An extract from Phil Marty’s “5 ways to be stunned by Colorado” in the Chicago Tribune:
Wow moment: The Lower Loop Trail heading out of Crested Butte is ranked “easy,” as mountain bike trails out here go. But then you’re flying down or struggling up one of its hilly sections on a 12- to 18-inch wide single-track trail, dodging rocks in the path, and you notice that the outer edge of the trail drops off nearly straight down, promising a nasty 20- to 30-foot plunge if you slip up. It’s not the time to be rubbernecking. Save that for when you stop to catch your breath and marvel at the aspen- and pine-covered mountains rising around you.
Where: Crested Butte, sitting at nearly 9,000 feet in the very mountainous west-central part of the state northwest of Gunnison, is considered by many to be the country’s best mountain-biking destination. Trails of all skill levels form a web around the tiny, picturesque onetime mining town. And finding a trail often is as easy as just cruising the streets to the edge of town. But trail maps are readily available.
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