Check back here for periodic updates from Willy and Drew on what is happening, and why you should be riding bikes instead of doing other things.
It’s been awhile, but it’s finally that time of year. We’re 50 days out from Memorial Weekend, which is when we’d really like to open for the summer season. We’ve been able to pull it off for a couple of years now and hopefully Mother Nature is on board with another early start. An early opening is never a guarantee, as May snow storms are a normal thing at Silver, but that won’t stop us from doing everything we can to get rolling.
Drew, our trail boss, and I have been talking about this summer for most of the winter and we’re both really excited about this season. Shovels are going in the ground and the excavator will be showing up before you know it. We have a hit list of tuning, rebuilding, and new construction projects slated for this spring and throughout the summer, including improvements and changes to some of our trails affected by last year’s logging. This is in addition to clearing fallen trees, taking care of runoff damage, and a huge amount of general touchup and maintenance projects from top to bottom will keep our trail crew busy for the foreseeable future. We have some completely new trail projects coming your way too, but we’ll be letting you know more about those as we get closer to them, rest assured your lift ticket and season pass dollars are hard at work. In related news, our early bird pass sale ends April 30th, don’t miss it.
The trail crew knocked out a lot of projects last season that are going to be awesome after soaking through their first winter. They rebuilt about half of the Lower Hammer jump line with an excavator right after we closed for 2016, this straightened out some tough spots and will make lofty jumps a lot more fun and predictable. The green trails saw a great addition with a large new section of Crescent, with an emphasis on flow, this is a great progression trail that’s fun for all abilities. El Burro Loco became a new favorite with a mix of tech and flow, it’s an absolute whip, and fun for high functioning beginners, intermediate, and expert riders alike. Low Life was opened right near the end of the season, completely eliminating the 5 Corners Road from our trail system, and adding a bunch of fun little jumps and turns for everyone.
Silver Mountain Sports is excited to announce the addition of a second full time bike mechanic, welcome to the bike park Steven! We’re excited to have two knowledgeable mechanics and riders available to help you make the most of your riding trips. Michael is currently building up a brand new fleet of Giant Glory 2 downhill bikes, and Trance 2 trail bikes. These things are sweet, the new Trance is super capable, and will pair nicely with the bulk of our trails now that it’s lower, longer and slacker. If you haven’t ridden a current trail or dh bike, do yourself a favor and rent one, you’ll be amazed how much they’ll open up for you. New riding gear and clothing is hitting the shelves daily, even as we’re clearing out the last of our winter clothing!
The additions and improvements keep on coming! We will have a dedicated host for our Ladies Days throughout the summer, I’ll have more on that soon. Our completely new trail map is in the works, with lots changes that will make it easier to find your way around our ever growing trail system. I’ll be hosting some live videos this summer covering more of our events, and keeping you updated more often on trail conditions. The North American Enduro Cup is now an Enduro World Series qualifier and a National Enduro Series stop. The Northwest Cup is getting ready for their third visit to Silver, and now a new stop at Tamarack Resort. It just so happens that we just inked a deal with Tamarack, Silver pass holders get two free days at Tam, and vise versa. The Silver Race Series will have some exciting news to announce soon, but for now you can mark the dates for our six main races.
Right now though the trails are super muddy and covered with trees and snow. So, for you it’s time to figure out where all of your left gloves ended up, to replace those goggles that smell like feet for some reason, and time to fix all those little mechanical issues you meant to fix last season. I don’t know what my reasoning was for not washing my knee pads before they went in the bin, but that odor is really starting to mature into a more complex and robust scent. It’s not the same as my goggle strap, and it’s different from the dirty shorts with an entire Clif bar stuck to the inside of the pocket. Two years of knee pad sweat is its own beast, it doesn’t really come to full power until your second gondola lap either, but then it hits you like you’re being gently maced, building throughout the ride. I feel like the sweat is part of what’s holding them together now though, so I’ll probably leave them and see if the washing machine can get that Clif bar out of my pocket.
We are very excited to see everyone, and it’ll be here before you know it.
Have a safe preseason,
Wow, it’s been a busy summer! The dirt was pretty darn good all year, and now we’re down to our final two weekends. These 5 days are it, then it’s back to shuttling, or pushing your bike uphill, like an animal. Well we aren’t going out with a whimper/*, we’ve got stellar weather and trail conditions for this weekend! What perfect timing for our three day bike festival, Silveroxx presented by Vertical Earth and Shimano!
Registration- Chainless, DH, and Super-D - Online until September 21, Village Friday 9:00-noon, Sat 8:00-11:00. There will be no registration on Sunday!
Friday we’ll kick things off with $20 lift tickets for women for our last Dirt Ladies Day of the year, then we’ll fire up the Bike Hub Poker Run 11:00-3:00 (just pick up cards, it’s free), at 2:00 we’ll start the Bike Hub Chainless Race, and if you have lights you can upload the gondola until 6:15 for the Moon Snuggle Group Night Ride. Saturday will be business as usual until the DH race at 1:00, the Steeziest Steeze Off will start as soon as the DH race is over, and then the Village Shenanigans and Minibike Keg Slalom will take over the Village from 8:00-10:00. Sunday is a 10:45 start for the 3,400’ final Super-D of the season, at 3:00 we’ll bust out the 16” coaster brake bikes for the Idaho State Minibike Champs, a mass start downhill event, and then we’ll wrap things up with the Silver Kids race in the village. Awards are at 5:00 each day, and don’t forget about the overall awards for the man and woman that had the fastest combined 6 races of the season, also on Sunday!
As I write this, I’m still recovering from moving box after box of killer prizes from my office to the staging room. We have $1,200 in $1 bills from Vertical Earth and Shimano for the fastest three men and women on Saturday and Sunday, plus so much stuff from Smith, Kali Protectives, Dakine, Dialed MTB Fenders, Kuat Racks, Giant Bicycles, Liv Cycling, Wildcat Pizza, Vittoria Tires, Serfas Lights,Redbull, The Bike Hub and Cliff Bar. Heck everything except for the cash is getting raffled, so anyone who enters has an equal shot at walking with some swanky prizes.
