Mountain biking in Moab

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
Week of October 2-8, 1997
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Mountain biking in Moab
Question: I want to go on an individual mountain bike trip for about four to seven days in the spring. I am thinking of Colorado, Utah, or Mexico. Do you have any suggestions on how to plan and where might be the best place to go?

Gina Gambogi
San Francisco, CA
[email protected]

Adventure Adviser: If by "individual" you mean you're going alone, I'd suggest staying in the country just because I think you'd be a bit safer. But if safety is not a concern, I'd probably suggest Mexico just because there are some great mountain biking hot spots that have sprung up over the last few years.

Either way, I'd stay away from Colorado in the spring. Most of the really scenic, fun stuff is up pretty high and you'll run into snow until at least mid-June. Moab is still a really great place to bike in the spring; that is, if you don't mind the hoards of ski bums who escape there in April and May to avoid mud season at higher altitudes.

These days, a lot of people poo-poo Moab because it's so popular, but it's still got awesome trails. From Poison Spider to Porcupine Rim, you have miles and miles of easy, intermediate, and hard trails to choose from.

As far as where to stay in Moab, lots of BLM land that you can camp on without a permit or reservations surrounds the town. There are also a bunch of new bed and breakfasts cropping up everywhere, like the Castle Valley Inn (801-259-6012) run by Robert Ryan and Hertha Wakefield. For general information on Moab call 800-635-6622.

San Miguel de Allende in Mexico is the newest mountain bike mecca in the land. High in the foothills and desert plains of central Mexico, the countryside around San Miguel is ribboned with trails that were originally for burros, but have conveniently been turned over to mountain bikers.

The centrally located La Puertacita Boutique Hotel, a former mansion decorated in vivid colors, is the central hub of all biking in San Miguel. Room rates there start at $120 for a double. Call 011-52-415-222-50 for more details.

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