Electric Mountain Bike Tag Program and 9K Trail Project Move Forward
The Park City Council is moving forward with plans to implement a courtesy tag program for those who ride electric assisted mountain bikes on single track and want to let others know that they are in compliance with the city’s trail ordinance.
Last year, the council approved amendments to its ban on non-motorized trail use. With a few exceptions – those with mobility disabilities – and those 65 and older – Ebikes on local single track are banned. However, it appears that not everyone knows about the exceptions and some verbal outbursts have occurred on the trails.
The Director of Mountain Trails Foundation, Charlie Sturgis says they’re in favor of the courtesy tags.
“We support the tag idea even though it's not perfect. We do believe at least letting the people who are legit make some effort to show they legit like I would be I would be legit, Sturgis said. I support that. We hope that it will help ease some tensions out there. I mean no one should be getting mad at anybody - everyone is out to have a good time, but we still support the idea that the bike E mountain bikes should be limited in their use in single tracks areas in Park City.”
The tags will be made of a high-grade plastic that will be displayed on a bike's handlebars – similar to a race event number. Applications for getting a tag will be done online. The tags won’t expire and are non-transferrable. When applying the applicant will have to certify the reason for their request and provide the make and model of their bike. Application is free.
The council’s discussion on the matter was cut short at its meeting last week, due to a poor internet connection with trails manager Heinrich Deters. However, Mayor Andy Beerman noted that he has received some public input on the matter.
“I had a request from a citizen who is an e-bike rider, that asked if on the tags, one we could put the reason why how you qualify for a tag -- either you’re over 65 or recovering from an injury,” Beerman said. “And secondly that they may be done in a brighter color – I was told it was muted and it might not show up on your bike.
City Manager Matt Dias said the tag will be brightly colored, but said he needed to check whether the reasons for the tag, could be published on the tag.
Meanwhile, Mountain Trails Foundation crews are busy trying to finish the 9,000-foot trail. Sturgis says the first segment is open from Guardsman’s Pass road to the Black Forest trail. He says the grant they received to build the trail stipulates that it must be completed on or before Oct. 1st.
There’s still quite a bit of work to do – along the west face of Jupiter Bowl before it connects to the Blazing Saddle trail that comes off the Crest trail.
There are some obstacles to getting there though. Sturgis says it’s very steep, rocky terrain with a lot of trees.
The hope he says is that this trail will help disperse parking off the top of Guardsman Pass road.
“In an effort to get people off the top of the pass, you can now park down at the Bonanza Flat parking area and actually be able to access the 9-K,” he explained. “You can do that from that parking lot 2 for Bloods Lake because you can walk up to the 9K, walk over to the Blood Lake’s parking and then get on the Bloods Lake trail right there and go. It gives you another probably extra mile and a half of hiking and also keeps you out of the congestion.”
Ultimately, this will be another way to come down from Pinecone and eventually there will be a connector from this trail down to the Mid-Mountain trail.