So what do you need to know if you’re planning on riding this weekend? Sign up for some events/ all the events, or join the ladies ride ($20 lift ticket on Friday) or the Moon Snuggle Night Ride(also Friday and free!), they’ll be fun and we have a category for everyone. If you aren’t racing, you should still come up, most of the mountain will be open, and cheering people on or heckling is a blast. Check out the day by day for what closures to expect below. Spectators can pick up a scenic gondola ticket for $10, or a three day scenic gondola ticket for $15. Spectators will need to pick up a voucher from registration during registration hours.
Friday-Everything open until 1:45, after that we will only have Jackass and its spur trails closed for a couple hours for the chainless race. We will allow people up the gondola with lights for our Moon Snuggle Night Ride until 6:15, you have to ride with the group, and we have a limited number of Serfas demo lights available, check out our facebook page.
Saturday- Everything open until 12:30, after that we will close Jackass and its spur trails for the DH race. Jackass should reopen around 2:45ish, when Hot Beans and Frankenbeans will close for the Pro and Cat 1 DH Racers followed by the Steeziest Steeze Off (biggest trick contest). We should have everything back open by 4:15ish.
Sunday- The lower mountain and the Hammer will be closed until the Top to Bottom Super-D race is complete, hopefully around 1:00. Jackass will close for about 15 minutes around 3:00 for the Idaho State Minibike Champs. Everything else will be open.
See you soon!
Crescent is looking sweet since the trail crew had a berm building competition last week, you can see their handy work as you head up the gondola. These are the perfect way to get comfy with riding berms, and I’d recommend a lap on Crescent to anyone. Also of note is the addition of a new little section on Mutton conductor that adds a little speed to the first rooty traverse. Look for a entrance to the left of the main line, right after you do the first fall line rocky section, about a quarter of the way into the trail. Check it out, it completely changes the flow through there. Finally, ride El Burro Loco if you haven’t already, it’s a blast.
Ok, on to the main event!
It’s officially time to kick off the Silver Race Series presented by Vertical Earth and Shimano! This weekend we will have downhill racing on Saturday, and a Super-D on Sunday, so a little bit of something for everyone. Northern Peaks Alliance will be running a tight ship all weekend with their chipped timing system, and rapid results. Vertical Earth our title sponsor will be set up in the village offering free neutral mechanical support for racers, they’re here to make sure your bike is in top shape for your race run! We are giving out $1,200 in cash this weekend, going three deep with equal payout for the fastest men and women of each event! We’ve also got a pile of great stuff to give out from our fantastic series sponsors, Smith Optics, Dakine, Kali Protectives, Wildcat Pizza, Dialed MTB Fenders, and Clif Bar, all you need to do is race to be in the raffle!
Everyone: We will have some trails closed this weekend, we keep closures as short as possible. Please respect all closures, as violating them can be extremely dangerous for both you and racers, or more often make for much longer closures as we try to clear the course and rerun races. There is still plenty of mountain open for your shredding pleasure.
Hammer closes at 12:45, Hammer should reopen around 2:30
Hot Beans/Frankenbeans/Hot Mess close when the last Cat 1 Woman finishes on Hammer, should be around 2:30. Hopefully reopen around 3:15-3:30
Alhambra and Dave’s Delight will be closed all day, until races are complete.
The lower mountain will be closed at 12:15, we hope to reopen before 3:30. Spectators are encouraged, but no one will be allowed past 5 corners until the event is over, no exceptions.
Racers: Online registration is done, but you can register in person outside Noah’s Canteen Fri: 4:00PM-6:00PM, SAT: 8:00-10:00, SUN: 8:00-10:00 in front of Noah’s. If you miss registration there will be no late additions, pre register for future events and save everyone a little bit of stress. We will be starting the Cat 3 racers first on Saturday and Pros first on Sunday. Racers are responsible for knowing the course, leaving the course results in a DNF, signage and tape is there as an aid, but riders must make sure they stay on the course. Reruns are not permitted for mechanicals, get your bike checked out by neutral support to help minimize the chances of having a mechanical. We try to be as accommodating and flexible as possible to make sure everyone has a good time, but we also need to keep things fair and running on time for the benefit of everyone. If you are interested in racing for the first time, swing by registration, we have a category for everyone and we’re pretty sure you’ll have a great time.
I also wanted to take this opportunity to thank our volunteers! While they all seem to have a great time, these ladies and gentlemen come and spend their day working instead of riding themselves. They drive here from all over the place and donate their time so that we can provide the best race experience possible. Without them these races would be impossible to pull off. Our sweepers, course marshals, awards girl(Barry), and even most of our finish line staff(Trisha & Stephen) are all here because they are really nice people. Thank you everyone! Please let us know if you are interested in volunteering at future events by contacting email@example.com
With the utmost respect,
Mother Nature has been doling out the moisture at perfect intervals this year, and trail conditions have been all time! Lots of grip, little to no dust, and week after week we get a little storm to make sure the brown pow endures. It’s mid-July and you can still get pitted without getting dusted, you can still run a train of riders with no gaps. I’d like to think it’ll be like this every year, but I’m making sure I take advantage of the epic conditions while we have them. We get a little different weather up here in the mountains, and so far our weather has been providing the traction.
Next weekend, July 29-31, is the kickoff to the Silver Race Series presented by Vertical Earth & Shimano! We have a Downhill race on Saturday and a Super-D race on Sunday, and we’ve got a bunch of great prizes to raffle off from Dakine, Smith Optics, Kali Protectives, Dialed MTB Fenders, Wildcat Pizza and others. At this point you might be wondering what in the heck is a Super-D ? Super-D, or Super Downhill, is still mostly downhill, but with longer courses, slightly less technical terrain, and an occasional bit of pedaling. These races are best suited for trail, all mountain or enduro style bikes, but downhill bikes can still be competitive. Think of a single long enduro stage with anywhere from 1,500 to 3,500 feet of descent, and longer race times than a traditional downhill. We’ve got categories and courses for all ability levels, these events are a ton of fun, and you’ve got a great chance of walking away with some sweet swag! Check the race page for courses!
Our new intermediate tech trail, El Burro Loco, is open and ready for business! Initially we opened the first half of the trail to change things up for our NWCup racers, but now the remainder of this sweet new trail is ready for some mid season shredding! But what is El Burro Loco like? It’s reasonably fast, with berms where you want them, a few rock and wood features, some short off cambers, and a boat load of flow. The pump pit to berm is easily one of the funnest 20 feet of trail on the mountain, you’ll know what I’m talking about as soon as you hit it.
