mountain Bike Race

30.0 mi 48.3 km • Loop • 4,635 ft Ascent 1412.66 m Ascent

(2) Snowmas…, CO
Favorite Riding uphill on Lincoln Creek Rd.
Intermediate

Lincoln Creek Road to Ruby Ghost Town

22.1 mi 35.6 km • Out and Back • 1,934 ft Ascent 589.43 m Ascent

(9) Aspen, CO

Trails in Aspen - 110

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1.6 mi 2.6 km #1Deadline Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
1.6 mi 2.6 km Snowmass Village, CO 34 
4.2 mi 6.7 km #2Seven Star Trail
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
4.2 mi 6.7 km Snowmass Village, CO 31 
4.1 mi 6.6 km #3Tom Blake
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
4.1 mi 6.6 km Snowmass Village, CO 26 
2.9 mi 4.7 km #4Valhalla Trail
Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Difficult
2.9 mi 4.7 km Snowmass Village, CO 20 
2.1 mi 3.3 km #5Airline Trail
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
2.1 mi 3.3 km Snowmass Village, CO 24 
6.6 mi 10.6 km #6Government Trail
Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Difficult
6.6 mi 10.6 km Snowmass Village, CO 21 
4.5 mi 7.3 km #7French Press
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
4.5 mi 7.3 km Snowmass Village, CO 18 
7.8 mi 12.6 km #8Rim Trail
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
7.8 mi 12.6 km Snowmass Village, CO 26 
5.7 mi 9.2 km #9Sunnyside Trail
Difficult
Aspen, CO
Difficult
5.7 mi 9.2 km Aspen, CO 12 
4.2 mi 6.8 km #10Verde
Easy/Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Easy/Intermediate
4.2 mi 6.8 km Snowmass Village, CO 11 
1.2 mi 2.0 km #11Animal Crackers
Very Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Very Difficult
1.2 mi 2.0 km Snowmass Village, CO 13 
2.6 mi 4.2 km #12Shadyside Trail
Difficult
Aspen, CO
Difficult
2.6 mi 4.2 km Aspen, CO
12.3 mi 19.8 km #13Richmond Ridge Road
Difficult
Aspen, CO
Difficult
12.3 mi 19.8 km Aspen, CO
3.2 mi 5.2 km #14Cozyline Trail
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
3.2 mi 5.2 km Snowmass Village, CO 15 
2.5 mi 4.0 km #15Viking
Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate
2.5 mi 4.0 km Snowmass Village, CO 12 
1.6 mi 2.6 km #16Hobbit Trail
Intermediate
Aspen, CO
Intermediate
1.6 mi 2.6 km Aspen, CO
3.4 mi 5.5 km #17Vapor Trail
Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Difficult
3.4 mi 5.5 km Snowmass Village, CO 12 
3.9 mi 6.3 km #18Scotty's Trail
Very Difficult
Aspen, CO
Very Difficult
3.9 mi 6.3 km Aspen, CO
2.0 mi 3.3 km #19Discovery Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Snowmass Village, CO
Easy/Intermediate
2.0 mi 3.3 km Snowmass Village, CO
2.7 mi 4.4 km #20Cross Mountain Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Snowmass Village, CO
Intermediate/Difficult
2.7 mi 4.4 km Snowmass Village, CO 10 

Photos of Aspen - 172

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Power of Four Race - Morning on the sublime Government Trail
Jun 26, 2015 near Aspen, CO
amazing climb trail - makes climbing fun
Aug 21, 2018 near Snowmas…, CO
rocks and roots will challenge you on a climb of cross mountain trail
Aug 21, 2018 near Snowmas…, CO
swooping endless berms
Aug 21, 2018 near Snowmas…, CO
Feeling the Flow on Deadline
Aug 20, 2018 near Snowmas…, CO
Local 7 year old learning downhill.
Aug 6, 2015 near Snowmas…, CO
Hummingbird Trail, looking downvalley in the Hunter Creek valley.
Oct 7, 2015 near Aspen, CO
Descending a berm at Aspen Snowmass.
Oct 20, 2018 near Snowmas…, CO