The Rio Grande Trail runs the entire length of the Roaring Fork Valley from Aspen to Glenwood Springs. The 42-mile long multi-use trail is built along the historic Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad corridor where train operations ceased in phases, between the 1960s and mid-1990s.
The right-of-way was purchased in 1997 with funding from a combination of local governments, Great Outdoors Colorado, Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, and the Colorado Department of Transportation. The rails-to-trails project was completed in 2008 and is now managed by the Roaring Fork Transit Authority (RFTA).
Protected from vehicular traffic and with a maximum of 3% grade, the trail is accessible to all levels of cyclists. You’ll see walkers and joggers too, rollerbladers, plenty of dogs, and maybe even some wildlife!
The closest access point from Shadowrock is located where the trail crosses Hooks Lane just off Willits Lane. There is parking available here for a handful of vehicles.
From there, the valley is your oyster! Head up-valley through the Roaring Fork Club toward Basalt, Woody Creek, and Aspen or down-valley toward the towns of Carbondale and Glenwood Springs.