In the past few years, fat biking has taken the snowsports world by storm. These special bikes have extra-wide, low-pressure tires that allow the rider to float over snow and ice. Although fat biking is a relatively new sport in the outdoor industry, it hasn’t taken long for us in Gunnison and Crested Butte to pick it up. You might say it’s in our blood to ride bikes, and if we can find a way to ride year-round, you bet we’re going to.
The Gunnison Valley is one of the places this new cycling sport was pioneered. This video features the people from Gunnison Trails and the Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association whose hard work and dedication have made Gunnison Crested Butte one of the best places to ride fat bikes in the world.
Hartman Rocks is hands-down the best place to ride near Gunnison, and might even be the best spot in the whole county for winter riding.
Gunnison Trails grooms over 14 miles of singletrack trails specifically for fat bikes, while Gunnison Nordic grooms the road systems primarily for Nordic skiing. Groomed singletrack trails can be accessed from either the Gold Basin Road (County Road 38) trailhead or the McCabe’s Lane trailhead.
Crested Butte Nordic Center’s trail system and Crested Butte Mountain Resort (CBMR) are the best places for a consistent fat biking snow surface. The Nordic Center requires you to have a trail pass (either a season pass or day pass), and fat bikes are limited to the trails on the east side of their grooming area. Although its a little pricier, this is the best option for beginners since it’s mostly flat and the trails are groomed almost every day.
Fat biking at Crested Butte Mountain Resort requires an uphill pass and is only allowed before and after hours. Although the climbs are steep in places, the snow is fantastic and well-packed, making for a consistent riding surface. Consult the uphill guide on CBMR’s website for maps and other information.
The Crested Butte Mountain Association (CBMBA) also grooms trails around Crested Butte for fat biking. View their grooming report to see which trails are currently groomed.
Every drainage around Crested Butte has a road that does not have winter maintenance or plowing. These roads have long been popular with cross-country skiers, snowmobilers, and other backcountry users, so please be courteous and share these places with other users. Avalanche danger increases significantly on some of these roads, so it is important to read the avalanche report the day you plan to go out. Check out these roads for the best fat biking experiences around Crested Butte:
Help maintain the image of fat biking by following these guidelines:
While you’re here, check out Crested Butte and Gunnison’s other winter activities: skiing and snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, Nordic skiing, and other winter activities!
Whether you’re looking for a cabin or a condo, a hostel or a traditional hotel, we’ve got you covered for a vacation rental.