Biking is one of the most popular summer activities at Vail, and for a good reason. From the unmatched on-mountain views to the adrenaline rush you get riding down the mountain, mountain biking is one of the best ways to enjoy all that summer in Vail has to offer. If a paved path is more your speed, there are plenty of road trails that provide opportunities to get your blood pumping or enjoy a cruise while taking in the views. And don’t worry about bringing your own bike – you can rent your gear at one of Vail’s many rental locations!
Tip: If you have never been mountain biking on mountain single track trails, we strongly suggest that you start off EASY. Either stick to the paved bike paths in town, or the gravel roads on Vail Mountain. Once you are comfortable with gravel, then venture to our easier mountain bike trails and progress from there.
Our favorite bike rides in Vail
1. Vail Pass Bike Path – There are a few ways to tackle Vail Pass, ranging from easy to more challenging. The bike path connects Frisco to Vail, and if you ride the entire route, it covers 14.2 miles (one way) and 1,500 feet of elevation gain. The most typical route from Vail is to head up to the summit. If you don’t feel like riding on into Copper, turn around and it’s all downhill from there. Not ready to conquer the pass on your own? Let Vail Sports escort you to the top of the pass for an exhilarating ride down. This guided tour is a one-stop shop and includes bike rental, transportation, helmet and area map.
2. Village Trail on Vail Mountain – This is the longest and most mellow route on the mountain – a winding gravel road that traverses the mountain in a descent, that is great for beginners. It’s about seven miles long, and you’ll take in some beautiful views of the town and Gore Range along your way.
3. Grand Traverse – The 4.9 mile Grand Traverse trail, one of Vail’s signature intermediate trails, weaves bikers through Game Creek and Sun Down Bowls with sections of forest and wide-open single track. The trail starts easy and then hits you with some challenging climbs as you gain 2500+ ft. of elevation along the way, but it’s well worth it for the views of the Sawatch Range and Mount of the Holy Cross! Bring your camera or phone to snap some photos on your water break.
4. Mid-Vail Escape – Mid-Vail Escape is a short but challenging single and double track that takes you from the top of Kloser’s Klimb to Mid-Vail – all with spectacular views of the Gore Range. It’s 2.2 miles of switchbacks and a 1,000+ foot descent.
5. Vail Recreation Path – Vail’s recreation path system includes more than 15 miles of paved path for you to cruise and peruse all that Vail has to offer. Stay on the paved path or veer off onto one of its connecting trails for even more mountain biking or hiking.
6. Buffehr Creek Trail – Across I-70 from Vail Mountain, Buffehr Creek is a difficult, beautiful ride that’s great for more experienced cyclists. The 5.5 mile trail (one way) starts at the Lost Lake Trailhead as a double track and switches between single and double tracks once you get onto Buffehr Creek Trail. It descends through trees and meadows, crosses over Buffehr Creek and even traverses beaver ponds as you lose nearly 1,500 feet of elevation.
7. Gore Creek Recreation Trail – For the more casual, recreational riders, the Gore Creek paved recreational trail offers miles and miles of fun flat to rolling hills from East Vail to West Vail and beyond if you choose! The scenery along the river is stunning – make sure to look around at the surrounding peaks!
8. Gondola Rides and Bike Hauls – Hop on the Eagle Bahn Gondola or Gondola One to head up Vail Mountain and ride your bike down with a bike haul ticket. Our staff will load your bike for you so you can sit back and relax before taking on the mountain. Don’t forget about the haul and lunch voucher combo – it includes a $15 food voucher for lunch up top!
9. Radio Flyer – As you drop into Radio Flyer, you’ll find a buttery smooth trail, winding from Eagle’s Nest down through Vail’s lodgepole pine forests. A large majority of the rocks and roots have been removed, leaving you with an endless series of rollers and banked corners to play on this intermediate ride.
Outlier Offroad Festival – September 24 – 26, 2020, The Vail Outlier Offroad Festival brings cycling, outdoor and camping brands to Vail for a fun-filled fall weekend of expo, demo, contests and clinics.