With over 750 miles of singletrack in the Gunnison Valley we have a wide variety of trails. That variety doesn’t just cover high alpine down to desert track. It also includes really good beginner track up to beasts that challenge even the best riders.
Green, Blue, Black Mountain Bike Trail Ratings
Anyone who has done any skiing is comfortable with the idea of green, blue, and black trail ratings. The same idea translates to mountain biking.
- Green Circle: These trails require little physical exertion. They have gentle climbs and descents. They may be wider or even double track. You will find mostly smooth tracks with few or no rocks and “moves.” Great for beginners or groups of mixed ability. Also good for your first day up at our elevation.
- Blue Square: These trails will likely make even the pros sweat at least a little. Climbs and descents will be at steeper grades than green circle trails. They may be longer and have more sidehill exposure. More rocks. Blues are good for those with more advanced bike handling skills or a willingness to walk. Best after you’ve had a day to get used to the altitude.
- Black Diamonds/Double Black Diamonds: Several factors can contribute to a trail earning a black or double black rating. A particularly steep climb or descent. Rocks and technical moves. Jumps. Length of the trail. These are the ones that will tire you out, maybe leave you with some bruises, and probably scare you, at least a little bit.
These ratings can be subjective. Just because you normally ride blues doesn’t mean you wouldn’t do just fine on some of our black diamonds. The opposite is true as well. Approach each trail with some respect for the mountains and you’ll be sure to enjoy your experience.
Flow to Tech Mountain Bike Trail Ratings
When we designed our online trail guide, we really wanted to provide another piece of information beyond the typical green, blue, black trail ratings to help you find the trail that is right for you, the bike you’re riding, and your skills.
We came up with the flow to tech rating, based on a scale of 1 to 5. It’s basically a rating of how smooth or technically challenging a trail is. Flow to tech ratings and green, blue, and black ratings typically run parallel. Meaning, a green trail is more likely to get a flow rating of a 1 or 2 and a black diamond is more likely to score a 4 or 5 on the flow to tech trail. But we also have trails like Lupine that come in at a blue square but have a flow to tech rating of 1. There basically isn’t a rock to be found on that trail. It’s all flow.
Thank you to the fine folks at Gunnison Trails and Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association. The members of these two Gunnison Valley mountain bike groups shared their knowledge and experience with us for the trail ratings you’ll find in our interactive trail guide and map app.