Evergreen East & Bell Joy Ride will be setting up camp in the Village this Saturday 7/23. Evergreen East is an organization staffed entirely by volunteers who fight for your right to access public lands and trails, offer riding clinics and lessons, build lots of new trails, and much more. This group of dedicated individuals sacrifices their riding time in order to make yours better. This Saturday you can become an Evergreen East member for just $25($10off), and all Evergreen members will get $10 of their bike park ticket and $1 off pints at Noah’s Canteen for the day. Right next door you’ll find Bell Joy Ride ambassador Karina Magrath, who will be putting on an awesome day of ladies only group rides, and giving out some sweet raffle prizes from Bell, Blackburn, Camelbak, and Shimano. These rides are a ton of fun, a great way to meet other lady riders, and an excellent chance to scope out Silver with your buddies. Details
Huckleberries!!! Oh man, I have a hard time riding past huckleberries without taking a 40 minute pit stop. My priorities, shift, my responsibilities, melt away. Trailside berry patches can cut the number of laps I am able to fit into a day in half. It’s the beginning of huckleberry season, and if you pay attention there is a feast to be had. Knuckleberries, nearly grape size huckleberries, are getting snapped up quick. So if you see people standing in the bushes, bikes cast down like cheap toys, chances are you’re in the presence of purple gold!
Crescent trail got some sweet and tender loving this week from our hard working trail crew. You’ll notice some fancy pants new berms directly under the gondola near the top now, and this is just the beginning. We’ll be getting the excavator up here soon to build a sweet new section of trail that avoids the road and provides more of that beautiful single track action you’ve been enjoying up top. I don’t usually ride the green trails much, but a quick trip down Crescent, Payday, and Cool Neatness have been sneaking into my route selections lately. Variety is the spice of life after all.
What a ramble, I’ll try and keep these a little shorter, and a little more frequent in the future. If you just skipped to the bottom, here is what you need to know.
- Conditions are freaking amazing, both the trails and the dirt itself.
- We have races next week, July 29-31, sign up , have fun, win stuff. Details
- El Burro Loco is open and a ton of fun.
- Evergreen East is here Saturday the 23rd, become a member for $25(normally $35), members get $25 lift tickets(normally $35) and $1 off pints at Noah’s for the day. Details
- Karina with Bell Joy Ride is here Saturday the 23rd, join her group ride if you are a lady and like having fun and winning sweet prizes. Details
- Huckleberries are delicious.
- Crescent trail got a little face lift, and the trail crew is laboring away on a whole new section.
- I will make these shorter in the future.
Snow, NAEC, El Burro Loco, Northwest Cup, dirt bikes, nice lids, tailgate pads, and chairlift schedules. We’ve got a lot to talk about!
The North American Enduro Cup was a raging success this weekend with 250 racers from all over the U.S. and Canada. The village and trails were full of amazing bikes and smiling people all weekend. We had world class support from some of Shimano’s best mechanics, champagne fights, giant checks, and enough dollar pizza slices to fuel 250 people for two days of intense racing. Pinkbike has the full recap here, but I just wanted to thank the Cascadia Dirt Cup, Montana Enduro Series, and the Idaho Enduro Series for coming together and starting what is going to be a huge annual event. If you didn’t race this weekend, make sure you sign up early next year because I have a feeling it will sell out quick!
The Stix & Stones Silver Mountain XC is this weekend and you’re in for a treat! This is a motorcycle event, so racers will be going through some of the gnarliest areas of the mountain, basically heading into all the areas we don’t have mountain bike trails. The courses are tough, so tough they are expecting a large portion of the riders to be unable to finish the event! We will be operating chairs 1&2 Saturday and Sunday, so you can fly right over the top of racers while they are on course, it’s going to be nuts! Spectator tickets are $19 for adults, $15 for youth, and $10 for season pass holders, this gets you up the gondola, access to the chairs, and access to the event. You can only by entrance to the event at the base of the gondola in the village. They will be checking coolers and back packs for alcohol, so don’t get your pony keg of Jaeger confiscated.
Jackass has a new brother, and he’s going to be a little handful. Despite Trump’s best efforts, El Burro Loco will have a home here at Silver Mountain Bike Park. We will have a soft opening this week in preparation for the NW Cup. As you finish navigating the technical sections of Jackass near the top, and after you cross the road, you’ll see the entrance to your left at the tree line. This trail needs some traffic in order to bring out the roots and rocks for next weekend’s race. Much like Secret Squirrel, Mutton Conductor, and our other tech trails, El Burro Loco will start out smooth and loamy, but will rapidly change into something we are excited to add to the quiver, another blue tech trail! This is only the beginning, el burro will eventually go all the way to the top of Lower Jackass, and the trail crew will be adding a few features in the coming days. Please go put as many laps as you can down this new addition.
In case you missed this weekend, we have 1/3 of our gondola cabins outfitted with tailgate pads from our friends at Dakine. When you walk into the gondola terminal you’ll notice that our lifties are scanning tickets on the other side of the building now. Basically it’s like loading bikes into your idiot friend’s truck, as he slowly pulls away from you laughing, but we won’t slam on the brakes right as you get up to speed. Wait at the new loading area, turn your bike around, lift your bike into the cabin, turn your bars to your left, and then get into the cabin ahead of the one your bike is now in. This allows us to upload 6 bikes and people in 2 cabins, versus 4 or 5 cabins in the past. Someone better at math than I am can tell us how much more efficient this is, but I’m thinking it’s close to a 600% improvement.
How bout that weather…. 95 degrees a week ago, and snow this week. We actually had some real accumulation Tuesday, but it’s supposed to get a little nicer headed into the weekend. Trail conditions seem to just keep improving, so get ready for more of that brown pow we’ve been shredding all season! Chair 5 was going to run for bikers this weekend due to the traffic from the moto event, but we are sending those folks up chairs 1&2, so you’ll have to wait until next weekend to get your chair 5 fix.
Well, that’s a wrap. Come up and enjoy some epic conditions, new trail, and wild dirt bike races.
Boy howdy, what a opening weekend! If you got out for a visit this weekend, then I think you’ll agree, conditions were all time! Nearly 600 bikers came out for our opening, turning Silver into a bustling mountain bike community for the weekend. The weather was great, the trails delivered prime shredding, and the opening weekend record was broken again! I don’t know what hurt more on Monday, my forearms from riding or my face from grinning like an idiot all weekend.
