Over the River and Through the Wood: Vermont’s Extensive Mountain Bike Offerings
Vermont’s mountains offer a plethora of activities throughout the year, one of the most robust of which is the fast-growing sport of mountain biking. From leisurely cross-country tracks to lift served downhill mountain biking and nationally renowned trail systems, Vermont’s resorts continue to expand upon their mountain bike offerings year after year. The continued expansions ensure that visitors of all ages and abilities can experience the joy of biking through Vermont’s beautiful mountains.
Stratton Mountain Resort
In addition to a new high-speed lift for Stratton, this summer’s $10 million capital investment includes phase one of a mountain bike park, served by the American Express six-passenger lift to mid-mountain, with trails expected to be available this fall. Focusing first on family- friendly terrain, the new mountain bike park features 4.6 miles of beginner, intermediate and progression trails. Vermont based Sinuosity has designed the layout implementing building techniques to minimize impact on the environment and create trail longevity. Throughout the summer, Stratton offers mountain bikes, including full-suspension models, and fat bike rentals and tours to nearby Angel Falls.
Three high speed lifts to get you to the top. Twenty-nine trails get you back down. On your way, enjoy over 35 miles of rugged single tracks, rock gardens, switchbacks and machine-built berms, hips and jumps. Plus, learn to mountain bike lessons will help you graduate from the Skills Garden to the Black Magic Jump Line in record time. The new Beast 365 All-Seasons Pass offers the best value to experience everything at Killington all-year long.
Suicide Six Ski Area
Coming in July to the historic Suicide Six Ski Area, the Elemental Bike Park, built by Sinuosity, features approximately six miles of flow trail accessible via the new quad chairlift. In addition, there are two pump tracks, a strider park, and a skills development area designed to build confidence and take riders to the next level. Share the fun with the entire family as they offer certified coaches, progressive terrain, and a premium bike rental fleet from the best full suspension bikes for kids, to the latest in downhill race machines from Kona and Santa Cruz. Scenic chair rides, hiking, craft beer and farm-to-table fare ensure a memorable experience for everyone.
Smugglers’ Notch Resort
The mountain biking experience at Smugglers’ Notch Resort continues to expand, with a comprehensive focus on supporting all ages and abilities to best serve the resort’s family visitors. This year, in celebration of both Memorial Day and the opening weekend for the onsite Bike Shop and Mountain Bike Center, Smugglers’ is leading the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail Bike-A-Thon on Saturday, May 26th. As a family friendly event, bikers can choose the length of their course and ride to help raise money for the Vermont Veterans’ Place, Cambridge Rotary, and Friends of the Lamoille Valley Rail Trail. The success of past seasons’ mountain bike offerings leads to further development of Smugglers’ cross-country network. Programs offered include park sessions, a family clinic, group or individual skills sessions, a women's clinic and a session for ages 3-6 year olds on Strider bikes (small bikes designed without pedals to promote balance and coordination at an introductory level for this age group). Resort visitors can choose to enjoy trails on site or access one of many nearby trail networks on their own or through a guided tour.
With close to 100 miles of cross-country mountain bike trails around Burke Mountain and trailside lodging at the Burke Mountain Hotel and Conference Center, two-wheeled visitors will have more options than they could imagine, located conveniently outside of their door. Add in the notable Kingdom Trails system and visitors will find themselves surrounded by some of the best trails in the country. Looking for lift served biking? The Burke Mountain Bike Park has been voted one of the top five best regional bike parks by riders throughout the Northeast. Riders of all ages and abilities will find a trail for them when they visit Burke Mountain.
Mount Snow Resort
Since opening its lifts to mountain biking 32 years ago, Mount Snow Bike Park has been putting smiles on dirt-covered faces each and every summer. Looking to try downhill biking for the first time? Mount Snow is home to Gateway, which is the longest introductory downhill trail in the East. Start there and work your way up through the levels, with the guidance of their professional instructors, to famous Double Black Diamond trails, such as Rock Garden and Swamp Donkey. Mount Snow Bike Park is also the home of the Eastern States Cup Downhill Finals each October. Looking for cross country trails? The Mount Snow Valley is crisscrossed with great single track with fun to be found for everyone from beginners to experts.
Okemo Mountain Resort
The Evolution Bike Park at Okemo debuted in 2015 with lift-served mountain biking and several miles of trails accessed from Okemo’s South Ridge Quad. Now, Okemo takes it from the top! Summit trails are accessible via the resort’s popular Sunburst Six orange bubble chairlift. The premiere summit trail, Scrambler, is a 1600-foot-vertical-drop ride with plenty of flow, and plans are underway for more trail construction to take place this summer. Okemo’s Evolution Bike Shop, featuring Scott bikes, moved upward as well. All mountain bike operations, including rentals and retail, plus Switchback BBQ, are now located in the Sugarhouse, Okemo’s mid-mountain lodge, accessible by Mountain Road.
Sugarbush offers twenty miles of lift-served downhill, cross-country and freestyle mountain biking terrain leading to the base of Lincoln Peak. In addition, the Vermont Mountain Bike Association has connected nearly sixty miles of mapped trails to Sugarbush's own trails including technical trails throughout the Valley and less technical terrain at Blueberry Lake. The bike park at Sugarbush is now under the leadership of Terrain Park Manager, Trevor Borrelli, who will work to revamp the lift-served offerings.
Stowe Mountain Resort
Stowe has a vibrant mountain bike culture with a world-class multi-use trail network, managed by the Stowe Mountain Bike Club (SMBC), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, supported by and engaged with the local community. With over 30 miles of maintained mountain bike trails, Stowe has one of the most extensive and vibrant networks in the Northeast. In the last year alone the SMBC has invested over $70,000 building two new trails in Cady Hill Forest, ‘Flo’ and ‘Snake,’ reworked the Charlie’s Trail, rebuilt the bridge on Tony’s trail and updated signage at all the trail kiosks.
Trapp Family Lodge
The Trapp Family Lodge mountain bike trails tour through the legendary property and have 1 mile of intermediate single-track trail, more than 5 miles of intermediate/expert single-track trails, and 20 miles of beginner to advanced double-track trails. Their progression of trails is perfect for first-timers or anyone looking to develop skills and confidence gradually. Start and end your ride from the fully equipped bike shop in the Outdoor Center or from one of the best trail hubs in Vermont, the von Trapp Bierhall where you can grab a burger, schnitzel or beer to round out your day.