The Beginning of A Great Partnership
This weekend's Trail Care Crew Visit was hosted by MEMBA, the Michigan's Edge Mountain Bike Association in Montague, Michigan. We had a great line-up of presentations, including Club Care, Land Manager Training and Trail Building School.
We met with Randy (MEMBA President) to look at the trail project on Thursday. To our surprise, the trail is located on Owasippe Boy Scout Ranch, the OLDEST Boy Scout Reservation in America! We were impressed and excited to get to build trail here. It's looking like a great partnership that could blossom ever more in years to come.
Our next order of business was Club Care. We presented that Thursday evening to MEMBA members and had some great discussions centered around club development! This is a fairly new Chapter with lots of potential, the group seemed to absorb knowledge and know-how like a sponge. This was one of our most effective Club Care sessions yet, which could be in part to the attendance and guidance of Andy Williamson, IMBA's Great Lakes Regional Director. Thanks Andy!
Trail Building School was on Saturday, and afterwards, we hit the trail out at Owasippe to build some single track. The trail that we worked on is going to be a re-route of a very fall-line section of trail that is currently being used for both hiking and cycling. The re-route will be about 2000 feet long upon completion, and will take several workdays to complete. The fall line trail might not be closed however, due to it's location and relevance to the hiking population. Our hope is that if the fall line trail must stay open, it will become the hiking path, and that the new re-route will be the designated cycling trail.
We managed to knock out about 400 feet of the new trail with 15 volunteers in two hours! We learned some great lessons along the way including workday organization to produce a more efficient commute to the trail project, proper bench cutting and finishing of new trail.
A special Thanks to Randy and Gina for being amazing hosts throughout the weekend! We really enjoyed our time spent with you! Thank you to all the folks of MEMBA and to the various other volunteers for your hard work and patience over the weekend!