More features are being added for Duluth trails

Adding new features to Spirit Mountain

COGGS and Spirit Mountain recently added a new blue line jump and are working on other features to improve mountain bike trails.

Cyclists of Gitchee Gumee Shores (COGGS) are responsible for the maintenance of over 110 miles of trails in the Twin Ports. The group also frequently works on adding more trails and features for mountain bikers to enjoy. 

“One thing that Duluth does not have a lot of is that really beginner friendly terrain. People that are new to the sport, new to town, sometimes have a little trouble getting into it,” said COGGS Executive Director Ansel Schimpff. “We also have a large group of kids that have grown up with all these trails now, and they have started to out-ride the trails that we have in town.”

In addition to maintaining the city’s current trail system, COGGS is also working alongside Spirit Mountain to add new features with the help of a grant through the Minnesota Legacy Trails Grant Program.  

“We look at the beginner rider coming here to our very advanced riders that come here and meeting the needs of the full spectrum of users at Spirit is really important to us,” said Spirit Mountain Director of Resort Services Jon Regenold. “So that’s really like one of the beginning points of why we’ve moved into these projects, working with the city of Duluth and to get this done.”

One of the new features is a blue trail jump.

“It’s something that our community has really been looking for,” said Schimpff. “You need to have some experience riding a bike, and this is going to be a jump trail, so there’s going to be kind of mandatory jumps, but no gap. So you can roll over the whole thing if you need to. But yeah, a little bit higher speed, a little bit bigger jumps than what you’d see on some of the more beginner trails.”

With the jump trail completed, COGGS and Spirit Mountain are already planning more projects. 

“We’ve got another trail in the works for next season that’ll be a Black Diamond level jump trail,” said Schimpff. “Over on the other side of the hill, there’s an adaptive bike accessible trail that is going to be built. That’ll be from like this bottom of Spirit Mountain over to the zoo.”

Regenold says Spirit Mountain has intentionality built into their master plans. 

“It’s a really rewarding portion that you get to see all of the planning go into play,” said Regenold.