Wednesday’s Town Challenge race features all of Emerald |

Wednesday’s Town Challenge race features all of Emerald

Race director says the trails are finally dry, calls the riding 'just amazing'

Luke Graham

Sars Larson, left, tries to hold off Rick Hager as the pair whip around a corner on Emerald Mountain during a Town Challenge Mountain Bike Race Series event last year. The Emerald Beetlekill Cross-Country starts at 5:25 p.m. Wednesday.

— A full Emerald Mountain is finally back in the fold for Steamboat Springs' Town Challenge Mountain Bike Race Series.

After dealing with logging operations last year and a long melting season this year, Series Director Gretchen Sehler had all of Emerald's lush landscape at her disposal.

"I'm excited," Sehler said. "We finally have Emerald back. My backyard is whole again."

It would be easier to list the trails not used in the course for Wednesday's Emerald Beetlekill Cross-Country, the fourth race in the series.

The course travels across Emerald and up Quarry Mountain, but now Sehler had the ability to include upper trails Stairway to Heaven, Abby’s and Root Canal because they are dry enough.

"Things are finally open," she said. "We haven't been able to do this for a while."

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With all the recent rain, Sehler said the trails on Emerald are super tacky. The downhill portion of Molly's, in particular, is in great shape.

"It's riding just amazing," she said.

Sehler said for the first time she has the perfect 6-and-younger course. With all races beginning behind the Brent Romick Rodeo Arena grounds on the chariot track, the division will have a more-than-suitable course.

"It's wide, smooth and flat," she said.

Children's races begin at 5:25 p.m. with the pro/open division beginning at 6 p.m. Subsequent adult classes will follow in waves.

Day-of registration begins at 4:30 p.m. The cost is $30 for adults and $15 for children. Parking for the event will be at the rodeo grounds.

For more information or specific course routes, visit

— To reach Luke Graham, call 970-871-4229 or email

If you go

What: Town Challenge Mountain Bike Race Series Emerald Beetlekill Cross-Country

When: Registration begins at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, racing starts with children’s classes at 5:25 p.m. followed by pro classes at 6 p.m. Other classes will start after 6 p.m. in 2-minute intervals. Race-day registration is at race site only.

Where: Starts behind the Brent Romick Rodeo Arena grounds on the chariot track

Cost: $30 for adults, $15 for children


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