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Front Range Single Tracks
by Tom Barnhart (Fat Tire Press)
Although short in distance, this trail has a fair amount of climbing on narrow single track. Try two or more laps if you want to get more miles in, or ride to it from Boulder to get a really good workout. It reminds me of a shortened version of Apex Park. The trail has recently been designated as a one-way ride for mountain bikers. Check at the trailhead to see which direction we bikers are restricted. Terrain: Smooth, narrow single track.Drop north from the parking area, pass through a fence and pickup the Canyon Loop Trail. Begin a short climb, passing through another fence (0.2) before starting the descent portion of the ride. This trail has some ruts and loose soil, so check your speed. After crossing the second of two small brooks (1.5), begin the final climb back to the start. As the trail turns back west from an overlook (2.2), climb to a second parking lot where a road takes you back to the start or continue on the wide path to complete the loop (2.9).
Afoot & Afield: Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins, and Rocky Mountain National Park
by Alan Apt and Kay Turnbaugh (Wilderness Press)
Betasso was Boulder County’s first Open Space purchase in 1976. Before it became open space, it was a homestead and then a ranch owned by the Betasso family, who were originally hard-rock miners. The preserve features scenic vistas, wildflowers, stands of ponderosa pine, and diverse terrain close to Boulder, and it’s a great place to watch sunset colors over Boulder. Bikers can ride to Betasso from the west end of the Boulder bike path and up the steep and difficult Betasso Link Trail. There is also a steep link to the Benjamin Loop from Fourmile Canyon.
60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Denver and Boulder
by Kim Lipker (Menasha Ridge Press)
Canyon Loop Trail is located in Boulder County’s historic Betasso Preserve, which was an 1870s mining and sawmill town. This wellmaintained hike is easy to find and close to Boulder. Half the trail traverses meadows with Douglas fir trees on north-facing slopes. The rest of the trail is shaded by ponderosa pines and lined with moss-covered boulders.
Mountain Biking Colorado's Front Range
by Stephen Hlawaty (Falcon Guides)
Betasso Preserve delivers a short, but sweet ride and offers much to riders of any ability. The wide and smooth singletrack of the Canyon Loop Trail is ideal for beginners wanting to test their singletrack mettle. The loop also invites riders with more experience to run laps past open meadows awash with wildflowers and through cooler ponderosa pine forests. Being so close to Boulder, Betasso Preserve offers an immediate getaway from the hectic pace of Boulder during rush hour. The preserve has been the subject of much public scrutiny and environmental impact studies in the last few years, reminding us to respect our parks, open spaces, and forests. Terrain: Singletrack and doubletrack that roll over open meadows and hard-packed forest terrain.
Hiking Colorado's Front Range
by Bob D'Antonio (Falcon Guides)
The city of Boulder and the county of Boulder have done an amazing job of preserving lands in and around the city, and Betasso Preserve is one of the many open space lands that citizens of Boulder County and the Front Range can use. This hike is a nice outing through forests of ponderosa pines on a smooth well-maintained trail.
Mountain Biking Denver & Boulder
Excellent singletrack around Betasso Preserve. This ride is a good, quick workout close to Boulder. Hammerheads can do laps around Betasso to increase mileage. Tread: 2.4 miles on paved road, 2.4 miles on doubletrack, and 2.6 miles on singletrack.
fast, smooth singletrack got me really excited. I could have done two laps easily had I conserved a little bit more energy for the climb on the second half of the loop.
This trail, although very short, is absolutely fantastic. Although it is rated an easy ride, this trail can do you some serious damage if you make a wrong move, last year my girlfriend broke 4 ribs on this trail, and she was going slow.
The first section of this trail can be extremely fast, but leaves NO room for error, plus you always have to be prepared not to collide with hikers.
Highly recommended for a few fun loops, I manage a loop in about 25 minutes, and usually do 3 loops.
This trail is shut to bikers on Wednesday and Saturday (foot traffic only)
If you are in Boulder, then this is a hell of a sweet loop.
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This loop is really fun! It's not too much of a challenge but just enough of a physical workout and fast ride to send you around the loop more than once!
The trail was in good shape for mountain biking. I especially liked the Link Trail (links Canyon Rd to the main trail). It's 2-3x harder than the main trail itself. Watch out for pinch flats!
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