Cotopaxi North - 2/2/17 version
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The Cotopaxi North area is lightly populated with homes and has a maze of county roads. Mixed in among this are small BLM-managed areas that have dirt roads, three ATV routes and one hiking/horseback trail. The area is north of US Highway 50, and starts just north of Cotopaxi. The area is often rideable in winter because it doesn't get much snow.
The motorized routes are easy dirt county roads and more difficult BLM dirt roads. The ATV routes on the south end are tougher - sand washes, sandy dirt roads, and a few steep rutted climbs. The total riding mileage is about 40 miles, so all the routes can easily be ridden in a day.
CR12 which goes from South Park to Cotopaxi and CR1A which goes from Cotopaxi south to CR69 make up a convenient route from South Park to the country south of Cotopaxi. A ride from Salida through South Park (CR175 and CR2) and then south through Cotopaxi can put you at McCoy Gulch, Texas Cr, and the Rainbow Trail. The latter connection to the Rainbow Tr is excellent for agile dual sport bikes that can be ridden back to Salida on the trail.
The Cotopaxi Store (on Highway 50) is a real "General Store". It has groceries, a bakery/deli/cafe, livestock feed, hardware, UPS shipping, maps, gift items, hunting and fishing licenses and supplies, and fuel - gasoline, diesel, propane, kerosene and firewood.
The map clip on the right ---> shows three groups of BLM routes. Click the map to see a larger jpg version showing the entire area (print for reference).
Click Off-highway Vehicles and then "Cotopaxi North" on the lower right to get a pdf map of the area.
Click Recreation to see a list of BLM areas.
Click BLM Seasonal Closures page (NEW) to see the Royal Gorge Field Office Wet Weather Gate Status.
DIRECTIONS: From Cañon City, drive US Highway 50 west to Cotopaxi. Turn right onto County Road 12.
From Salida, drive US Highway 50 east to Cotopaxi, about 23 miles. Turn left onto County Road 12.
YouTube video - Cotopaxi North area ride on 3/15/13 riding a Honda CRF250L.
See Dual Sport Riding in Central Colorado for information about other areas and rides.
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