Where's your favorite place to ride? As Trail Care Crews, it's a question we get just about every weekend. While we have our top ten list of world class mountain bike destinations, our answer invariably includes our hometown trails -- the trails out our back door.
Without easily accessible trails close to home, most of us would probably never have become mountain bikers. This is a important point not missed by mountain bike advocates in Parkersburg, West Virginia. In Parkersburg, the mountain bike community knows that to grow the sport, to get kids on bikes, and to spend time riding on trails rather than riding to trails, they need to work together to create local opportunities to ride bikes.
While Parkersburg already has great singletrack resources outside of town, they're working on developing a new trail system within city limits at Johnson T. Janes Park. The new trail system will offer fun, beginner trails in a part of the country rife with mostly intermediate and advanced trails.
As part of our visit, we helped RVMBA and WVMBA build 600' of a new trail that will be a part of a beginner loop that showcases and preserves a beautiful wetland zone with Johnson T. Janes Park. We also presented Better Living Through Trails to city decision makers, which supported their investment in trails by making the case that trails connect people to the land, increase health and wellness, and tap into the economic benefits of trails.
Parkersburg is well on its way to developing a great new community trail resource. When it's done, visitors and locals will be able to stay in the Blennerhasset Hotel, enjoy the North End Tavern, and have the local Parkersburg trail police show you some singletrack without having to get in a car. Now that's sweet singletrack!