Trail Talk #3: Gettin real

Photo courtesy Josh Davidson

Photo courtesy Josh Davidson

This past week marks a major milestone for MBoSC and the Flow Trail project. We have broken ground on segment 5 and have rough cut almost 1000 feet of trail.

While this project has been in the works for over a year, it has remained a bit of an abstraction, an imagined ribbon of rad singletrack through the woods. It has been mapped out on paper, at the center of a huge fundraising campaign, the motivating factor for training a legion of volunteer trail crew leaders, it’s been through the environmental review process, designed and redesigned in the minds of its trail builders, and prepped, groomed, and cleared by crews of inmates. But as soon as the first bucket of dirt was moved by the Morrison Trailblazer trail machine, the trail became real. It is happening, and it is so tremendous.

The first couple days just Drew and I were out there, getting a feel for the flow of construction and figuring out how we can best utilize volunteers on a daily basis. We have come up with somewhat of a system for construction. Our current focus during the work week is rough cutting trail. This entails cutting bench with the Morrison, and adjusting the trail with our soon to be delivered skid steer.

While we are roughing in the trail, the finish work and the building of most of the trail features (the fun, artful side of trail building) are being left for our volunteer days. This will give our crew leaders a chance to employ the training they have received and take on some projects. There are numerous berms, jumps, rollers, and natty wall rides waiting for the knowing touch of volunteer trail builders. There will be consistent midweek and Saturday volunteer opportunities throughout the project. Check out the Flow Trail page, follow MBoSC on Facebook, or email for more info.

Photo: Bogdan Marian

Photo: Bogdan Marian

Photo: Bogdan Marian

Photo: Bogdan Marian

Buku thanks to our volunteers who came out this past week. Our tree and rigging expert, Pierre, helped us build a massive retaining wall out of a fallen old growth redwood tree (photos below). Josh, Bogdan, Glenn and Ford braved the rain (finally rain, jah provide!) on Friday and helped to ready the trail for the significant amount of rain forecasted for the weekend. They made sure that all of the trails drainage was properly cleared so that we don’t come back to a swamp next week.

We are stoked to have so many willing volunteers to put shovels to dirt.

Trail Talk is a blog written by MBoSC Trail Builder Matt De Young chronicling the construction of the Flow Trail at Demo

retaining wall

Our trail alignment goes right through a gigantic old growth redwood stump. To get the trail around it we had to choose between going high above the stump or dropping down below it. We chose to go high but in doing so were left with a super steep section of trail. To mitigate this we knew we had to build some sort of structure to lessen the grade. We could have built a cribbed retaining wall out of split wood, an elegant, but time intensive solution. Luckily we came across a beautiful fallen old redwood that lay on the ground conveniently uphill of the spot in question, and y’all know bout lemons and lemonade. With some handy saw work and the help of Pierre’s rigging and know-how we moved three sections of this log and built ourselves a mighty retaining wall that will support a massive insloped turn. Brrrappp. Photos Josh Davidson and Matt De Young

stump stopper

While the Morrison Trailblazer is a mighty machine. It does have an Achilles heel in the form of buried immovable objects, in this case the subterranean remnants of a behemoth old growth redwood. Here is Drew chipping away, reconnoitering, then retreating from this obstacle. He ended up leaving it and finding a way around it. We will come back to plug away at it and likely incorporate it into a nice big roller. Photos Bogdan Marian


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