Routes » Continental Divide Trail
Please note, this page is about the CDT, which is long distance singletrack trail, for information on the “bike version” of the divide, see the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route Page.
Generally accepted as more difficult, in many respects, than the PCT or AT, the CDT is the big daddy of all long distance trails. It is also unlike the PCT and AT in that most of the trail is open to cyclists (outside wilderness areas).
The trail is a work in progress, with many sections unfinished or routed on dirt roads.
History of cycling on the CDT
There have been no known thru-rides on the CDT. Will you be the first?
Sections of the CDT, however, are frequently bikepacked. A prime example is where the CT and CDT overlap in Colorado. Other sections in New Mexico and Montana are also frequently ridden.
Many areas of the CDT are currently being considered for wilderness designation, despite historical mountain bike usage. There have also been indications that land agencies would like to discourage or not allow bikes on the CDT summarily. Since cyclists are already shut out of the other two major long distance trails, it would be a shame to lose access to the CDT!
Jonathan Ley has a KML file for the entire CDT. While it’s generally in the area of the CDT, it is not suitable for navigation in the field. Great for planning and daydreaming, though!
The following are two GPX files from different CDT loops along the MT/ID border: