Heather Goodwin-Nelson - Utah Valley

Heather is the WomenMTB Representative for the Utah Valley Region. Heather is well connected and has a lot to share. Get to know Heather a bit better below:

Home Location: Orem, Utah

Years Riding: I started mountain biking in college on a Rocky Mountain rigid before suspension was invented. 

How did you get into riding: I've always been riding bikes, but the amount of riding has changed with each stage of my life.

Bike you currently ride: Santa Cruz Hightower 27.5+, Trek Superfly 29er, and Kestrel road bike.

Favorite memory on a bike: I started riding when I was 4 years old. I took my brother's full size bike to the curb, climbed up and pushed off. I failed, tried, failed, and tried again until I was able to ride on my own. No training wheels. No sitting down (the bike was to big). Just the pure joy of riding. That's how riding has been all my life.

What is your day job: I'm a single mom. I work with schools and teachers regarding Special Education and Accreditation. In my spare time I volunteer as the Head Coach for ProvoMTB with the Utah High School Cycling League.

What is the best after ride food digs near you: Oteo, Cubby's, Bam Bams BBQ, and Food Truck Fridays at Scera.

What is your favorite piece of bike gear you won't ride without: Helmets, shoes, cleats, clothing all change depending upon how and where I'm riding. But my consistent items are RoadID, a paired down first aid kit, Parktool I-B3 multi-tool, C02 inflater and C02 cartridge with duck tape and electrical tape wrapped around it.

One piece of advice you would give someone just starting to Mountain Bike: Mountain biking requires more skills than just pedaling. Take some time to learn and practice basic skills so when you are on the trail you feel confident in your abilities. When people invite you on a ride, say yes! If they are asking you to go they are okay with your skill and confidence level. Just ride and enjoy time with friends.

Get in touch with Heather about Utah County happenings via email:

Danielle Kassaw Ball - St. George

Danielle is the WomenMTB Representative for the South Western Region of the state. Get to know Danielle a bit better below:

Home Location- St. George, Utah

Years Riding- 2 1/2 yrs

How did you get into riding- My son started racing MTB's during his freshman year of high school (Utah High School Cycling League, Team Flying Monkeys) and they needed volunteers to ride with the kids. I thought it would be a great way to get in shape and have fun. It was scary at first but the more I rode the better I got. Now 2 1/2 yrs later riding 3 to 4 days a week ( its an addiction ) the word fun does not even describe riding. I think of it as a mini-vacation each time I'm out on the trail.

Bike you currently ride- Cannondale Scalpel 29'er Carbon 2

Favorite memory on a bike- This is difficult so here's a couple. I enjoy seeing the smiles and listening to the kids cheer each other on out on the trail. They are creating great memories and discovering all the advantages mountain biking has to offer (helps your mood, physical fitness, always meeting new friends). Then the next one is when I conquered that short but steep hill at the base of the acid drops that goes towards Stucki Springs on Bear Claw Poppy. I had beat me down many times but I finally solved the puzzle (correct speed, gear, and balance) and it all came together. I was on a high for the rest of my ride that I can't even describe.

What is your day job- When I'm required to act like an adult I'm a Nationally Certified Pharmacy Technician (14 yrs) and work 1 day week because my bike would miss me if I worked anymore than that. LOL!!! I'm also a wife (of 26yrs), mother to 2 boys (16 & 24), and a mother-in-law. I also volunteer to ride with the Flying Monkeys MTB race team ( a Utah High School Cycling League).

What is the best after ride food digs near you- Even Stevens Sandwiches, Irmitas Mexican Food, Xetava Cafe, Kaili's Restaurant

What is your favorite piece of bike gear you won't ride without- A good chamois and a cell phone in case of emergencies but mainly to take pictures of ALL the SMILES that are going to be happening!!

One piece of advice you would give someone just starting to mountain bike- We all were beginners at one time so don't get discouraged. Keep pushing forward and that HUGE mountain will become a LITTLE hill with enough patience and practice. This is NOT a race it's all about having FUN!! 

You can contact Danielle about what is happening in St. George via email: