After a sweltering 17-mile bike ride along Warm River near the Idaho-Wyoming border, we settled at our reward: a shady
camping spot at the river’s edge, where we sipped
beer and watched an osprey survey the night’s
catch from a treetop before dive-bombing into the
water to retrieve it.
Behind us, the kids played amid the tents,
grabbing bites of chips and guacamole before
returning to their collective frolicking. Then our
guide, Wes Shirey, got antsy.
“How about an obstacle course?” he shouted
toward the kids, who clamored to mount their
respective mountain bikes and follow the resident
Pied Piper of Biking Children.
“Slow is the new fast,” he said, leading his
charges over the firewood logs he had set in a path
traversing the group’s campground. “I don’t want
you to cheat technique with speed; you need
technique to further your biking adventures.”
This was a typical pre-dinner routine during our
five-day family mountain-biking trip with Western
Spirit Cycling, a Moab, Utah-based company
specializing in backcountry road and mountain-
bike trips throughout the Western U.S.
With an emphasis on biking around and through
public lands and national parks, this itinerary began
just west of Grand Teton National Park in Idaho’s
Island Park, leading us east through cow-dotted
meadows, along scenic river valleys and over the
border until we reached the park’s famed Jenny Lake.
Wild, Wild West
A Western Spirit Cycling trip near Grand Teton
National Park offers families a taste of the West
BY HEATHER MUNDT
The writer’s son (left)
and a cycling buddy
stop for a rest.
Family biking trips can be the perfect way for clans to bond in the great outdoors.