Ear to the ground

“There are a couple of rocks here. We will climb them.”

– A 4-year-old Durangoan’s observation on her first drive into the Utah desert

Freeheel fest

Break out your leathers. Durango Mountain Resort is going to the pinheads this weekend. Locals can turn out Sat., March 26, to “Get Your Neon” (get it?) at the annual Telefest. The telemark festival runs all day and is hosted by Backcountry Experience, DMR, Fort Lewis College Outdoor Pursuits and the Fort Lewis Tele Club.

Never-evers will have their pick of demos from Backcountry Experience’s telemark fleet. A free Tele Tips skills clinic runs from 9 a.m.- noon. And those who happen to pick up the freeheel habit are in luck; the demos go on sale immediately following the event.

A variety of races/events have been scheduled for the more advanced three-pinners out there starting with a Tele GS Race at 11 a.m. “We are inviting all you tree-hugging, long-haired, hippie-type old-school telemarkers to compete against the young studs that formed the Fort Lewis Tele Club.”

A Tele Bump Comp runs at 12:30 p.m., and the organizers of Telefest are resurrecting a long-forgotten discipline for the big day. The Tele Ballet Comp runs at 2 p.m. “This is the competition that focuses on the grace and glamour of a bygone era.”  

Last but not least, a Tele Parade will promenade down the front side at 3:15 p.m. in an effort to form the “world’s longest tele conga line.” Awards and ice cold beverages will follow.

There is no entry fee for the competitions, and sign-ups will be held at Telefest Headquarters – the Backcountry Experience tent on Purgy’s Beach.

The trail tracker

There’s no need to get mud in your eye this weekend. Trails 2000 has demystified early mountain bike season with a new Trails Conditions section on its website.

“If you want to know if the trail’s in great shape today or find out what construction is going on or which outdoor festival has ganked your favorite trail for the day, this is the place to check it out!,” the site reads.

The section lists nearly every trail in the immediate Durango vicinity and rates them as “closed,” “poor or severe,” “fair” or “good to go.” For example, Overend Mountain Park (aka the Test Track) rated as fair as of press time – “All of the south facing trails are good. North facing not at all.”

Riders can also log on and help fill in the blanks after a ride into the unknown. Simply visit: www.trails2000.org/site/trail_conditions.html.





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