Snohomish County tourism officials are looking for ways to make the region more of a biking destination.
Each weekend, packs of mountain bikers descend on a swath of dense woods just outside Issaquah, where a spaghetti bowl of trails provides hours of ups and downs, tight turns, and air-time.
“It's definitely a destination, it's one of the better riding areas that we have in the area,” said Rhys Haydon. He and his buddies come from all across the region to meet up at King County's Duthie Hill Mountain Bike Park, where they're training for an upcoming race.
“It's something that brings people to Seattle, you know, we have a gentleman we are riding with right now came up from Portland to ride our trail systems up here,” said Haydon.
DNR is planning a similar park in the Stillaguamish Valley. The state is building a system of about 20 miles of mountain biking trails, which should open later this year.
That's one facet of a growing effort to increase bike tourism in Snohomish County. Business owners, government planners, and non-profits will gather on Monday for a workshop to brainstorm ways to provide more cycling opportunities.
Whether people are riding on scenic highways, paved trails, or in a park, tourism officials think they need to do more to accommodate a growing sport.
“It's on the rise, certainly,” said Haydon.