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SORBA's Tour de Subaru Hits the Road to Visit with Chapters

The 2014 Tour De Subaru has hit the road and the SORBA staff will be heading to an event or meeting near you!

The first stop this year landed us in Wilmington, N.C. for a visit with the high-achieving Cape Fear SORBA Chapter. Cape Fear SORBA has grown to more than 100 members, assists in the organizing of a seven-event race series in eastern North Carolina, offers kids rides on a new fleet of bikes, and has been involved in the creation of all of the best local trails in the area.

In addition to the Blue Clay Bike Park and the Brunswick Nature preserve trails, Cape Fear SORBA is assisting the city of Elizabethtown, N.C., in the creation of a new trail system just one mile outside of town that is currently known as the Brown Creek Trail. What distinguishes the Brown Creek trail from Blue Clay and the Brunswick trails is elevation. Elizabethtown is just far enough off the sea coast to offer some good, old up and down. There will be an easy beginner trail at Brown Creek, but Greg Brinson and the Cape Fear crew have also planned a leg-burning climb right out the parking lot. Of course, where there is up, there will be down! We were happy to preview a singletrack flow-trail descent on Brown Creek. There is still a lot of work to do, but look for an opening of Brown Creek in late 2014.

Want to speed things up? Get in touch with Cape Fear SORBA and they will be glad to involve you in this project.

Wilmington is poised to become a bicycling destination to attract those from beyond the immediate area. With a coastal climate, it offers an attractive wintertime alternative to the much-colder mountains of western North Carolina. Wilmington offers bike lanes and paths in town, some great shopping, local brews, and cafes offering locally sourced ingredients. And yes, there's surfing not too far away.

The trip from coastal North Carolina to steamy central Florida is just a hop, skip and jump in the Outback (OK, not really) but the Subaru is as comfortable on the highway as it is adept in getting into remote backcountry.

SORBA's Tour de Subaru joined up with the Subaru-IMBA Trail Care Crew (TCC) during its visit to the new Orlando Area SORBA chapter. Forty-two people attended the IMBA TCC presentation on Saturday morning, then went to Markham Park to work on trail.

The Orlando chapter has dedicated itself to working with state and local managers to improve access and tread at Markham Park and at Snow Hill in the Big Little Econ State Forest. Other parks and trail systems are presenting appealing projects. Orlando has one of the biggest concentrations of IMBA members in SORBA country and I fully expect that the IMBA Trail Solutions folks will be spending some time here in the next year or two after SORBA and the chapter do some strategic planning.

Our thanks to Parkway Subaru of Wilmington, N.C., and Mastro Subaru of Orlando for their past and future support of IMBA, SORBA and our chapters!

Find out more about SORBA's Tour de Subaru.

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