When a Bike Park comes to town...
My area is about to get a bike park. Nothing the size of Whistler, of course, but we have a strong local scene and are not far from a few major cities. Our riding is XC to all-mountain, but not freeride. Some riders are on 6" bikes here, but the shuttles are few and there's a real endurance vibe here. Lots of pedaling.
Does anyone have any experience with what happens to local trails after a lift-assist, gravity-oriented bike park comes to the area? Does it result in lots of long-travel rigs out on the trail? Greater or fewer conflicts on surrounding PUBLIC trail?
I'm am reading between the lines and wondering if with the bike park, ALL your trails would now be lift accessed and are within the bike park?
We've got some lift access riding around here at ski areas. What I see is that as things dry out in the summer, some people keep riding the lift access trails, to the point of 8"-12" of dust. But these aren't the XC routes, just the gravity assist ones.
One would assume that lift accessed trails will be directional (one way down), right? If that hasn't been considered, that might be a serious flaw in the plan.
Better riding for everyone... If it is not already being shuttled I doubt much will change on existing trails.
Originally Posted by D.F.L.
No, no. The lift access site is off by itself. We have a zillion acreas of public land in National and State park in the area.
Originally Posted by formica
I'm most curious if conflicts rise in public land near lift-assist sites due to increased/shifted user demographic.
I've never heard of any of that kind of conflict. If anything, more users is a good thing, grows the economy as people come to visit and spend money. We've got two lift assist areas close ( Schwietzer and Silver Mt) and one mt that has a shuttle road to the top. Typically but not always, you may be talking about two somewhat separate biking demographics that don't' overlap much.
Seems to be best to give the gravity riders a place to do their thing where appropriate. Kind of like terrain parks at ski areas - give the gibbers a place to huck n slide so they're not doing it on top of those for whom it's not their thing.
The question of if more of these parks are built, then will it increase the number of big bike body amour riders on XC trails? That's a good question and my feeling is for the most part, those who want the DH type experience will mostly stay on the type of trails that are best matched to their taste and equipment. There will be some bleed over but that type of riding is mostly confined to lift served/shuttle type trails. The big problem is when there are XC trails that are technical enough to entertain the big bike folks that can be shuttled. This can lead to conflicts if the trail is popular and there is an increase of people on bikes who's main activity is shuttling to the top and repeatedly ripping down hill,