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Breckenridge to Baker's Tank and Back

 18 votes

13.7 Miles 22.0 Kilometers


80%

Singletrack

1,770' 540 m

Ascent

-1,762' -537 m

Descent

11,109' 3,386 m

High

9,674' 2,949 m

Low

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

19%

Max Grade (11°)

All Clear

64 days agoUpdate

A loop ride from town to the historic Baker's Tank.

Don Leinweber

Overview

Link from town up the lower slopes of Baldy Mountain to Baker's Tank, an historic railroad water tank along Boreas Pass Road. The road sections are closed to motorized use with the exception of Baldy Road.

Wayfinding from the top of Nightmare on Baldy to Mountain Pride Trail can be confusing. In general, dramatic (steep) climbs or descents are an indication that a wrong turn has been made.

The description includes an out and back at the upper end of the ride to Baker's Tank. The ride length can be shortened by cutting this section out. However, the 1.8 mile out and back is extremely enjoyable and includes a fun, flowy section of trail with abundant aspen and some of the best dirt in the area.

Valdero Trail can be used at the midpoint of the Baker's Tank Trail descent to connect to Boreas Pass Road. Boreas Pass Road west of this intersection passes through a large aspen grove, and offers stunning views. Aspen Alley can then still be descended.
Dogs: Leashed

Need to Know

The description and GPS track begins and ends at the Stephen C. West Ice Arena on Boreas Pass, south of Town.

This loop can be done counterclockwise as well. The lower half of Baker's Tank Trail is no picnic, but Nightmare on Baldy and Barney Ford trails are both great downhill. Barney Flow or B-Line trails offer great alternatives to Moonstone Trail if ridden CCW.

As with many rides in Breckenridge, there are numerous opportunities to lengthen this ride by incorporating adjacent trails.

This ride can be combined with the Classic Breckenridge Route from Barney Ford Trail for a longer tour of Breckenridge.

The kid-friendly trail network around the ice arena offers an opportunity for ride swapping with the family.

Description

Park at the Stephen C. West Ice Arena. Cross Boreas Pass Road to Sunbeam Drive. Sunbeam Trail begins on the left side of the road and leads to Carter Park.

Climb the Carter Park switchbacks to a flume. Go left then take an immediate right onto Moonstone Trail. Climb to Moonstone Rd.

Cross Moonstone Rd to Barney Ford and climb to Sallie Barber Road, passing V3 enroute. Go left at the top of the trail and ride up to Sallie Barber Road and ride through a gate. Sallie Barber Road contours for a mile before climbing steeply for 1/3 mile to Sallie Barber Mine.

Take an uphill right turn, climbing south up Nightmare on Baldy to True Romance. Go right, through a wooden barrier then descend to Baldy Road (a primitive gravel road).

Turn right on Baldy Road then immediately left onto the Crossing Route doubletrack with a brown, USFS carsonite marker indicating road 528.1B. Crossing Route contours, passing through a four-way intersection with timber barriers across the side trails. Continue straight, on the contour through this junction. After ~1,000 feet, Crossing Route climbs a steep, rocky, rutted section. After a short distance, look for the unmarked Pinball Alley singletrack on the right.

Climb Pinball Alley to a high point and fork in the trail. Take a right and descend through an s-curve. Turn left and south out of the s-curve onto Mountain Pride trail at a mine tailings area.

Ride this contouring trail for a mile, and merger point with Baker's Tank Trail (USFS Trail #40) at a Y-intersection which includes a sharp right turn downhill. The ride can be shortened by taking a right onto Baker's Tank Trail.

Continue straight at this junction for an out and back section along a fun, flowy, aspen descent to Boreas Pass Road at Baker's Tank. Turn around and begin back up Baker's Tank Trail.

Continue back to the intersection with Mountain Pride Trail, turn left and descend. At the midpoint of the descent, Baker's Tank Trail crosses Valdero Trail - USFS #9032. Continue due west on Baker's Tank Trail.

Top out and descend to the Boreas Pass winter trailhead. Turn left on Boreas Pass Road at the trailhead passing through an open gate. Take Aspen Alley on the right side of the road just after the gate.

Aspen Alley (USFS trail #9133) descends 1 mile through a number of tacky, flowy switchbacks to a gravel driveway adjacent to Boreas Pass Road (paved).

Cross the drive, turn left onto the Blue River Trail. After 1/4 mile turn right at a post onto the Illinois Creek High Trail. Follow Illinois Creek passing the Southside Trail on the left. Descend right through a switchback with a straight option and ride east passing two more left turns before a final curve. Ride straight out across a short bridge back to the parking lot.

History & Background

Here is a great link to the Summit Historical Society and information on Baker's Tank: summithistorical.org/BakerT…
and another for Sallie Barber: summithistorical.org/Sallie…

Contacts

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   Clear Rating

4.4 from 18 votes


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Check-Ins

Sep 19, 2017
Ben Wessendorf
Sep 3, 2017
Kevin Brown
Heavy Breathing for the first several miles... and took a few wrong turns, but overall a great ride. Aspen Alley is the best part! 14mi
Sep 3, 2017
Matt Newman
Aug 19, 2017
Cara Hubbell
Aug 13, 2017
Josh Howard
Aspen Alley was sick
Aug 12, 2017
brian firestone
Aug 10, 2017
Micah Morlock
Jul 17, 2017
Paul Billings
From bottom of Colorado Superchair lift. Aspen Alley descent the hands-down favorite part. Hero dirt on the out & back to the tank, nice flow. 17.2mi — 3h 25m

Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 18 votes

#3

in Breckenridge

#320

Overall
  4.4 from 18 votes
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Rankings

#3

in Breckenridge

#83

in Colorado

#320

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13,207 Since Jun 19, 2014
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Conditions


All Clear 64 days ago

Getting forecast...

Looks like a great loop, which I will try next summer. However, your description mentions Nightmare on Baldy a second time and the second occurrence should be Bakers Tank Trail. Nov 28, 2014
Good ride and the trail was dry and in good shape. Make sure to check instructions for directions occasionally as there are lots of side trails and roads. Even if you get off the trail finding your way back to town should not be too difficult. Jul 8, 2017

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