Located within the vicinity of Fort Collins, Colorado, the Reservoir Ridge trail network offers a rocky and technical riding experience for intermediate-level cyclists. With a total distance of 5 miles, this trail promises a challenging climb and a thrilling descent, albeit with a series of caveats.
Reaching the Reservoir Ridge Natural Area is fairly straightforward. From Fort Collins, head north on Overland Trail, and if coming from Laporte, head south on the same road. Look out for Michaud Lane located at a 90-degree turn of Overland Trail. Proceed down Michaud Lane to its end and you'll find the parking lot situated next to Claymore Lake.
The trail network is predominantly rocky and could be considered "moderately technical." Starting on the Foothills Trail, riders make their way west uphill to the first intersection, where they can either continue on the Foothills Trail or take a detour onto Reservoir Ridge Trail that loops back to Centennial Drive.
The trails exhibit a stark contrast between the West and East sides:
The East side of the trail has undergone rerouting and presents a jarring array of rock gardens. While these add a technical element, they are considered "gnar at no speed" and can be frustrating for riders. Expect frequent stops and "pecking" through rocks.
The consensus among experienced cyclists is rather mixed:
It's worth noting that many riders are disappointed with the rerouting on the East side. The ride is described as a "full-time exercise in pedal management," which might not be everyone's cup of tea.
Reservoir Ridge offers a somewhat polarized experience, appealing to riders seeking a technical challenge but possibly alienating those in search of a smoother ride. However, its convenient location and the availability of different route options can make it a suitable choice for Fort Collins' intermediate cyclists, depending on what they are looking to get out of their trail ride.