Mountain Biking Increases Visitation to Wyoming State Parks
In 2005, IMBA Trail Solutions designed a mountain bicycle trail system for Curt Gowdy State Park, not far from the legendary rockclimbing destination Veedawoo. Construction began the following year, with Singletrack Trails leading the charge. The quantity and quality of the trails eventually earned Epic status (see link) from IMBA.
The success of the trail system is evident in the visitation numbers from the park:
- In 2005, the park generated just over $100,000 in revenue without any trails; in 2011, the park revenue was almost $250,000.
- In 2008 when all other parks saw a dramatic drop in visitation because of the recession, Curt Gowdy nearly doubled its visitation.
- Prior to the trail system there were few events held in the park, but now the park hosts the Gowdy Grinder in the spring, the Exterra in the summer, and the Stone Temple 8 in the fall. The Exterra race had a 96% approval rating by participants, making it the highest-rating event of its kind in the park system. The park also hosts the Climb to Conquer Cancer for the American Cancer Society and the Antelope Dash for the Nature Conservancy.