In the Alsea Falls Recreation Area there were mainly 20-30 percent graded hiking trails that are known for being no walk in the park. For mountain bikers, there were some rough descending options and a painful climb to access it.
To remedy the situation the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) turned to IMBA’s Trail Solutions program to make a new network for riders of all levels and disciplines and opening day is almost here, thanks to the over 25 volunteers who joined the professional crew on a recent build day. They came from as far north as Portland, and as far south as the California border. It was great to see old friends and new faces; together, the BLM, Trail Solutions, and volunteers created a fun loop full of flow and features.
Climbers are going to love the three-mile singletrack to the top and the gravity crowd will appreciate asphalt access for pushing up. The figure-8 shape has got a black diamond section — completely built by local volunteers, with Eric Emerson and Mike Ripley of Team Dirt leading the charge — featuring chundery, technical, rooty, hand-cut singletrack that connects to the Highballer trail now in progress. Trail Solutions’ Jason Wells has been hard at work to machine cut the trail and the Team Dirt volunteers eagerly took care of the finishing touches, hand packing berms and rollers, and even a couple double options, before shuttling laps themselves.
This is all in addition to the green section Wells calls, “The ultimate trail you can bring everybody to fall in love with mountain biking.” It is basically 1.8 miles of pump track built last year by IMBA’s Alex Harrington. In its next phase, it will be extended beyond its current terminus so it will turn into a descending, flowing singletrack top to bottom.
Alsea Falls is Oregon’s latest mountain bike offering and it will be ready for riders later in June when the BLM officially opens the new trail, at which time it will need plenty of tires to help break it in. “A trail is never really done, it can always get better, and riding it definitely helps,” said Wells. There will be a big grand opening celebration, with shuttling included, so stay tuned, and keep building!