Mountain Biking Book Reviews
||But first, a word from our sponsor...
Why buy a biking book?
1. More rides, better details. Our trail pages should be considered
"quick and dirty" descriptions. We show you what
the trail's like, but for accurate riding descriptions, there's nothing like a
good guidebook. (Our trail riding guides are heavily odometer-dependent. If
you're riding without a speedometer, you need the more detailed
description in a guidebook.)
|That's "Rider Mel,"
author of the Moab biking book, hanging out at the top of Porcupine Rim
with Mike. (Mike's the tall one.)
Small world! Of all the Saturdays, on all the trails, we hit the
Castle Valley overlook at the same time.
2. More riding options. In particular, Gregg Bromka's books offer
permutations on the major rides. Turn a short trail into an epic loop. Attached
to a trail you thought you knew, find that insane downhiller's romp. In Mountain
Biking Utah's Wasatch Front, Gregg offers a several optional add-ons to almost
every ride. UtahMountainBiking doesn't do that because, frankly, Gregg works a
lot harder than we do.
3. Camping and dining info. Where's the best biker-friendly source of
suds, pizza, vegetarian fare? Where can I camp? Where's the nearest broken-bike
support? This is great information. If you want it, you're going to pay for it.
4. Supporting the tribe. Guidebook authors have helped make Utah a
bike-friendly state. Somebody had to do the research that helps bikers navigate
the trail. Support the pioneers
of Utah mountain biking by buying some books.
||Mountain Biking Utah by Gregg Bromka, Falcon Publishing 1999, 519 pages.
This is THE authoritative guide to the best of Utah's trails, with 100 of the must-do rides around the state.
Gregg Bromka writes a colorful description with interesting "side notes,"
plus a trail map and elevation graph. Good access directions. Better maps
than most other guidebooks. Includes the
best rides of the Moab area. This book is a
tad heavy for your bike backpack -- when exploring, we copy the pages of
the trail we'll be riding. If you're looking for
a single excellent
overall guide to Utah biking, get this one. Buy this book!
||Mountain Biking Utah's Wasatch
Front by Gregg Bromka, Off-road Publications 2003, 320 pages. This is
the most comprehensive guide to the trails of the Wasatch Front area (does
Logan or Park City trails). Includes descriptions, elevation graphs, and
topo maps of 71 trails within 50 miles of
Salt Lake City. Goes far beyond Mountain Biking Utah (Gregg Bromka's
state-wide trail book), with rides and ride options covering virtually
every worthwhile trail. Restaurant recommendations; camping information;
dog regulations; much more. This is a MUST-HAVE trail
book for SLC-Ogden-Provo area riders!
City and Beyond by Gregg Bromka, Off-road Publications 2006, 228
pages. This is the NEW definitive guide to Park City's
trails. On flipping through this book, I could only say
"Wow!" 43 rides, done in typical rigorous Bromka fashion.
Excellent maps, elevation graphs, ride add-ons. Includes a few trails in
the Heber and Uinta mountain area. Quick-glance information for each
trail in a helpful spreadsheet includes distance, tread type, difficulty,
elevation gain, and more. Master map shows locations of trails. Section on
City's Prime Cuts by Charlie Sturgis and Mark Fischer, 2004, 108 pages. It details 20 rides in the Park City region, ranked
into five difficulty levels with about 4 trails each. By-the-mile trail
directions are very detailed; elevation graphs are included. Maps are
bare-bones minumum (my only criticism of this book is that posted trail
names and critical intersections aren't shown on the maps). Spiral binding lets this book lie
flat, and the thick pages resist damage on-trail.
and Hiking in Moab's La Sal Mountains by Tim Walsh, La Sal Endeavors
2001, 111 pages. If you're venturing into the La
Sal Mountains above Moab, this is the book you want -- even if
the ride you're contemplating is listed in a book you already own. This excellent trail guide
lists 16 La Sal rides and 6 hiking-only routes. Trail descriptions give GPS
waypoints (the first book we've seen that does this!), topo map, elevation
graph. Spiral binding lets this book lie flat. This
book is the cure for uncertainty when following unfamiliar La Sal trails.
||Mountain Biking Moab Pocket Guide by David Crowell, Falcon Publishing
2004 (reissue of 1997 "Mountain Biking Moab"), 239 pages.
This is an excellent trail guide to 42 Moab-area rides, with map, elevation graph, trail riding description.
Descriptions are short but precise and well-organized -- just what you
need for a quick glance as you try to figure out where you are.
Mile-by-mile ride description. Small size
and light weight, this book fits a biking backpack or pocket!
This is the book we use on-trail when we ride Moab.
You need more of a recommendation than that?
||Mountain Biking Moab by Lee Bridgers, Globe Pequot Press 2000,
2nd Ed 2004, 380 pages, originally published as "Mountain Bike
America Moab." 41 great
rides in the Moab area, including topo map and trail descriptions. No
elevation graphs. What makes this book unique is many interesting "feature articles" on local history and archeology, along with colorful biking
stories. It's a bit heavy to take on the trail with you. A fun book if you like to read. Use
the tidbits of info to impress your friends.
||Biker Mel's Mountain Bike Guide to Moab 2. Biker-Mel
2004, 129 pages. 39 great
rides in the Moab area, ranging from easy to abusive, including trail map and
description, elevation graph. This book has an irreverent, fun tone, but
gives you the information you need without a lot of verbiage. This
"New Enhanced Mel 2" is even better than the first version! A good on-trail book, because the spiral binding lets this book lie flat. Light in weight but with heavy-duty cover.
Fun! Includes 3 roadie rides. Surprisingly useful.
||Mountain Biking Grand Junction and Fruita by Bob
D'Antonio, Falcon Press 2002, 86 pages. Guide
to the trails in the Fruita/Grand Junction. (Not really Utah, but a lot of
Utahns go there!) 21 trails in typical Falcon Guide format with drawn
(non-topo) maps, mile-by-mile riding milestones, elevation graphs. A
"Just the Facts, Ma'am" approach for a thin pocket guide.
||Mountain Bike! Southern Utah by Michael McCoy, Menasha Ridge Press 2000, 232 pages. Guide
to the trails in the lower half of the state (not just Moab and Dixie). 75 trails with maps and riding
description. No elevation graphs. If you're only going to hit a few trails
in southern Utah, you can get by with Bromka's Mountain Biking Utah (above). But if
you're going to ride them all, you'll need this book. If
we lived in Escalante, we'd use this one.
||Mountain Biking Utah's Brian Head - Bryce Country
by Gregg Bromka, Off-road Publications 1998, 198 pages. Typical of
Bromka's work, this is an excellent book, with accurate detailed maps and
colorful trail descriptions. Gregg adds details about local history and
geology that we really enjoy. Covers 41 rides (no St. George area trails). Doesn't include elevation graphs.
Rich in overall
detail, it gives the best ride directions for adventurous souls riding
without an odometer. We give this book our
highest recommendation for Bryce-Brian Head.
||Mountain Biking St. George/Cedar City by Bruce Grubbs, Falcon Publishing 1999, 136 pages.
This is a useful trail guide to 35 rides in the Cedar City and St. George area, with
maps, elevation graphs, and trail riding mile-by-mile. It's written in the
same concise "just the facts" style as Mountain Biking Moab
(above). Missing a few newer St. George trails. Smaller size fits into a biking backpack or biking-jersey pocket!
If you spend much time in southwest Utah, you need
this book as your quick on-trail reference.
Copyright 2007 Mad Scientist Software Inc