Weekend Wheeling in Denver

Blue Dot
By Tom Barnhart
  |  Gorp.com

Many of the trails along the Front Range are unmarked and crisscrossed by spurs. Blue Dot is an advanced, out-and-back, 10.8-mile ride that is just one example. It can be confusing since it involves numerous unmarked interconnecting trails, but if you like narrow, challenging single-track, this trail is worth taking the time to explore. Much of the trail is firm and smooth, although there are frequent rocky sections.

Getting There
From Boulder, head west about 20 miles on Canyon Road (Colorado Route 119) to Nederland. At the traffic circle, head south (left) on Route 119/72 a couple of blocks and look on your left for the old railroad cars that harbor the Happy Trails bicycle shop. Park in the shopping center next to Happy Trails. Denver riders may want to get to Nederland via Coal Creek Canyon (Colorado Route 72) to avoid Boulder traffic.

The Trail
Pick up the trail by cutting between the grocery store and the row of two-story shops. Turn onto Big Spring Drive, which is the road to the south, and climb to where it switchbacks sharply to the right at mile 1.0. This is where the unmarked single-track begins with a short climb to a natural gas pump station at Magnolia Road. Go left (east) from the pump station and immediately hook up with the narrow Reboot Trail to the right. Do not go into the dump.

The narrow, unmarked Reboot Trail winds north and east, coming out inside Reynolds Park. Turn left (downhill) and then go straight uphill after passing a trail adjacent to the power poles. Take the next (more used) right trail spur and exit from Reynolds Park with a quick narrow climb to a T-intersection. Turn left and then quickly right again at yet another trail intersection. After dropping through some short, tightly packed pines, you come to another intersection. You have ridden approximately 3.3 miles from the trailhead.

Turn left and drop into the meadow where you will find the official Blue Dot Trail. Now the trail gets more technical. Emerge from the forest and into a small meadow where the trail divides. Go right and then quickly right again, climbing to a small ridge. Drop on some fun double-track to a gate. Take the road to the trailhead for the Front Range Trails at mile 6.4. Turn right on Magnolia Road, going generally uphill for two miles.

Near mile 8.4, you should see a gate on the right and the Road 606 sign. You need to make a decision: If you continue on the road, it will take you back to the natural gas pump station (mile 9.6) where you turn right and return to town for a total ride of 10.8 miles; Road 606 returns to single-track and the Blue Dot Trail.

Published: 30 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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