Colorado Mountain Biking and Breath Taking Views

Nestled against Mt. Garfield and 30 min. away from the base of the Colorado Grand Mesa, the town of Palisade provides visitors a scenic and central location for all levels of Colorado mountain biking and road biking. The ambitious rider could easily travel 30 minutes to the West and conquer the famous 18 Rd Trail System in the N. Fruita Desert, experience the thrills of downhill mountain biking on the Grand Mesa at Powderhorn’s Downhill Bike Park and ride the striking red canyons of the Colorado National Monument all in one weekend.

Coming Summer 2020 – The Palisade Plunge:  32 Miles of downhill single track bliss awaits.  Travel from the top of the Grand Mesa through scenic meadows, groves of Aspen trees, rock gardens and more.  Descend 6,000 ft in elevation into the town of Palisade.

Visitors to Palisade, CO can access over 51 MTB bike trails within a one-hour drive.

 In addition, the area offers multiple scenic road biking and cruiser trips for those who enjoy a more relaxed adventure. Click here to learn about road biking trails and the Fruit & Wine Byway.

The Grand Valley includes the entire stretch from the famous Fruita desert trails, through Grand Junction’s popular Lunch Loops, located on the Colorado National Monument, and Palisade’s favorite thrill seeker ride, the Palisade Rim Trail.

Downtown Palisade is only 45 minutes to alpine mountain biking and scenic road cycling through the highest flat top mountain in the world, the Colorado Grand Mesa. Summer Temperatures on the Grand Mesa can be as much as 30 degrees cooler than the valley floor, making an excellent choice for guests who want to escape the summer sun.

See below for a list of trails located throughout the Grand Valley with links to supporting trail maps and travel time estimates.

Popular Colorado Mountain Bike Trails

MTB Trails within 15 min from downtown Palisade, CO:

Palisade Rim TrailExtremely Difficult – Located 1,000 ft. above the valley floor, the Palisade Rim trail provides breathtaking views and thrilling adventure.

Palisade Bike Skills Park –  Beginner – Part of the Riverbend Park area, this skills park is a great place to bring the family, practice your MTB skills and enjoy a day outdoors. Riverbend Park also provides easy access to the local River Trails which allow biking travel from Palisade to Downtown, Grand Junction.

Bookcliff – Beginner – Explore the rolling hills between 25 & 29 rd. The Bookcliffs are bordering the entire North side of Palisade and are great for fun, non-technical, desert riding.

MTB Trails within 30 – 60 min from downtown Palisade, CO:

Grand Mesa Mountain Biking –  For those who want to escape the desert, the Grand Mesa offers beautiful wild flowers, aspen trees and trail riding for all levels.

  • Flowing Park Loop – Intermediate
  • Mesa Top Trail – Intermediate
  • West Bench Trail – Intermediate

Learn more about Grand Mesa MTB trails from COPMOBA.

Powderhorn Downhill Bike Park – Powderhorn Mountain Resort offers three levels of downhill biking trails to help all riders develop and improve their downhill biking skills.

  • Mutton Buster – Beginner
  • Pinball Alley –  Intermediate
  • Blue Ribbon – Difficult

Learn more at

18 Road Trails – This Nationally acclaimed series of MTB trails is located in the Fruita, CO desert offering a variety of trails from beginner through advanced/difficult skill levels. For a map to the trail head click here.

  • Chutes and Ladders – Difficult
  • Joe’s Ridge – Intermediate
  • Kessel Run – Beginner
  • Pumps Bumps Rollers (PBR) – Beginner
  • MoJoe – Intermediate
  • Prime Cut – Beginner
  • Sarlacc – Intermediate
  • Down Uppity – Intermediate
  • Frontside – Difficult
  • Western Zippy – Beginner
  • The Edge Loop – Lipan Canyon Section – Difficult
  • Edge Cutoff East – Intermediate
  • Edge Cutoff West – Intermediate
  • Vegetarian – Beginner
  • Lower Chutes and Ladders – Beginner
  • B03 – Intermediate
  • Zippety Do Dah – Advanced

Highline Lake – Simple fun family trails for beginner to intermediate riders. Highline State Park also offers water-based, sports activities and a small swimming area. Click for map.

Kokopelli Loops – 150 miles of mountain biking trails on various terrain through the desert of Loma and continuing trails all the way to Moab, UT. Choose from short beginner/intermediate loops or multi-day rides. For a map of Kokopelli Trail Loops, click here.

