Bike Mecca Facts
For more information contact:
Durango Area Tourism Office, 802 Main Avenue, Durango, CO 81301, 800-525-8855, www.durango.org
Media contact: Theresa Blake, firstname.lastname@example.org, 970-764-7783
Cyclists enjoy elite training to leisure rides in Durango, Colorado
“Simply because there is no other city that offers as much variety and spice. Whether you’re riding the Colorado trail, visiting the Ancestral Puebloan sites at Mesa Verde National Park, riding ‘Test Track,’ shopping downtown, doing loops in the mountain bike playground that the Trails 2000 has made available, or simply lying by the Animas River watching the clouds float by, Durango has it all.” Zapata Espinoza, former executive editor, Mountain Bike magazine.
Durango, Colo--Nestled in the heart of the San Juan Mountains in southwestern Colorado, Durango is home to some of the world’s best single track mountain biking, road biking and outdoor recreation. In addition to more than 1,000 miles of trails surrounding this community, there are numerous organized races and tours that appeal to a whole range of biking abilities. Whether you are a professional racer, a weekend warrior or still on training wheels, Durango offers the perfect atmosphere, event support and vacation town amenities to make every ride memorable.
This extremely friendly bicycle culture has resulted in Durango’s new Gold Level Bicycle Friendly Community designation from the League of American Bicyclists. The application process provided an opportunity for the City to review its infrastructures, roads, bike paths, trails and school routes. The evaluation highlights the quantity, quality, interconnectivity and proximity of trail systems throughout Durango. In 2013, local bike business Mountain Bike Specialists was designated a Silver level –Bicycle Friendly Business Award from the League of American Bicyclists.
Durango is uniquely situated between the high desert and towering, ancient volcanic peaks. With the city at 6,590 feet above sea level, this high altitude training ground offers a superb range of options for development and growth of top-level athletes. Durango would challenge that we have more cycling national champions, world champions and Olympians per capita than anywhere, except maybe the Olympic training center itself.
Referred to as “America’s Race,” the second annual USA Pro Cycling Challenge selected Durango as the overall start for the second annual race. After drawing more than 1 million spectators in its inaugural year, the 2012 race returned to Colorado from August 20-26, 2012, and Durango hosted the overall start.
Durango hosts one of the largest and longest continuously run bicycling events in the United States: The Iron Horse Bicycle Classic. Citizens and professionals race the historic Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad on its 50-mile trip from Durango to Silverton. This event pits man and woman against machine for an impressive ride over two-10,000 foot mountain passes and changing weather conditions. Durango has also been the staging site for national bike tours including Ride the Rockies Bicycle Tour, Colorado Peace Ride and the Bicycle Tour of Colorado.
Along with a host of professional and Olympic riders, Durango is home to Fort Lewis College, 17-time national cycling champions: the NCCA Collegiate National 2009, 2004 & 2003 Mountain Bike Champions, 2004 & 2003 Collegiate National Cyclocross Champions and 2004 Collegiate National Road Bike Runners Up. These athletes are a testament to the quality of riding found in the Durango area.
BIKE EVENTS IN DURANGO, COLORADO
Iron Horse Bicycle Classic
Celebrating the 41st year, the IHBC is one of the largest and longest continuously run bicycling events in the United States. For training assistance visit: www.ironhorsetraining.com. This unique event features a 50-mile road race and bicycle tour on Highway 550, the exciting downtown criterium, time trial, a kid’s race and a velo swap.
Durango Fall Blaze
Breathtaking fall views of the scenic San Juan Basin including Shalona, Vallecito, Bayfield and the Animas Valley. Proceeds benefiting the Fort Lewis College Cycling Team's Tom Danielson Cycling Scholarship Fund: "Ride the Blaze... We're Sending Cyclists to College.” This fully supported bike tour includes sag support vehicles on-course and food/aid stations. Post-ride catered celebration includes food, beverages, music and beer. The Blaze is about fun, safety and celebrating cycling. (970) 403-4842. Hagen_D@fortlewis.edu.
Squawker Classic Road Race
Fort Lewis College Cycling Team’s annual Squawker Classic—a road race and criterium held annually in the spring.
Hermosa Off-Road Classic
Hermosa Creek trail racing is back! Come one, come all, to race on the high country trail that made Durango famous. There is a 36-mile course for Professionals, 2 Single speed classes, cool prizes and a post-race BBQ/campout for racers and friends/family. Proceeds go to the Fort Lewis College Cycling Team. Contact Dave Hagen at (970) 403-4842 or email@example.com.
