Chris Kehmeier: Building Trails Around the World and in Your Backyard
Chris “C3” Kehmeier may have the same name as three others at Trail Solutions but that doesn’t mean he blends in. “There’s no such thing as a bad ride,” is his motto. A child of the west, with roots in New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado, Chris has been a mountain biker since 1988 when he and his Trek 820 (complete with Shimano Biopace chainrings) first learned to rip. Today, his favorite trail is the one he’s on, but forced to name names, those would include Monarch Crest in Colorado, the Whole Enchilada in Utah, anything in Oakridge, Oregon, and Devil’s Pass in Alaska. His claim to fame is completing an 18-month bike tour around the world, with his wife.
Chris (and his wife!) got his start with IMBA in 2009 as part of the Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew, transitioning to Trail Solutions in 2011. You can check out an example of his work on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail extension in Utah and also in LangFang, China, if you travel as much as he does. When he’s building, he always brings a clino to get grades dialed, flagging tape, a 100’ steel tape and sunflower seeds. For new builders, his advice is to walk your trail first. Figure out what makes it awesome, then develop a style to guide you, but not limit you. Become a master at visualizing what nature has in store, and then lay down an awesome user experience — whether it’s black diamond chunder or family flow — on top of that.