So I've been stuck on a tropical island for the past 14 months without my bike, missing way too many trips to moab, and daily rides in the front range of CO. I'm going to be back in the US (in Texas) in December, and I'm wondering if there's anyplace within a day or 2's drive that is rideable in december. I was thinking Moab, but I think it's probably too cold to be any fun that time of year, so I'm kind of thinking el paso, new mexico, or airzona? anyone have any good info on a winter hideaway?
It can get cold in West TX and anywhere in NM. I’ve seen an snow storm close I-10 from Pecos TX to Deming NM, so your best bet might be Tucson or Phoenix. Tucson is a great town. Much better than Phoenix, but Phoenix has the advantage of being an hour and a half or so from Sedona which is a top 5 MTB spot (but can be anywhere from 30-60 degrees in Dec). Check the maps. Both have great trails.
Tucson can be great in December, winter storms rarely last very long lots of trails can be ridden while it's raining if your die hard or as soon as the sun comes out if not. If the weather is really good you can make it to Sedona pretty quickly, while its not Moab there's plenty of great riding. Phx also has tons and the Black Canyon trail is just north on the way to Sedona.
John I live in El Paso and there are quite a few trails in the area. El Paso doesn't get too cold. Most of us ride year round. There's even a race on January 15th (The Puzzler) that gets a ton of participants. You should check it out. If you need a riding partner or local trail info let me know.
I also hear great things about Tucson. I'm planning to hit up Sedona, AZ around February.
Thanks for the tips! I'm definitely going to need to get to arizona soon, I think for this trip I'm going to check out big bend ranch state park. It looks like the avg temps are highs in the low 70's and lows in the low 40's. 3 days of bikepacking sounds just like what the doctor ordered.