A Family of Bikers: The Seitz

Trigg Skoe

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CSU Student Profile: Mountain Biker, Jake Seitz

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Jake Seitz biking | Trigg Skoe

Mountain biking is one of the most popular sports on the CSU campus. In fact, some students come to CSU because of the ample mountain biking opportunities so close to campus and the community of mountain bikers.

Jake Seitz, an avid biker, didn’t have to travel far to come to CSU. He grew up in Fort Collins and grew up mountain biking. RamPage sat down with Jake to find out why and what he loves about the sport so much.  

Jake’s Basic Info: Junior, studying economics

Other hobbies: Motocross, hiking, rock climbing

Rampage: When did you start mountain biking?

Jake Seitz: I was probably about 7 or 8 when I first started. I can’t remember exactly, I was pretty young. I hated all the uphill rides, in fact, I hated mountain biking to tell you the truth, but I was doing it because family was into it.  As I got older I started to enjoy it more.

RP: What attracted you to the sport?

JS: I guess I still got a bit of that young kid in me because I still don’t like the uphills at all, I love the downhill speed.  After you bike all the way up a big hill, you get to fly down. I love that speed. I also have many friends that are into mountain biking.  

RP: How has mountain biking improved other areas of your life?

JS: It is very physically and mentally demanding, so it keeps my body and mind in shape. It also teaches you a lot about self-reliance. It is an individual sport; you can only depend on yourself.

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RP: What are some of your favorite local trails to take?

JS:  Lory State Park has a lot of trails for different types of rides and skill levels.  One of my favorite loops is the Lory State Park Small Loop. You enter the park from the north side and drive around to the west side to get to the trail head.  There is a good amount of downhill on the route. You are climbing for about 45 minutes and then you have 20 minutes or so of downhill,depending on how fast you ride.  It is a really pretty ride. You can see a lot of Horsetooth Reservoir, including Party Cove and you are surrounded by mountains. (Note for readers: for detailed route maps, including Lory State Park Small Loop, visit: MTBproject.com.)

The east side of Lory is also a fun ride (The A Trail).  It is steep, rocky, and technical. From the top you have good views of the city and now also the rubble of the stadium.  RP: Any other routes near campus?

JS: For a nice mellow and flat but fun and scenic ride, I go to the Poudre River Trails.  You get off the concrete on the north side of the river and jump on the dirt path.

RP: Other Colorado spots you enjoy?

JS: Fruita, CO has some really fun trails. It is about 5 hours away, on the Western Slope, just past Grand Junction. And Winter Park Ski Resort for downhill. For about 80 bucks you get a pass and the ski lift takes you to the top of the hill.  They used to have Crankworx there (a biking expo and competition), which I started doing when I was 12. They don’t do it there anymore, unfortunately, it has moved to Whistler Mountain and other places.

RP: Other parts of the country you have biked?

JS: Moab, plenty of times for Slick Rock Trail and Porcupine Ridge.  These are often multi-day bikes. I enjoy that area because there are also a bunch of cool rock climbing spots and hiking there too.

RP: If you could bike someplace you never have before, where would that be?

JS: Definitely Whistler Mountain, Canada. It is one of the top bike places in the world. I’ve heard it is quite a bit steeper and longer than Winter Park.  

RP: Have you done any dirt jumping?

JS: Yes, lots.  The Lory has jumps.  There is also a place in Boulder called Valmont Bike Park. There are some really big jumps there. (Note for readers: Please visit this article online at collegian.com/rampage/ for an aerial video of Valmont.)

RP: What bikes do you own?

JS: KHS and a Santa Cruz.  My family used to have a lot of bikes.  

RP: Where is your favorite place to shop for bikes and gear?

JS: Lee’s, especially when you need tires or a fork seal when you blow one.

RP: Your dad also bikes, has it been an important part of your relationship?

JS: He was the first one that took me when I was 8.  At this point we only bike together a couple times a year; I’m busy with school.

RP: What is your worst fall you have taken?

JS:  I was on a trail in Montana. I went around a corner, hit a rock, and launched off and hit a tree. My face was all cut up. I was there for my grandpa’s wedding so my face was all messed up for the photos.

RP: Mountain biking can have negative environmental impacts. Are there any rules you follow to avoid this?  

JS: Stay on the trail to minimize erosion.

RP: Mountain biking and hikers can come into conflict on the trails, have you experienced that?

JS: Hikers are always pretty bitchy if you come up behind them and slam on the bikes. (Laughs.) Nowadays, many parks, like Lory, have side by side trails for bikers and hikers.