Facebook Twitter

PARK CITY `PEDALFEST’ WILL PROMOTE BICYCLING

SHARE PARK CITY `PEDALFEST’ WILL PROMOTE BICYCLING

They come here to ski . . . from November through April.

Now, there's something more. A bridge, of sorts . . . Biking from April through November, for year-round use of the mountains and complementing facilities.But while skiing is well-established, biking isn't. It's in the building stage right now.

Still, there are, within the Park City area, more than 30 miles of mountain biking trails. More than 50 if you count the Rails To Trails system from Park City to points north, west and east.

Some of the trails are single track, or paths through the forests hardly wider than the handlebars on the bike. Some trails are old mining roads and some recently constructed bicycling routes.

All, says Tim Henney, trail coordinator for the Mountain Trails Foundation, offer some excellent biking experiences.

To help in the introduction of biking, Park City is holding a "Pedalfest" on Saturday and Sunday. It will be a bicycle happening compete with guided tours on bike routes, how-to seminars and bicycles races.

All proceeds will go to help, among other things, the University of Utah, the Mountain Trails Foundation and the Park City Library.

The seminars will show participants where and how to ride, the races will test their skills and the tours will show them a little of what this area offers to riders.

And there is another purpose. This one, says Troy Duffin, executive director of Mountain Trails Foundation, is to help people understand the responsibility bikers, and hikers, too, have to the land.

Many of the routes in Park City pass through private land.

"What we are working for," added Duffin, "is compatibility. We want bikers, and hikers, to understand they must respect property or face the possibility of losing it."

The MTF, he said, is constantly working to build new trails. Gaining permission from property owners and funding are two limiting factors.

"Currently we're building three new trails in the Park City area, and are involved in helping with plans for two more," he said.

One of those is a nordic trail that will link the Winter Sports Park in Bear Hollow with Park City. Not only will it be a convenient biking route, but it will also serve as a cross country ski track in the winter.

One thing both Duffin and Henney are concerned about is the possibility of overuse. That is, people using one or two of the more popular trails "instead of branching out and using all of the trails; educating themselves to just what trails there are in this area," said Henney.

Duffin added that he sees a time in the future when the trail system in the Park City area "becomes a valuable alternative to a car."

His plan is to someday link the existing trails with those around the Jordanelle Reservoir, over to Wasatch State Park and eventually into Provo Canyon. And, someday, to connect up with the Great Western Trail, which currently hits the peak of Parleys Summit.

Beth Hoffmeister, in charge of special events for the Park City Chamber Bureau, said the First Security Pedalfest will include a number of activities. Among them are the Roll and Run for Knowledge (Saturday, 9 a.m.), a 5K race and fun run, the Overland 120 Challenge at Deer Valley (Sunday, 10 a.m.), a mountain bike cross country, and a number of tours (self-guided and organized) and clinics. Jacquie Phelan, a three-time NORBA champion will conduct some of the clinics.

It is planned, she said, to accommodate bikers of all levels, from first-time to experts.

Registration forms are available at all First Security Bank locations and at the Park City Chamber.

All this, of course, is to reacquaint and introduce people to biking trails around Park City, to help raise funds to develope more trails and cooperations, and to help instill in people that as users, they are responsible for their actions as safe riders.