Saturday race on Emerald Mountain to merge cyclists, runners |

Saturday race on Emerald Mountain to merge cyclists, runners

Ben Ingersoll

— Saturday will mark year two of the Keep Emerald a Gem mountain bike and running event organized to help raise funds for and promote a couple of local organizations.

Race Director Walter Magill said the event is meant for fun and collaboration whether racers are on foot or wheels.

"We just want to get everybody together, both runners and bikers," Magill said. "I'm aware of some conflicts this year on Emerald between bikers and runners yielding to the uphill rider, so I think getting everybody together for a race would be fun."

Racers will start and finish at Howelsen Hill Lodge but will traverse different paths and distances along the way. Riders will tackle a 13-mile trail that will encompass much of the singletrack on Emerald Mountain. Runners will take on an 8-mile course. Magill said no cross traffic will occur.

Funding the race has been a bit of a challenge for Magill and his collection of volunteers. All told, Magill is looking at costs of about $1,700 for insurance, trail-user fees and T-shirts, which are given to those who register. To break even, about 70 participants are needed, he said.

The cost is $30 for adults, $25 for Routt County Riders members, $18 for youths ages 13 to 18 and $10 for kids younger than 13. Those who are interested can register at Any proceeds will benefit Routt County Riders and the Steamboat Springs Running Series.

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Despite the funding issues, Magill is excited to bring together the area's running and riding communities in a collaborative event.

"The city has been a great help on it," Magill said. "The Running Series has been a great support and same with the Routt County Riders. So it really brings … us all together for one ride. And we all appreciate Emerald."

A short-course option also will be available to adults and kids shortly after the 9 a.m. start. A post-race party will take place with food, a raffle and a trophy ceremony. Festivities will wrap up by noon.

"It's non-competitive," Magill said. "There's competition, but even the people that would beat you on a race are still encouraging you as they go by you."

To reach Ben Ingersoll, call 970-871-4204 or email

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