The Summit Fat Tire Society and the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) celebrated joining forces with a meet-and-greet event Monday evening at the Frisco Adventure Park. Earlier this summer, the Fat Tire Society became an official IMBA Chapter.
Officials from both organizations were on hand to discuss the meaning of this new relationship.
Jason Bertolacci, IMBA’s Colorado and Wyoming regional director, said that the partnership will give a stronger voice to mountain bikers in the area and help with future trail projects.
“If we want to speak with one voice, then doing that together is clearly a better path,” he said. “Summit County has a huge committed group of riders; it strengthens the future of mountain biking.”
An IMBA trail work crew was also on hand with a presentation on the health and economic benefits of well-organized multi-use trail building.
The crew described how in several towns mountain biking has had a substantial, positive impact on the local economy. The former logging town of Oakridge, Ore., was cited as a prime example. The town’s economy shut down when the last logging mill closed, and now mountain biking is helping to put it back on the map.
Summit Fat Tire officials hope the new association with IMBA will lead to more support locally, both in membership and volunteer hours. That starts with work on a 300-foot portion of the Colorado Trail on July 17 and 20.
“It’s the first major project we’ve done in a few years on the Colorado Trail,” said Mike Zobbe, Fat Tire Society vice president.
Crews will rebuild turns and slightly reroute portions of the trail to make it flow more smoothly for riders. The new design should also help preserve the trail by making it less prone to wear and tear from users.
— Sebastian Foltz