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8/23/2013 6:00:00 AM
Cycling's impact around Kingman enough to surprise
From left to right, mountain bikers Cory Wall, Jim Madison and Art Cassman take a break in the shade before continuing their trek at Monolith Gardens, a BLM area near Kingman, in May 2006. (JC AMBERLYN/Miner)
From left to right, mountain bikers Cory Wall, Jim Madison and Art Cassman take a break in the shade before continuing their trek at Monolith Gardens, a BLM area near Kingman, in May 2006. (JC AMBERLYN/Miner)

Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - Bicycling could be one of the next economic engines for Kingman's economy. The Arizona Department of Transportation recently released a study showing that out-of-state cyclists spent more than $88 million in the state last year on tours, races, hotels, food and equipment. They also provided jobs for 721 people.

The study doesn't break down the numbers by county, but in the western region of Mohave, La Paz and Yuma counties, bicycle tourism brought in around $2.1 million and provided jobs for 29 people. According to ADOT, Arizona has many features that attract cyclists from all over the world, including its warm climate, sunny weather and draws such as the Grand Canyon and Route 66.

The numbers surprised Ran Hanks, the owner of Bicycle Outfitters in Kingman.

"That seems a little high," Hanks said "We do see an increase of in out-of-state visitors in the spring and fall. We get a lot from Europe."

Most of them are cycling along historic Route 66, he said. Sometimes the shop will get visits from two or three groups a week. Some of them come with RVs or another vehicle in tow; others have their bikes fully laden with supplies and ask for directions to the nearest campground or hotel.

Kingman Chamber of Commerce Tourism Director Josh Noble was also surprised by the figures. The chamber did a visitors study in 2010-11 that had a few comments from motorcyclists, but he couldn't recall any comments from bicyclists, he said.

"We do get a few calls throughout the year, about four or five, for assistance on a bike path along Route 66," Noble said.

However, the idea of making Kingman and Arizona more bicycle-friendly has merit, according to Noble. A bike path out of town on Route 66 or up in the Hualapai Mountains would be good, he said.

Hanks agreed and pointed to local trails on Bureau of Land Management land near Coyote Pass, such as Monolith Gardens: "Some days there's nothing out there. Other times you'll see grass or plants that are in bloom," he said. "It's always a different trail."

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Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, August 24, 2013
Article comment by: V Stokes

@The Great Race...
Actually, there is a local triathlon scheduled in Oct which includes a 25mi bike leg (which can be done by itself also). On Facebook at TourofKingman.

I believe Bicycle Outfitters is planning some races/tours as well.

Posted: Saturday, August 24, 2013
Article comment by: Optimistic MountainBiker

Kingman is a great venue for the cyclist. I drive to Flagstaff and Boulder City Nv. all the time to enjoy their trail systems. I leave plenty of money there in exchange for their tails and hospitality. Not just me, but lots of people. They embraced it as a form of commerce. Kingman could as well.

Posted: Saturday, August 24, 2013
Article comment by: The Great Race

Hmm, seems like I am the only one responding to this (posted "Worth pursuing" also) and I haven't ridden a bicycle since I was a kid. Why not sponsor a bicycle race like some other towns do? Should be able to attract CA cyclists. Surely someone(s) could plot out a 25 or 50 mile course over a variety of terrains.

Posted: Saturday, August 24, 2013
Article comment by: Josh Noble

@ worth pursuing: Thank you for the comment: We have trail information for the Cerbat Foothills Recreational Area online at We are also producing a new area/dining map that outlines the Kingman cycling trail. If you have more resources that you can provide, we're open to helping get that information out. The more useful we are as a community, the more business through tourism we'll create!

Posted: Friday, August 23, 2013
Article comment by: Worth pursuing

Looks like something worth posting on the C of C webpage. Also maybe a pamphlet showing bike paths and routes or simply a 8-1/2 by 11 sheet with that info. This could be as good for the bike shops as the Harley convention is for the Harley dealer.

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