We had no idea when we arrived, but the Continental Divide Trail, also known as the 1101 and Wyoming Trail, runs right through Dumont Lake Campground in the Routt National Forest, where we were camping. This trail offers singletrack mountain biking as well as hiking and is rated intermediate.
Being primarily road cyclists, we are not close to the intermediate level where mountain biking is concerned. But we gave it a try and found that we were able to ride much of it, while walking the short technical portions. We're so glad we tried it as it is a beautiful ride with glorious views once we climbed 1000' or so.
Barry had ridden his mountain bike the day before and rode this trail at the end of his ride on gravel forest roads so was able to preview it for me. He enjoyed himself so much he urged me to ride with him the next morning, Sunday, before hitting the road.
So that's what we did. It was a chilly but sunny morning (though not quite as cold as the previous morning where the temperature dipped to 20F!), so we bundled up and got going. By this point, the temperature was in the low 40s.
The trail begins as a short stretch of doubletrack in the campground but soon narrows to singletrack.
Here's one of the walking parts!
Right after the creek crossing, the trail gets steep, curvy, and rooty as it climbs through a wooded section. We walked parts of this too. We were passed by a large number of young, fit Colorado mountain bikers wearing shorts and short sleeves on this section, and riding it, of course. Oh well, we're old farts and certainly not mountain bikers most of the time. At least we were out there giving it a try, right?
Once through the heart-pounding climbs, the trail flattens out again and was really fun to ride.
Eventually we reached a gravel road. Climbing up a ways on the road brought us to this excellent lookout point where we could see Dumont Lake down below. Gorgeous!
This was our turnaround point since we had to vacate our campsite by noon. We knew it was all downhill from here so should be much faster in this direction.
This innocent-looking spot is the curve right before the steep, rooty, rocky descent through the forest. Time to walk a bit again! Barry rode more of it than I dared to.
Once we crossed the creek, we got to the easy part of the trail leading to the campground. Whoop-dee-doos are fun and make you feel like a kid again!
The scenery heading back over to Dumont Lake and campground is amazing.
While we didn't ride anywhere near the whole trail, even just the taste of it we enjoyed was excellent fun. It started the day on a positive note and provided a ride we won't forget for a long time.
Emily & Barry
We're a long-married, early-retired couple who are currently traveling as nomads with no fixed home base. After years of living in North Carolina (Emily's home state), we spent 18 months living oceanfront on Ambergris Caye, Belize, a year road-tripping the US in a Honda CR-V, a year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and are now roaming North America in our 32' motorhome, Pearl, following warm weather whenever possible.
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