Is Colorado America’s playground state?

November 26, 2008

Yesterday we talked about the many different winter activities that you can do in Colorado but of course it is not only skiing, snowboarding, ice racing, ice climbing and the like that attracts visitors, as well as residents alike to the great outdoors – a wonderful and inspiring playground.

Indeed Colorado has, according to several studies, the lowest obesity rate in the United States, at 18.7% of the population it is the lowest percentage in the nation – but this still equates to nearly one in five people. Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama score over 30% according to the CDC’s – the Centre for Disease Control & Prevention – 2007 survey – so perhaps you Coloradans do not have too much to worry about – just keep exercising.

And today we want to tell you about a small town where another great all year round activity can be practiced in Colorado – mountain biking. Well in a state that has 53 fourteeners (mountains with a height in excess of 14,000 feet) you would expect the word mountain to appear in front of bike!

In the biking world the northern Coloradan town of Fort Collins is well known and it is a reputation the town’s authorities are proud to protect and promote. It has just received the League of American Bicyclists ‘Gold Medal’ for being a bicycle friendly community.

Cathy Jones, the marketting director of the town’s Convention and Visitors Bureau says ‘ Cycling is king here – perhaps it is the wide open spaces, the record number of sunshine days or the high profile cycling events held here every year plus the fact that Fort Collins has invested so much into what makes cycling so popular – greenways and bike lanes – there are 90 miles of trails and paths in Poudre Canyon and more than 200 miles of bike paths in and around the city, and a new mountain bike park in Lory State Park to the west of the city’.

Annual cycling events include the Fort Collins Cycling Festival usually held in June, the New Belgian Brewery ‘Tour de Fat’ held in September and the USA Cycling Collegiate National Championships held in the spring.

And for the casual biker who doesn’t want to invest a fortune for their one bike ride of the year you can bob down to the Fort Collins Bike Library and ‘borrow’ anything from a cruiser to a mountain bike free of charge for up to 72 hours.

For more information visit www.ftcollins.com or call the Fort Collins Convention and Visitors Bureau on  1-800-274-3678

Take a look at what you can expect at Fort Collins in this video from bikeskidino – sure looks like a playground!



  1. Please don’t mislead people into thinking we’re having fun here in Fort Collins, CO. We work hard and play hard. We also work hard at making this a Gold Level Bicycle Friendly Community, mainly through our world class, Bicycle Cooperative of Fort Collins, Inc. The “Bike Co-op” (http://www.fcbikecoop.org/) makes possible our local bicycle lending library and keeps everyone riding throught its Earn-a-Bike program. You should come visit and see how hard this is!

  2. […] unknown wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt […]

  3. I hope we didn’t mislead people into thinking this was not a serious biking place. The use of the word ‘playground’, if this was the terminology that worried you, is used in a broad term (and is frequently used in this context) to describe somewhere with a multitude of offerings – more so than less committed places. I am sure you work hard – and I am equally sure you play hard. Why not? – after all, having created a biker’s paradise like Fort Collins you deserve it!

  4. It is a pretty fabulous state. But it gets cold and snowy. Which I prefer, but to be a playground state it seems like you’d need a nicer climate year round.

    • yeah, but can’t a ‘playground’ encompass all weathers and thereby all sports? you have the best summers and the best winters. Sitting here in the south of France we are envious!

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