Monday , 20 September 2021
Photo taken from the Facebook group event hosted by Cold Lake Bike Park & Trails and City of Cold Lake

Cold Lake Bike Park Unveiled; Citizens Give Feedback

Photo taken from the Facebook group event hosted by Cold Lake Bike Park & Trails and City of Cold Lake

Citizens of Cold Lake got the chance to preview the proposed design of the new Bike Park on Wednesday evening. Bike enthuasists were asked on what their preferences were with the project, their concerns, and what features interested them most.

“It’s your legacy, and it’s great to get your input because whatever it [the bike park] turns out to be, will have direct impact from you guys,” said designer, Jay Hoots during his presentation to nearly 100 people at Lakeland Inn.

The contracting company Hoots Inc. designed the complex for mountain biking, year-round use, with a single track trail system.

Hoots’ vision consists of eleven trails and a full skills park that includes multiple pump tracks and progressive jumps, beginning at the Air Force Museum. He says this array of skill and riding components will keep the “learning” aspect of the park alive for the rider.

“Whether it’s balance, whether it’s speed, whether it’s speed and handling, whether it’s jumping – we like to think of the skills park as the welcome mat to the world of mountain biking,” said Hoots.

Hoots says that his draft is centered on “diverse skills and riding zones” making the bike park as functional as possible for the most amount of people. He also emphasized progression in the park, and how smaller trail loops build into bigger loops.

Their mandate also stressed the natural elements of the park to bring people back to the forest.

Chiara Harris, 13-years-old, and her fellow club members of the Cold Lake Mach 1 Speed Demons team, presented their case for why the bike park will be beneficial for the whole community. It was their idea brought to city council in 2016 that spurred development for the project, and guided Hoot’s vision for the bike park.

“I think it’s amazing. I think it’s going to be a very big success,” said Harris. “I like how there’s skills for everyone, from young to old, to people who just started biking, and a lot of room for people to progress if people haven’t biked a ton.”

Mayor Craig Copeland said, ideally he’d like to start construction in the fall, assuming that the design and cost is finalized. The full planning document should be done in a month said Hoots, after the public feedback from the open house is collected. That document will include those financial and construction details.

“As soon as they are comfortable with the design, it’s who’s going to build it, how much it will cost, how much if any volunteer activity will be required,” said Mayor Copeland. “The big thing is to get the conceptual development done first so we can move forward.”

Hoots began the project by taking stock of the city’s land topography, climate, and demographic. It usually takes him a full year to accurately access the area, but in this case, he only had one season. Despite the shorter window, he says the bike park itself will succeed.

“Coming back and spending time in the field, I’m more convinced than ever that there’s a gem sitting in the forest.”

City council has already spent $300,000 on this phase of development.


The Skills Park will include:

-Start/Return Hill

-Beginner Pump Track

-Advanced Pump Track

-Progressive Jump (Beginner-Intermediate)

-Progressive Jump (Intermediate)

-Advanced Jumps with a transition to flow trial

-Flow Trail (Intermediate)

-Expert Jumps

-Wood Skills Area

-North Shore Balance Trail

-Passive Space


About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.