By Lyn Sadler, Estes Park Cycling Coalition

Estes Park Cycling Coalition (EPCC) is a new bicycling organization in the Estes Park community with a mission to promote and increase cycling of all kinds in the Estes Valley, through advocacy, education, partnerships and community building. EPCC is striving to cultivate a biking culture in the community and make the Estes area a destination for cyclists. The organization’s elected officers are: Greg Sampson, EPCC President; Alicia Mittelman, Road Biking Vice President; Glenn Case, Mountain Biking Vice President; and Thad Eggen, Secretary.

EPCC has had monthly meetings since November, 2013 with approximately 30 members at Twin Owls Steakhouse, the space generously donated by owner and EPCC Secretary, Thad Eggen. The meetings typically start with some socializing and games or short presentations related to cycling. The group then divides into two groups based upon road biking and mountain biking interests. Those groups then work to develop ideas of how we can facilitate making road biking and mountain biking more integral parts of our community, and how to most effectively advocate for these interests. After the two main groups have had substantial discussion of ideas, the coalition reunites to table the ideas which have developed. Some of the main points that have emerged at the meetings include: cyclist/traffic safety in recreational road biking and commuting, trail reconstruction and engaging in the overall community flood recovery efforts as an organization,development of new trail systems and connectivity, and moving towards making Estes Park a viable destination for bicycle tourism. As of our most recent meeting, EPCC joined the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA).

Thus far, we have engaged in dialog with Estes Valley Parks and Recreation District (EVPRD) Director Skyler Rorabaugh, and had some input in the Town of Estes Park Transportation Advisory Committee meetings via our EPCC and Transportation Advisory Committee liaison, Belle Morris. Both of these endeavors have been very positive and productive in dovetailing our EPCC vision with the vision of the future of the Estes Park community. It is an exciting time to be on board with flood recovery and rebuilding efforts in Estes Park, realigning of downtown traffic, and rebuilding Highways 34 and 36.

If you have an interest in bicycling and want to engage in an organized effort to advance cycling quality and opportunities in the Estes Park community, please join us at our next EPCC meeting on Wednesday, July 16 at 7pm at Twin Owls Steakhouse. If you want to learn more about EPCC, Estes Park Cycling Coalition has a Facebook Page, a Facebook group, and a website, “Estes Park Cycling” with recommended rides and trail maps, news, classified ads, forum, comments, events, cycling tips, meeting minutes and more at www.bikeestes.org. Group rides for both road cycling and mountain biking are announced at the meetings and posted on the website and Facebook page. At Bike to Work Day on Wednesday, June 25 from 6 a.m. – 9 a.m. members of the Estes Park Cycling Coalition will be on hand to explain cyclists’ rights and responsibilities and distribute educational materials on the subject, free of charge.

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