Western was recently ranked as one of the Top 10 Colleges for Mountain Bikers by Mountain Bike Action Magazine.
The magazine highlights Western's access to nearby Hartman Rocks and Crested Butte as reasons for the ranking. The article also credits mountain bike legend and Mountain Sports Team Director Dave Wiens.
"Gunnison and Western's backyard trail riding is top-shelf, second to none," Wiens says. "Our riders' daily bread is the magnificent, 50-plus mile trail network of the Hartman Rocks area. Hartman’s is a smooth, fast and flowy sea of sagebrush, pocked with challenging and technical islands of granite, slick rock and juniper trees. And Hartman’s is just one-quarter of the public lands accessed directly from Gunnison and the Western campus."
Western Mountain Sports Cycling competes in the Rocky Mountain Collegiate Cycling Conference (RMCCC) against the toughest competition in the nation. “But since collegiate cycling offers A, B and C racing categories,” Wiens says,“there’s a place for everyone. From someone brand new to mountain biking to a seasoned professional looking to make the jump to elite international competition, Mountain Sports and our RMCCC schedule have a place for you.”
The top-10 ranking is just one of many Western has achieved in recent years. Western was also ranked as one of America's Best Colleges in Forbes Magazine in 2011, one of Forbes Top 100 Best Buy Colleges, one of the top Liberal Arts Colleges by Washington Monthly, and is listed as one of America's Top Coolest Schools by the Sierra Club.
Western's Mountain Sports Team is growing, with offerings in mountain bike racing, skiing and more. Western is one of the few universities in the U.S. where outdoor athlete are offered such a wide variety of opportunities in such close proximity to the mountains.