New Trails Take Community Effort

Local News

Years of planning to greatly expand the Mack Ridge Trail System became real today, as one of five future trails opens to mountain bikers.

The Wrangler Trail re-route is an example of the Bureau of Land Management’s new national recreation strategy, that officials say creates a focus to become more noticeable in the communities where they operate.

“It’s kind of a game changer for the BLM. We’re really good at holding public meetings and having scoping comment periods,” said Collin Ewing, with the BLM, “But, what we haven’t been so good at is talking to the community members we don’t see on a day to day basis out on the trails and asking what do you need for your public lands.”

More than 10 agencies, businesses and organizations collaborated to make the, such as Hilltop, who volunteered with the Western Colorado Conservation Corps to build the trails.

“A single track allows people to flow with the environment and its more fun, there’s fewer choices and a little higher level of commitment,” said David Livingston with Hilltop, “A single track allows people to flow with the environment and its more fun, there’s fewer choices and a little higher level of commitment.”

The old trail will be closed for conservation.

This is just the start of the project at the Mack Ridge Trail System. As more donations come in, agencies hope to add more than 5 miles of additional trails in the area at a cost of around $100,000.

For nearby municipalities, they’re hoping to reap in the return on investment.

“Whether you’re on a bike or not and you live in Fruita, the revenue that is generated from the sport is actually a benefit to every resident.” said Mike Bennett, Fruita’s City Manager,  “It translates into revenue it translates into direct services.”

The project is primarily funded by donations. Contact COPMOBA to find out how to donate.

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