Two-Wheeled Paradise

The 10 Best Mountain Bike Rides in Wyoming


September 15, 2015 Sports and Outdoors By Photo by Henry Phillips
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A Note on Trails: Everyone has their favorite local trail, and most are hidden away at an unmarked trailhead at the end of a dead-end street. For that reason, we included only trails that have easily accessible trailheads and information that is readily available to the public. If we missed a trail that you think should be included, feel free to drop us a line at tips@gearpatrol.com.

The West is full of world class singletrack — and Wyoming is no exception. With thousands of miles of trail, the Cowboy State has something to offer everyone on two wheels. Climb all day to reveal unabashed views of the Tetons, test yourself on some of Wyoming’s slickrock or go adventuring and carry your bike across raging waters. Whether you are renting bikes for the day to ride a mellow two-mile loop, or you’re looking to take your new all-mountain rig on Wyoming’s most technical descent, these trails cover it all.

Beginner | Intermediate | Advanced | The Full Map

Beginner

Fountain Pot Loop

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Distance: 14.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 356 feet
Starts From: Yellowstone National Park
Why Go: The Yellowstone area is home to some of the best scenery in the country. While out on the Fountain Pot Loop, you have a good chance of seeing bison up close and personal. The trail also passes lakes and geysers including Ojo Caliente Springs and Midway Geyser Basin.
Trail Notes: The trail is meandering and mostly flat, making it the perfect family or beginner trail. The surface is mostly crushed stone and is doable on a rigid-frame mountain bike without your arms turning to jello.

Dugout Gulch Botanical Trail #77

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Distance: 8.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,050 feet
Starts From: Dugout Gulch
Why Go: Dugout Gulch offers an ecosystem unique to the state of Wyoming. Plants referred to as boreal disjuncts, including Rattlesnake Fern, Common Solomon’s Seal, Canadian Enchanter’s Nightshade and the oval-leaved Milkweed, are rare to the area and can be seen along the sides of the trail.
Trail Notes: The trail is laid out as a lollipop with a connector trail and a loop trail. The climb to the top is challenging enough to get your heart pumping, but will not suck out all of your energy before the fast and flowing descent.

Arrow Trail

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Distance: 4.8 miles (9.6 miles out-and-back)
Elevation Gain: 671 feet
Starts From: Wilson, WY
Why Go: Close to Jackson, the Arrow Trail offers a meandering climb to unobstructed views of the Tetons.
Trail Notes: The trail surface is mostly crushed rock and dirt and is best ridden as an out and back. The trail climbs to a max elevation of 8,247 feet. Once you reach the top, turn right back around and reap the benefits of your suffering.

Intermediate

Slickrock Trail

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Distance: 7.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 988 feet
Starts From: Cody, WY
Why Go: Slickrock is normally reserved for trail systems in places like Moab, Utah, but Wyoming has a little slice of slickrock as well. Riding here is unlike anywhere else in the state, truly unique.
Trail Notes: Be careful when navigating on the slickrock. Unlike Moab, the rock isn’t painted, so navigation can be difficult and it is easy to get lost. As always, it is recommended that you ride with a friend.

Natrona Trail

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Distance: 5.1 miles
Elevation Gain: 574 feet
Starts From: Casper Mountain, WY
Why Go: Located at Casper Mountain County Park, the Natrona Trail offers views of impressive forest and some views to the plains below. In fall, many species of wildlife are active and can be seen throughout the ride.
Trail Notes: In the first few miles, the trail alternates between double track and singletrack but then switches to exclusively singletrack. There are some challenging technical sections that will keep you on your toes. The trail is well marked and makes for the perfect afternoon ride.

Game Creek Loop

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Distance: 18.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,435 feet
Starts From: Jackson, WY
Why Go: Starting and ending in Downtown Jackson, the Game Creek Loop offers expansive views of the Teton Valley, features ribbons of dirt bisecting alpine meadows, and descends through a burn forest littered with colorful flowers.
Trail Notes: The trail starts off of the bike path that runs along Flat Creek. It then rises and falls along the 18.5 miles, trading sustained calf-busting uphills with technical rapid descents.

Advanced

Phillip’s Ridge to Phillip’s Canyon

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Distance: 14.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,447 feet
Starts From: Wilson, WY
Why Go: Phillip’s Ridge to Phillip’s Canyon loop is one of the best trails within striking distance of Jackson. The loop offers a little bit of everything, including some steep sustained climbing that does not go unrewarded.
Trail Notes: Start from the trailhead off of Fish Creek Road and head up Phillip’s Ridge. Work your way to Snotel, then take Arrow up to the top. Turn right onto Phillip’s Canyon and pin it all the way back down to the start.

Curt Gowdy State Park Epic

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Distance: 19.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 2,260 feet
Starts From: Cheyenne, WY
Why Go: Curt Gowdy is ranked as MTB Project’s number one trail in Wyoming. It is also the only trail in Wyoming certified as an IMBA Epic ride. For that reason alone, Curt Gowdy is worth a trip for any avid mountain biker.
Trail Notes: The IMBA Epic at Curt Gowdy State Park offers diverse landscapes including the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains. Parking costs $4 for in-state residents while visitors pay $6. Overnight camping is also available for $10 and $17, respectively. The trails are well marked and offer plenty of technical drops and features to keep you entertained throughout the 19.2 miles.

Bearlodge Mountain Classic

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Distance: 22.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 3,256 feet
Starts From: Sundance, WY
Why Go: Offering the best riding in the Bearlodge Mountains, the Bearlodge Mountain Classic is a test piece for even the most experienced riders. Views of the plains below and blooming wildflowers make for awesome scenery while you trudge through uphill sections.
Trail Notes: The Bearlodge Mountain Classic is best ridden from June 1 to October 15 to avoid mud and snow, though they are not uncommon within that date range. The trails are not well marked, so make sure to bring a map. The few blazes that do exist are blue diamonds with a bear paw, so look out for those — and actual bears.

Laramie Enduro

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Distance: 69.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 6,615 feet
Starts From: Laramie, WY, Medicine Bow National Forest
Why Go: The Laramie Enduro is a grueling race that takes place every year. This year’s route was raced in August and covers 69.6 miles. If you’re looking to test yourself on some of the best trails Wyoming has to offer, this is your spot.
Trail Notes: If doing this race self-supported, be sure to bring plenty of water. The trail has an average grade of four percent and maxes out at 20 percent. This loop is not for the faint of heart.

The Map

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