West End

West End Bike Alliance Takes Shape

April 15, 2014
Situated almost evenly between the mountain biking meccas of Fruita, Moab, Telluride and Cortez, the vast West End can seem intimidating and unknown due to its isolated wilderness characteristics and sheer size. Couple this with sparsely populated towns with even smaller numbers of local mountain bikers and one can see why the West End has remained elusive for community activists who want to develop this huge resource for low impact economic gain.
            The West End Bike Alliance (WEBA) is being formed to push a new initiative called the West End Trails Project. It will be a cooperative project between Quick read more or view full article Montrose West Recreation (MWR) of  Nucla / Naturita and the Norwood Chamber of Commerce. The project will cover sections of both San Miguel and West Montrose Counties. The project intends to identify, map and promote only existing routes on public lands which make up the majority of this huge territory. Along with accurate GPS information, the group wants to make key coordinates available to local travelers and make the area less intimidating and more user friendly. The area boasts hundreds of miles of two track routes, some old and abandoned and others maintained for two wheel drive vehicles. The 110 mile long Paradox Trail, which will celebrate its 20th anniversary next year, utilizes these routes to traverse a rugged course from the Uncompaghre Plateau to the LaSal Mountains in Utah. Less known, are the potential loop and out n’ back rides (and hikes) available just off Hwy 141 between Gateway and Norwood. This unique area of Colorado features five tracts currently managed as wilderness, all within a half hours drive of the Unaweep-Tabeguache Scenic Byway (Hwy 141).
            Although no signage will be sought or new trail construction will be proposed, the group plans to rate each trail on a common difficulty scale, produce a downloadable map and give brief trail descriptions including photos. The information will be available on various websites and at the local visitor’s center in Naturita. While maintaining the area’s wilderness reputation, the group hopes that travelers will stop and discover some of the unique characteristics of this beautiful region.
            For more information about this project and West End riding opportunities email Paul at :  pdkoski@gmail.com
  
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Posted by Paul Koski
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