Colorado's Trails Aren't Just for Skiing and Snowboarding

27 May 2021

Whether you’re running for exercise, training for your first marathon, or a seasoned ultra-runner, your favorite Colorado ski resorts have hundreds of miles of co-use trails perfect for trail running.  All within a few hours from Denver, these running trails are the perfect excuse for an exercise-oriented day trip.  If you’ve got some extra pep in your step, link some of these quintessential trail runs for a great weekend in the mountains.   
Keystone has long been a favorite for mountain bikers – but trail runners are catching on to one of the best 18-mile loops Colorado has to offer, Keystone Gulch. Don’t worry, if you’re just getting started you can turn this “behind the scenes” trail run into an out-and-back (for a 3-mile out-and-back, turn around at Ruby Express). This trail run skirts all the way down to Wildcat Express and The Willows.  
Song we’re running to: Run Wild, Laney Jones 
Experience Breck’s high alpine from a whole new perspective. If you’re looking to get in serious trail running shape, hit Peak 8 (11.4 miles) or Peak 10 (13 miles) trails for a truly Breckenridge experience. For 5,813 feet of elevation gain to the top of Peak 8, take Swinger to Vista Haus where you’ll connect with trails that continue on to the summit. For a Peak 10 summit, start at Lower Sawmill and connect to County Road 751. Hit the town and pat yourself on the back at some of the best outdoor decks Breck has to offer. 
Song we’re running to: Here We Go, WILD 
Start your run at either Vail Village or Lionshead Village and climb all the way to the gates of Vail’s Legendary Back Bowls. You’ll take Berrypicker, a 3.2 mile run with gorgeous views of the Gore Range and incredible wildflowers, high into the alpine. Cut across to Mid-Vail via Fireweed, and continue the journey up Kinnikinnick (1.1 miles) for a serene ridgetop traverse along Sunlight trail (1.5 miles). Reward yourself with a cold beer from Vail Brewing Co. on the deck at Garfinkel’s!   
Song we’re running to: The Way We Move, Langhorne Slim 
Beaver Creek
Want to train like an Olympic Athlete at the home of skiing’s Birds of Prey? Look no further than this 7.3 mile point-to-point at Beaver Creek. If you’re new to trail running this is a great smooth dirt road that soars to 11,372’ for nearly 3,250 feet of elevation gain. Take Cinch to the PHQ Hill Climb and you’ll be rewarded with some of the best views in Colorado. When you’re done, don’t forget to cool down and stretch in front of the year-round ice-rink… and treat yourself to a slice of Blue Moose Pizza, you deserve it! 
Song we’re running to: Miracle Mile, Cold War Kids 
Crested Butte
There’s nothing more epic than the 7.1 mile point-to-point trail run to the top of Mt. Crested Butte. You’ll not only enjoy the beautiful meadows in the wildflower capital of Colorado, but you’ll run through Aspen groves and past beautiful vistas up to a whopping 12,073 feet. Start out at Lower Westside trail at the base of Silver Queen Express Lift and make your way to Yellow Brick Road before the final ascent up Peak Trail. This trail run is the perfect finish for any training plan.  Sit outside and admire your accomplishment at Butte 66 Bar & Grille. 
Song we’re running to: Goodpain, Yoke Lore  
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