On an objective basis it's difficult to rank the trails in Fruita on par with destinations like Whistler, Crested Butte, or even Moab. But if you limit your scope to specifically desert mountain biking, there's no question that Fruita is one of the top mountain biking hot spots. This popularity is largely due to the 18 Road Trail System located in the North Fruita Desert, which offers fast, flowy beginner-friendly trails in wide-open terrain. Camping near the trailhead is extremely popular, making for a convenient spring mountain bike getaway for the throngs of riders that live on Colorado's Front Range.
Across the interstate, the Kokopelli Area Trails provide more technical terrain with challenging rocks and downhill gnar. That said, some of these trails offer excellent flow as well.
Included in this guidebook are key trails in nearby Grand Junction. While perhaps not technically in "Fruita," the Lunch Loops trails—and especially The Ribbon—are 100% worth riding when you're in the area. While they might look further away on the map, driving time to reach the Lunch Loops from downtown Fruita isn't much longer than driving to 18 Road.
Finally, unlike some towns that might objectively have higher quality trails, Fruita "gets it." The local business owners and elected officials know what it means to be a mountain biking destination. They've rebranded Fruita's official town logo and now depict it as an "F" in the center of a bicycle chain ring. Multiple bike shops in downtown support mountain bike tourists—most notably Over the Edge, whose owner and founder, Troy Rarick, is responsible for catalyzing much of the trail development in the region. And finally, the local restaurants and breweries—most notably the Hot Tomato—are all about their mountain biking patrons. While perhaps some of the trails leave something to be desired, in many ways Fruita sets the tone for every other mountain bike destination around the world.