North Boulder Winter Gravel Ride

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Location:
Boulder, CO
Date Published:
January 22, 2020
Distance:
31.80
mi
Elevation:
1257
ft
Gravel Ratio:
50% G / 50% P
Difficulty Rating:
⛰⛰
Enjoyability Rating:
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Download GPX File
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Highs:

We’ve done all of these North Boulder roads and trails in previous rides but since we did them in a different order it felt simultaneously new and familiar.

Although the morning temperature was brisk, one of the amazing things about Colorado is that biking in 43º temperature can be totally comfortable with the right gear and sunshine! For us, the sun was bright, there were very few clouds in the sky and the wind was light- all of which made for a great day of winter riding.

We really love a blend of gravel and pavement. This route was a 50/50 mix, and because of that, the route can be ridden at a pretty good pace! The pavement sections will help you set a good tempo that can be continued on a lot of the smooth gravel road sections.

Dressing warm for winter cycling is a skill which we are slowly perfecting. Laura was testing out a new pair of winter cycling shoes which were a success- meaning her feet stayed warm and sry the entire route. Our hands stayed warm with wool glove liners inside our normal winter gloves.

Lows:

The Eagle Trail in North Boulder was particularly crowded with large groups of walkers and dogs.

51st Street near the Boulder Reservoir is starting to form a lot of washboards and was a bit uncomfortable to ride on. (Thank goodness it is a pretty short section!)

Do this ride if you are looking for a great face-paced beginner winter groad (ideally when we haven’t had precipitation for a week or two).

Other Notes:

Winter riding isn’t always sloppy and messy. When Boulder hasn’t had snow in a few weeks and things have time to dry out, there are some routes like this one that aren’t icy or muddy. Hooray!!

Beginners, keep in mind that there are a few raised cattle guards on the trails. Keep your speed up on the approach and hold your pedals level as you go over and you’ll be a pro at them in no time!

While there has been a port-a-potty at the Left Hand Trail head parking lot in the past, it wasn’t there when we parked there this time.  We were able to easily find other public bathrooms near the Boulder Reservoir and along the trails where there are parking lots. (The closest bathroom to the parking lot is at the Beech Shelter.)

Interested in other winter gravel routes? Check out this blog post for a few others!

We started this ride from the Left Hand Trail head parking lot off of Neva Road near 39th Street.

Driving Directions

Route Contributor

Laura & Rose

Laura Karpinski and Rose Barcklow are the creators of Gravel Bike Adventures. Click on the About page to learn more about them.

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