600 riders is a lot, a whole lot, and as you may have noticed or heard, we had a gondola lift line for most of the weekend. In addition to our “Local Day” on Saturday, we were running with a little less than half of our normal number of gondola cabins due to opening 3 weeks early. Well, we’ll have a bunch more cabins online this weekend, which should help keep lines to a minimum, and the stoke levels high!
As many of you are aware Silver is proud to host the inaugural North American Enduro Cup on June 10-12. This event will bring in 300 competitors for two days of stage racing, so brace yourselves for a flood of fanny packs, water bottle cages, and half helmets with goggles. Also of note will be the trail closures, due to the size of the event and the sheer amount of terrain covered, we will have the entire lower mountain and a few of the upper mountain trails closed for the majority of Saturday and Sunday. We are aiming to keep most of the chair 3 system open while racing is happening, and we will be opening the lower mountain as soon as the courses are clear, probably around 3 or 4 in the afternoon. Friday we will be 100% open for everyone. We will offer $29 adult bike park tickets and $22 youth bike park tickets on June 11&12. Watch for course details dropping this week, NAEC details HERE
Staying with the events theme, the Stix & Stones XC Motorcycle Race will be taking place on June 18 and 19. This event will take place all over the mountain, basically anywhere we don’t have bike trails. We will be keeping our bike trail system totally open wit the exception of Dave’s Delight and Happy Day. Spectators will be using chair 3 to access the course, so we are expecting heavy traffic and slower upload speeds on 3 for the weekend. To combat lift lines we will open chair 5 during normal hours, so you can pop on there and enjoy the most scenic ride on the mountain. Make sure you leave some time to watch this event, these crazy yeahoos will be riding their dirt bikes at race speed through some of the roughest, steepest and wildest terrain in the region.
Northwest Cup is June 24-26 and you can check out all the details HERE, basically everything is open to public except the race courses while qualifying and racing is happening. So, don’t plan on riding Jackass or Frankenbeans on Sunday until later in the day, the rest of the mountain is yours to shred at your leisure though. This is an awesome event to watch with lots of high speed action, so grab a beverage and pencil out an hour for some heckling or cheering, whichever is your speed.
This weekend we’ll be open Saturday and Sunday, we have no events, and it looks like the brown pow is back after some rain showers today. The trail crew is building a new wall ride this week to replace the one at the top of the Hammer, so hopefully that’ll be waiting for you to freeride the heck out of real soon. If you missed out on last weekend, make sure you get up here soon to see all the shiny new stuff, conditions are perfect for squeaking the wheels and getting twisty!
In anticipation of your valued response,
A little over 24 hours from now I will be enjoying a cold beverage with friends after an exceptional day of shredding the brown pow. Tired, dirty, and extremely worn out, we’ll be sitting around swapping stories and enjoying some hard earned food.
Barring an act of god tomorrow will easily set the bar for future openings. Every trail has gotten some love, new and old. The soil is moist, tacky, and not muddy. Nearly every berm and feature has been lovingly tuned, with many changes that improve the experience but are so subtle you’ll most likely just think you’ve gotten better as a rider. There are features and trails that you’ve enjoyed for years that will be different, and we think you’ll agree, better. There are big improvements like the rebuild of Old School that we’ve told you about, and smaller, completely new sections sprinkled around the mountain that we haven’t even mentioned.
After riding Silver for 12 years I can confidently say that our trails system is the best it’s ever been. The progress that has been made since last September is shocking, and has really changed the face of our park. We have added a bigger rental bike fleet of 2016 Giant Glorys and Trances, online rental reservations, more days of operations, big new events, and lots of other stuff for this summer. But, the thing that stands out the most is how freaking good the trails look and feel for 2016!
At this point in the conversation I’m going to turn it over to the man of the hour, Drew Mahan trail boss extraordinaire, so keep reading.
Good luck sleeping tonight,
Despite some serious challenges facing the trail crew this season (most notably damage from the wind storm earlier this year, and a big chunk of our trail system that was logged last fall), we have been able to get our entire trail system open and maintained 3 weeks earlier than we usually do. It would not have been possible without the efforts of a lot of people, some of whom work here, and others who just want to help dig so that they can ride sweet trails. So in no particular order, thanks to:
The trail crew: Peter Jantz, Brendan Courrier, Brad Barker, Trevor Chrisman, Morgan Winchester
All of the patrollers who helped get the trails open: Joel Kopf, Brian Hilland, Miles Rinne, Loegan Sargent, Nick Fabbiano
Chris Penson, helping out from lift operations
Michael Conley, who rescheduled his belly button piercing appointment to come help dig
Thanks to Ed Assed, (volunteer) Trail Crew Manager and the rest of the volunteer trail crew: Anthony Williams, Anthony Tudor, Cody Robertson, and Mr. Larry Bunden, as well as everyone else who came out and moved dirt for the cause.
Also, a big thanks to Cy Welk, who was a key part of the Old School bridge construction last fall. Also, thanks for talking me into rebuilding the end of Corkscrew, it was worth it.
Thanks also to Nick Hathhorn and Kent Billingsley. You guys both did amazing things for this mountain, not only in big obvious ways like building Baby Swiss, but in a lot of smaller things like fixing bad corners and putting the perfect tune on a jump.
Sorry if I have forgotten anyone. As you can see, it takes a lot of hard work from a lot of folks to make shredding happen on opening day. If you know any of these people, give them a high five next time you see them. The mountain is a better place to be because of them.
P.S. Stay off the wall ride. We are working on replacing it but for now it is unrideable. Thanks for your patience.
To my friends,my dirty smelly friends,
Nine days and counting! It’s so close I can almost smell that first ride up the gondola, packed with sour knee pads and excited chatter from grown men and women who have put off painting the house, or cleaning the basement so they can enjoy the best conditions of the year. This is a weekend full of reunions with people that know each other maybe even not by name, but by helmets and bikes, or some blurry after race memory involving too much pbr and 3 people on one bike. This is the weekend we have waited 8 months for!
Mother Nature saw fit to give us an amazing winter full of powder days, followed by a brilliant spring that allowed the trail crew to get buck wild and buff out the trails in record time. We are opening almost everything Memorial weekend, fully 3 weeks ahead of when we normally open. Frankenbeans and Baby Swiss will be in prime shape, and Chair 3 will be spinning Saturday through Monday. We are staying open weekends from May 28 to October 2, with 7 day operations from June 2 to September 5, so this will be our biggest operating schedule ever!
