Ride Report: Golden Open Space near Madrid, NM

I like excuses.  Well, not really.  Unless it’s an excuse to ride my bike.  I also like excuses to eat good food and drink good beer.  Usually, those excuses are intertwined with riding bikes, as food and beer always taste better after riding bikes.  What am I blabbing about?  Well, I wanted an excuse to return to the funky little town of Madrid, New Mexico.  It’s a an old mining town off the “Tourqoise Trail” near Santa Fe, with a great vibe (albeit a bit touristy and harley laden on the weekends).  So I started searching for mtb opportunities nearby.  After some sleuthing, I found a relatively new trail network just up the road from Madrid in another historic mining area called Golden – aptly called the “Golden Open Space”.

Trailhead at the Golden Open Space

Trailhead at the Golden Open Space

This network is so new, that the signs are temporary, and they are still adding mileage and connecting some sections.  I’ll be super stoked when they do, because as-is, there is some great singletrack to be had.  Right now, the network is about 9.3 miles and 688′ according to the Strava data I collected on my ride.  It’s only gonna get better as they add more mileage.

Temporary trail signs, alluding to the "work in progress" of the new trail system.

Temporary trail signs, alluding to the “work in progress” of the new trail system.

Fantastic singletrack and gorgeous views from the mesas abound.

Fantastic singletrack and gorgeous views from the mesas abound.

 

The Golden Open Space is a little off the beaten path, and as such, it seems to be less crowded than other ABQ area rides, and has a very remote feel.  Coupled with great scenery, and flowy singletrack, it was a wonderful mountain biking treat.  The red and yellow sandstone paired with limestone for a potpourri  of colors.  There are also sections where wildflowers line the trail.  Quite stunning.  The trails meander through two mesas split by an arroyo.  On top of the mesas it’s pretty flat and smooth riding.  As you make your way in and out of the arroyo there’s more switchbacks making for fun descents, while the climbing grade is kept manageable.  Nothing too hard or techy out here – just peaceful, relaxing riding.

Wildflowers lining the trail.  Love it!!

Wildflowers lining the trail. Love it!!

What ride isn’t complete without good food and beer?  Well… in this case, my ride ended at 11am, so I wasn’t ready to crack a beer… But I did head over to the Java Junction in Madrid for a brekky quesadilla and home fries.  Yum indeed.  All the excuses I made to find this ride were well worth it 🙂

My brekky quesadilla and home fries at Java Junction in Madrid, NM.

My brekky quesadilla and home fries at Java Junction in Madrid, NM.

A cool re-purposed section of an old railroad car, near Madrid.

A cool re-purposed section of an old railroad car, near Madrid.

More info:  

 

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