Summit County Bike Trails: Spruce Creek Loop
Throughout the summer, Explore Summit Weekender will run mountain bike and recpath trail guides from our annual Explore Summit County Bike Guide. The rides will be a mix of dirt trails, singletrack and paved roads from across Summit County.
The Spruce Creek Loop is a short, challenging ride that offers several great options for exploring the Spruce Creek drainage south of Breckenridge.
Know Before You Go:
This ride can be lengthened by combining it with the Burro Trail ride, which starts at the base area of Breckenridge Ski Resort’s Peak 9. You can also explore several side roads and trails though the singletrack in the area is steep, technical and often muddy. Offshoot trails may require some portaging. Expect some vehicles on Spruce Creek Road.
From I-70, drive south beyond Breckenridge 2.1 miles. Turn right onto Spruce Creek Road (across from a small lake). Follow this road as it climbs, curves left, travels past some houses and reaches a trailhead after 1.4 miles.
Ride up Spruce Creek Road, which is often rocky. Pass Crystal Lakes Road and later, at about 0.5 miles, the Burro Trail. Continue climbing steadily until reaching a four-way junction at roughly 1.2 miles. Turn right. The main road dead-ends in about 1 mile, and the left fork follows the Wheeler Trail over a ridge and down to McCullough Gulch. Follow the side road through a gate and past the fork for the Wheeler Trail on the left. Cross a stream, pass another gate and then merge with Crystal Lakes Road at almost 2 miles. Turn right to continue the loop. The left fork is a very steep but worthwhile 1.5-mile climb into a striking high-alpine cirque containing lakes and crumbling mining remains. The descent on Crystal Lakes Road is a fun challenge containing steep, rocky terrain. Merge with Spruce Creek Road, turn left and descend to your vehicle.
For more riding options visit http://www.exploresummit.com or pick up a copy of the Daily’s Bike Guide.
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