Durango Wheel Club Training Rides, Group Rides and Time Trials
Join the Durango Wheel Club for these “world famous” training rides. See web site for levels, meeting locations, women’s rides and information. Contact: (970) 259-0550
Dirt Lovers Race - Horse Gulch Trail
Challenge and fun in the dirt! The trailhead starts at 8th Avenue and 3rd Street; the beginning of the trail is up a rocky 4-wheel drive trail that turns into meadows. At the top of the dirt road, you have the choice of turning left or right. Turning right will lead you into the meadows where there are a few different trails. If you choose to turn left, the trail gets difficult and goes up the ridge face for some good climbs and descents. Experts will ride 18.5 miles, under 1:40 for pros. Sports will ride similar route as experts: 16 miles. Beginners will ride 6-mile route, approximately 45 min. Helmets (and Bikes) are required!
Tour de Farms
Harvest time signals time for the Tour de Farms Durango Bike Tour. This annual ride sponsored by Healthy Lifestyle La Plata and CSU Extension is an educational bike tour that highlights local efforts to promote what is unique, healthy and homegrown about our Durango community. Tour de Farms has two routes to choose from – a leisurely 5-mile in-town short route tour and a 25-mile long route loop highlighting an agricultural area in the county in Ignacio. The Tour will feature presentations from farmers, gardeners, and local food advocates garden directors while sharing ways you can support area efforts to strengthen our local food system. The Tour travels along in-town and county ‘safe-routes’ and culminate in a delicious seasonal lunch made from local ingredients. For more information, contact Darrin Parmenter, Parmenterdm@co.laplata.co.us or (970) 382-6464.
Bike to Work Week
Yes, sometimes a day feels like a week, so why shouldn’t it then be entertaining and productive?
Bike to Work Day was a great stepping-stone to “Durango Bike Week.”
Durango Family Mountain Bike Camp
Mountain Bike Camps are designed to provide skill improvement by quality instruction both on and off the trail in a fun, safe and supportive environment. The main goal is to increase ability and interest in mountain biking as a lifelong activity. The versatile, experienced staff includes trained coaches, athletes and moms, all with a passion for the sport.
Durango Mountain Bike Camp—Ladies Clinic
Ladies will learn bike handling skills, cornering, downhill, climbing techniques and gain confidence as they ride with other women and certified cycling coaches. All classes will begin at Mountain Bike Specialists, 949 Main Avenue.
SheRide Cycling Clinic for Women
Understand proper mountain biking techniques; build confidence and solid skills for mountain biking on trail! Ride great singletrack with a group of fun gals and SheRide's supportive women coaches! Open to all levels from never ever to advanced mountain bikers. We break into groups so you will ride with women of your own skill level. Push yourself in a supportive relaxed environment. All skills taught are focused on ability levels.
FLC Cycling Cyclocross Series
Cyclocross races on the FLC Campus: starting in November on five consecutive Sundays. Contact: Dave Hagen at (970) 403-4842 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
TIMELESS THINGS TO DO ON BIKES
My City Bikes
Velorution Cycles has announced that it is an official co-sponsor of the My City Bikes project. The Durango, CO bike shop located at at 1077 Main Avenue has made a commitment to the health of the surrounding community by investing in the development of a mobile app for Apple, Android and Windows devices that will highlight the most accessible commuter, trail and road cycling resources in and around Durango. By encouraging more people to bike more often, Velorution Cycles aims to improve individual and environmental health in the region. Durango's My City Bikes apps will be available beginning on May 1, 2014. For more information visit Velorution Cycles online at velorutioncycles.com or call (970) 259-1975.
Discover the Durango Trails System
www.trails2000.org, (970) 259-4682
The base of any good cycling community is the riding. Within an hour of Durango, there is an altitude range from 4,500 to 13,000 feet. This provides many varied choices of both altitude and climate for the preferred training opportunity any time of year. This landscape is enhanced by an awesome trail system. A hundred years ago, cattle barons and miners built trails all over this landscape in search of gold or grassy meadows. Today, Trails 2000 has transformed this historic trail network into hundreds of miles of recreational trails. Whether they are being ridden in search of gold medals or grassy meadows, they are some of the best trails anywhere. You can give back to the trails by joining Trails 2000, attending a trail work event or participating in a Volunteer Vacation. Trails 2000 publishes free maps of the Telegraph trail system available at the Durango Area Tourism Office or www.durango.org/Activities/SummerFall/BikingTrails.asp
Community Recreation Center
2700 Main Avenue, (970) 375-7300
Spin classes daily, Iron Horse Classic training classes: www.durangogov.org (or www.durangogov.org/resident/parks_leisure/reccenter.html. The Durango Parks and Recreation Department offers a wide variety of programs and activities for children year round. Specifically, in the summer the popular Kid's Mountain Biking program.
Durango Sports Club
1600 Florida Road, (970)259-2579
A complete cycling center offering comprehensive programming and service to the Durango cycling community. In collaboration with Dr. Bruce Andrea, David Farmer and Rick Crawford, DSCCC brings 70+ years of combined experience. Cyclefusion is a combination of exercises to prepare riders for the Iron Horse events is one of the first cycling-specific classes in their expanded schedule.