Singletrack excitement


Cloquet's new singletrack mountain bike trail has many people buzzing with excitement.

According to Pine Valley 360, a group dedicated to promote the activities at Pine Valley Park in Cloquet, there are many to acknowledge for making their dream a reality.

Thanks to the City of Cloquet, the Cloquet Park Commission, trail designer Jake Carsten of Dirt Dojo, trail contractors Trail Logic and Trail Source and many volunteers, there is now a mountain bike trail located in the Pine Valley Park behind the Cloquet hockey shelter.

The resolution to approve the solicitation of bids for the Pine Valley mountain biking trail was passed and adopted by the Cloquet City Council on Jan. 17, 2017. Soon after, much time and effort went into the making of the success story.

When the trail opened Wednesday, July 18, a storm of bicycle traffic rolled into Pine Valley to ride the new track.

The trail is purpose-built and optimized for mountain biking, but it is also open to hikers and runners, plus snowshoes and fat bikes in the winter.

"I expected some shotty trails, because I hadn't heard much about it," Spencer Mayasich, an avid mountain biker from Cloquet, explained. "My expectations were soon blown out of the water."

After comparing Pine Valley's new trail to those in Duluth, such as the world-class trails in the Mission Creek area, Mayasich said: "The trail here definitely deserves more publicity. The woods are beautiful; there is dark greenery from the pine trees, uphills, downhills, switchbacks. There's flow, everything you would expect in a great mountain bike trail."

Although Mayasich is a skilled rider, "the new trail is welcoming to beginners" he said.

Two 10-year-olds, Sam Painter and Joseph Kalm of Cloquet, also enjoyed their ride at Pine Valley.

When asked about the trail, the two friends — gleaming with excitement to continue riding — quickly agreed it is a great new addition to the Cloquet community.

"I will definitely bring some of my friends to here," Sam said.