The lower mountain was logged last year, resulting in a completely different look and feel, but I think you’ll appreciate the new views and wider lines on Secret Squirrel. This has created one issue that we hope avoid problems with, pirate lines. As we’ve grown, we have seen an increase in new lines getting ridden in, off our designated trails. This creates a number of problems, first and foremost, because our trails are on BLM lands at different times, it creates the risk of closing down access to our entire lower trail system for everyone. Beyond that, it creates a scenario where our crew is working on repairing and blocking off these trails instead of working on new trail or doing maintenance. Don’t ruin it for everyone, stay on the trails, nuff said.
On to the real good stuff, the trails! I finally got up to see what Drew and the trail crew have been up to since last fall, and I was a little shocked. There are pleasant little surprises all over the mountain, like slight reroutes, and new berms, but the shock came when we hopped on Old School. I knew it was rebuilt, I’ve seen some pictures, and I’ve talked to the crew about the project. Getting on it for a test run last week forced me to change how I look at our park. This thing is big, it’s legit, and it’s right here in Kellogg! The jankey rock jumps and wild intersection with Payday are gone, and in their place are a series of the biggest, funnest, and most approachable jumps we’ve ever had, plus a crazy bridge/ table ticking the tape at a 40’ from lip to landing. If you liked the Hammer rebuild, prepare yourself for something even better.
Riders will be in for another treat with a big reroute project tying Corkscrew, Old School, and Highlife together with some massive berms. You’ll now avoid half of the 5 corners road all together. You’ll also notice that Spooky Woods has a little left hook near the bottom that ties in nicely to Pepsi Can. To boot, the weather this week is looking to provide some of the best opening day conditions we’ve ever had!
Coming full circle, the most responsible thing is to go ride, to get out of town and have fun with your friends. To hyper focus on something as simple as getting around a corner as fast as possible, or getting your tech skills in order on Mutton Conductor, something that takes every fiber of your concentration. Something that allows you to return on Monday a little high on life, and with a fresh perspective. Besides, you can always just hire someone to paint your house, we even know a guy.
With sweaty anticipation,
Silveroxx is here!!! We have 13 events going on this weekend including the last Dirty Ladies Day, Chainless Race, Poker Run, Moon Snuggle Night Ride, SRS #6, Steeziest Steeze Off, Bunny Hop Comp, Beer Keg Kids Bike Dual Slalom, Outdoor Movies, SRS #7 Super D, Silver Kids Race, Instagram Contest and the Idaho State Mini Bike Champs!!! REGISTER HERE
We have a lot going on this weekend so please register online before midnight on Thursday to help things run smoothly. There is on-site registration in the village on Friday and Saturday but times are limited and exceptions will not be made this weekend, no registration on Sunday Morning. Registration times will be firm and you will not be able to show up late. You can pre register for SRS 6 & 7 as well as the Chainless race, everything else will have registration immediately before the start of the event.
The outdoor movies and Village Shenanigans will have a Ninkasi beer garden, because we’ve all earned one, it will be an all ages show. The night ride will be a blast and we do have a few Lezyne lights left to demo for FREE, just message us on Facebook to get one set aside, first come, first serve. The Idaho State Mini Bike Championship will be the funnest thing anyone has ever participated in, and the spectating will be amazing, shotgun start. The Super D on Sunday is a world class course with 3,400 feet of descent and a full mix of trail types. In summation, this weekend will be a ton of fun and a proper send off to the 2015 season!
That being said the mountain will mostly be open to everyone throughout the weekend, just respect any closures for everyone’s safety. The logging is continuing at the bottom of the mountain, so Wide Open, Pirate Trail, Man Child and Secret Squirrel will be closed. Old School is also getting a major facelift right now and is closed, but Lower Payday is open and you can look at the crazy new bridge/ table that goes over it now. That still leaves 30 trails for your enjoyment, and you can get a sneak peak at what’s in store for 2016 from the gondola.
It has been an amazing year, thanks to everyone for supporting the bike program and we’ll see you this weekend!
Hugs and Kisses,
With so much going on right now we basically have two updates for you today!
Some exciting developments in trail land to tell you about this week, so here we go:
Last week we had enough rain to do some patching up here and there around the mountain. Hammer, Jackass, Frankenbeans, and Baby Swiss all had some work done. We were also able to fix up some of the more primitive sections of Mutton Conductor.
As promised, Old School is getting a much needed face lift. Things are well underway with the rebuild. We have also hired a small legion of rock removal specialists to follow the excavator and tune things up as we go. Expect lots of jumps and rollers when it is opened next year. This also means that Lower Hammer will be closed at Mutton Conductor. If Mutton Conductor is not your bag, take either Lower Jackass or Lower Payday to access the rest of the lower mountain.
Speaking of the lower mountain, our logging operation down there is still underway. Secret Squirrel and Man Child will remain closed this weekend. We are optimistic that we will be able to get them re-opened by next weekend however. Then we have 25 years to build as many trails as we can down there before the next round of logging.
Please bear with us as we lay the foundations for some awesome shredding next season. Respect all closures, they are for your safety. You can peek at the Old School rebuild from the gondola, but please keep your tires off of it until next season.
Hello from office land! We’ve got a lot coming up for the end of the season, so here we go:
We are running Saturdays and Sundays only until our final weekend when we will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday for Silveroxx on October 2, 3 and 4. We’ve been getting some much needed rain and with the tune ups that Drew mentioned above the trails are riding awesome.
We are selling off our 2015 Kona rental fleet right now with bikes as low as $999. If renting Saturday or Sunday, your rental fee can be applied towards the purchase of a bike.
Silver Mountain Sports Hours- Friday: 9am – 8pm, Saturday – Thursday: 9am – 6pm
Call 208 783 1517 during business hours for details.
Last but certainly not least, Silveroxx final details are coming out today. We’ve got the final Dirty Ladies Day, Moon Snuggle group night ride, chainless race, poker run, Silver Race Series #6, Steeziest Steeze Off, Village Shenanigans, outdoor bike movies, Super D (SRS#7), Minibike Race, Kids Race, and Overall Awards. Registration and lodging specials are at www.northernpeaksalliance.com. There will be no day of registration on Sunday.
