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Where to Try Fat Biking in Colorado

By Lisa Blake

Leave it to ultra-fit Coloradans to find a way to bike year-round. Fat biking has taken over as the new must-try Colorado winter activity. The amusingly wide tires, monster tread and enlarged frame may look intimidating, but fat bikes float over snow, making the sport fairly easy to pick up.

Fat bike enthusiasts are carving out stunning trails and dedicating groomed Nordic center and ski resort pathways to these two-wheeled beasts, while organizers are creating friendly competitions centered around the quad-burning sport.

Here’s where to go to pedal over the hills and through the snowy woods.

Fat bikes have been wheeling around for awhile in Crested Butte and area trail access is expanding as more and more shops offer rentals. The Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association secured permits for fat bike trail grooming along classic mountain biking trails like Strand, Canal, Strand Bonus and Farris. Crested Butte is also home to the Fat Bike World Championships each January. Learn more about Crested Butte trails and fat bike rentals.

Sticking to hard-packed or groomed trails helps ease the powder pedaling challenge and Winter Park offers up hundreds of miles of trail options. Most paths are easily accessed right from downtown, making it clear why Winter Park has been dubbed Mountain Bike Capital USA™. Find fat bike rentals at Beavers Sports Shop and Epic Mountain Sports.

Nearby Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Tabernash rents fat bikes to riders accessing their 20km of pristine trails and Latigo Ranch guests near Kremmling enjoy 50km of snow-cat-groomed Nordic trails.

In Boulder, locals ride fat bikes year-round and area winter biking trails span some seriously spectacular scenery, including Walker Ranch, Magnolia Road, Brainard Lake and Peaceful Valley.

Video by CBMBA


Tackle more than 50 miles of free groomed trails around Leadville and the bike-friendly network at the Tennessee Pass Nordic Center. Winter bike until your legs turn to jelly while taking in panoramic views of the Sawatch Range on the 11.6-mile Mineral Belt Trail.

Vista Verde Ranch near Steamboat Springs has a fleet of fat bikes ready to hit the packed-down winter trails. Learn about Steamboat’s trail systems and fat biking best practices from the Routt County Riders.

First-timer? That’s great. There are plenty of Colorado outfitters on tap to show you around this fast-growing winter sport. In Telluride, a professional guide from BootDoctors will take you on a half-day guided fat-bike tour inside the famous box canyon. Head to Fort Collins where Front Range Ride Guides provide custom gear, a local guide, trail-side lunch, photos of your ride and a post-ride happy hour featuring locally crafted beer.

Find more Colorado winter activities.