Whether you’re an experienced road warrior or a biking beginner, Colorado has some of the best motorcycle rides for an unforgettable journey. The state’s dramatic landscapes and sweeping vistas, carved by Mother Nature herself, offer unparalleled motorcycle riding experiences.
From your friends at Fay Myers Motorcycle World, here’s a bucket list of the best roads for motorcycles that will bring you face-to-face with Colorado’s untamed beauty.
Mount Evans Scenic and Historic Byway
Kicking off our journey at Idaho Springs, the Mount Evans Scenic and Historic Byway offers a thrilling ascent to 14,130 feet, the highest paved road in North America. This 28-mile stretch takes you through various ecosystems as you climb towards the peak, passing pristine mountain lakes and ancient bristlecone pine trees.
As you approach the summit, watch out for mountain goats and bighorn sheep that call this rocky terrain home. With hairpin turns and awe-inspiring panoramas of snow-capped peaks, this ride will leave you breathless in more ways than one.
Trail Ridge Road Scenic and Historic Byway
Trail Ridge Road spans 48 miles from Estes Park to Grand Lake, crossing the heart of Rocky Mountain National Park. As the highest continuous auto road in the country, riders will encounter dramatic alpine vistas, abundant wildlife, and delicate tundra flowers on this memorable trip.
The road offers more than 10 miles above 11,000 feet, peaking at 12,183 feet. Keep an eye out for herds of elk and marmots scampering around the rocks. With sharp curves and occasional brisk summer temperatures, remember to bring an extra layer for this ride.
Santa Fe Trail Scenic and Historic Byway
Ride the path of history on the Santa Fe Trail Scenic and Historic Byway. This route follows the footsteps of pioneers and traders, with original wagon ruts still visible in places. The journey takes you through sprawling prairies, the Comanche National Grasslands, and past the imposing Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
Stretching 188 miles, you’ll encounter the unique heritage of Colorado, from Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site to the charming town of Trinidad with its richly diverse architectural styles. Make sure to enjoy the sweeping views of the Spanish Peaks, adding to the ride’s visual appeal.
San Juan Skyway Scenic and Historic Byway
Dubbed “The Road to the Sky,” the San Juan Skyway presents a stunning 236-mile loop in Colorado’s southwestern region. Navigating the skyway treats riders to some of Colorado’s best features: high alpine passes, deep river valleys, historic mining towns like Telluride and Silverton, and the prehistoric cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde National Park.
Marvel at the incredible vistas of towering peaks and wide-open vistas, like the panoramic view at Molas Pass. This journey, with the snow-capped San Juan Mountains as your backdrop, will indelibly etch itself in your memory.
Unaweep Tabeguache Scenic and Historic Byway
Unaweep Tabeguache Scenic and Historic Byway presents a geologically fascinating 133-mile ride. Starting in Whitewater, the byway winds through a canyon formed by the Dolores and Gunnison rivers, revealing eons of Earth’s history. The red sandstone cliffs and barren shale slopes contrast with verdant valleys, creating a captivating palette of colors.
Along the route, remnants of the area’s Ute Native American heritage and Colorado’s mining history are scattered, adding fascinating elements that set this trail apart. Don’t miss the historic Driggs Mansion and the hanging flume – an engineering marvel of the late 1800s.
Frontier Pathways Scenic and Historic Byway
The Frontier Pathways, Scenic and Historic Byway, is a 103-mile voyage through Colorado’s heartland. Starting from Pueblo, the ‘Steel City,’ the byway winds past open prairies and ranchlands and ascends into the high peaks of the Wet Mountains and Sangre de Cristo Range. As you pass through the charming towns of Westcliffe and Silver Cliff, take in the area’s Western heritage and its mining and ranching past.
A notable highlight is Lake Pueblo State Park’s marina and vast water-based recreational opportunities. In autumn, the mountain segments of this route burst into vibrant colors, enhancing the scenic grandeur.
Pawnee Pioneer Trails Scenic and Historic Byway
Explore the echoes of Colorado’s pioneer past on the Pawnee Pioneer Trails Scenic and Historic Byway. This 128-mile route takes you across the Pawnee National Grassland’s vast prairies and under its towering sandstone buttes.
Famed for its bird-watching opportunities, you might spot hawks, eagles, and larks on your journey. Pawnee Buttes, two 300-foot sandstone towers, is a not-to-be-missed landmark. Delve into the region’s agricultural heritage in small towns like Grover, Briggsdale, and Raymer, and keep an eye out for unique roadside stops along the way.
Top of the Rockies Scenic and Historic Byway
Cruising on the Top of the Rockies Scenic and Historic Byway takes you through 115 miles of Colorado’s high country. Starting at Copper Mountain, you’ll ascend through the breathtaking scenery of the Continental Divide and ride past the state’s two tallest peaks, Mount Massive, and Mount Elbert. Leadville, the highest incorporated city in the US, offers rich insights into Colorado’s silver mining history.
With challenging elevations and an array of visual treats, this route is a testament to Colorado’s moniker – “the state of high peaks.”
Taking riders over the Continental Divide, Independence Pass is a 32-mile, adrenaline-pumping journey that should be on every biker’s bucket list. As you ascend this challenging route, you’ll cross the tree line into an alpine wonderland of shimmering aspen groves, spruce-fir forests, and colorful wildflower meadows.
At the summit, (12,095 feet), panoramic views of the Sawatch Range leave an unforgettable impression. Note that the pass is seasonal and is typically open from Memorial Day to late fall.
Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic and Historic Byway
Uncover the heritage of Colorado’s oldest communities on Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic and Historic Byway. This 129-mile route skirts the mystical Sangre de Cristo Mountains and unveils the charm of the San Luis Valley.
With sights like the historic town of San Luis, Colorado’s oldest church, and the Fort Garland Museum, there’s much to explore. The ride culminates at the awe-inspiring Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, a sight that seems more fitting to the Sahara than the Rockies.
Discover the Road Less Traveled with a Bike from Fay Myers
Motorcycle riding in Colorado is more than just a pastime – it’s a journey of discovery and adventure through the state’s rich, diverse beauty. And remember, whether you’re a seasoned rider or a two-wheel novice, there’s always a new path to be explored and a new thrill to be experienced.
So, gear up, and find your next adventure on the best motorcycle rides Colorado has to offer. At Fay Myers Motorcycle World, you can browse an outstanding selection of new and pre-owned motorcycles for sale in Greenwood Village, CO. No matter your style or budget, our team can help you find the perfect bike. And once you join the Fay Myers family, we’re always here for you – our knowledgeable motorcycle techs are available to answer any questions you might have about your bike or a new one you have your eye on.
There are adventures out there waiting to be had – and there’s no reason to waste even one more day before hitting the road. Visit Fay Myers Motorcycle World to get your dream bike today!
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