As its name implies, Penelope’s is a relatively easy ride that travels up and over a ridge with no technical sections and a nice breezy downhill. It also affords gorgeous views of the Wilsons Range and looks out onto Telluride Ski Resort and the box canyon.
When spring rolls around in Telluride, mountain bikers are forced to employ patience; the trails around here require some time to dry out from the winter snowfall. Luckily, there is the Aldasoro Ranch, rolling complex of south-facing slopes whose exposure to the sun ensures good early-season riding. Penelope’s Cruise is the trail to hit when the sun’s out and you want to dust off your mountain bike but the trails aren’t quite ready.
As its name implies, Penelope’s is a relatively easy ride that travels up and over a ridge with no technical sections and a nice breezy downhill. It also affords gorgeous views of the Wilsons Range and looks out onto Telluride Ski Resort and the box canyon. It requires some road miles to get there, but it’s one of the area’s best beginner rides.
What Makes It Great
Penelope’s can be done in about an hour, so it’s a great option for a lunch break or post-work evening. It’s also a good ride for when you just want a cruise. The terrain alters from sagebrush slopes to well-spaced aspens, and it offers up big open views for head-clearing pedaling.
Who is Going to Love It
Beginner mountain bikers, cyclists who only have a short window of time and those who want to get their legs strong before striking out on a more challenging or technical mission.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
From downtown Telluride, head west out of town on Colorado Avenue (main street), linking up with the bike path at the roundabout. Ride the bike path three miles, and just before you hit Society Turn (the major three-way intersection), take a left onto Last Dollar Road, following signs to the Telluride airport. Ride the road as it climbs two switchbacks and just before you get to the airport, continue right on Last Dollar Road (the dirt road). Follow the road for less than a mile, and you will see a parking lot and kiosk on your right. That is the trailhead. Climb the singletrack as it winds up the slope until it meets up with Deep Creek Trail. At that junction, take a sharp right to continue up to the top of Penelope’s. The trail will top out in the aspens and cruise along the ridge for a short section before dropping down the other side. It ends with a curvaceous descent that spits riders back out on Last Dollar Road. Head back to town the way you came, and take either the paved bike path or, if it’s late enough in the season, the Valley Floor singletrack back to Telluride.