West GarCo 2022 in review: Grand Hogback Trail System receives major grant funding to build out

A rider traverses the beginning of a trail during the Grand Hogback Extravaganza event north of Rifle.
Ray K. Erku/Post Independent.

Editor’s note: This story joins more than a handful of others as being some of the biggest to come out of Western Garfield County in 2022. 

One of Rifle’s proudest projects right now is its Grand Hogback Trail System, and this epic spot is edging closer and closer to completion.

What’s set to establish 18 miles of single-track bike trails winding up and down the diverse landscape hugging the Rifle Arch, riders eagerly await the final product. The area compasses 2,200 acres of Bureau of Land Management and caters to all skill levels.

Designed and being constructed by Gumption Trail Works, 2021 welcomed the completion of phase 1: 6.4 miles of new track. In August 2022, Rifle City Council approved $265,006 in construction services to build out what will eventually be an additional 8.31 miles of track.

But it was with gleeful hearts that Rifle received some great news. Also in August, city planner Patrick Waller informed council that the city received a $160,000 non-motorized grant through Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

In addition to CPW, the Grand Hogback project itself wouldn’t be happening if it weren’t for the ongoing support of the city of Rifle, Alpine Bank, Rifle Area Mountain Back Organization and private donations. Paired with the CPW grant, they’ve kicked in a total of $305,000.

Gumption Trailworks Owner Aaron Mattix told Rifle City Council that the project is expected by spring 2023. 

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