STEVENS PASS — For now, the mountain bike trails at Stevens Pass are still a series of disconnected segments, littered with machinery and tools, boulders and mud. But trail builders can already see themselves gripping the handlebars as they fly down the forested hills, hurdling jumps and hugging the berms in a perfectly brakeless flow. The dream is beginning to take shape.
The endorphins have kicked in as Stephen Ettinger manuevers over the steep primitive mountain biking course in the forests above Bogotá, Colombia. He knows he has the legs for these Pan American Championships. He tightens his helmet strap some more in the sticky 80-degree heat, puts in a couple digs and soon finds himself in a top position.
Ask a mountain biker — from west of the mountains or east — what their favorite ride in the state happens to be, and invariably the answer will be Devil’s Gulch near Cashmere. Inquire about their favorite spot — and you’re likely to hear the Methow Valley.
LEAVENWORTH — It’s been a long wait — five years to be exact — but outdoor recreationists are optimistic they’ll soon be riding the chairlifts at Stevens Pass with their mountain bikes rather than just their skis. The final comment period on a plan to allow the Stevens Pass Ski Area to build the state’s first lift-access mountain bike park ended in mid-January. Renee Bodine, public affairs officer for the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, said Monday that a decision will be made in about two weeks on whether to allow ...