BLM seeking input on 2013 mountain bike race

By: Taylor Temby Email
By: Taylor Temby Email

Fruita and Moab are known for their world-renowned mountain bike trails, but Grand Junction could soon be adding its name to that list. Know More about a new biking event which could be coming to the Grand Valley.

This proposed race would last three days next September near Labor Day, and could invite some 600 cyclists to the Valley to explore trails in Grand Junction. Now the Bureau of Land Management is asking for your input to see if this race could call our city home.

Business is good, but an event of this magnitude could make it even better. Ruby Canyon Cycles owner Ryan Cranston would gladly welcome a newly proposed mountain bike race to the Valley.

"[It would] bring people in for hotels, lodging, restaurants, of course, businesses like mine," Cranston said. "Why wouldn't we do something to really promote some of the absolute best parts of living in Grand Junction and bring more money into our economy?"

The race would not only help promote the sport on the Western Colorado, but would bring Grand Junction’s name into the national spotlight.

"It puts us, once again, on the map for mountain biking, and Fruita has done a great job of that," Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau’s Barbara Bowman said.

"[It would] bring the spotlight over here where it deserves to be," Cranston added.

Race organizer Epic Rides first brought the idea to the VCB, and even though it's still in beginning stages, it already has plans to draw 600 cyclists to Grand Junction.

"There would be a sanctioned mountain bike race along with it as well as a festival in the downtown area," Bowman said of the week long event. “A lot of people bring in their families and they make this entire week a vacation."

The race would begin downtown, then weave its way to BLM land including the Lunch Loop, Butterknife and Megellan trails, but that could potentially disrupt the community's use of the trails. That’s why the BLM is asking for input.

"Lunch Loop is a high use area, there's a lot of people who use Lunch Loop," BLM spokesperson Christopher Joyner said. "People always have concerns whenever you disrupt whatever the normal operation is for a particular area."

For Ruby Canyon Cycles, the new race would be a welcomed addition, not to mention, it could put Grand Junction’s name up there with Moab and Fruita for mountain bike enthusiasts.

"In the economy that we have, I think it's just going to be a benefit for the whole community," Cranston said.

The BLM says it has already received some feedback from those in the community about this race. They'll be taking comments from the public until December 19th.

You can send your comments to the addresses below.
The Grand Junction Field Office
Attn: Carrie Surber
2815 H Road
Grand Junction, CO 81506

You can email your comments to BLM_CO_GJ_Public_Comments@blm.gov


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