Seg 1 – Southeast Segment (Kansas/Colorado State Line to Canon City)
From Kansas, the ADT crosses the eastern plains of Colorado along the Arkansas River climbing from 3,555 feet to 5,293 feet over a distance of 221 miles. The ADT follows the general route of the old Santa Fe Trail to La Junta and passes by Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site. It also goes through John Martin Reservoir State Park and Lake Pueblo State Park. The route uses county and state roads through the pastoral countryside.
Colorado State Parks
Bent’s Old Fort
Maps: TOPO! Colorado or DeLorme Colorado Atlas
Seg 2 – Front Range Segment (Canon City to Denver)
This section takes the traveler through the Front Range where the eastern plains meet the foothills of the Rockies. Starting at 5,293 feet, the route climbs to 9,165 feet at Ute Pass in the shadow of Pikes Peak and then descends to Colorado Springs at 6,008 feet and proceeds on to Denver at 5,280 feet. Highlights include Cripple Creek (world’s greatest gold camp), Garden of the Gods, Pikes Peak Greenway, U.S. Air Force Academy, and Platte River Greenway.
www.woodlandparkchamber.com – Woodland Park Chamber of Commerce
www.gmfco.us – Green Mountain Falls
Maps: Delorme Atlas, Pike National Forest, Trails Illustrated # 135 and # 137.
Seg 3 – Northeast Segment (Nebraska to Denver)
From Nebraska, the ADT crosses the eastern plains of Colorado along the South Platte River, climbing from 3,448 feet to 5,280 feet over a distance of 241 miles. Highlights include the Fort Sedgewick, Overland Trail, and Fort Vasquez museums, and the Denver South Platte Trail. The route uses county and state roads through the pastoral countryside
Maps: DeLorme Colorado Atlas, TOPO! Colorado CD-ROMS
Seg 4 – East Mountain Segment (Denver to Winfield)
In this segment, the ADT starts at 5,317 feet and climbs over the foothills of the Rockies into the high alpine country to cross seven passes, four of which are over 12,000 feet high. The highest point on the ADT is at Argentine Pass (13,207 feet) on the Continental Divide.
The ADT is often above timberline for breathtaking views. It follows the Continental Divide Trail for 9 miles from Webster Pass to Georgia Pass, crossing the summits of four peaks over 12,000 feet high.
From Georgia Pass the route follows the Colorado Trail for 106 miles, passing through the Holy Cross and Collegiate Peaks wilderness areas.
This segment crosses high mountain passes and ridges where it can snow any day of the year.
Highlights: Georgetown National Historic District, Leadville (highest incorporated city in the U.S.), great wilderness hiking and camping, spectacular scenery.
Maps: TOPO! Colorado, Trails Illustrated #104 and #109, Colorado Trail Foundation Trailside Data Book
Bike Detours: Parts of the ADT route go through wilderness areas where bicycles are prohibited and over rough terrain where mountain bike travel is difficult. Recommended bike detours are at the end of the segment.
Seg 5 – West Mountain Segment (Winfield to Redstone)
This segment features some of the most spectacular and breathtaking views of the Rocky Mountains. It starts on Clear Creek Road and follows the Continental Divide Trail for 16 miles, passing through the ghost towns of Vicksburg and Winfield before entering the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area. The ADT then climbs past Lake Ann to cross the Continental Divide and descend into spectacular Taylor Park.
The route climbs to the Continental Divide at Taylor Pass (11,928 feet) before descending down East Brush Creek to historic Crested Butte, “Mountain Bike Capital of the World.”? Then the ADT climbs over Paradise Pass (11,300 feet) Schofield Pass (10,707 feet) and then down the beautiful Crystal Creek Canyon to Marble and Redstone.
Warning: The first 62 miles of this segment go through remote backcountry (no shelter/services). Alternate routes may be more appropriate for some travelers. Also, inquire locally about the condition of the passes, which are often closed by snow.
www.ghosttowns.com – Click on Select A State, choose Colorado, click on List Alphabetically, then click on Winfield
www.ghosttowns.com – Click on Select A State, choose Colorado, click on List Alphabetically, then click on Marble
Maps: TOPO! Colorado, San Isabel National Forest, Gunnison National Forest, Trails Illustrated #131
Bike Detours: Parts of the ADT route through this segment enter a wilderness area and are over rough terrain where mountain bike travel is difficult. Recommended bike and snow detours are at the end of the segment.
Seg 6 – West Segment (Redstone to Utah)
From Redstone at 7,190 feet, the ADT reaches elevations of 10,380 feet (near Twin Peaks), 10,668 feet (The Flat Tops), and 11,159 feet (Crags Crest) before plunging down into the Grand Valley to a low of 4,430 feet at Salt Creek Bridge. This segment features some of the most scenic backcountry in the world in the White River and Grand Mesa National Forests, the spectacular Colorado National Monument, and the challenging Kokopelli’s Trail in desert conditions. Obtain local advice before beginning Kokopelli’s Trail.
Warning: This segment of the ADT takes travelers across more than 70 miles of rough remote uninhabited backcountry (no houses, phones, food, treated water, shelter). Discuss your plans with the Colorado State Coordinator before attempting this leg. Alternate routes may be safer for some travelers.
www.fs.fed.us/r2/spf/ – Click on Select A Forest – White River NF and Grand Mesa NF
Maps: TOPO! Colorado; Delorme Colorado Atlas; Trails Illustrated #128, #136, and #208; White River National Forest; Grand Mesa National Forest. Map of Kokopelli’s BikeTrail by Rick Showalter
Bike Detours: Parts of the ADT route through this segment are over rough terrain where mountain bike travel is difficult. Recommended bike detours are listed at the end of the segment.