“Winter-only loop (and sub-loops) combines groomed singletrack, nordic trails, and some plowed paths near downtown Aspen.
— Mike Pritchard
Looking for a short winter fat bike ride close to Aspen? Consider this one of the go-to winter rides when conditions are good. The overall loop is best in the clockwise direction so that you mostly climb paved/plowed, and descend on snow.
This loop combines several different types of routes. The best ones are snowmobile-groomed singletrack (on the Aspen Golf Course & Maroon Creek Trail
), some are groomed nordic trails, and a minority are paved and plowed bike paths to link it all together.
As always with winter fat bike riding at high elevation, pick your time of day wisely. You'll need cold temps and packed snow conditions to enjoy your ride while not damaging the trail for other riders and trail users. While some portions of the loop coincide with summer routes, others are very much winter-only. Look for signs and only ride where you're sure bikes are allowed.
This trail is for winter use only when snow covered.
Need to Know
All of the Marolt Open Space trails are open to fat bikes. Most of the Aspen Snowmass winter Nordic Trail System is closed to fat bikes, including Bernese Boulevard and Labrador Lane. Key exceptions include the Rio Grande Trail
and the Burlingame to Rio Grande Trail
Use good sense when riding these trails. If you're leaving a rut deeper than 1", it's time to turn around and wait for more compact snow conditions. Always ride with lower pressures appropriate to the snow conditions to reduce rut depth and maintain traction. This will allow you to ride more and walk less, avoiding postholing on the trail.
This loop starts and ends at the Aspen Golf Course, saving the fun descent for the end of the ride. The low point is just on the south side of 82, so keep that in mind for where you decide to hop on this loop as you'll have to ascend heading north from 82 in a clockwise direction.
When starting at the Golf Course parking lot, be sure to avoid riding on nordic trails; find the loop by riding northwest around the tennis courts to hook into the main loop.
Check out more info on the Aspen Fat Bike Loop here
New for 2017: Fat bike singletrack compaction-drag used at Maroon Creek Trail
and the new Figure 8 shape (sub-loops) on the Aspen Golf Course.