If you build it, they will come.
Such has been the case with the completion of the dual slalom course at Posse Grounds Park’s Bike Skills Park.
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It represented the finalization of Phase II of the bike park’s development. Riders can now race one another on the downhill track that features rollers, tabletops and berms.
“A beginner can ride it slow, and an advanced rider can ride it fast and have fun,” said Doug Copp, Sedona bike coordinator. “It’s basically how aggressive you want to ride the features.”
The slalom course is behind the pump park, which opened at Phase I’s completion about a year ago.
From conception to execution the course’s design was altered a bit to reduce the size of some of the features.
Copp said that since opening, the riders he has spoken with have had positive feedback.
“The couple of people I’ve talked to said it was a lot of fun, and that it’s not dumbed down,” he said. “You can tell a lot of people are riding it.”
Lars Romig explained his satisfaction with Phase II.
“Oh I love it, compared to Phase I,” Romig said. “Phase II, we should have had it from the get-go.”
Having a bike park is important mostly for safety reasons, Romig said. Before the park’s construction, jumps and similar features were being built illegally on Forest Service trails, miles into the wilderness.
“At the bike park it’s a little more controlled environment,” he said. “There’s an inherent risk in doing the sport ... it’s much closer to emergency services.”
It is also an ideal place to get used to riding the Forest Service trails in and around Sedona, Copp said, not to mention the surrounding views.
He added that its location, next to West Sedona School and the skate park, should encourage more children to ride to school, since they can ride after school lets out for the day.
Progressive Bike Ramps, a company based in Missouri, built the course. It took about four weeks from start to finish, according to Sedona Parks and Recreation Manager Rachel Murdoch.
“Progressive Bike Ramps is very experienced,” Copp said. “They did a very good job. They did it on time in very hot weather in June.”
Phase II cost $120,600. A tot loop, a smaller sized loop designed for children, was also originally set to be built, but due to budgeting, it was not.
“It seems that although we have a design that estimates the amount of money we will need, once you end up bidding the project or finalizing a contract for the construction, it is always more expensive,” Murdoch said.
In terms of the course itself, riders begin the downhill track traversing rollers, which are littered throughout, before hitting the first turn. Each of the turns are separated into two banks; the inside part of the first is steep and sharp while the second is longer and more gradual.
The second turn banks right and continues at more of a downhill angle than the first and third. Both banks have larger faces and are more gradual.
The final turn, soon after the second, again goes left and both are quick. There is a final straightaway before the track’s end.
Murdoch added that hopefully through volunteer efforts the tot loop can be built in the near future. A part-time maintenance worker has been hired to take care of upkeep and organize volunteer efforts, but Murdoch said local riders are good about doing it on their own, as well.
Despite its recent construction, a bike park in Sedona has long been talked about.
Murdoch said groups around the community had been interested and the Forest Service wanted to see one built to give a place for riders to practice.