UPDATED: 2/11/15

Mountain Biking in Breckenridge, CO has the whole package, so to speak. It offers beautiful views of the Tenmile Range, historical Western landmarks, and miles of perfect single track that cross golden meadows and clear-water streams. I love mountain biking, and I love photography, so what better thing to do than combine the two to inspire others.

One trail I especially enjoy is referred to by locals as the Blue River Trail. The Blue River trail is an out-and-back ride, located just south of Main Street, behind the Stephen C. West Ice Arena. The trail starts and ends at the Illinois Creek Trailhead sign, located at the far end of the ice arena’s parking lot. The trail travels south of Breckenridge, parallel to Hwy 9,  toward an area called Blue River. The Blue River trail can be used by any rider, but be aware of those around you, for there may be novice riders practicing their uphill skills, intermediate riders practicing their downhill skills, or experts riders doing both. The Blue River trail offers many challenges, all capable of producing confidence in novice riders, or humbling even the most expert of riders. Take a peek at the trail below and click here for trail maps and more.

And, if you need help getting your bike ready for summer click here.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

Trailhead sign located at the far end of the Stephen C. West Ice Rink parking lot

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

The beginning of the ride

Illinois Creek Trl, Breckenridge, CO

The Blue River trail provides a perfect atmosphere for solitude. These were the only people I ran into the whole ride when I rode it last summer. The fellow on the right has ridden this trail for 20 years. That’s his son on the left.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

The signage on this trail is great because it’s well maintained and colorful. This is one of the newer signs.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

So simple, even a caveman can figure it out

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

The terrain and views on this ride are ever-changing.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

This is one of the best sections of the trail. The views and fresh air can cure almost anything.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

Passing this ranch wasn’t possible without pausing to enjoy its beauty.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

Then came the bridge. This bridge is a great landmark to use when determining your location, and general disposition. The picturesque views are worth stopping for, so bring the camera and have a flexible schedule.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, Co

After leaving the meadow area, I enjoyed a nice long descent to this creek.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, Co

What a great place to park the bike and have a snack.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, Co

The first time I rode this trail, I noticed this creek. It was one of the most memorable moments of the ride. Make sure to spend a little time enjoying it.

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

It’s hard to concentrate on riding with views this good. Toward the end of the trail, the density of the trees open up, and the Rocky Mountains show themselves as if to say, “Good Job! You are almost there. The ultimate reward is just a little farther.”

Illinois Creek Trail, Breckenridge, CO

As you near the end of the trail, snow-capped mountains surround you. Some of these mountains can reach as high as 14,000 feet. Once you reach this point, take a break, enjoy the view, have a snack, and then turn the bike around, because getting home is all downhill from here. This is the ultimate reward. Enjoy!

 

 

 

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