Editor’s Note: Lift-served mountain bike lift tickets and packages from resorts across North America are now available on Liftopia.com. Check out our FAQs to learn more about lift-served mountain biking, how it works and where you can do it. This post was written by Nathalie Couët, one of the writers for Go Girl.
Summer…the season to get into some of the most adrenaline-pumping outdoor sports. Mountain biking ranks high on the list for adrenaline junkies, regardless of whether we’re talking flat singletrack or intense alpine ascensions.
The most important factor in determining the best place to bike is the caliber of the trails. However, as with many mountain sports, biking has the advantage of being able to bring you to a huge variety of locales. Often, the environment you find yourself pedaling in is just as thrilling as the trail itself.
Last season, Whistler Mountain Bike Park, Bike Snowmass, Mont-Sainte-Anne, Angel Fire Bike Park, and Killington made our list of 5 great North American resorts for downhill mountain biking. Here are five more for you to check out.
1. Banff (Alberta)
We’re used to hearing all about Whistler, but travel towards the prairies into Alberta and you’ll land in Banff, another should-be-classic site for riding beautiful singletrack trails. Nestled within thousands of acres of Rocky Mountain terrain, the scenery and wildlife are just as impressive as Whistler’s.
Some notable singletrack routes include: Jumping Pound Ridge/Cox Hill, Montane Traverse, and the Canmore Nordic Center. The latter two are accessible directly from the stunning, quaint mountain town of Canmore.
2. Bromont (Québec)
The Canadian province of Québec isn’t often associated with mountainous terrain (for good reason when compared to the Canadian Rockies of the West). However, the advent of some world-class riders within the Quebecois community inspired the development of Bromont Mountain, where both the 2008 and 2009 World Cup events were held.
Bromont is chock-full of some of the most intense rides with jumps, rollers, and many more features that will be installed in the upcoming season. Although previously notoriously difficult to ride, recent work has enabled the park to become more accessible to beginner and intermediate riders.
3. Mammoth and the Eastern Sierra (California)
The Eastern Sierra Mountains offer some of the most beautiful desert landscape in North America – as well as some of the most extensive bike parks around. Two areas to note are the Mammoth Mountain Bike Park, and the Lower Rock Creek Trail.
Mammoth Mountain is home to one of the largest network of trails West of the Mississippi; meanwhile, Lower Rock Creek Trail is a 2,000-foot descent within the canyon that finishes at a desert stream which you can throw yourself in after a run under the pounding sun.
4. Park City (Utah)
Park City is a North American Mecca for mountain sports, no matter the season. With numerous ski areas come innumerable options for alpine riding. Over 400 miles of singletrack trails surround the area and city of Park City, some within-bounds of the resorts, and others not.
A relatively accessible route (in terms of technical difficulty) within the Park City park-conglomerate is called Flying Dog. This route gives you the choice between short, easy 10-mile rides and 23-milers with 3,000-foot ascensions, so every rider is guaranteed to find a challenge.
5. Crested Butte (Colorado)
The sport of mountain biking is said to have its beginnings in the area of Crested Butte. It should come as no surprise then, that the region has some of the most incredible trails on the continent.
Crested Butte Mountain Resort houses its own bike park so not only are new trails constantly being developed, the mountains surrounding Crested Butte are home to hands-down some of the most incredible views to be had on two wheels. Trail 401 and Deadman’s Loop, both classic routes, are absolutely musts.