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  1. #1
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    Prospective Missoula rider

    I'm thinking about going to UM for college. Since biking is pretty much what I do, how is the riding around Missoula?

    I mostly do DH and dirt jumping, but I like cross-country too. Are there a lot of DH trails, or any race-worthy ones? Any XC trails? What is the terrain like? Is there any dirt jumping there? What's the race scene (downhill, mountaincross, and cyclocross) like? This is a must, because I love to race. Also, last question, how bike-friendly is Missoula? I want to be able to bike for my primary transportation. Maybe even ride to the trailhead.

    I'm coming from Santa Cruz so my standard is pretty high, but from what I hear Missoula is a cool town. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Come on, someone here has to live in Missoula, or at least ridden there. Is there anyone who I could PM that knows the place well?

  3. #3
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    You'll hate this place...

    stay in cali

  4. #4
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    Search and you will find lots of info. Missoula has so many trails. You dont even need a car in Missoula. Most trailheads are close to the city too.

  5. #5
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    Gone Sking

    They don't look at the MTB forum in the winter.
    When we teach all children from age 5 on to meditate just 1 hour per week on compassion war will end within 3 generations.

  6. #6
    TRAIL KUBUKI CORNDOGGER
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    If you like eco-rednecks who gutshoot Bull trout you'll like Missoula. Either that of you can spend your days waiting for the next Cat-Griz game. Yawn.
    Nobody cares what kind of bike you ride.

  7. #7
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    The U of M college was rated as one of the top 10 party schools and Missoula was rated as one of the top 10 mountain bike cities. I have read this in a few mags. You make the decision. The U of M is a party school but is also a good school too. People study and play hard.

  8. #8
    Grumpy S.O.B.
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    There are a ton of good trails in and around Missoula, three or 4 of them are within easy riding distance from the university. Check out the following links for some good info about trails around Missoula.

    http://www.mountainbikemissoula.org/guides3.html
    http://www.trails.com/catalog_produc...familyid=10442

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by kanter
    The U of M college was rated as one of the top 10 party schools and Missoula was rated as one of the top 10 mountain bike cities. I have read this in a few mags. You make the decision. The U of M is a party school but is also a good school too. People study and play hard.
    Univ of MT is a "good school" as long as you plan to stay in Montana. its reputation outside the state is almost invisible.

    any place that is a "big party school" will not give a good education. that's a plain fact.

    now with those generalities said,

    there are a few programs within the Univ MT that are valuable. but for the most part, earning a 3.0 or higher GPA is possible if you merely show up for exams. and from what I understand, cheating is just about accepted practice in many classes, as is plagiarism on the many required papers. I think this is the "study hard" (cheat hard) that kanter referenced.

    the MTB riding is passable, but if you're coming from Santa Cruz, you'll be disappointed I hate to say.

    and as to "top 10" rankings -- always fiction, always created for the point of increasing tourism revenue or "bragging rights."

    I don't know about you, but tourism and bragging rights don't make for a great town IMO.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for all the replies. I know leaving Santa Cruz will disappoint me no matter where I go. I'm coming to visit UM on Spring Break anyway, so I want to ride some too. And isn't Missoula within driving distance of a bunch of spots like Whitefish, Sandpoint, Spokane, and Canada?

    I dont think anyone addressed what the race scene was like. Are there any local DH races, or would I have to travel to Colorado or something for that?

  11. #11
    Grumpy S.O.B.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gonzostrike
    Univ of MT is a "good school" as long as you plan to stay in Montana. its reputation outside the state is almost invisible.

    any place that is a "big party school" will not give a good education. that's a plain fact.

    now with those generalities said,

    there are a few programs within the Univ MT that are valuable. but for the most part, earning a 3.0 or higher GPA is possible if you merely show up for exams. and from what I understand, cheating is just about accepted practice in many classes, as is plagiarism on the many required papers. I think this is the "study hard" (cheat hard) that kanter referenced.

    the MTB riding is passable, but if you're coming from Santa Cruz, you'll be disappointed I hate to say.

    and as to "top 10" rankings -- always fiction, always created for the point of increasing tourism revenue or "bragging rights."

    I don't know about you, but tourism and bragging rights don't make for a great town IMO.

    Once upon a time Missoula was a party school but that was back in the 80s and before, I don't think it is much different today than any other University. I went to school at Missoula from 92-95 and now work at the school and I would say it is probably similar to any other school of its size.

    The mountain biking around Missoula is well above passable, not sure where you have ridden around Missoula, but I think the riding is excellent. I stick with XC, so can't say much about the Downhill scene, but with all the mountains around there has to be some good trails.

    Bottom line is there is a ton of good riding around Missoula. Also Missoula is a very bike friendly area, you don't see too many trails that are closed to cycling.

    And yes Missoula is within 3 hours or so of the places you listed. Sandpoint would be the furthest.

