A new way to explore Steamboat while having a lot more fun
The Yampa Valley is a dream location for outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds and with the increased interest in electric bikes across the nation, it seemed only fitting they’d find their way to Steamboat, Bike Town, U.S.A.
It was only natural for born and raised Steamboat locals, Trace Adams and Brandon Buckles to choose Steamboat as their second location for their company Journey Rides.
What was it like growing up in Steamboat?
Growing up in Steamboat gives you the ability to be outdoors and have as much fun as you want as a kid without a lot of worry. Our parents gave us the freedom to do whatever we wanted to do. It’s a town unlike anywhere else where you can play in the river or go bike all around town.
When you are back in town what do you enjoy doing?
I enjoy skiing in the winter and in the summer time, horseback riding, bike riding, boating, tubing the river, all the great things in Steamboat, the list can go on and on.
Why Did you choose to open an electric bike company?
I ran a variety of small business start-ups over the years, ranging from novelty products to clothing. Electric bikes caught my eye as an opportunity to sell fun, innovative products to a vastly expanding market.
Brandon has over 10 years of experience in the tour guiding business and managed two of Arizona’s top tour/adventure companies for ATV, and UTV desert guided tours. After realizing the need for an eco-friendlier alternative to the gas-powered ATV’s, Brandon established the first electric bike tour business in the Sonoran Desert in 2012.
The benefit to electric bikes is it gives the rider the ability to get as little or as much exercise as they would like, while on a quiet, comfortable ride. With an electric bike, you are able to do so much more. You can work just as hard and still break a sweat but be able to go 2-3 times farther than you would on a regular bike.
Why did you choose Steamboat as your second location?
We chose Steamboat, one because we grew up here, two, it’s beautiful, and three, in Scottsdale it’s nice 9 months out of the year, but the other 3 months it’s really hot. This was a great opportunity to return to the Yampa Valley for the summer months.
Eventually, we may look into some winter options in Steamboat as well. We want to explore the snow bikes because the fat wheels have become so popular in the winter.
What different tour options do you offer?
There are places in Steamboat where electric bikes aren’t permitted, such as the Yampa River Core Trail and on Emerald Mountain. There are however, a lot of other places we are able to go.
We offer three different tours right now:
• Fish Creek Flyer- The most popular of our tours this 2 hour and 30-minute tour takes you around Fish Creek Falls, the mountain, and along the river.
• Howelsen Hill Thrill- Explore historic Howelsen Hill on this 2-hour ride.
• Hot Springs Splash- The longest of our rides the Hot Springs tour takes you to the Strawberry Hot Springs where you can enjoy a dip in the natural pools before heading back.
What sets your company and your product apart from others?
Variety! We are your one-stop shop for electric bike tours, rentals, demos, and sales. We are official dealers for 15 different brands of electric bikes.
What different products do you offer?
We offer electric bikes, scooters, and skateboards in all shapes and sizes. Mountain bikes, cruisers, folding bikes, cargo bikes, kids’ bikes, and fat wheel bikes. Some of our bikes are pedal assist, meaning you have to pedal but will be motor assisted and others are pedal assist with a throttle, meaning you don’t have to work at all.
Any tips for first time electric bike riders?
Enjoy the ride! There are a lot of purists in town. Steamboat is filled with so many hardcore athletes that ski, hike, bike, and run and they look at electric bikes as “cheating”. But our slogan is, “It isn’t cheating, it’s just a lot more fun”.