FATMAP difficulty grade
If you’re looking for an ambitious dirt road loop right out of downtown Breckenridge that’s achievable on a gravel bike, look no further than this route up and over Georgia Pass, returning to Breck via Boreas Pass. Admittedly, the technical difficulty of this route could be a bit much for some gravel riders.
The section of dirt road climbing up to the top of Georgia Pass is rated for 4x4 vehicles on the map, with the upper section rated as difficult.
However, a competent rider on a gravel bike should be able to pick their way up the rocky 4x4 road to gain the top of the pass. The grassy meadows on top of Georgia Pass yields jaw-dropping views of the surrounding mountains.
Guyot towers over you. From here on out, the technical climbing will pay off with easier riding! The rest of the route takes place largely on two-wheel-drive gravel roads, with some sections of pavement mixed in.
Thankfully, the gravel road descent down the backside of Georgia Pass is smoother than the climb, allowing you to relax a little bit as you rip down the mountain. Once you drop into the South Park valley, a short section of riding along Highway 285 is required to reach the gravel on Boreas Pass.
Note that cars fly along this highway at 65 MPH or faster, so ride cautiously.
Thankfully, the shoulder is generally quite wide. After dealing with the traffic on the highway, getting back on the gravel on Boreas Pass is a welcome breath of fresh air.
Originally a railroad grade that was built to serve the nearby mines, the well-built corridor makes for a pleasant, consistent pedal to the top. Boreas Pass is notable as one of the few graded and well-maintained two-wheel-drive roads in Colorado that climb up and over a major alpine pass.
In general, most other high alpine passes are either gnarly 4x4 roads, or are paved.
Consequently, Boreas Pass is a gravel biker’s paradise! Once on top of the 11,500-foot pass, get ready for a steady downhill rip all the way back into downtown Breckenridge! Be sure to take in the views along the way, and stop and snap a quick picture at the impressive Baker’s Tank.