TrailQuest So Far: The View from the Top

I’m #1 on the TrailQuest Leaderboard (when published on June 26, 2017– Graham will probably pass me soon and you’ll see that below…). TrailQuest is a game to see how many unique single track trail miles we can log in a season, or in multiple seasons. Bike, run or hike.

I don’t expect to be #1 for long. Just behind me at #2 is Graham Elliot, a much stronger mountain biker than I. Below me on the board are plenty of other stronger riders. Neither my technical skills nor endurance on a bike are close to formidable, the former suffering from monovision and the latter by ageing.

John's TrailQuest Profile PhotoBut I do like games and have found that nothing rivets the attention on staying in good physical condition like signing up for something physically hard. Will I have that second Martini? There’s a good chance I will. But at least I’ll think about it.

Joining TrailQuest has changed my riding life. Living up Cement Creek and an unfortunate victim of ease and habit, in years past I have ridden Lower Cement Creek, Walrod to Warm Springs, and Upper Cement Creek hundreds of time. Once a year I would venture to Reno/Flag/Bear/Deadman or Walrod Cutoff to Caves. I would accept invitations from friends to join them on Snodgrass, the Lupines, Strand or 401. But mostly I was a Cement Creek rider.

That won’t do for TrailQuest, which measures not how many miles we log but how many unique miles.

I’m addicted, as are others. A friend and I were going to ride. I suggested Tony’s/Upper Loop/Bridges/Upper Upper. He said he had Tony’s, Upper Loop and Bridges accounted for, but since he had descended Whetstone Vista instead of Upper Upper, he agreed to the ride.

Another day we rode Skull Pass to Aberdeen and as we were finishing I noticed we were passing Skull Pass Bypass. We didn’t take it, but we all thought about it. If I find myself close to something, I almost feel compelled to do it—East River on the way to Strand, for example. On another Hartman ride we also passed 9-0, something we should have bagged while we were in the neighborhood.

I find Deer Creek a spirit-crushing ride but last weekend I did it: 8.3 trail miles, a jump in the standings!

So far, I’m averaging 2.1 unique trail miles/day since the start. If I maintain that pace, I’ll end up with just over 300 unique trail miles this season, with 450 miles left to ride to complete the 750 miles we have in the valley. Next summer, to continue picking up new trail, some of my rides will necessarily be pretty far-flung. We’ve got trails out there I’ve never even heard of let alone done.

As for strategy, the density of trails at Hartman and Evolution Bike Park make those two networks great for picking up mileage. But soon, everyone who plays is going to have to get out there and explore!

I’m pretty happy to have been “forced” into it!

Screenshot of app homescreen with settings

Android phones have settings in the upper right.

Things We Have Learned So Far

  • Feeling like you’re not getting full credit for your miles? You can log in to your TrailQuest account at From there, you can take a closer look at your tracks and see what percentage of miles you received on a particular trail. If you notice that you’re not getting “full credit” for your miles, go to settings from the app homescreen and try adjusting down the minimum distance between points. We’ve noticed this helps a lot with getting your full mileage.
  • Battery running out of juice on long rides? We like to turn off mobile data and wifi when we’re out. As long as you still have location services enabled, you’ll get your recording.
  • Running the app on an iPhone and getting incomplete recordings? Make sure your location setting is set to “ALWAYS.” This allows the app to receive location any time it’s on and you’re recording. If it’s not set to always, when your phone goes to sleep, it will stop getting the waypoints and you’ll lose your ride.
  • Want to export your tracks so you can upload them to Strava or another program as well? Go to “Record” and click the upper right corner to see all or your past recordings. Select a track. In the bottom right corner, use the arrow to email your GPX File to yourself and then upload to whatever other program you want.
  • Not seeing your miles go up right away on the Leaderboard? After hitting “save and submit” to TrailQuest, there may be a bit of a hold-up in seeing those miles go to the leaderboard. If you’re anxious to see your miles go up, backtrack to Record and open up that recording. Then hit the airplane and re-submit to TrailQuest. Boom! You should see your miles come through!

If you’re noticing other issues, send us an email at [email protected] and we’ll get it over to our developer. We appreciate any and all feedback that helps us improve the CBGTrails and TrailQuest experience! Best of luck to everyone!

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