MTB Project Logo

Sweet Dreams

 3.8 (23)

After a romp on this rough and rowdy ride, you'll find yourself having Sweet Dreams.

Your Rating:      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add to Favorites · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key






7,534' 2,296 m


7,058' 2,151 m


205' 62 m


618' 188 m



Avg Grade (4°)


Max Grade (10°)

Dogs Off-leash

E-Bikes Unknown

Features -none-


You've made your way past the slower traffic on Frontside and Backbone. Your legs are still feeling pretty good and you want more miles before heading back to town. Enter Sweet Dreams. Expect small rocks, big rocks, rocks you may want to pick your bike up and over. It's got a few good climbs and rough descent down Sweetwater Gulch.

To get here, make your way to the end of the Backbone trail as it hits Cottonwood. Head down the Cottonwood drainage for a hundred feet or so and the trail crosses and climbs out of the Cottonwood drainage. The trail cruises along the side of a hill and down into a saddle where it swoops around and continues to the east. You'll see a social trail heading almost straight uphill on your right as you swoop around.

Here is where the trail starts to distinguish itself from the other close in trails of the Arkansas Hills system. You may still catch glimpses of town, you climb up and away from it through more trees. It begins to feel like a mountain ride and the rough rocks all over the trail and beside the trail grab for your pedals and any other dangly bits under your bike. The climbing gets steeper with few breaks between climbs so take it easy and press on. Several recent reroutes have lessened the sting of a few of the climbs.

You do get a small downhill between big climbs and great berms catch you as you carry speed, ducking around trees and testing your traction.

At the end of the last big climb, you drop into a wide drainage scattered with good sized rocks to pick your way around and over - rough going, watch your chainrings. After bouncing your way over these, you drop into the Sweetwater drainage. Drop your seat and hang on. The rough rocks continue as you bound your way around boulders, trees, and sand. Some work has been done to help water drain off the trail and a few berms are scattered here and there to help out the overzealous rider. There are more corners that won't catch you so watch yourself.

At its narrowest, you'll ping-pong through slabs of rock. A rollable drop is in here and maybe a little water too.

As the drainage opens up again, the trail will run along it and hop across and out to the left with a short, punchy climb. It then drops into the drainage again and over a large wooden structure leftover from days past. A couple more turns and you hit a doubletrack road. You can take a right on this to head back to town or the little trail directly across the doubletrack.


Shared By:

Josh Jones with improvements by Marcel S

Trail Ratings

  3.8 from 23 votes


  3.8 from 23 votes
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Trail Rankings


in Colorado


61 Views Last Month
1,799 Since Jun 17, 2015



Near the end of Sweet Dreams.
Dec 22, 2015 near Salida, CO
Enjoying some Chicken Dinner!
Dec 27, 2016 near Salida, CO
Sweet Dreams & Chicken Dinner, Salida, CO
Oct 21, 2018 near Salida, CO
It's what's for dinner.
Jan 17, 2018 near Salida, CO



Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 37 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In


Jun 30, 2019
Luke Perkerwicz
Jun 2, 2019
Matt Castelli
Fun! Ended w chicken dinner
May 30, 2019
Jordan B
5mi — 6h 30m
Apr 28, 2019
Chris JD
Aug 28, 2018
Lucas C
Aug 11, 2018
Tom McKim
Jun 28, 2018
Chris Dvorak
Pretty technical for me. Did quite a bit of walking. Big rocks.
Apr 14, 2018
reuben bel