Lyons Bike Park: Working design baby!

Hey all,

I’ve been working on a bike park design for the city of Lyons, Colo., and it’s ready for public review.

Please tell me what you think. Measure twice. dig once!


The mission
– Create a bike park in the city of Lyons, CO. Lyons fenced off the area where last year’s Lyons Outdoor Games DJ contest was held.

– Dave Cosgrove, director of parks and rec, is committed to making this park rock — literally. Blue Mountain Stone has offered to provide various types of rock; I hope to armor/pave as many surfaces as possible.

– Cater to riders of all types and levels.

– Marry the worlds of DJ/pump and XC. Show XC riders 1) how to ride expressively and 2) how to apply pump skills to real terrain.

– Give riders skills they will use on local terrain. Lyons is all about rocks and ledges; you’ll find no ladder bridges here.

– Get this all done before the Lyons Outdoor Games, June 12-14. The DJ contest is definite. I’d love to see time trials using the entire park and — of course — a Pump Track Worlds.

The process
I’ve been working with Dave at the city, Glenn at Bitterbrush Cycles, Brian at Yellow Designs, Jimmy at PUSH, Jimmy at Nick Sim[sick] and other select rider/visionaries. Trying to understand all the project requirements and design something that will satisfy everyone.

That is not easy to do. Ten design iterations later, here’s a solid working design. I have another eight pages of very detailed specs to justify safety and best practices (key with cities) and direct the building crew. Once we agree on this design, we’ll come up with a plan, gather the materials, organize the labor and get this done.

We will need volunteers! Please email me or post a comment if you’re game, and I’ll keep you in the loop.

The terrain
Here’s the working design. Descriptions of pieces are below. Click the image to open it in a new window or tab.

ROLLERS – A BMX-ish set of widely spaced rollers to get your pump/manual/jump on. I plan to use it as a return line. And transfer to the tabletops. Jon Watt will show us all what’s possible there.

TABLETOPS – Three pairs of mathematically perfect jumps. The larger line should flow perfectly together, rhythm style. The smaller line will have some flat space to collect yourself. I expect people like Nick to jump in and out of the slalom course.

SLALOM – We all love Sea Otter speed and huge 180 berms, but this area is flat, and very few riders can generate speed in 180s. I settled on consistent 90-degree corners with highly pump-able, yet tricky, features in between. We will be hauling mail! I have a few optional lines planned for later.

TRICK JUMPS – This was tricky. We wanted to hold the Lyons Outdoor Games DJ contest in this area, but we didn’t want to eat up space with huge jumps that almost nobody can ride. The solution: Build permanent small step-up/trick jumps with huge landings. These will be pretty tame but super fun. During the LOG, Brian from Yellow Designs will place temporary wooden launch ramps. The pros can go as huge as they want during the event; they rest of us can have fun the rest of the year.

PUMP TRACK – What a treat, to use modern pump track technology in a public park. This track has a fast outside loop with a figure 8/180 crossover section in the middle. And consider the connectivity options with the …

NATURAL TERRAIN LOOP – The Pyramid will let people climb and descend smooth or rocky lines. The Ziggurat lets riders climb and descend a series of ramps or ledges. The end straight teaches true Trail Fu — beginners will noodle around the rock piles; experts will rip the berms and pump straight over the rocks.

Municipal Braaap!!!

Comments are welcome (as are volunteers). Measure twice, dig once!

— Lee

PS: Don’t even ask for the detailed specs unless you’re a paying customer. For help designing your backyard or city bike park, email me.

Know more. Have more fun!

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13 replies
  1. Kyle Kirkman says:

    Lee- Thanks for being a leader in the pump track/ skills park arena. I wish I lived close to assist. Keep up the fantastic work.
    Kyle Kirkman
    HMBA/Hoosier Trail Patrol Director
    Evansville Vanderburgh EMA Bike Team 15B1 / 15A14
    Knight Fire 6X20

  2. Eric Benner says:

    Hey Lee, was wondering if you could lend some advice to the guys down in Castle Rock on what to do with the land they have for the Rhyolite Freeride park?? Last time that I was down there it was a great piece of land and is chock full of possibilities… Looks like the North end of town is covered (Boulder, Lyons…) maybe this could add some nice bike park action to the south end of town. At least if I can get a meeting with the official people that have the say so on what we can and can’t do, could you at least give some advice on what kind of budget they would be looking at to get you involved and maybe some equipment/trail design as well?? Thanks man, I think your site is great and I have picked up a lot of good advice from here!!-eric

  3. Hersch says:

    Once again you’ve outdone yourself, Dr. McCormack… contact me so I can run a story in BMA newsletter & website ASAP.

    Laissez les bikepark roulez!

  4. leelikesbikes says:

    There are five platforms, each 18 inches taller than the one below.

    The line on the left is a 20-degree ramp that just about anyone can ride. The line on the right is a vertical face that will be challenging to hop/lunge onto.

    The faces will be made of rock, and there will be a gradual transition from easy to hard.

    Our local riding has tons of rock ledges; this will be great practice.

    I can see using the “easy” ramps to jump in and out of the pump track.

  5. Ben Blitch says:


    Not to be overly critical, but as I also do these types of design/builds professionally, and want to see them built as properly and completely as possible to represent us all well; I have a question and a suggestion.

    First are you covered with Professional Liability Insurance to cover any damages that may occur do to potential errors and omissions? It would be a shame to hear of you being on the wrong end of a litigation with mouths to feed. Email me if you do need coverage and I will do my best to steer you towards a few companies.

    Now a design comment. It seems to all be very compartmentalized. I worry that folks will tire of the same routes over time and you may want to try to integrate more crossover lines, transfers and a bit more organic design to the macro traffic flow patterns in the park. You do a great job reflecting your ideas in imagery, it really looks pro.

    Enjoy the project and I wish you the best of luck.


  6. leelikesbikes says:

    Thanks Ben. Great points.

    I foresee lots of connections between the rollers, tabletops, slalom and trick jumps, as well as between the pump track and natural terrain loop. Showing them makes the diagram a mess — it was actually intimidating to look at!


    — Lee

  7. tim says:

    hey Lee this looks awesome, definately worth a trip from longmont, please email me when you have dig sessions going on, I’m pretty busy but I’d love to help.

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