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More trails, please! On the ground with IMBA

Across the country, IMBA and its Trail Solutions team are cranking away on creating and enhancing great places to ride. From teaching advanced trail building schools, to helping communities work through planning hurdles, to designing and building trails and bike parks at the direction of local riders, IMBA is at the forefront of helping grassroots advocates and organizations turn their dreams into reality at every step of the process.

Here’s a quick update of a handful of the projects we’re currently working on. Winter doesn't slow us down!

Sandy Ridge, Oregon - This 17-mile, bike-optimized trail system east of Portland was built in 2013 thanks to a partnership among IMBA, the Bureau of Land Management and local mountain bike groups. Annual maintenance is funded by the Northwest Trail Alliance and spearheaded by IMBA Trail Solutions. Last week, IMBA’s Jason Wells was back at it rebuilding and reshaping sections of singletrack to keep them fresh.

Jason's latest dispatch: "Final hand shape on the berms that were built last week. Probably 500 plus riders over the weekend. All smiles and thanks for the work. Rebuilt a left berm today … I can now ride brakeless all the way through what’s been worked on this round."

Shelbyville, Illinois - Last week, IMBA’s Joey Klein visited Forest Park near Lake Shelbyville to ride the existing trails and assess the surrounding terrain, which includes Army Corp of Engineers property. Joey saw huge potential for expanded trail and bike park experiences, thanks to the landscape and the 17-year partnership between the local bike club and the Army Corps.

From Jerry Yockey, local advocate: "What we needed most was a vision for our trail system and Joey definitely delivered! I also appreciate the way Joey effectively communicated with the Army Corp of Engineers and our trail volunteers. Collectively, we are ready to take the next step to improve and grow our trail system. Later this week, I will be meeting with the Army Corps to discuss a possible IMBA return trip to Shelbyville in March, 2018. I can’t thank Joey enough for his attention to detail and hard work this past week!"

Carbondale, Illinois - IMBA recently led a trail building school at Southern Illinois University, stemming from planning and design work that IMBA Trail Solutions did one year ago at the university’s Touch of Nature Environmental Center. The Center had a successful fundraising campaign to host the trail building school and continues to raise money for trail construction in the near future.

Santa Barbara, California - The 4.5 mile Buckhorn Trail is part of a 34-mile multi-use loop located in the Los Padres National Forest. Previously recognized as an IMBA EPICS ride, Buckhorn trail was closed in 2007 due to fire and subsequent storm damage. By working with IMBA Trail Solutions, partnering with other local trail organizations, and using its own volunteer crews, the Santa Barbara Mountain Bike Trail Volunteers (SBMTV) has rebuilt approximately one third of the trail.

IMBA’s Chris Orr recently wrapped up a successful two weeks rebuilding one mile of the Buckhorn Trail, but there’s still more work to do! SBMTV is seeking funding via IMBA’s Dig In Campaign to help reopen the 34-mile loop. Click here to support this project, directly! 

San Diego, California - IMBA Trail Solutions recently attended the U.S. Forest Service Trail Stewardship Summit to host a trail building school in conjunction with San Diego Mountain Biking Association (SDMBA). Approximately 60 people attended, more than half of them Forest Service staff, including from the Cleveland National Forest. Also in attendance were staff from San Diego County Parks and Recreation staff and City of San Diego Parks and Recreation. Others included SDMBA leaders and members, plus equestrian, hiking, and trail running representatives.

Grand Rapids, Michigan - IMBA Trail Solutions is continuing to work with Progressive AE, West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance members and the City of Grand Rapids to design and develop a bike park concept plan. The plan was recently presented at a public meeting hosted by the city. Both local riders and adjacent neighborhoods are excited to have this resource in their backyards.   

Caliente, Nevada (featured blog image via Pathfinder Trail Building) - Progressive Bike Ramps and Flow Ride Concepts just wrapped up construction of a new bike park for this beautiful desert location. The park, which IMBA Trail Solutions helped to design, is adjacent to town and other parks amenities, and is easily accessible by residents.

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