Colorado, Utah and Arizona are filled with hundreds of miles of outstanding single-track mountain biking trails. But if you don't live there — or have a local buddy to guide you — you probably won't know where to go.
That's why veteran rider Steve Mokan says he started Chasing Epic, a new off-road cycling tour company based in Boulder, Colo.
The company aims to fill a void in the cycling world by offering all-inclusive, locally guided mountain bike trips in the West over long weekends.
Trips are aimed at intermediate to advanced mountain bikers — not beginners — who only need to bring a helmet, shoes and an "an appetite for epic single-track adventure."
Mokan, a long-time Colorado mountain biker and a veteran of the adventure sports world, has worked with adventure travel companies, outdoor gear manufacturers, and ski resorts across the West as a professional photographer with his other venture, Switchback Photography.
Over the last decade, he said he saw "a glaring hole" in the mountain bike adventure travel industry.
"Participants on most mountain biking adventures today are being asked to bring too much to the table before the fun even begins," he said.
"Without proper guidance and advice, it can be daunting in busy professional and family schedules to follow a checklist of pre-trip preparation, specialized gear and shipment of your own bike (or choosing from a fleet of rentals) before getting on a trail."
Chasing Epic's trips include inn and hotel lodging (never camping), hearty meals, high-end, all-carbon demo bikes, local guides who know the terrain, customized eight-week pre-trip training programs, shuttles and lift tickets.
Cycling destinations include Crested Butte, Durango, Fruita and Telluride in Colorado; Sedona in Arizona; and Park City and St. George in Utah.
Unlike traditional point-to-point itineraries, Chasing Epic takes riders to a single town and stays at each destination long enough to cover a variety of daily rides on the best single-track trails (known and unknown) in each area.
Rates range from $950 per person for three days and $1,250 for four days, regardless of location. For private, exclusive customized trips the per person rate is $1,150 for three days and $1,450 for four days (based on a group of six or more).