Motorcycle and ATV enthusiasts will now have more than seven miles of riding trails on 400 acres at Idaho Falls Raceway – just minutes from downtown Idaho Falls – thanks to a public-private partnership, grant money and some very supportive local businesses.
The community is invited to join the City of Idaho Falls Parks & Recreation Department and Greater Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce for a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, Sept. 22 at 11:00 a.m. to celebrate the expanded trail system. Idaho Falls Raceway at Noise Park is located 7 miles west of Idaho Falls on U.S. Hwy 20. Following the ribbon cutting, motorcycle and ATV rides will be offered to those who want an off-road experience and tour of the new trails. Riders are encouraged to wear appropriate attire and footwear.
In 2014, the Idaho Falls Trail Machine Association (IFTMA), a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and development of motorized and non-motorized trail systems, approached the Parks & Recreation Department to discuss the long-term plan and the potential for off-road trails at the Idaho Falls Raceway at Noise Park, a city-owned facility.
The idea stemmed from IFTMA hearing concerns from property owners and local law enforcement regarding people riding off-road vehicles on private property and causing damage. IFTMA recognized a great opportunity to collaborate with the City of Idaho Falls to create a legal, safe and enjoyable area for the Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) community.
“Our club feels that this area would provide a safe, controlled environment for families and patrons of Idaho Falls to enjoy riding at a facility that is close to home,” said Alvin Edwards, president of the Idaho Falls Trail Machine Association. “This area could also be used by our club and others to educate young riders on the proper etiquette and safety procedures for riding OHVs,” added Edwards.
The Idaho Falls Raceway Trail Development, a multi-phase project, began in 2016. Phase I included moving the current raceway gate closer to the existing motocross and stock car tracks, construction of a gravel parking lot, construction of a 7,200ft fence, and placement of 70 signs in the parking lot and along more than seven miles of trail for local riders of ATVs, under 50”, and motorcycles. Phase I was paid for by a $24,358 grant awarded to the city in 2015 from the Recreational Trails Program as well as matched city funds of $6,090.
In 2017, phase II included the installation of an ADA accessible public restroom, drinking water, safety equipment, better parking facilities, equipment to help develop and maintain the infrastructure of the facility and development of an RV Park or campground on site. Phase II was paid for by a $22,100 grant from the Idaho Department of Parks & Recreation and matched city funds of $5,525.
The Idaho Falls Raceway Trail Development project resulted in designated trails that provide riders with specific places to ride. In turn, the trails will protect the land and maintain the natural beauty while allowing community members to enjoy the area. Due to land development and privatization, these trails will soon be the only designated OHV trails within 20 to 30 miles.
“The city has received multiple letters of support from riding associations, local motorcycle and ATV businesses, and several independent riders from our community. We are looking forward to opening this new trail system and want to thank all the volunteers and partners for their help and support with this project,” states Parks & Recreation Director, Greg A. Weitzel
The City currently works in conjunction with the State of Idaho to use the facility for OHV training. With more than 9,000 OHV tags sold in Bonneville County each year and the loss of rideable trails in the foothills surrounding Idaho Falls, there is a significant demand for off-road trails. The new trails will open up more land for class participants to practice their riding skills. To ensure that young riders have completed the OHV training course, that adults have registered bikes and that all riders are safe, riders will be required to fill out a visitor log prior to riding.
Bill Bott, owner of Bott Yamaha states, “IFTMA gets families out of town, youth off the streets and gets them in the outdoors seeing some of the best scenery Idaho has to offer. It is great to hear that our local motorcycle riders are doing maintenance and helping to keep trails open to keep Idaho looking as beautiful as ever.”
The on-site caregiver at Idaho Falls Raceway is responsible for general maintenance and operation of the facility. IFTMA will maintain the facility trails as an ongoing volunteer project, which includes the maintenance of more than 400 miles of other off-road trails around the region.
Mayor Rebecca Casper states, “Thanks to this public-private partnership, off-roaders can now enjoy a safe trail system that is closer to home, easily accessible and suitable for training young riders. The project also supports our local stores, gas stations and food retailers as residents and guests make purchases on their way to the park. We look forward to having more Idahoans discover all that Idaho Falls has to offer.”
Idaho Falls Raceway at Noise Park
Idaho Falls Trail Machine Association
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Fall and winter recreation enthusiast can now learn about a myriad of recreation activities, community events, youth & adult programs and sports in the recently released 2017 Fall & Winter Discover Idaho Falls Parks and Recreation Guide.
Media Note: For more information or to schedule an interview with city staff, contact Public Information Officer, Kerry Hammon.