A huge thank you for everyone who came out for the Northwest Cup this past weekend. It was great to see two chairlifts and the gondola full of bikes and riders, and we had some great racing over the weekend. We are already looking forward to next year's Northwest Cup. If you missed it, the next Silver Race will be Sunday, September 6th.
In trail crew land, we have been picking up the pieces this week from hundreds of laps on Frankenbeans and Jackass. Given how dry the trails are, we were pleasantly surprised how well everything held up over the weekend. We have also been doing some planning for our fall build season. As soon as some rain comes in and the hoot owl restrictions are lifted, we will be getting an excavator up here and starting to get into some serious rad-making. First up will be starting on the rebuild of Old School. The plan is to pack it with as many long, mellow tabletop jumps as we can, and maybe also a few rollers here and there. We are also going to address a problematic intersection and re-work the ending of the trail.
In what may be the most controversial part of the project, the rock tables are going the way of Monster T forks and 71 degree head angles. If you are one of the few batty individuals who loves those things, don't worry: you still have a couple of weeks to session them before they are gone forever.
Hero dirt season is almost back.
See you on the trails,
We are pleased to announce the soft opening of Mutton Conductor, our new Advanced Technical trail. As you probably know, it starts on the Lower Hammer just before the big switchback, and ends up right at the top of Spooky Woods at 5 corners. Before you get too amped up, please read the following information.
We on the trail crew have worked our butts off to make this trail as safe and rad as we possibly could. Due to the somewhat dry conditions this year, a lot of the trail is very (very) soft and loose. So please take it easy when you are riding it. Expect blow outs, chaos, and unseen roots and rocks lurking in the dust. Also know that like Secret Squirrel or Frankenbeans were when brand new, a lot of the lines to make the trail flow have not been formed yet (that is your job, you lucky dog).
Will you like the new trail? If you like Frankenbeans, or even wish it were a little rowdier, then yes, you probably will. If you prefer a more flowy, bermy bicycle riding experience you should probably just continue on down the Lower Hammer. Mutton Conductor is rated 'More Difficult' (or Black Diamond, if you prefer). You should not be on this trail if you are not an advanced rider.
Now that we have the cautions and caveats out of the way, please feel free to get stoked. New trail for your shredding enjoyment, Saturday, August first.
Summer is in full affect, this is the time I spend late winter and spring yearning for. I remember sitting there this winter, having a beer and telling myself would be riding so much if the weather would just clear up and get warm. Our season is almost half over and I haven’t been riding as much as I should. I’ve been convincing myself that it’s too dusty and hot, I’ve got too much going on and the list goes on with lame excuses. Well I’ve snapped out of my lull and started riding more, and I can’t believe I was skipping out on this. We’ve got six weeks of 7 day week operations left and then it’ll be gone before you know it.
We will have Frankenbeans closed for filming on Saturday from opening until around 1:00, we will open the trail as soon as possible. On that note expect to see another great edit from Cameron Hotchkiss hitting Pinkbike in the coming weeks.
I finally got to check out the new tech trail, Mutton Conductor, departing from Lower Hammer and winding its way down to 5 Corners. This is going to be a game changer for riders looking for a little more tech in their lives. It’s a whole new beast that rides like a well shaken mix of Frankenbeans, Squirrel, and Spooky Woods. Roots, off camber sections, steep shots and about 900 feet of vertical will be your link to an uninterrupted top to bottom black diamond experience. Please stay off the trail until it is officially open, there are a lot of hazards including but not limited to active ground hornet nests, men with chainsaws, falling trees and stuabs & stumps.
This one is for the ladies! Every Friday afternoon in July and August, and Saturdays in September we will be hosting the Dirty Ladies Days. This is chance to ditch the dudes and do some lady specific shredding. Pick up your $20 lift ticket and join the ladies group ride or go do your own thing, either way this is a great way to meet some new riding partners and have fun. All abilities levels and ages are welcome whether this is your first time on the mountain or you’ve been out every weekend.
I am sitting at my desk with my riding shorts and jersey on, my trail shoes, knee pads and gloves are a safe distance away to keep nostril burns to a minimum. A few more things to check off my list and then it’s time to do what I moved here to do, ride bikes on some of the funnest trails around with some of the best people in the PNW.
Missing your scent,
Trail crew has been battling the elements, working on the new tech trail. It is really starting to come together. It is going to have three distinct sections to it, each with its own unique thing going on. The upper third or so is going to be wide, fast, and loose, with lots of big rocks, roots, and off camber sections. The middle section is a repurposed game trail that will have kind of a backcountry-single-track feel. It is tight and twisty, but it is going to have a lot of flow at the same time. The bottom third goes through some dark White Pine forest and should be steep, rooty, and technical. The initial building should be complete in the next 2-3 weeks. We will do a little flow testing at that point and fix any wonkiness, build a couple of small wood features, and we hope to get it open to you all sometime around mid-August.
It has been, I would say, the most difficult trail building conditions we have yet encountered here at Silver. We have built through areas of nothing but watermelon sized rocks, through alder groves so dense you need to battle it with a chainsaw to even walk through it. And the heat. Oh the heat. To keep morale up in these challenging times, we have been carrying on some side competitions while we work. In our Biggest Loser Trail Crew competition, Nick is in the lead, having lost 14 pounds since we started working on this trail. He was at 16 pounds, but he gained a couple pounds of moon dust just prior to weigh in. In our Who Wants To Find a Hornets Nest competition, I am comfortably in the lead, having found two hornets nests. Meanwhile Nick and Jerick have yet to get on the board with a single found nest.
We can’t wait to get everyone shredding on this new trail. We will keep you updated as we get closer to opening it up.
It’s that time of year again! Last minute registrations, popsicles, parking lot parties, heckling and precision timing will be on display for the kick off to the Silver Race Series. This downhill race series is entering its second year and my how the conditions have changed. Gone is the torrential downpour and 4” of mud, replaced by clear skies, a bit of dust and pleasant mid to high 70’s temperature.
