“A fun and rocky singletrack climb and descent of Animas Mountain.
— Jason Lampenrider
This ~6-mile 100% singletrack loop Ride begins and ends at the marked parking lot right in Durango. The top is nearly exactly 3 miles up, making for a great ride in either direction. Riding counter-clockwise is a more technical 3-mile climb followed by a fun and fast 3-mile descent. Riding clockwise is a less rocky 3-mile climb with a more technical 3-mile descent.
Seasonally closed fall to spring. Check locally for specific dates. Watch out for hikers.
Need to Know
This loop is mostly ridden counter-clockwise. If you ride clockwise, be very aware of quickly descending riders. There is tree cover here and there, but you'll be mostly sun exposed and Durango can be hot in the summer.
The more popular counter-clockwise direction is mapped here. Begin from the marked parking lot, where you'll immediately start climbing fairly technical zigzags, loose rocks, occasional short/steep sections and narrow lines, with the reward of plenty of wonderful views of Durango as you gain elevation. Be ready to walk a few segments.
When the trail begins to level out, the North Animas Valley appears, and as you crest and begin to descend, you'll see the La Platas come into view. At this point, quickly turn your focus back onto the trail for a wild and fun descent through a nicely carved and curvy (though still quite rocky) singletrack trail back down the mountain to the parking lot where you began.
You'll see a few trail options (more on the way up) that serve to either cut the loop shorter, or provide variety.
This is not a long Ride, but it's a favorite in the area due to its workout climb, fast and fun descent, and close proximity to downtown Durango.