Dillon Bike Guide: Oro Grande Trail (video)
Distance: 3.9 miles
Time: 1 hour
Elevation: : 9,263-9,556 feet (293 vertical feet)
Type: Loop, dirt road and trail
Season: Mid-May to mid-October
Extensions: Summit County recpath, trails on Tenderfoot Mountain, Dillon dump trails
Parking: Ride up Lake Dillon Drive to the water tank and park in the pullout on the right by the Tenderfoot Trail sign.
Oro Grande is one of the earliest trails to open in the county each season. It faces west and a little bit south, so it dries off quickly, has killer views of the lake and the Tenmile Range as well as down the Gore Range from Buffalo. One end can have some funky smells because it ends at the dump. Be aware of the shooting range up there, which can be disconcerting at times to people on bikes. At the other end is the Dillon water tank. The good thing about it is it’s a larger backbone for a great system of other trails. It’s easy to access Tenderfoot and is a nice, wide, fairly gentle trail for all abilities.
— Scott Reid
Known as one of the first local mountain biking trails ready to ride in May, the Oro Grande Trail is a solid early season riding option for anyone who just needs to pedal after a long, snowy winter. Following an aspen-covered hillside above Lake Dillon, this ride offers panoramic views of the Tenmile and the Gore ranges. It’s also in a prime location for riding on lunch breaks or immediately after work, though it tends to get a bit packed on weekends thanks to the connected Dillon disc golf course and a nearby pump track.
Ride up the dirt road and turn right immediately. Follow this fork past the water facility building on the right and up into the trees. Pass Tenderfoot Trail on the left. The road meanders through open meadows and aspen stands as it crosses several hills.
Just beyond a fence, at about 2.1 miles, riders will come to a four-way junction and an open area (also home to the Lake Dillon Disc Golf Course). To do a 4-mile loop, turn right and descend to Cemetery Road or return the way you came. Continue straight for the longer ride and climb, passing under power lines as you veer left and pass a couple of side roads surrounding the motocross track. The main road remains obvious as it climbs more, then descends to a wood fence and three-way junction at 2.8 miles.
Continue straight, passing through the fence onto a road that becomes more of a trail. Veer left near a large berm and climb through a sagebrush hillside. Pedal across a steep slope and swing sharply left above the landfill and Summit County Shooting Range. Climb through the trees and descend to connect with a main dirt road at 3.9 miles.
From this point, you can either return as you came, continue onto Frey Gulch or connect with the paved recpath for a loop back to Dillon or rolling ride to Keystone.
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