Back Country Touring: Jeeping, Dirt Bike, ATV in Ouray
Back country touring by jeep, dirt bike, or ATV is a wonderful way to experience the San Juan Mountains near Ouray. The extensive network of old mining roads make Ouray the 4-wheeling capital of the US. These trails pass through some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, with abundant wildflowers, ghost towns, abandoned mines, and wildlife all along the way.
Trails range from easy scenic drives to challenging drives over spectacular mountain passes. Beginning 4-wheelers can choose Last Dollar Road into Telluride or Cinnamon Pass towards the Animas Forks ghost town and Lake City.
More experienced drivers can choose for dozens of scenic and challenging trails including Engineer Pass, Yankee Boy and Governors Basin, and the Imogene-Ophir loop trails or even Black Bear.
One of the most popular tours is the day-long trip over the Alpine Loop. This trail connects Ouray, Silverton, and Lake City. Take Engineer Pass and return over Cinnamon Pass. Stop in the ghost town of Animas Forks and imagine the life of a hard rock miner. Many other reminders are still visible, abandoned mines and mills, old railbeds, and of course the route itself.