We have a category for everyone from first time racers to hardened pros. The series is structured in a way that your are competing against people of similar experience and age, with the exception of our pro racers who are in a no holds barred free for all. $100 cash goes to the fastest man and woman each day and the huge pile of swag from Smith Optics, Dakine, Kali Protectives, Wildcat Pizza, Vittoria Tires, Osprey Packs, The Bike Hub, and Lezyne will be raffled out to the racers. The shop sponsor for this weekend is The Bike Hub from Spokane Washington. Regardless of how you place you have an equal chance of winning some great gear! Kuat Racks has provided two sweet hitch racks to be raffled off at Silveroxx this year! All you need to do to enter is compete in five of our seven races.
Register early to save money and headaches. Once day of registration closes, that’s it, no late registrations or mid race category changes. This is helps us ensure accurate timing and fairness for all of the competitors. We use a chip timing system so please hold on to your number plate for the entire series. No licenses are required, courses are listed below, details and registration are at www.northernpeaksalliance.com
Kent Billingsly took home a lot of cash last year, who is going to try and stop him for 2015?
Race courses for SRS 1 & 2!
Category 3- Men & Women - Start at the top of Jackass and run all the way to the bottom of Chair 5.
Category 2, 1, Pro - Men & Women - Start at the top of Hot Beans, merge on to Alhambra and then take a right onto Frankenbeans, continue to the last jump as you exit the back to back monster berms.
Category 3, 2 – Men & Women -Start at the Mountain House, run the Hammer to the last straight away before the drop in to Lower Hammer.
Category 1 - Women – Same as Cat 3 and 2.
Category 1 - Men – Same as Pro.
Pro – Men & Women- Start at the top of Hot Beans, merge on to Alhambra and then take a right onto Hot Mess, end just before the service road at the bottom of Chair 3.
The season is officially rolling! The last couple of weekends have had amazing numbers of riders coming out and the trails are holding up well despite the traffic! We are gearing up for 7 day a week operations and have been knocking out some new projects around the trails, including the new rest station at 5 corners and a new gap on Lower Hammer.
We have a couple of closures for June 20 and 21! The Silver Mountain Archery Shoot will be happening this weekend so we ask that you respect all closures and stay on the trails. There will be around 400 bow shooters roaming around and your safety is our top priority.
The following trails are closed:
Both Hiking Trails
In case you haven’t heard, the trail crew has officially started a new hand built expert tech trail on the mid mountain. This will take a large portion of the summer to complete, but when it’s done we will have a full top to bottom expert trail that bypasses the roads. We are super excited for this project and can’t wait to have it open.
The Silver Race Series is kicking off in just over a week! This series is super fun, affordable and a great way to win some great swag from great sponsors. Smith, Dakine, Kali Protectives, Kuat Racks, Clif, Wildcat Pizza, Leyzne, Osprey Packs and Vittoria Tires have kicked in some great prizes that will be raffled off to anyone who enters, so everyone has an equal chance of walking away with great prizes. The Bike Hub and Norther Peaks Alliance are also doing a cash payout for the fastest man and woman of the day. We have a category for every ability type and age group so you can race against people of similar ability levels and we use chip timing, so it’s super accurate. You can sign up at northernpeaksalliance.com
A big thanks to all the riders who turned out for the Memorial Day sneak peek. Because of the great showing, we are bumping up our opening weekend to June 6. This will be a full opening, with chair 3 as well as the gondola running and all trails open.
To that end, we have been out getting all of our remaining trails buffed out and ready to go. Crescent, Alhambra, and Happy Day all got some work this week. We are also very excited to show off the new and improved Hot Mess. While it is just as steep and technical as ever, we have been focusing on improving the flow in the corners and giving a little more margin for error in some of the tricky spots.
We are also doing a little tune up to the machine built ending to Hot Mess, which set up really nicely over the winter. If you haven’t hit it yet, I think it is one of the smoothest jumps on the whole mountain.
The weather continues to be great for trail work, with a little rain every day this week keeping the dirt very nice. It should be great conditions for opening weekend. Hope to see you on the trails.
The count down is getting real, we open for the Sneak Peek in just four days! I finally got a chance to see the rebuilt Hammer in person and wow, Drew and the trail crew has done an amazing job! That rain we got really helped things and it looks like we might have some more headed our way before opening. The trails are riding great and traction on Sunday was off the hook. Prepare to shred on a whole new level at Silver this summer!
Open May 23-25
Gondola Hours 9:30-4
Bike Park Day Ticket Prices for Memorial Weekend
This is a Sneak Peek so we will not have Chair 3 running, this means full top to bottom runs with 3,400 feet of vertical each. This also means we will not have a beginner route open all the way to the bottom, we recommend this weekend for experienced riders only. If you ride Frankenbeans be prepared to pedal up Moose Knuckle to get back into the trails, same with Cool Neatness. Hot Mess, Happy Day and Crescent will be CLOSED. We do not have our rental fleet yet, but we do have a bunch of shiny new Kona bikes on their way.
After Monday we will close until June 13th, when we go to our normal operation schedule. That means another three weeks with the trail crew grinding away at projects like giving Hot Mess a face lift and many others for your bike shredding pleasure. We will have everything open including Chair 3 and we will have a full compliment of 2015 Kona Downhill and Trail bikes. With the seven day a week schedule there will be times when trails are closed for maintenance or rebuilding while we are open, please respect the closed signs, we will have a zero tolerance policy for people found in closed areas.
If you are on the fence about buying a season pass, you can roll your day ticket into your pass purchase if you do it the same day. Adult passes are just $250 right now but they will go up on July 1. Just like last year we have a lot of plans in the works including a big new expert trail on the mid mountain! We can’t give too many details yet but we are planning on opening that later in the 2015 season and it will be sweet.
We’ll see you on Saturday, bring your friends!
22 days until the Sneak Peek!
Memorial Weekend Sneak Peek details- May 23, 24 and 25 -As the name suggests this will not be a full opening. We will be running the gondola but NOT Chair 3. Frankenbeans, Hot Mess, and Happy Day WILL BE CLOSED, possibly others too. Most importantly, THERE WILL BE NO BEGINNER ROUTE ALL THE WAY DOWN, so experienced riders only. Please respect the closures, passes will be taken if riders are found on closed trails!
The above being said, the majority of our trail system will be open and we have some sweet new stuff for your riding enjoyment! The rebuilt Hammer is looking sweet, Secret Squirrel has really developed into a great tech trail and Snaggletooth is a new short but sweet little mix of techy rocks and smooth flow. The dirt is great and flow is better than ever. Remember to look before you leap as lots of little things have changed. The best part is that there will be another three weeks for the trail crew to get things dialed in before our full opening on June 13th.
