Stu Hassell rides on a pump track he built next to his home in Oak Creek.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

Stu Hassell rides on a pump track he built next to his home in Oak Creek.

Pump track gets repositioned in Oak Creek

Creator working to find new site for public track


— A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers site review nixed the first choice for a new bicycle pump track in Oak Creek, but the idea is far from dead.

Stu Hassell, a town Public Works Department employee and the main proponent of the pump track, said last week that the proposed site behind the Oak Creek Motel will not work because of wetlands and steep grades. Rather than giving up, Hassell said he’s looking at other sites that would allow the project to continue.

His next choice is the water treatment ponds at Williams and Arthur streets. The town no longer uses those ponds, and Hassell said he’d be willing to donate the time if the town provides the equipment to clean them up. If the town agrees, Hassell said very little funding would be required to build the pump track.

“It’d be a perfect spot if you can reclaim it and flatten it out,” he said, adding that the town will have to reclaim the ponds at some point.

Plans for the pump track were delayed in April and May because the town’s insurance carrier initially said it would not cover such a facility. After additional discussions, however, the insurance carrier agreed to cover the pump track. Oak Creek Town Clerk Karen Halterman said the insurance comes at no additional cost to the town.

Hassell said he became interested in bringing a pump track to Oak Creek after he rode one on his way to Winter Park.

“It’s not challenging,” he said. “There were kids 8 years old and professional downhillers” all using the same track.

Pump tracks are typically designed to have low rolling bumps, or rollers, in the middle with banked ends. The tracks are designed so riders don’t have to pedal, but can use the momentum of the rollers to keep moving around the track. The rollers are usually small enough that beginning riders can handle them, but big enough for experienced riders to jump off them.

Hassell’s initial plan was to build one in his backyard, but he’d rather make one that can accommodate the entire community.

“If I’m going to build it anyway, maybe I can build it for everybody,” he said. “Everybody can come out and play, the whole town.”

Because of the delays getting a town pump track approved, Hassell went ahead and built one in his backyard anyway. He has already invited neighbors over to test it out.

“Once I get it dialed in, I’ll probably have a ‘Pump 101’ day and have people come up and see what it’s about,” he said.


max huppert 6 years, 10 months ago

This is stupid!! just build it, this is Oak Creek, the Government is not going to help us and only gets in the way, who do you think is going to come out to our town and say you should not a bike trail there? To many rules that are not common sense so I would not follow rules that stop our town from doing what we want. And insurance for what? if someone gets hurt its on them, called a accident not some thing the city set up as a danger. Is city council scared to act? Better get some vision for this town, by the time you act summer will be over, should have already thought of ways to bring in traffic and help business owners, and find things for the kids to do.


Scott Wedel 6 years, 10 months ago

Knowingly messing with wetlands is exactly the sort of thing that will get someone coming to Town to supervise the restoration project. And in an area with as many US Forest Service employees and people that care about the environment, it would be truly stupid to mess with wetlands. The county dept of environmental resources acts as the fed's and state's local representative for issues so we are not too remote for it to ever be noticed.

Seems to me there is no shortage of available flat lots controlled by the Town to put this. There is the lot next to the creek across from the fire station on Colfax that was last used for staging the equipment for the sewer project. There is the library lot at Sharp and Oak. It would seem to make perfect sense that a pump track lot could be used for snow storage as well. The snow could be piled on top of the outside part of the track and the inside part would have to be rebuilt, Or the inside part could be left flat. What to do would depend on whether how many besides Stu uses it.

I was talking with several recent Soroco HS grads Friday and they were far more interested in being able to hang out at a rec center. Weekly or such trips to the SB rec center in order to swim and such was what interested them.


max huppert 6 years, 10 months ago

a obstical couse would be fun to have also, and a skate ramp, but a motor cross track would bring people to town, and have races and x-games available and gambling on it also. Or a house track for races, that would be cool, with a trail from Steamboat and around to ride house into town and build a stable right on main street so tourists would see it and might want to stop and do a ride or something.. Scott could turn the car wash into a stable, that wold be cool..


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