Famous point-to-point race route from Crested Butte to Aspen.

Statistics

2,265

m

2,548

m

16

max°

Difficulty

FATMAP difficulty grade

Difficult

Description

The Grand Traverse route from Crested Butte to Aspen is one of the most iconic point-to-point traverses in Colorado.

This traverse is similar to the iconic Pearl Pass mountain bike ride from Crested Butte to Aspen, but the ski touring route follows a slightly different path through the mountains.

Recently, the ski touring race has spun off into trail running with the Grand Traverse Mountain Run. This point-to-point ultra marathon "follows the route of the Grand Traverse Backcountry Ski race," according to [TheGrandTraverse.org](https://thegrandtraverse.org/run/).

"In total, runners travel 40 miles across the Elk Mountains with over 6,000′ of elevation gain." That 6,000-foot number appears to be rounded down a bit.

According to our statistics, runners can expect to climb over 7,400 feet of elevation over the course of this epic run. "Racers will start on Elk Ave at 6:00am, run to the Upper Upper Loop trail via Tony's, over to Brush Creek Road, and out to Canal Trail," according to [TravelCrestedButte.com](https://travelcrestedbutte.com/crested-butte-trail-runs-races/).

"They will continue on through Death Pass (Trail 400) to Star Pass to Taylor Pass and Richmond Ridge and into the Aspen Ski Resort for the Finish at the base of Aspen Mountain." Topping out at an elevation of 12,346 feet, this route traverses some of the wildest, most remote, and most beautiful mountain terrain in the state! Unlike some routes that simply climb up to a high point and then drop back down into the valley, the Grand Traverse spends many miles traversing along a high mountain ridge well above tree line.

This route affords runners the opportunity to soak in the epic alpine grandeur that the Elk Range is renowned for!