Speaking of getting things dialed in, be prepared. Bring tools, tubes, water and anything else you might need out there, at times you may be miles from assistance. Bike patrol is primarily for medical support, it is irresponsible to rely on them for tubes and tools. If you are unprepared realize that you may have a very long walk in front of you and since you aren’t prepared you probably don’t have water for the walk out either. Check out the Dakine fanny packs which allow you to ride with just the essential tools and a tube, it feels like you aren’t wearing a pack but in a pinch you’ve got what you need. I’ve had enough of those long walks, I’ll be joining my dad as a proud wearer of the fanny pack!
Silver Mountain Bike Park is in need of a few good people. We are looking for a mechanic, or two that know their way around modern trail and downhill bikes.
Imagine waking up and walking past your beat down Subaru wagon. Walking, because you live in employee housing located so close to the gondola that it is quicker than trying to get your bike out of the living room. A quick burrito at Matt’s and breakfast and lunch are now covered. Time to roll out the bikes for the morning and talk to a few customers about what the trails are like.
Imagine a bike shop where customers bring you high end trail and downhill bikes, instead of their post DUI “car”. Spend your summer maintaining a fleet of brand new bikes, selling some great gear, working with fun people and shredding the heck out of some great trails. A place where people are in a great mood because they’re on vacation. Take advantage smoking deals on bikes, parts, clothing and a season pass to the #1 bike park in the northwest!
If you don’t want to ride the park every day, don’t worry. We have amazing fly fishing, a 72 mile paved bike path, great hiking and much more, plus Coeur d’Alene is just thirty minutes away. Oh, and $2 PBRs at Noah’s on the patio are hard to beat. I should know, I moved here eleven years ago for the same job.
Read on for the official job description.
EXPERIENCED BIKE MECHANICS WANTED
Silver Mountain Resort in Kellogg, Idaho is hiring a full-time and a part-time bike mechanic for the upcoming summer season, approximately May 15 through October 15th.
Silver Mountain Resort was recently voted the number one bike park in the Northwest for 2014 by mtbparks.com:
“Featuring North America’s longest gondola serving 3,400 feet of ridable vert, Silver Mountain’s short lines, long runs, dense forests and mix of tacky, loamy (and sometimes dusty) soil make it a surreal—yet relatively unknown—riding destination that should be on your radar regardless of what corner of the country you call home. Even advanced riders won’t want to skip the blue trails here—they offer some of the most fun on the mountain regardless of your ability.” -mtbparks.com
Mechanics are responsible for building and maintaining a Kona rental mountain bike fleet, as well as a rental pavement bike fleet. Duties will also include customer bike service, bike accessory and other retail sales, assisting with the customer rental process as needed, and opening and closing procedures for the shop.
Employment benefits include a summer season pass to the coolest bike park in the Northwest, access to our giant Waterpark, employee discount programs, possible assisted housing within walking distance, and a fun, laid back work environment. Silver Mountain Resort is located in the Silver Valley in North Idaho, just 30 minutes east of Coeur d’ Alene or 1 hour east of Spokane, WA. There is epic fishing, hiking, tubing and swimming in all directions nearby.
Applicants must be self-motivated, professional, honest and happy. A current understanding of the mechanics and technology of today’s mountain bikes are a must. Certifications preferred.
Please send a resume and/or contact Janet at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 208-783-1504 with any questions.
While the snow is still falling on the upper mountain, down on the lower mountain trail work season is underway. The dirt is perfect for shaping right now, and all of last years blown out berms are getting re shaped one by one. We have also been hiking around, scouting, and getting our planning done for the new construction that will happen later this season.
The full crew will be on in the next couple weeks. Nick Hathhorn, who was on the crew last year, is returning from a bad case of broken leg he sustained skiing this winter. If you noticed that the shape of the berms got much better last year, Nick had a lot to do with that.
We are also welcoming to the crew Peter Jantz, who is largely responsible for a lot of the awesome new trails at beacon over the last several years. Also joining the crew pre-season will be Rob Gibbons, who comes to us from Showshoe Bike Park in West Virginia. Rob will be helping us launch our bike instruction program as well as patrolling once the season is underway.
Some big things are in the works this year- we already have a short section of tech trail completed for opening weekend, and the newly rebuilt sections of Hammer and Payday we worked on last fall should be ready to go. On Payday we didn’t change the flow of the trail much, just added some more robust berms to the corners. The Hammer got quite a bit of rerouting, and will alternate between handbuilt tech sections and big bike park berms and jumps.
Once those loose ends are wrapped up, it will be on to the new trail construction. The big one for this year will be an advanced tech trail splitting off of the lower hammer and taking you directly to 5 corners. This will be a great option to change things up, but it will also allow us to run races on the lower mountain without closing it down to non-racers. There may also be a section or two of new trail popping up as time allows.
Here is looking forward to another great season. And remember, don’t brake in the corners.
80 days until the park opens seems like an eternity. The riding has been great in CDA and Spokane and it seems like we should be opening any day now. But as it rains in town, the Chair 3 Zone is slowly being buried with some much needed snow. The lower trails are too muddy to ride and this has given me the opportunity to finally ride Beacon Hill in Spokane enough to learn my way around. As good as the riding is, I want to ride the trails that are a 5 minute pedal from my house, the ones I know every inch of.
Drew tracked a bunch of mud into my office two weeks ago, the weather has allowed him to get started early. As we go through the punch list for opening day the tasks are piling up. Berms to tune and manicure, trails to build, brush to cut, signs to hang, rental bikes to build, maps to print, races to plan, a web site to build, sponsors to call and all a little bigger and better than the year before. Each year we grow and each year we add to the list. Trails that we talked about building over post ride beers are being built as I sit here writing this, the excitement is real now.
Thoughts are coming out of the fog. The new section of the Hammer has been sitting under the snow waiting to be ridden for the first time, that new big table was really great looking. The new trail down low on the mountain is going to be sweet when it opens, we finally found some solid granite. I’m pretty sure my knee pads were put away wet and cannot be put in a gondola cabin with people anymore.
80 days until we open and every one of them will contribute towards making this the best season we’ve ever had. This is going to be a fun year and we’re just as excited as you are to get started.