The Crested Butte area has some of the best mountain biking in the country. This isn't happenstance. Many believe that true mountain biking really began in Crested Butte. The more you ride here, the more you realize why mountain biking endures here.
Many of the rides are long and epic. Even the shorter rides access incredible mountain scenery. There is so much beauty in these hills, that one of the best ways to see as much as you can in one summer is on a bike. To the well conditioned, thirty to fifty miles in a day is possible. For the novice, half of that will be a challenge. Even so, you will cover more ground on a bike in one day than just about any form of outdoor transportation.
Most of the trails around here have been slowly transformed into bike trails by the sheer number of people who ride them and maintain them. Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association (CBMBA) is a very active local organization that is affiliated with the national organization IMBA (International Mountain Bike Association). CBMBA has been passionately involved in trail maintenance, trail protection, access, and land holder trust. Most of the small trail signs you'll see along the way are compliments of CBMBA.
The high alpine areas of Crested Butte are fragile. Please ride carefully and don't abuse the trails. Carry over wet areas. Stay on the main trail and don't braid boggy areas. Show the rest of the world that mountain bikers do care.
"Crested Butte and the Gunnison Valley offer an expansive mountain-biking experience like no other. The area's more than 750 miles of mountain-biking trails lead to wildflower-peppered valleys, unparalleled mountain vistas and multi-hued desert expanses. Read on to learn about some of our favorite Gunnison and Crested Butte mountain-biking trails. -- Travel Crested Butte
Fat biking is a fun winter activity that has recently been introduced in the Crested Butte area. This new activity is a great alternative to skiing in the winter. Fat bikes were introduced in 2009, and have seen a lot of growth in the past 5 years. These funny looking bikes are made to fit 3.5″ + tires, and extra wide rims. Because of the wide footprint, accompanied by low tire pressure, these bikes loft very well on snow. There are a few rental options in the valley and plenty of places to roam about.
"The roots of mountain biking in Crested Butte are almost as deep as skiing's, and are spread throughout our town's culture. Fat tire bikes used to be the only way to get around the pot-holed dirt streets of Crested Butte in the 70's. Naturally people just kept riding them further and further from town until they reached Aspen, and the rest is history. Nowadays we keep these traditions alive with events like the Pearl Pass Tour, and the oldest mountain biking club in the United States, the Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association.
Gunnison and Crested Butte are known as a mountain biking treasure chest with over 750 miles of trails to ride. Try asking the locals what their favorite trail is and you'll get answers as heated and opinionated as a bunch of southerners debating barbeque. In the end it comes down taste; alpine singletrack, desert rocks, or pine forest plunges." -- Gunnison - Crested Butte
As these fun bikes become more popular, the access where they are allowed will grow. Currently they are off limits on most nordic trails other than Town Ranch, Riverbend Trails, Recreation Path, and North Village Trails. All of the valley drainages are open to fat bikes as it is public land. If you intend on riding on the above mentioned nordic trails, you will need to buy a pass, $40 for the year or $5 for the day. Head over to the Crested Butte Nordic Center for more details. For updated conditions check out Gunnison Crested Butte Fat Bikers.