Lakeside bike park caters to downhill mountain bikers
Legacy Bike Park is nearly able to roll in Lakeside. The brand new downhill mountain biking park will open to its first riders on Thursday.
Legacy Bike Park would be the first of its sort in northwestern Montana. Located on 175 acres simply south of Lakeside, the park options 13 shuttle-served trails constructed particularly for mountain-biking.
“It is for folk who wish to trip down and repeat,” mentioned Marty Beale, one of many creators of the park. “We’re maxing out the grins per mile.”
The thought got here to Beale a few yr and a half in the past, on his approach from Whistler, British Columbia, again to his dwelling in Whitefish the place he runs a contracting enterprise, Conscious Designs.
“I used to be dreaming all the best way dwelling,” Beale recalled.
There isn’t any scarcity of mountain bike trails within the Flathead Valley, or operations particularly targeted on mountain biking. The Whitefish Path, Whitefish Mountain Resort and the Whitefish Bike Retreat all supply a model of what Beale was dreaming about on his journey dwelling from Canada.
However Beale needed to copy the large-scale, downhill-focused bike parks he rode north of the border.
He broached the likelihood together with his companions, Dave Radatti and Jason Pholman, at Conscious Designs.
Then he introduced on the opposite half of the Legacy Bike Park dream group: Linda and Pete Costain of Terraflow Designs.
The Costains work between Whitefish and Huge Sky, constructing state-of-the-art trails that many within the valley have loved numerous instances. Terraflow’s resume consists of the Whitefish Path, the Lodge at Flathead Lake, the Huge Sky Resort and the ultra-exclusive Yellowstone Membership.
Mountain bike trails are Terraflow’s bread and butter, and the Costains mentioned they relished the possibility to be part of Legacy Bike Park.
“It’s a dream mission,” Pete Costain mentioned. Costain and Beale knew one another from years of working collectively within the Whitefish development trade.
THE COSTAINS’ experience is on show within the various path system sprawling all through Legacy Bike Park.
The entire trails — from the pair of inexperienced newbie tracks to probably the most superior choices — are oriented round downhill circulation.
“We’re simply enthusiastic about having a spot that is 100% targeted on the gravity facet of using,” Costain mentioned.
Day passes (season passes aren’t an possibility but) give riders shuttle rides to the highest of the path system from 10 a.m. to five p.m. Friday via Monday. Passes may be bought on-line forward of time or from the car parking zone on the entrance to the property.
Since bikers can catch a carry uphill on the park’s specifically made “huck wagons,” the paths are constructed completely across the downhill expertise.
TRAIL QUALITY can be a excessive precedence at Legacy Bike Park. The paths had been deliberately carved into the north facet of the hill to maintain them cool and damp, and ticket gross sales are capped at 80 riders per day to keep away from overuse.
“That retains the standard of the expertise actually excessive,” Beale mentioned.
There’s one thing for nearly each sort of rider on the new Lakeside attraction.
“There’s an actual wide range to the complete biking spectrum, they usually’re all nice,” Beale mentioned.
There are difficult trails and large jumps for what Beale calls “the highest, high finish” bikers, however there are additionally choices for less-experienced riders, like Beale’s 8-year-old niece. When the younger thrill seeker went for a spin via Legacy’s inexperienced and blue trails, she reportedly beloved feeling like she was cruising on a “large curler coaster.”
“You may get 15- to 20-foot airs, or you may maintain your tires on the dust,” Beale mentioned.
Nonetheless, potential visitors with no biking expertise are inspired to take their very first check trip elsewhere earlier than using at Legacy Bike Park.
The path selection is a part of the companions’ imaginative and prescient for making a biking group, reasonably than a standalone set of trails.
Legacy Bike Park doubles as a primitive campground with 31 websites, plus easy facilities corresponding to picnic tables, a slack line and a sandbox.
“It is a tremendous enjoyable place to hang around,” Pete Costain mentioned.
Legacy would not embrace many luxuries — there is no energy or operating water — and that is deliberate.
“We encourage individuals to get pleasure from Montana,” Beale mentioned.
THERE WILL be extra to come back at Legacy Bike Park within the subsequent few years.
“It is not utterly dialed” simply but, Beale mentioned. Subsequent summer time, Legacy Bike Park plans to have fun its true grand opening. By that point, Beale expects the variety of trails to almost double. In truth, he mentioned there is no finish in sight to the path additions his group will construct on the park.
“There’s a lot extra to come back,” he promised.
Even in its infancy, Legacy Bike Park is already attracting consideration.
Throughout opening weekend, Transition Bike Co. from Bellingham, Washington, will make Legacy Bike Park the primary cease on its tour of must-ride mountain biking locales.
Legacy Bike Park will host a celebration on the campground and supply a restricted variety of day passes courtesy of Transition Bike Co. throughout their go to.
Beale mentioned he is excited for the professionals to take a spin on their trails, since it should assist get the phrase out concerning the “grassroots” effort.
“That is utterly Mother and Pop, or Joes and Bros,” he mentioned. “It is only a bunch of soiled bikers doing it ourselves.”
That is why he and his companions are wanting ahead to introducing riders of each caliber at Legacy Bike Park.
“We wish to share the stoke,” Beale mentioned. “That is simply our model.”
The park’s web site is legacybikepark.com.
Reporter Bret Anne Serbin could also be reached at 406-758-4459 or firstname.lastname@example.org.