Trail Biking & ATV Riding
Mel Quale has been riding a trailbike in the Boulder-White Clouds for almost 40 years. “I moved to Idaho in 1960 and my in-laws were riding primitive machines. They were called ‘toot-goats,’ and they were like a scooter. I got hooked,” said Quale. Over the years, this primitive scooter evolved into trailbikes resembling a motorcycle, but designed to travel on single-track dirt trails. Quale’s trailbike is one of the 45,000 off highway vehicles registered in Idaho. Trailbikes make-up half of the registered OHVs in Idaho, and another popular type of OHV is the four-wheeled all terrain vehicle.
Quale is a past president of the Idaho Trail Machine Association. Each year, its members maintain more than 1,000 miles of Idaho’s 9,000 miles of single-track trail. They also sponsor a State Ride, drawing hundreds of people from all over the country to ride together for one weekend each year. The weekend before the 2003 State Ride, Quale was riding with friends to old mining communities, mountain lakes and the high country in the Boulder-White Clouds.
“It’s a great family sport. We raised our kids out here. And we really enjoy the mountains and being outdoors,” said trailbiker Denise Alexander. Like Alexander, Clark Collins taught his children to ride in the Boulder-White Clouds. When Collins’ daughter was learning to ride a trailbike, he took her on Williams Creek trail and Frog Lake trail in the White Clouds. Now, four generations of Collins’ family ride together. His parents who are in their eighties ride ATVs, and recently, he began teaching his seven year-old granddaughter to ride a trailbike.
According to Collins, the trails of the Boulder-White Clouds are some
of the premier trails in Idaho. He said, “They are some of the tougher
trails and some of the more scenic country that you ride through.”