    Hopefully the snow will be melted and dried up a little when you come up for spring break.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by grgilchrist
    The mountain biking around Missoula is well above passable, not sure where you have ridden around Missoula, but I think the riding is excellent.
    nice sales job. why don't you buy this cat a house for his 6-year stay that will be required to finisih the requisite number of credits, given the University's approach to revenue (don't let 'em graduate in 4 years!). better yet, why don't you go work for the Chamber of Commerce and help pave most of the forest so that Yuppies can get Starbucks in the Rattlesnake, Blue Mtn and Pattee Canyon?

    the school sucks, and Babbitts like you suck even worse. but go ahead, cheer it on! be a booster! go GRIZ!

    oh yeah... I've ridden most everything in Missoula, I know what it has to offer, even beyond XC. I stand by my prior post.

  13. #13
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    There is so much XC in the Missoula area that you could ride a different trail or loop every week for many years and never ride the same trail. Rock Creek, Fish Creek, Butler Creek, 9 Mile, 6 Mile, Seigel Pass, Petty Creek, Squaw Peak, Sula, all the Bitteroot, Blue Mountain, Rattlesnake, Pattee Canyon, Black Mountain, Deer Creek, Over Which, Carlton Lake, Seeley Lake.... I could go on and on about riding within a hour of Missoula. There are so many trails. I have riden a bike or a horse on a lot of them growing up. If you are into XC, the only thing that will limit you is your legs and time.

    Gonzostrike is refering to FR and DH. I think. The FR scene is pretty small and there are a few DH shuttles, but you have to know the area. There are a lot of trails where you can shuttle and only have a few miles of uphill with many many miles of DH. There are a few resorts with DH trails in the area. Big Sky, Fernie, Silver Mountain, Panorama, and Kicking Horse are all within 3-6 hours .

    Partying in college is everywhere.
    Last edited by kntr; 03-06-2006 at 05:12 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by gonzostrike
    nice sales job. why don't you buy this cat a house for his 6-year stay that will be required to finisih the requisite number of credits, given the University's approach to revenue (don't let 'em graduate in 4 years!). better yet, why don't you go work for the Chamber of Commerce and help pave most of the forest so that Yuppies can get Starbucks in the Rattlesnake, Blue Mtn and Pattee Canyon?

    the school sucks, and Babbitts like you suck even worse. but go ahead, cheer it on! be a booster! go GRIZ!

    oh yeah... I've ridden most everything in Missoula, I know what it has to offer, even beyond XC. I stand by my prior post.
    I understand where you're coming from, Santa Cruz has the same anti-nonlocal energy since it's the yuppies moving in from Silicon Valley that turned SC into one of the most expensive places to live in the country. My dad has also tried to buy property in Montana but he never gets a reply because the California address scares people away (and for good reason).

    So trust me when I say that I'm not a typical Californian yuppie . My family visits relatives in Montana every summer and I love it there. Thanks to everyone that answered my questions, I'm stoked to head up there now.

  15. #15
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    Kalispell and Whitefish are getting more expensive every year. Prices of houses are growing daily. If you or your family want to buy a house in Montana now is the time. House prices are increasing about $50k-75k every year.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by gonzostrike
    nice sales job. why don't you buy this cat a house for his 6-year stay that will be required to finisih the requisite number of credits, given the University's approach to revenue (don't let 'em graduate in 4 years!). better yet, why don't you go work for the Chamber of Commerce and help pave most of the forest so that Yuppies can get Starbucks in the Rattlesnake, Blue Mtn and Pattee Canyon?

    the school sucks, and Babbitts like you suck even worse. but go ahead, cheer it on! be a booster! go GRIZ!

    oh yeah... I've ridden most everything in Missoula, I know what it has to offer, even beyond XC. I stand by my prior post.
    I won't argue you with you about the school, and the yuppies that have taken over missoula. I am politically conservative and don't fit in too well at the university, but I will stand by comments about the mountain biking.

    As far as your attitude you can shove it up your A$$!

  17. #17
    Unrepentant Cowboy SOB
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    Quote Originally Posted by gonzostrike
    nice sales job. why don't you buy this cat a house for his 6-year stay that will be required to finisih the requisite number of credits, given the University's approach to revenue (don't let 'em graduate in 4 years!). better yet, why don't you go work for the Chamber of Commerce and help pave most of the forest so that Yuppies can get Starbucks in the Rattlesnake, Blue Mtn and Pattee Canyon?

    the school sucks, and Babbitts like you suck even worse. but go ahead, cheer it on! be a booster! go GRIZ!

    oh yeah... I've ridden most everything in Missoula, I know what it has to offer, even beyond XC. I stand by my prior post.
    If I didn't know better I'd think you were me before my morning coffee.
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  18. #18
    Salad Days
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    Quote Originally Posted by black noise
    I know leaving Santa Cruz will disappoint me no matter where I go.
    That's true, you should just stay there. Or maybe Iowa, I hear there is some good singletrack there.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by akitadogg
    If I didn't know better I'd think you were me before my morning coffee.
    No, he is always that way.

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