SMBA is floating the concept of a pump track, a small-scale riding park replete with appropriately scaled jumps and berms, for Telluride’s Town Park. While the idea is still in its conceptual stages, (a location has not yet been determined, nor has permission from Telluride Parks and Rec been granted), it has nevertheless garnered wide support from the local cycling community.
SMBAPresident Adam Black explained that the concept was initially suggested by the non-profit cycling advocacy group’s membership. The organization held regular meetings throughout last winter and heard from members that a pump track could be an excellent addition to the local cycling landscape.
“It was brought up by some of our members that pump tracks are starting to pop up all over, like in Grand Junction and Gunnison,” Black said, “and we thought, how great would it be to have one here in Town Park?”
Pump tracks are steadily growing in popularity in bike-savvy communities around Colorado thanks to a number of factors, including its accessibility for nearly all levels of riders.
“It provides a place where you can learn to jump your bike in a relatively safe manor and improve your biking skills, so you can then take it to the bigger jumps and bike park. The pump track is also a great avenue to grow the sport through the younger generations. Getting to them early is important,” Black says.
Local cyclist and mechanic at Life Cycles bike shop Travis Young says he’s surprised Telluride hasn’t built something like a pump track already. “Everyone, from beginner to expert, can have a great time on the same piece of property,“ Young said. “It doesn’t take up much room, it’s good training for adults and kids, and it wouldn’t take much money to build. Any time you make it easier for someone to get on a bike, it is a good thing.”
The pump track would provide small- to medium-sized roller style jumps throughout, shaped of quality dirt that would need to be imported to the site. Small machine work would be required to smooth the track and build the jumps, “along with a lot of manpower,” Black said.
Investing in a pump track makes sense, and not just for the benefit of local riders, Black said. “Giving people more areas to ride will only increase our exposure and help to draw visitors into our area. I also really like providing more options for the kids to be active, rather than getting into trouble, or watching TV,” he says.
Cyclists already have the SMBA to thank for facilitating the opening of the Mountain Village Bike Park, as well as for working to bring back the Full Tilt in Telluride mountain bike race. The group reports it is currently in the process of locating a suitable site for the pump track, at which time they will present a formal proposal to the Parks and Recreation Department.