Top Mountain Biking Destinations By Campervan
By Carly Eisley
Mountain biking vacations are a great way to see an area. And what better way to travel than with an Escape campervan as your basecamp? Here are a few great mountain biking destinations to get you on your way to some stoke-worthy camping and riding.
Whistler, British Columbia
A 2-hour drive from the Escape Campervans Vancouver depot, Whistler is a world-class mountain biking destination. The downhill park at Whistler Blackcomb has miles (kilometers?) of lift-serviced trails, with cross country and enduro riding nearby for those who like to pedal their uphills. Bike shop and rentals are available at the mountain, making logistics a breeze.
Perhaps one of the most well-known mountain biking destinations in the United States (OK in the world), Moab’s vast network of trails offers something for everyone, from beginners to the most seasoned riders. It’s about a 4-hour drive from Escape’s Salt Lake City depot. The scenery is unreal and the miles of trail are unmatched. The famous (and technical) 9.6-mile Slickrock trail is one of the most popular, but there are many, many others to suit all rider abilities.
Numerous bike shops in the area offer rentals to get you on the trails if you aren’t traveling with your bike. Most of them offer a range of different rental types, from more basic mountain bikes to high-end rides.
When you have had your fill of riding, check out nearby Arches and Canyonlands National Parks for some great hikes. Cap off your day with a cold one at Moab Brewery!
Two hours north of the Phoenix depot, Sedona is a must-visit for any outdoor enthusiast. The red rock scenery is just gorgeous. With an estimated 250+ miles of mountain biking trails, there is something for everyone. Many trails are known for some steep exposure and technical descents, so experts rejoice! Check out Over the Edge bike shop for rentals, trail maps, route recommendations, and local expertise.
From Sedona, the exploring options through Arizona are endless; Flagstaff, Grand Canyon, Tuscon… so many options to continue your adventure.
Lake Tahoe, California
Lake Tahoe is home to some famous trails – most notably the Flume trail and the Tahoe Rim Trail. There are miles of trails to choose from with mountain and lake views that can’t be beat. At around 3(ish) hours from the San Francisco depot, Lake Tahoe is a fantastic destination for all things biking and more. After a long day of riding, take a swim in the lake and then hit the local craft breweries to plan your next ride. Local bike rentals are available, as are shuttles for one way trails such as the flume.
Crested Butte, Colorado
A 4.5-hour drive from the Denver depot will land you in Crested Butte. This bike-centric town is home to some epic trails with stunning scenery and flowing singletrack. Crested Butte has been part of mountain bike culture since the beginnings of the sport and it shows. With over 700 miles of trails and the oldest mountain biking festival in the country, the trails will bring you there but the people and the culture will keep you coming back. Check out CB’s website for some inspiration to get you rolling.
Love bikes, hip cities, good food, and craft beer? Get yourself to Bend! A three-hour drive from the Portland depot, Bend and its surrounding areas are home to hundreds of miles of singletrack, as well as lift-serviced downhill trails at Mount Bachelor. The fun doesn’t stop in the winter – hop on a fat bike and cruise some snowy terrain. See this guide to riding in Bend.
Brevard/Asheville, North Carolina
Time to give the East Coast some love! A 3.5-hour drive from the Atlanta depot will take you to some of the best biking on the East Coast. Riders of all levels will love the trails at the Bent Creek experimental forest just outside of Asheville. Head a bit south for a rooty, rocky, technical, enduro riders dream in the Pisgah National Forest in Brevard. DuPont State Forest’s 10,000 acres is host to a collection of trails with varying terrain and ability levels as well.
Don’t skip your post-ride brew here! Asheville and it’s surrounding areas are a craft beer lovers dream. Stop into the Hub in Brevard for gear and trail recommendations, and hit up Oskar Blues brewery after for some beers with fellow riders; there is a trail leading into the National Forest from their parking lot.
Kingdom Trails, Vermont
A mecca for New England mountain bikers, Kingdom trails in East Burke, Vermont is starting to get the national attention it deserves. Miles of flowy singletrack in an idyllic small-town setting makes for some amazing riding. The trails are groomed for winter fat biking in the snow, and there are downhill trails at the nearby Burke mountain resort. Hit up the Spokeasy Pub on Darling Hill for a post-ride bite and brew, or Mike’s Tiki Bar (right at the parking area in East Burke) for a unique apres-ride setting. The nearest Escape depot to rent from is New York.