GIRDWOOD BIKE PARK
The Girdwood Mountain Bike Alliance is proposing a mountain bike specific trail system in the lower Winner Creek drainage. This trail system will occupy the land within and around the existing 5k Nordic Ski Loop. This zone is bordered by the Winner Creek Trail on the north and east, the Chugach Powder Guides cat road on the west, and the Alyeska hotel to the south. Through careful route planning, this area can provide an ideal setting for mountain bike trails. The rolling terrain of this zone has the perfect amount of gradient; it is not too steep, yet has enough relief to provide fun mountain bike trails. This area has been chosen due to its proximity to the 5k Nordic Ski Loop, which plays an integral role in the construction and bike traffic flow of the proposed bike trails.
The 5k Nordic Ski Loop will serve as both an up-route for bicycles to access the trail system, as well as a way to move trail building equipment through the forest. We believe that using this pre-existing infrastructure is the most economical, practical and low-impact way to construct a mountain bike trail in Girdwood. By utilizing the 5k Nordic Ski Loop, we can dramatically decrease the amount of clearing and excavation needed to construct new bike trails. With the primary access to the proposed trail system already built, the focus can be on designing and building mountain bike specific trails. This will enable us to save on cost, and conserve more forest than if we were to build an entire new trail system from scratch.
The Girdwood Bike Park encompasses and area that can be seen as the light grey shaded area on the Girdwood Bike Park Conceptual Map. This area was designated based on topography suitable for mountain bike trails and connectivity to existing trails in the Girdwood Valley. The goal of the Girdwood Mountain Bike Alliance with this project is to build a system of downhill specific “flow trails” throughout the designated Girdwood Bike Park. A mountain bike flow trail as defined by the International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) is as follows: “Flow Trails take mountain bikers on a terrain-induced roller coaster experience, with little pedaling and braking necessary. This style of trail typically contains features like banked turns, rolling terrain, various types of jumps, and consistent and predictable surfaces. Conspicuously absent are abrupt corners or unforeseen obstacles. As a rider carves back and forth, and up and down, he or she develops a rhythm and flows down the trail.”