The Freedom Riders Story
Welcome to Freedom Riders a look at the evolution of the sport and the progression of trail building in this country. From its days as an activity reserved for the few who rebelled against the spandex clad status-quo, to the multimillion dollar, mainstream sport that it is today, see the true inside story on a group of riders that would never see their passion die.
On the morning of July 12, 2008 a large group of dedicated Mountain bikers gathered at the base of Teton Pass. Everyone was dressed to work and the atmosphere was festive. There were tents set up with food from local restaurants, soda, tools and fulfillment in the air. Representatives from the US Forest Service walked around and mingl
ed with the riders. The mission for the day was to add a new massive dirt jump to Lithium–one of the handful of trails in the National Forest dedicated and with a purpose: sustaining the tail systems for downhill mountain biking.
Jump back eight years, a small group of passionate riders meets at the top of Highway 22 the infamous Teton Pass under the cloak of darkness. They stand at the t
op of a trail, etched roughly into the side of a forty-degree slope. The trail is informally called Ritalin and is the epicenter of an ongoing battle between “the Fed’s” and a rebel group of locals who are dedicated to experiencing the sport of freeriding. These trails are illegal and only the secret squirrel knows of their existence let alone how to navigate through the terrain. Conflicts between armor clad, gladiator “down-hillers,” and other multi users including: cross-country mountain bikers, hikers and horseperson are commonplace.
The Freedom Riders craft their trails, when anyone who would otherwise object is unaware, at speeds that would make the average trails person shudder.