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The IMBA Trail Care Crew Visits Chicopee Woods


The IMBA Trail Care Crew Comes to Chicopee Woods

Ryan and Kristen Butcher rolled into town March 30-April 1st to do some trail education, building, and riding at Chicopee Woods Mountain Bike Trail System in Gainesville, GA. On Friday Ryan, Kristen, and the Gainesville chapter SORBA reps met with the Land Manager, then they toured the trail, choosing an area to work on and flagging the line for the new trail.

On Saturday morning, the Butchers held class and taught a group of SORBA members the whys and what-fors of building sustainable trails. They talked about the proper tools, as well as construction techniques for a variety of trail conditions and technical skill levels, and gave out some tips on how to sell the idea of sustainable trails. This entertaining and informative session was followed by lunch, then, it was off to put the knowledge to work in the field.


Kristen Butcher of the the IMBA Trail
Care Crew works with Mike and
Michelle Young on a bermed
turn on Chicopee Woods' Outer Loop.

The TCC had chosen a rooty drop-off on the Outer Loop that was followed by a sharp right turn and an eroded downhill that bumped you along and spilled you out on a newly built bridge over a creek. They determined to reduce the erosion and increase the fun factor at the same time.

Relax, the rooty drop-off is still there! It's now followed by a wide, curving berm, an armored downhill that skirts the creek, then swoops out into another berm, before shooting you onto the bridge. This new route is sweet, fast, flowing, and SUSTAINABLE!


Kevin Daniels takes a break as Robert McBride
delivers a load of rocks for the lower berm crew.

Twenty-five hearty and enthusiastic volunteers from the Athens, Atlanta, Ellijay, Gainesville, and RAMBO chapters converged on the Outer Loop to make this new, fun section a lasting legacy in the Chicopee trail system. These intrepid volunteers gathered rocks, cleared new trail, sidehilled, built berms, armored trail, tamped, spread leaves, and reclaimed the old trail. Whew!

After an afternoon of hard work, our crew was treated to a fantastic BBQ dinner, Sweetwater, and a slide show of Ryan and Kristen's adventures around the world, as well as pics from the day's work-a fitting end to a great day.

If you missed Ryan and Kristen at Chicopee, they'll be back for a repeat performance in Chattanooga at Raccoon Mountain, April 12-15th.