When should you care about YOUR trails? The time is now! I have been watching the recent rise in interest in trail maintenance amongst some of the more influential members of our cycling community here. The history of trail maintenance in this area is sketchy, to say the least. My sincere hope is that this new rise of activity and interest will be a sustained one. I also hope that this responsibility is not bourne by a few, as is all too often the case. Time will tell.
The recent rise in interest seems to be directly tied to a proposed race event for 2006 in Geo. Wyth State Park. That's all well and fine, but what happens after that is what I'm interested in. I certainly understand that doing this work will be a reward and a benefit to those participating in the event, but what about the vast majority that won't be participating? Are you people that are not racing, or helping to put on the race going to be not only using trail, but maintaining it? It's your responsibility as well. Is the racing community going to disappear from the trail maintenance detail after their event? That's not good stewardship.
I heard a plan idea, put forth by Carlos the Jackal, that really made sense to me. This is what his thoughts were. If the primary off road trail that you use happens to be close to where you live, ( and often times this is exactly the case) then why not take it upon yourself to be a trail maintainer in that area? If you know of others in the same situation that are trail users, then band together to focus on that trail system. We are talking about three or four basic trail systems here. Ullrich Park, The Green Belt, and Geo. Wyth/ Lower Hartman. Wyth and Hartman could be split up, as there is enough work/ trail on both sides of the river to make that distinction. Of course, if you do not live close to a system, but want to work on it anyway, (Ullrich) then you should do that. I live closest to the Green Belt, so that would be my choice of trail to maintain. Anybody out there with me? Let's not wait for a vote, or some one else to do it. Lets not wait for a phone call. If you are reading this, you are invited! (Well, if you are not a local, then get up and maintain your local trail!) Let's see this through, and not let up. The more we take care of it, the easier it will be to do. If we let it go, then trails get swallowed up by dead falls, grass, and other things. We lose trail, less riders will bother to come out, and the problem gets worse. It's everyones responsibility that rides off road here to pitch in. Do it!
The time for action is now!