Project: Marshall Mountain
Just a few years back, Five Valleys Land Trust (FVLT) acquired the upper half of the old Marshall Mountain ski area and approached us about building trails. Their commitment to public access, conservation, and recreation is what makes our work here possible.
Since the Spring of 2016, we've built almost 4 miles of new, bike-optimized trails which we paid for through grants, business sponsorship, and the sweat of our volunteers.
Partnership: Five Valleys Land Trust
Bjorn Again, Marshall Mt
Is it public?
The upper portion of Marshall is owned by FVLT and managed for public access. The trails we've built up there form multiple complete loops so you can ride them anytime and stay legal. Access these via the green gate 1 mile up Marshall Canyon drive on the east side.
The lower property, where the lodge and XC/Dual Slalom race courses sit, is still privately owned, and is not open for general public use. However, MTB Missoula is able to host events there, such as Zootown Derailleurs practice and a number of races, so if you're dying to ride the bottom, check out the Mullet Cycling Classic. We're hopeful about finding a solution for public access in the long run, so it's crucial that riders maintain goodwill by respecting property rights in the meantime. It's a similar situation to the many private areas bordering FVLT's Dean Stone Project.
Bjorn Again: Missoula DH
With a significant fundraising opportunity provided by Big Sky Brewing in the summer of 2016, MTB Missoula received one condition: do something cool. We couldn't think of anything better than Missoula's first public-access bike-only downhill trail.
Volunteers showed up for somewhere north of 22 organized trail days to leverage the in-house excavation and get this built. The volunteer enthusiasm proved our hypothesis that with the right project, we can bring an even wider constituency into public lands and trails stewardship. The trail opened just in time to host the 2017 Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championship Downhill, and a few weeks later it was christened "Bjorn Again" at our annual end-of-seaon bash, the Bike Ball. Find it on Trailforks.
We are ever grateful to the volunteers, sponsors and partners that made this trail possible.
2018 Flow Trail
Building on the success of Bjorn Again, we're filling out the area so there's something for everyone. Next up is a flow trail, still as bike-optimized as the gravity trail but just a little more tame.
Thanks to an outpouring of community support, construction is now underway. Check the calendar or social media to find the next Tuesday Night Dig!