POCAHONTAS COUNTY, W.Va. – The International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) has designated Snowshoe Highlands Ride Center as a Silver-Level Ride Center. Only a year after its debut.
According to release, with its induction into IMBA, as a Bronze-Level Ride Center in August 2019, the Snowshoe Highlands Ride Center has extensively grown its trail systems and amenities over the course of the last year, with the help of many talented and hardworking organizations.
Our communities and partners have been planning and working very hard the past year to achieve the Silver Ride Center status. Our designation is leveraging our extensive public lands and trails, our partnerships with Snowshoe Mountain and the US Forest Service and our unlimited natural beauty to enhance our tourism economy through mountain biking and outdoor recreation.”Cara Rose, Executive Director at the Pocahontas County Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB).
The difference between a bronze and silver-level ride center:
IMBA utilizes three different rankings to denote a Ride Center’s status: bronze, silver and gold.
Using seven different factors including, trail experience, services, community involvement,
tourism, promotion, marketing, evaluation and measurement, IMBA then decides if a Ride
Center is gold, silver or bronze, the release states.
“The Ride Center designation represents IMBA’s Model Trail recognition for large-scale
mountain bike facilities that offer something for every rider,” says IMBA’s Ride Center
Application Guide, on their website.
According to release, the basis of IMBA’s criteria focuses not only on the mountain biking product, but the experience and culture of the community applying as well. The IMBA application itself
encourages growth of all Ride Centers, as they expand through the three different rankings
adding to and improving the quality of the trail systems, amenities and building the community
culture within the IMBA Ride Center.
Snowshoe Highlands IMBA Ride Center now aims to go for gold.
“We can do this. The community efforts over the past few years to obtain Silver status have demonstrated how much we can achieve. Aiming for gold sets the bar pretty high, but with the support of all the stakeholders is it clearly possible. New bike optimized trails, including adding more green trails, maintenance, way finding and connecting trails to support epic rides are all elements we are actively working on. Our plan is aggressive, we would like to see Gold in five years. Riding in the Snowshoe Highlands IMBA Ride Center is only going to get better.”Eric Lindberg, from Pocahontas Trails