As the chairlift approached, I suddenly got nervous. It had been 15 years since I loaded a bike on a chairlift rack, and I didn’t want to royally screw up in front of a crowd and become file footage for America’s Funniest Videos. Typically, I like to earn my downhills by riding to the top, but when you’re lowlander at nearly 9,000 feet – the elevation of Trestle Bike Park in Winter Park, Colorado – you won’t hear any complaints about not riding uphill. I was breathing hard just pushing my bike onto the rack, which I managed to do without embarrassing myself.
Although Winter Park has had lift operated mountain bike trails since the early 1990’s, Trestle Bike Park is a new venture which takes lift-operated mountain biking to a new level. Trestle claims it is the fastest growing bike park in the U.S., and offers a wide range of trails from tight, technical, rocky singletrack on Mountain Goat to wide open, fast and flowing double track on Green World. And with black diamond expert trails running adjacent to green circle beginner trails and blue square intermediates, it’s a bike park which the entire family can enjoy.
Feel like shredding the gnar on your 10-inch big-hit downhill rig? Test your mettle on the mountain’s most fearsome double black diamond, Trestle Downhill. This is the downhill used for Crankworx Colorado. But be warned, the trail is unforgiving. While not the most insane technical trail, Trestle Downhill is very tight and steep in spots, dropping you down the face of rocks and roots and pointing you directly at ‘magnetic trees’ – trees which lay directly in the fall line. And like every great bike park, Trestle offers plenty of optional North Shore style ramps. So long as you have some skill, disc brakes and at least 4 inches of travel, Trestle Downhill can be cleaned, so long as you bring your A-game.