Unauthorized Trail Work

Board Member

April 02, 2020, 09:19 PM

Given the current societal situation, many folks have time on their hands and a desire to get out in the woods and maybe do something productive, and some of them (maybe you) are thinking of trail work.  This is awesome; the trails always need work, and without being able to hold spring workdays, that is especially true.  You can work alone, and swinging a tool is a great way to enforce social distancing.

While it is great that we have willing volunteers, it is extremely important that you get any dirt work you want to do approved by your Trail Steward.  They are easy to contact, are friendly, and will be glad to have your help.  But a great deal of planning and thought goes into the work we do, and a couple hours of misguided work can easily waste several times that in correcting the damage.

A couple examples: 

  • Skill features and jumps may look dangerous or poorly shaped to you, but the folks we have building them are very good at what they do, and skilled at putting features on trails that are appropriate to the skill rating of that trail.  It's possible they have been damaged or changed by someone who shouldn't have, but do not alter without checking in with the Trail Steward.
  • Brushed over trails:  We don't abandon trails just for the hell of it; once a trail is built there needs to be a very good reason to eliminate it.  It may not be obvious what the reason is (erosion, safety, conflict with other users are some), but trust us, there is a good reason.  If a trail you once rode is covered in branches and brush, leave it that way and learn to love the alternative.

We don't want to spend our time undoing what you've done, and you don't want to spend your time doing something that is undone when you come back.  Let's all spend our time and energy moving in the same direction!

Note that there are some exceptions, usually ones that don't involve dirt.  If there is a tree down that you can move, please do so.  Leaf blowing and weed whacking are always welcome (though there are some tips that will make weed trimming more effective, don't be afraid to ask).  But if you are spending any time with a shovel, please, please, check in with your Trail Steward.

And if you see someone altering trail, feel free to ask if the work is authorized.  Don't be a jerk, and don't get in any arguments, but it's good to let those who don't see these messages know that others are paying attention.  And don't hesitate to let your Trail Steward know what you saw.  If they are legit, give them a remote fist-bump; that's how the work gets done.

Thank you!

« Last Edit: April 03, 2020, 04:15 AM by Renegade Rick »