Best Offroad Trails Near Denver – Beginner to Advanced

The area near Denver is any off-road driver’s dream.

The combination of top-grade trails and the scenic surroundings featuring gorgeous scenery offers a perfect mix for driving adventure.

Besides that, the availability of easy, moderate, and hard trails makes this region ideal for all off-road enthusiasts.

So, what are some of the best-off trails near Denver?

Best Offroad Trails Near Denver

Denver and the surrounding region have some of the best off-road spots in Colorado. For a novice or a seasoned off-road driver, some of the best trails that you can try out include:

Bald Mountain Gulch

This moderately busy loop trail is also referred to as FS Road 300. The 4WD trail is found in Colorado’s Fourmile region in the southeast of the Johnson Village. It’s one of the best trails near Denver that offers scenic views thanks to its rock-framed landscape, unique rock formations, as well as a sandy ground.

Bald Mountain Gulch has a trail with a moderate level of difficulty. Its track length is approximately 8.8 miles with a track time of slightly over an hour.

It’s perfect for a weekend or a holiday gateway. You will start from a dirt road by going through the trail, you will come across multiple transitions including a sand wash and a steep descent. The northeast and southwest trail are quite different and challenging.

So, for 4WD enthusiasts, the combination of different transitions makes the whole trail engaging.

Bald Mountain Gulch is quite versatile and while it gives 4X4 lovers the best chance to navigate this terrain, there is still a wide range of activities to engage in. This includes camping, fishing, and hiking, etc.

Alpine Tunnel East


It is a relatively easy trail that makes it suitable for beginners.

The historical landmark that’s found in the San Isabel National Forest and near St. Elmo sits on one of the North highest closed railway lines.

Alpine Tunnel East has a track length of about 5.7 miles with a track time of 30 minutes.

For the most part, the trail’s terrain is mainly made of dirt road, you will enjoy a smooth and easy ride. Besides that, the trail is quite wide without obstacles. This makes it suitable for your favorite holidaying SUV.

It’s an interesting offroad trail that is rich in history. Your adventure will take you through the ghost time of Romley that was previously vibrant with life when the Mary Murphy Mine was active.

Romley is an interesting town, having been famously known as the red town due to its red and white buildings.

Bassam Park

Bassam Park is another easy trail that’s beginner-friendly.

Covering a length of 8 miles and a track time of approximately 30 minutes, this is one of the best offroad trails near Denver that offers versatility.

You have a chance to take your 4WD through different types of terrains while taking in the scenic views that the surroundings offer.

Located inside the San Isabel National Forest, Bassam Park Road is renowned with 4WD enthusiasts as well as hikers and equestrians. This is also a favorite spot for mountain bikers. The combination of towering outcrops of volcanic stones with high buttes makes this mud and dirt terrain attractive for ordinary passenger gars such as minivans and sedans.

Bassam Park is a high-traffic area but with a wide road that can perfectly accommodate two vehicles, you are bound to enjoy most of your time going moderately difficult inclines, descents, and blind curves.

Black Bear Pass

If you are looking for the best offroad trails near Denver that are quite hard to navigate, then you should first start with the Black Bear Pass. Well, its difficulty ranges from hard to very hard and so you must be prepared to do some mental and physical work.

Its track length covers 9.8 miles and it will take you around 3 hours to complete it.

Its terrain is mainly made up of mud and dirt. The start of your journey will feature scenic surroundings with waterfalls cascade from the Alpine’s snow melting.

But as you go up and climb through the almost physical 12,900-foot summit, you must be ready to deal with tight switchbacks, some loose shale, and difficult turns.

This makes it an ideal offroad trail for experts with years of experience.

Bordenville Gulches

Well, if you can’t take Black Pears Pass, then you can try the Bordenville Gulches.

Its difficulty level is easy to moderate and it has a track length of around 21 miles. Bordenville Gulches has a mud and dirt terrain and it takes almost 3 hours and 40 minutes to complete it.

Located in Pike National Forest, this is a trail that’s rich in history and has beautiful views. Besides that, it’s known to be a great camping area with multiple hunting ones.

It’s usually open to the public throughout the year and so you can enjoy snow wheeling even though this usually poses serious challenges to most drivers.

The majority of the people who take this trail often use AWD vehicles due to the poorly maintained gravel and dirt roads. However, there are still parts of this trail that can accommodate trucks and jeeps. It’s also not unusual to come across dirt bikes.

Rampart Range

Rampart Range is also part of the Pike National Forest. Rampart Range is just a few minutes drive away from the Denver area hence it’s a convenient spot for offroad drivers. Its terrain is quite easy and this makes it a great place for beginners.

With almost 36 miles distance, it takes slightly over 3 hours to explore and go through this whole trail.

It’s worth noting that Rampart Range has multiple trail options including the Rampart and Mt. Herman Road that are suitable for introductory purposes. You also get a chance to enjoy great views from the Air Force Academy and the Front Range.

Don’t forget to check out the Garden of God’s Park as well as Pikes Peak since they are awesome as well. However, driving on this trail is quite challenging on weekends and holidays since it’s usually crowded.

Ballard Road

It’s a cool trail with beautiful views and engaging side roads. Located inside the Roosevelt National Forest, Ballard Road ensures that you are fun-ready regardless of the season since it’s usually open throughout the year.

Its difficulty level of easy to moderate. While the first 4 miles are usually uneventful, you have to be prepared to deal with a difficult trail on the last part. This trail has a track length of 4.12 miles and it normally takes around 45 minutes to finish.

Its close proximity to the urban area has made with popular with offroad drivers. Besides that, you will likely come across campers. Note that the mud and dirt terrain has become a popular avenue for winter wheeling even though its southern part usually remains closed during this season.

Bill Moore Lake

With a track length of 5.6 miles, it would take you a track time of almost 3 hours to complete this trail. Bill Moore is quite fun and engaging thanks to its moderate level of difficulty.

The mud and dirt terrain road is one of the best offroad trails near Denver that offers fun climbs to cater to the needs of seasoned and beginner offroad drivers. Besides that, it has amazing alpine scenery.

The 4X4 Bill Moore trail has a rich history that dates back to the 1930s. It’s moderately trafficked and as a result, perfect for a weekend gateway. It’s worth noting that this trail is primarily used for OHV/Off-road driving. In addition to that, the most ideal time for an offroad adventure is between April and October.

China Wall

This off-road trail literally feels like navigating through a wall. Well, its difficulty level is hard after all.

With a track length of 8.1 miles, it would take you a track time of almost 2 hours. It’s definitely the best way to enjoy the weekend adventure and work out.

The well-maintained roads make this difficult trail great to navigate and the scenic views definitely make the trail enticing.

For campers looking for some downtime, the China wall trail has great camping spots. Note that there is a large campground that’s located near a beautiful reek. So, this is a great place for a small off-road holiday or weekend.


For an off-roading enthusiast, there is no better way to enjoy Denver’s backcountry other than taking over its different trails. The surrounding area has a wide range of off-road trails suitable for all types of off-road drivers.

Not only do you have a chance of improving your skills and experience, but the area near Denver is a masterpiece.

You will come across interesting sights, abandoned towns, steep inclines, blind turns, and inactive mines. The aforementioned trails are some of the best in this area.

They cater to different needs and most of them are usually open for the most part of the year.

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