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Elk Meadow & Bergen Peak Loop

Difficult

Trail

10.7 mile 17.2 kilometer loop
95% Singletrack
Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 2,088' 637 m
Descent: -2,087' -636 m
High: 9,660' 2,944 m
Low: 7,595' 2,315 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 27% (15°)

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Trail shared by Marcel S

A ride leading to the top of Bergen Peak with a loop that uses the best trails for the way down.

Marcel S

Electric Mountain Bikes Allowed

Features -none-

Overview

This ride is around 11 miles total with just over 2000ft of uphill and fun downhill.

This is one of the best routes to get to the top of Bergen Peak and back, using the most fun & technical sections of trail to get to the top and the longest way down. This route avoids the easier and wide Founders and Painters Pause trails, and instead uses better singletrack for the last section.

It's best to ride this area during the week as Elk Meadow gets very busy during the weekend when the weather is nice, or start early to avoid crowds, especially on the downhills.

This ride is for people that like technical trail with rocks, roots, waterbars, etc.
It gets pretty icy after snow gets packed down in the winter, best in the Spring and Fall. A good full suspension mountain bike with a dropper seat-post is nice to have for this more technical ride.

Need to Know

The last section to the top of Bergen Peak is out and back.

There are quite a few blind turns on the way down, be aware of other users that you might encounter.

Description

There are 2 official parking lots at Elk Meadow, park in the lower lot to finish with a downhill.

Ride up the Sleepy "S" Trail all the way up. Turn right at the T junction, onto the Meadow View Trail. (left goes to the upper parking lot). Then, turn sharp left onto the Bergen Peak Trail, this is where the ride becomes much harder. It's like a puzzle of technical features, one after the other while climbing; rocks, roots, waterbar turns, etc. There will be failed attempts to clear some of these, some dismounts and walking, etc.

This section continues all the way to a T junction, where a left turn is the out & back to the top of Bergen Peak. Take a left and go to the top - there is more technical stuff up there but it's worth it. There are a few aspen groves, which look great during the fall season, and good views at the top. Take a break and enjoy the moment.

Commence with the best part of this ride: an almost continuous downhill all the way back to the parking lot. There are only a few short uphill sections and lots of technical downhill. This is where a dropper seat-post comes in really handy. Again, this technical trail, not for everyone.

Start back down the 'out & back' portion of the Bergen Peak trail, but take a left (almost straight) onto Too Long trail. After a short rise, there will be a long downhill section with lots of fun features that will last for miles. This will finally meet up again with the Meadow Trail, turn right (a left turn leads to the easy/wide way back to the parking lot - not as good). There will be some short uphill sections on the Meadow Trail.

At the next intersection, turn left onto the Elk Ridge Trail. This short section is fun on the way down with rocks & waterbars to hop off. This leads back to the Sleep "S" trail. Turn left to coast back to the parking lot.

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Check-Ins

May 24, 2020
Dakotah Thompson
Snowed/rained most of the ride. Hero dirt when I was there early morning, but snow/rain continued as I was leaving at 10. 10.8mi
May 20, 2020
J Hud
Sep 15, 2019
Tommy Sclafani
the uphill on the Black section is brutal. the features are big and in the way so you have to give it your all to get over them. I didn't get over…
Sep 12, 2019
Justin Brown
Aug 25, 2019
Stan Z
10mi — 2h 25m
Jul 14, 2019
Tony Nesavich
Jul 11, 2019
Tyler Ditto
Jun 27, 2019
Thomas Pyke

Trail Ratings

  4.1 from 66 votes

#169

Overall
  4.1 from 66 votes
5 Star
36%
4 Star
47%
3 Star
6%
2 Star
8%
1 Star
3%
Ride Rankings

#61

in Colorado

#169

Overall
444 Views Last Month
13,720 Since Oct 6, 2014
Difficult

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3%
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93%
3%

Photos

Great views a top of Bergen Peak. This overlook is just below the top.
Aug 10, 2016 near Kittredge, CO
Descending from the summit
Dec 1, 2017 near Kittredge, CO
Fall = good color on the Too Long Trail
Oct 6, 2014 near Kittredge, CO
Full descent down Elk Ridge with no uphill hikers or riders to get in the way!
Jul 26, 2018 near Kittredge, CO
Main descent from top of Bergen Peak using Too Long.
Aug 4, 2018 near Kittredge, CO
At the top of Bergen Peak.
Oct 6, 2014 near Kittredge, CO

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