Jackson County, Alabama, tourism director J.P. Parsons is pitching the idea as a way to build tourism revenue for the area…which is smart. Ã‚Â Not only are then in a good area for potential trail building (good terrain, close to several major urban areas), but there’s precedent for believing a quality trail network and facilities can bring riders to the area.
Our friends at BMCC in Wilkesboro, NC used an initial $10,000 grant from their local Chamber of Commerce to build the incredible Dark Mountain and Over Mountain Victory Trails, and they continue to build more. Ã‚Â This has helped the area land several large events (BURN 24 Hour) and let’s the club host their own events. Ã‚Â Ski resorts like Mammoth, WhistlerÃ‚Â (photo above is from Whistler’s online gallery) and more use their growing mountain bike parks to keep business up when the snow melts.
Even IMBA supports the concept and offers seminars and training for areas that want to develop mountain bike parks and resorts.
Read “more” to see a map of the area…
Click on the image to enlarge it. Ã‚Â Jackson County, AL, is centered around the “A” pinpoint. Ã‚Â The blue circles are the major metros that are easily within a day’s drive. Ã‚Â The location is on the western side of the Blue Ridge mountains, in the foothills along the Tennessee river. Ã‚Â Having the river there provides additional summertime recreational opportunities. Ã‚Â I’m glad to see there are some forward looking people that are embracing mountain biking (and cycling in general) as a way to boost their local economy.
Here is a direct link to Google Maps of the area with Terrain View showing the hills.