  • Mary’s Loop – Intermediate
  • Rustler’s Loop – Beginner
  • Horsethief Bench- Intermediate
  • Steve’s Loop – Intermediate
  • Wranglers – Beginner
  • Lion’s Loop – Difficult
  • Troy Built – Intermediate
  • Moore Fun – Extremely Difficult
  • Mack Ridge Connector – Difficult

The Grand Loop – The entire Kokopelli Trail is roughly 150 miles of various terrain ranging from technical single track to pavement. This scenic route travels from Loma, CO to Moab, UT.  This trail links with the Tabeguache Trail and the Paradox Trail to make one Grand Loop through SW Colorado and UT. The full loop is considered a bike packing trip, as most riders estimate 3-4 days to ride the entire section.

Colorado National Monument Mountain Biking – Ride amongst the stunning red rocks and astounding features of this breathtaking landmark. Test your technical skills on a multi-day adventure trip, or visit for a quick lunch ride with your friends.

Lunch Loop Trail system – Located at the base of the Colorado National Monument is the famous Lunch Loop Trail system. This local hot spot showcases over 50 possible routes, a variety of skill levels as well as a popular beginner and kids bike park known as Kids Meal. Click here for online resources regarding the Lunch Loops Mountain Biking Trails.

  • Ali Ali Loop – Intermediate
  • Ali Alley – Intermediate
  • Allstar – Beginner
  • Gunny Cutoff Singletrack – Beginner
  • Gunnector – Intermediate
  • Gunny Loop – Difficult
  • Big Sister – Intermediate
  • Brick House – Intermediate
  • Bunker – Difficult
  • Eagle Wing – Extremely Difficult
  • Eagle Tail – Difficult
  • Clunker/Holy Bucket Loop – Intermediate
  • Curts Lane – Intermediate
  • Curt’s Down – Intermediate
  • Bentonite – Difficult
  • PreNup – Difficult
  • Pucker Up – Extremely Difficult
  • Pet E Kes Conn  – Intermediate
  • High Noon – Intermediate
  • Holy Cross – Difficult
  • Kids Meal – Beginner
  • Raven Ridge – Difficult
  • The Ribbon – Intermediate
  • Free Lunch – Extremely Difficult
  • Lemon Squeezer – Difficult
  • Leftover Lane – Difficult
  • Miramonte Rim – Intermediate
  • Moto Cross – Difficult
  • The Ribbon – Advanced
  • Time Machine – Intermediate
  • Andy’s Loop Cutoff – Intermediate

Butter Knife – Difficult – Challenging trail on Little Park Road, this trail is over 12 miles of intense riding, twists, turns and amazing views of the Colorado National Monument. Click for map

Kannah CreekIntermediate

Gunnison River Bluffs Trail System – Beginner – 7 miles from Orchard Mesa to Whitewater, this historical trail runs along the Old Spanish Trail and overlooks the Gunnison River. Click for map

The Palisade PLUNGE !

The Palisade Plunge is 32 miles of sweet riding, back-country singletrack that connects the top of the Grand Mesa (10,700′) to the Town of Palisade, CO, (4,700′) via – yes, 6000′ of relief! The Plunge is guaranteed to offer a fast, fun, and challenging ride.

The Plunge is a long, complex trail that has been built by a team from COPMOBA, Mesa County, the Town of Palisade, the City of Grand Junction, the Division of Parks & Recreation and other contributing partners. The first half of the trail is opening Summer 2020, with the entire trail projected to open Fall, 2020. Check out our Palisade Plunge page for ongoing updates and trail information.

Need to Rent a Bike?

Rapid Creek Cycles & Sports, located in downtown Palisade, carries a great selection of mountain bikes, cruiser bicycles, road bikes and outdoor gear for resale and rentals. Call ahead with questions and make sure your gear is reserved for your arrival: 970-464-9266.  Ask about guided tours or pick up area trail maps.

Need a Place to Stay?

The Town of Palisade has the perfect lodging opportunities for any traveler. Stay at a one of our quaint Colorado Bed and Breakfasts, the famous Victorian Wine Country Inn, or the beautiful campgrounds and cabins found along the Colorado River at Palisade’s Basecamp and RV Resort. Visit our lodging page to explore various locations and book your Colorado getaway today.