Can mountain biking ever be as big as skiing? That’s the question moderator Lisa Lynn of Vermont Ski + Ride asked a panel of experts in August as part of our regular forums at the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum.
We heard from Ben Colona about the 5500 spectators, the groms and racers who came to the first Fox US Open of mountain biking with downhill racing at Killington in early August. John Hammond of Sugarbush resort and Jessica Sechler of Burke Mountain Resort also spoke about the big races each of their resorts has hosted and will be hosting.
Suicide Six‘s Nick Mahood reported on their new lift-served mountain bike park, Elemental, and Adam Deslauriers talked about how Bolton Valley is reviving its old trails and Tyler Jeppesen of Smuggler’s Notch, about the new ones they are building.
Trail builder Brooke Scatchard of Sinuosity told how much it costs to build a mile of trail ($30,ooo) and Zac Freeman of the Rochester Randolph Sports Trails Alliance and Tom Stuessy of the Vermont Mountain Biking Association reported on the proposed Velomont Trail that will connect Killington to Stowe. Finally, Sam Von Trapp of the Trapp Family Lodge and Lilias Ide of Kingdom Trails spoke about some of the economic benefits mountain biking has brought to their regions and resorts.
The evening followed up with questions about how we get new people to learn the sport, e-bikes and how we an improved access for women. Watch the full forum here:
Featured photo: 2018 Fox US Open. Photo by David Young/Courtesy Killington Resort