Bike czar: Area well positioned to cater to outdoor enthusiasts

Ken Gart
Ken Gart

The Grand Valley already offers “unbelievable assets” in attracting mountain bike enthusiasts. But there’s potential to further develop the area as a destination, according to a business executive who serves as the volunteer bike czar for Colorado.

“I really think Grand Junction has a silver platter in delivering those products,” said Ken Gart.

Gart, a member of the Colorado family that became synonymous with its chain of sporting goods stores, now is involved in a company that acquires, develops and manages real estate holdings. Gart also is among the investors who purchased and since have been involved in improving the Powderhorn Mountain Resort east of Grand Junction.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper enlisted Gart to help with efforts to make the state the best in which to ride bikes.

The so-called Colorado Pedals Project includes several goals, Gart said: promoting health and fitness, but also tourism and economic development.

In the Grand Valley, there’s the possibility to develop additional mountain bike trails, including several trails that would take cyclists from the top of the Grand Mesa into Palisade. One possible trail dubbed the “Palisade Plunge” could become an iconic ride that attracts cyclists from around the world, Gart said.