Finding the best mountain bike trails can be a challenge, and regular hiking trails aren’t always suitable for bikers. When you’re on a designated mountain biking trail, you have the right of way. On any other trail, you need to be more careful about pedestrians.
Fortunately, plenty of resources will help you find the perfect mountain biking trails, no matter what level of experience you have.
The Best Sites for Finding Mountain Bike Trails
If you’re going to find the perfect trails, you need to check out the best mountain biking sites that will help steer you in the right direction. We have come up with our top three favorites based on how useful they are.
AllTrails.com is a site designed to help you locate the best trails in your area. This particular site covers a wide range of options, rather than only mountain biking trails.
While you can stick to the mountain biking feature, it’s also a wonderful resource for someone who enjoys mixing things up. Plus, if you’re looking for trails with friends, you can find something more suited to their capabilities.
Things We Like
- Wide variety of trail options
- Plenty of filters to narrow down your choices
- Available across the world
Things We Don’t Like
- Not only for mountain biking
- Complaints about people mountain biking can bring down ratings on great trails
You can use the filters on the site when searching for trails to narrow down your results.
Those filters include:
- Elevation gain
- Route Type
- Activity (hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, backpacking, etc.)
- And more
Through this website, you can take a look at individual trails that you’re interested in. Each trail will have ratings, pictures, and comments from people who have experience with the trail.
Unfortunately, since this is a site for hiking too, there tends to be a lot of complaints about bikers on the trails. Therefore, the ratings on some of these trails may be more negative than they should be. However, it is a great resource for finding the trails, so you may want to check out ratings on other sites for comparison.
MTBProject.com is another fabulous option if you are looking for mountain biking trails anywhere in the world.
This website is a crowdsourced mountain biking website. In other words, it is built by serious mountain bikers, for serious mountain bikers.
- Crowdsourced website
- Always up to date
- Extremely informative
- Not as many trails or features and some other sites
Anyone is able to share trails, ratings, comments, photos, and improve existing content. That enables the site to stay up to date effortlessly, so you can usually rely on the information you find on the site.
If you find that something has changed about a trail, you can take part in updating the content to help other bikers.
The MTB Project has a similar setup to All Trails, but it is specifically designated for mountain biking. While this makes it a useful site for many, it may lack some of the features you’d find with a bigger resource. Still, you can filter your results to find a trail that suits your needs best.
- Trail type
- And More
Keep in mind that this site is very well rounded in the USA, and you can easily search for trails in your area. Or if you are going on vacation, you could search state by state to find something along your route.
They have even begun expanding into other countries, so you are able to find mountain biking trails anywhere in the world!
Trailforks.com is another popular database. It is similar to All Trails because it also has a list of various trails for all kinds of activities. That includes hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, and more.
You are able to search on the map, by a regional directory, or by list. You can also plan, find, or recommend specific routes.
- An extensive list of trails for all activities
- In-depth report section
- Includes a list of parks in addition to regular trails
- App is not better for navigation than tracking progress
- Not compatible with Strava
One of the most helpful features on this site is the report section. It allows Trail Fork users to report on fallen trees, washed out sections, or other obstacles on specific trails.
Users can also report on dangers they come across on the trail, such as poisonous snakes or large predators passing through the area, such as bears.
This site also shows you other biking locations, such as parks for biking, practicing skills, and leisurely riding. That’s a fantastic feature for someone taking a break from serious trail riding. It’s also a perfect resource when you’re teaching a new mountain biker certain skills before venturing out on challenging trails.
Tips for Getting the Most Out of Mountain Biking
When it comes to mountain biking, there are more tools and tricks at your disposal than ever before. We want to point out a few valuable tips you should know before taking on your next mountain biking adventure.
Join a Club or a Riding Group
If you’re serious about mountain biking, it can be a lot more fun to join a group or club. That will give you a chance to learn from other people, and possibly pass on your own knowledge as well.
More than anything, it’s a great way to make friends and travel safely. Mountain biking is a serious sport, and the more challenging trails can be dangerous. It’s important to stick with a buddy in case you get injured and need help.
Use Apps with Downloadable Maps
Many of these resources, such as TrailForks.com, have an app with downloadable maps. Those will ensure that you have guidance even if you lose service.
That’s extremely important if you’re exploring a new area, and don’t know how well your phone’s service will hold up. You should always be well prepared, and finding maps that can be accessed offline is an important resource.
Track Your Progress
If you’re a serious mountain biker or hit the trails for a multitude of different activities, you might be interested in tracking your progress. Strava is a fantastic tool to use for that purpose.
Instead of logging progress manually, you can use Strava like a FitBit. All you have to do is turn on the app before setting out on your next adventure, and it will track your progress. Over time you will be able to look at how much you have improved.
Make Sure to Use Legitimate Trails
One of the most important reasons we recommend using these sites to find legitimate trails is to keep you safe. Unfortunately, there are plenty of illegal mountain biking trails all over the country.
Long story short, if you want to find safe and legal trails that are specifically designed for mountain biking, these websites are a fantastic resource.
Overall, mountain biking is a great way to take adventures and get fantastic exercise. The hardest part is finding the right trails that fit your level of experience. Of the sites listed above, we found that the MTB Project was the best since it’s only geared toward bikers. And, it allows users to consistently update information about each trail.
If you have tackled all the trails in your area, you might be interested in branching out and traveling a bit further for a new challenge—and the sites above can help with that.