The Best Brews and Bike Trails near Boulder Posted By dan on

It’s hard to find bad mountain biking trails in Boulder, or bad beer for that matter. Here’s a list of some of my favorite rides along with some watering holes where you can grab your well deserved post-ride brews.  Be sure to click on the trail names and then on the map tab for each trail to get directions and ride profiles.

Dales Pale Ale

Colorado's home to amazing mountain biking and beer, including Dale's Pale Ale from Oskar Blue's

Betasso Preserve (Canyon Loop):

7.4 Mile Loop, plan 1-2 hours. The trail has a moderate climb up to the Betasso preserve, then smooth fast single track

around the loop. Many people will ride the loop a few times before descending back to the parking lot. There have been a few mountain lion spottings lately, so keep an eye out. No Bikes are allowed on Wednesday or Saturdays and remember to yield to hikers and uphill riders.

Ride on over to Colorado’s first microbrewery Boulder Beer for a Single Track Copper Ale, which is appropriately named for such an occasion!

Walker Ranch:

7.4 Mile Loop, plan 1.5-4 hours. If you’re looking for a bit of a longer ride with some steep hill climbs then this is your trail! You’ll be rewarded with great views of the Indian Peaks Wilderness area and a close encounter with South Boulder Creek. Be sure to walk your bike down the stairs that lead down to the Creek- this should be pretty obvious  once you see them.

After the steeps at Walker, you’ll be pretty thirsty. Avery Brewing Comapany‘s innovative line up of White Rascal, Out of Bounds Stout, and India Pale Ale should quench your thirst.

Hall Ranch:

10 Mile Loop (that feels like less), plan 1.5 to 4 hours

This trail is technically in Lyons, but it’s close enough to Boulder and bad-ass enough to make the list. Hall Ranch is the best combination of technical climbing and fast single track that i’ve ever encountered. The second mile is very technical with rocky tread, and if you can ride it clean then you’re pretty much my hero. Even if you end up walking up much of the incline the single track awaiting you at the top is completely worth it. Trust me when I say you don’t want to get stuck near the Old Nelson Homestead during a lightning storm.

Stop in to  Oskar Blues to find the ever popular Dale’s Pale Ale and what may be the worlds best burgers. Don’t be surprised if you want to nap in the park across the street before heading home.

Marshal Mesa:

12-16 Miles, 2-4 hours

This is one of the more casual rides near Boulder, a combo of single and double track and nothing too technical or too steep. Think of Marshal Mesa as a great place to take those who want a beautiful ride with out a ton of effort. Bonus: by connecting to the new community ditch trail, you can easily ride 15+ miles.

After the ride head North to Boulder to visit one of my favorite breweries, Southern Sun. The servers are very knowledgable and can recommend an awesome nitro beer or a sampler that’s bound to be as epic as your ride. Heads up though, the brewery only accepts cash- and yes it’s worth every cent of the ATM fee.



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