A Tale of Trails in Park City - 10.05.2011
BY: Jay Burke (current Basin Recreation Board Member)
How is this the greatest bike-centric community in the country you might ask - it's because of organizations like Basin Recreation, Mountain Trails, Park City Municipal, and many private organizations like Canyons Resort, Deer Valley and the Colony. If you are from around Park City it doesn't take much more than simply looking out your window to see the massive amounts of bikes. All types of bikes rolling around, townies, road bikes and of course mountain bikes. The best part of all this, not just bikes are rewarded from all the development and infrastructure improvements to the trails around the area. Simply put hikers, trail runners and even just the pure walkability element that exists around our communities - the interconnection of our system is certainly coming together in a very impressive way.
As an example, one need not look further than the trail system in Glenwild. A little over 10 years ago trails were a dream in the area, today there are nearly 30 miles of trails that you can loop together for your next MTB ride, hike or trail run. The Glenwild system is managed by Basin Recreation, which does maintenance and continues to improve and add on to the system every year. Another great asset of the area would be the Round Valley trail network, managed by Park City Municipal and maintained by Mountain Trails Foundation. Again, around 10 years ago we had one or two quick options in Round Valley to ride, yesterday I was able to put together a loop from my home in Silver Summit that totaled about 13 miles (check GPS track here).
I mentioned interconnection earlier, until recently it was quite hard to ride to a trail from your home (if you didn't live right in town). With the most recent bond passing, Basin Recreation is focusing on connecting neighborhoods to neighborhoods, and more important...neighborhoods to trail hubs and urban areas like Redstone. The new Highland Drive project is a fabulous example, giving the communities east of Kimball Junction an option to travel without a car to Kimball Junction. The new trail will also feature safe on-roadway lanes for road bikes, which many of us will appreciate! Watch for more urban connection projects, or trailer-trails as I like to call them (because they are perfect for families to use), coming in the next 12-18 months.
Lastly, I am going to highlight an event I am involved with, the Park City Point 2 Point, which without the epic trail system we have would be impossible to pull off. The event uses 80 miles of our trails and most impressively never uses the same trail twice or crosses itself. The course starts in Round Valley and makes its way through all three resorts to finally finish at Canyons resort. I challenge anyone to tell me another place in the country where you could pull off an event like this, so compact, but yet so broad.
We have nearly 400 miles of trails in Park City, and I never hesitate to tell anyone that this is why my family and I call this place home - what a valuable asset we have!
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Written by: Jay Burke (Current Basin Recreation Board Member)
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