Divide Road Section

One-way Distance: 14.6 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
MTB Skill level:
Elevation: 8986 - 9694 feet
Cellphone: 0-2 bars
Time: 1 hr. 30 mins.
Trailhead: Divide Road MM 22.0
Fee: none
Attractions: Scenic views

Tabeguache (TAB-a-watch) is a 150 mile long trail that has one end in Grand Junction, Colorado and the other end in Montrose. This post covers the 14.6 mile stretch of the trail between the Dominguez Section and the Love Mesa Section that follows the Divide Road. This is probably the easiest out of all of the various sections of the Tabeguache trail.

Measuring from where the Divide Road leaves Highway 141 it is 22 miles to the junction of the Divide Road and the point where the Dominguez Section of the Tabeguache trail meets it. This picture is looking at the Divide Road junction from where the Dominguez Section of the Tabeguache trail comes to an end. If riding the two sections together you would simply make a left and begin following the Divide Road as it heads south.

The Divide Road section goes by fast in comparison to any other stretch of the Tabeguache trail.

The road is hard packed gravel. Finding a track to follow where the gravel is thinned out and there aren't any washboards makes it easy to stay in high gear even going uphill.

The overall trend going from north to south is uphill but it isn't anywhere as steep as the elevation profile makes it look. The overall elevation gain going from north to south is 1,514 feet while in the other direction it is 935 feet.

At the 3 mile point the trail passes California Springs.

For most of the distance the road travels out in the open but there are the occasional aspen grove along the way.

Distant views to the south looking over the canopy of trees and vast meadows have the San Juan Mountains for a background.

To the west the La Sal Mountains are the main feature but the Abajos are visible on a clear day as well as the red rock canyons along the Dolores River corridor between Gateway and Naturita.

Near the 9 mile point the trail passes Monument Hill and at 12 miles it crosses the line between Mesa and Montrose counties.

Just past the 14.5 mile point the Love Mesa trail begins on the left and it is time to say goodbye to the Divide Road. It is a good idea when riding the Divide Road Section of the Tabeguache trail to have a filter mask ready like those that ATVers or dirt bikers sometimes wear to keep from eating the dust of every vehicle that passes by. One nice thing about this part of the Divide Road is that it sees less traffic than the ends that are closer to Grand Junction and Montrose. The Divide Road section of the Tabeguache trail is obviously easier going from south to north but we rode it in both directions in just over 2.5 hours and that included taking about a hundred pictures. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is grab your bike or 'Take a hike'.