Summit County Bike Guide: Breckenridge to Frisco on the Blue River Recreational Path (video)
Distance: 9 miles
Rating: Easy to moderate
Time: 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on pace
Elevation: 9,600-9,075 feet (525 vertical feet)
Type: Paved recpath
Season: Late-April/May to October
SUMMIT COUNTY — Made for riders of all ages and abilities, the Blue River Recreational Path parallels the Blue River, connecting Breckenridge and Frisco when it meets with the Frisco-Farmers Korner rec path. These two paved routes are popular for cyclists all summer long. They afford stunning views of the entire Tenmile Range and are favorites of bike-bound commuters, with just enough of an uphill grade over roughly 9 miles from Frisco to Breckenridge for a mellow after-work cycle.
For summer 2017, the underpass at Highway 9 skirts in and out of a construction zone. Slow down and use caution through the corners and when passing walkers, joggers and other bikers through the 1.5-mile stretch of construction activity.
This trail is one of the most heavily used sections of the Summit County Recreational Pathway System, especially during the summer weekends and holidays. Anticipate a large number of other bikers and hikers on this popular trail. Also expect to encounter a number of people stopped along the way. The trail crosses several roads and driveways that have vehicular and large-truck traffic. Use caution when crossing these areas.
To ride from Breck to Frisco, start at the Watson Street parking lot in Breckenridge and follow the rec path along the Blue River adjacent to commercial shops, the Summit County Justice Center and Kingdom Park. At French Street and North Park the trail passes through an underpass next to the river (watch out for water and gravel in these areas). Kingdom Park and a scenic reclaimed section of the Blue River are along the route. At the County Road 3 crossing the trail swings to the west and follows the abandoned Denver, South Park and Pacific narrow gauge railroad grade.
Near the Snowbridge Rest Stop, the trail swings back closer to Highway 9 and crosses several roads that have heavy truck traffic on and off the highway. Use caution when crossing these gravel roads. The trail then crosses a pedestrian bridge over the river. Please do not stop on the bridge, as it creates congestion on the path.
At the base of Gold Hill the trail is constructed on the top of an elevated, 1,800-foot retaining wall above the highway. A fenced horse meadow borders the west side of the trail north of Gold Hill. Watch the horses, but please do not venture out into the meadow.
As the trail approaches Farmers Korner it veers to the west behind Summit High School, where you will come to an intersection. Continue straight ahead on the Frisco Farmer’s Korner Path. The spur to the right will take you to the intersection with Highway 9 and Swan Mountain Road.
The Frisco Farmer’s Korner Trail climbs a series of small hills, then continues through the Bill’s Ranch area. There are several connections to the town of Frisco off the rec path in this section, including Seventh and Second streets. Be aware that vehicles are allowed on the rec path through the Bill’s Ranch section, which also provides access for residents to their homes along the path.
In Breckenridge, drive on Watson Street one block west of Main Street. Parking is available on both the north and south sides of Watson Street. The trail begins at Watson Street on the west side of the Blue River and continues north. Other parking areas include the Kingdom Park/Breckenridge Recreation Center, Gold Hill Trailhead off Gateway Drive (County Road 950) and just about anywhere along Main Street in Frisco.
In Frisco, park at the dirt lot at the far west end of Main Street near the Interstate-70 on-ramp at exit 201. Follow signs to the paved rec path at the base of Mount Royal and head east, then south toward Breckenridge.
Editor’s note: This article was first published in July 2015 and is updated annually for accuracy.
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