Steamboat Springs City Council wants to take 2nd look at plan allowing snow bikes at Howelsen Hill | SteamboatToday.com
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Steamboat Springs City Council wants to take 2nd look at plan allowing snow bikes at Howelsen Hill

Scott Franz
Howelsen Hill has opened its Nordic trails to fat bikes for the winter.
103113_SnowBikesFILE

— The city of Steamboat Springs’ plan to allow snow bikes on the Nordic ski trails at Howelsen Hill this winter will get a second look next month because some members of the Steamboat Springs City Council are concerned about the move.

“I think it’s going to impact a lot of people,” council member Walter Magill said Tuesday night adding the trails on Howelsen are unique because of the youth ski training that goes on there.

Magill and council member Sonja Macys said the council was left out of the loop on the decision to allow the bikes.

They added they had received emails and complaints from community members about the plan.

Concerns they cited included potential conflicts with Nordic skiers and potential interference with the races that occur at the city’s ski area.

Interim Parks, Open Space and Recreational Services Director John Overstreet told the council the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club supports the city’s decision to allow the bikes.

The council voted unanimously to have its Parks and Recreation Commission discuss the proposal Nov. 13 before it is brought back to council.

Snow bikes have wider tires filled at a lower air pressure and are designed to be ridden on snow.

Craig Robinson, Howelsen Hill’s facilities supervisor, said last week that the city learned other ski areas in the country — including the Grand Targhee Resort in Alta, Wyo. — successfully were adding the bikes to their trail systems.

“As this industry has grown and the sport has kind of evolved, we were able to talk to other ski resorts that had implemented this program and thought it would be a great fit for Howelsen and Steamboat,” Robinson said. “As the technology has evolved, there is less and less impact from the bike.”

The Catamount Ranch & Club also has plans to allow the bikes on some of its cross-country trails.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10.


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