The most accessible and popular of all the trails in the Aspen area, the Rio Grande Trail follows the old Denver and Rio Grande Railroad bed along the Roaring Fork River. It is possible to follow this trail along the old scenic railroad corridor all the way from the post office in Aspen to the Upper Woody Creek Bridge. From the post office, the trail leads over two bridges - the first goes over the Roaring Fork River, the second over Hunter Creek. The trail continues along the right (north) side of the Roaring Fork River for several miles. The initial section of the trail has signs every 400 meters (1/4 mile) for a 2.4 kilometer stretch. To the west of Cemetery Lane, the next 2 kilometers are very scenic, as the trail follows the river in a small canyon-like setting. This section of the trail is gravel.
The Rio Grande Trail has recently been extended and paved from the Woody Creek area to Old Snowmass. It then links to a paved path which leads from Old Snowmass, beyond Basalt to Emma.