Mountain bikers to celebrate new trail at 18 Road

Another season, and another new trail is planned at the popular 18 Road system north of Fruita.

The mountain bike community will converge at 18 Road on Sunday to officially name and cut the ribbon on the latest addition to the network.

This is the second year in a row that riders have had new terrain to try out at 18 Road, after the PBR trail was opened last spring.

“(The new trail) is kind of like PBR on steroids,” said Dave Grossman, coordinator for the Grand Valley Trails Alliance, one of the Bureau of Land Management-affiliated groups organizing Sunday’s event. He added that the new intermediate-to-advanced trail includes a number of built features and jumps, “so there’s going to be lots of potential for flying, if one is so inclined.”

The Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Trail Association also is an organizing group, and along with the rest of the project partners will have a ceremony and ribbon-cutting at noon at the 18 Road parking area.

That’s when the name of the trail will be announced and the first rides will happen, but it will be a day for everybody just to come out and ride, organizers said.

“We’re going to be riding all around the area, so bring your bike,” Grossman said.

The new trail is essentially an extension off of the popular Joe’s Ridge trail. Instead of paralleling the road at the bottom of the trail, riders will now have the option of taking “Trail B” (the temporary code name).

“It’s really cool. It kind of rolls through this real gentle valley for the top third, and then it drops into this cool arroyo, which is where most of the built features are,” Grossman said.

So how do they come up with the names for trails?

This time around, the name will be picked by a community of people who worked on the trail or are with COPMOBA. Today, they’ll pick from about eight candidate names during the trail build, then announce the name Sunday.

Recent storms have kept some area bike trails damp, but the recent warm spell has people wanting to get the trail season started as soon as possible.

Grossman said most of the trails in the lower valley are “pretty good,” with some wet areas still remaining in upper sections, but “things are pretty close to being all ready to go.”

“It’s springtime and everybody is itching to ride,” he said.


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