by Colby King, Midlands SORBA Secretary
Over a recent November weekend, Midlands SORBA hosted a three day event with the IMBA Trail Care Crew, including trail building instruction, new trail construction, riding, and socializing. With over 40 individuals participating throughout the weekend, the group made substantial progress, bench cutting, trimming, and packing, as they group prepares for a major expansion of the trail system. The event was hosted in cooperation with State Park Manager Zabo McCants, a tremendously supportive land manager. The members of Midlands SORBA have been busy building and maintaining trails across South Carolina’s Midlands, but nowhere more so than Poinsett State Park.
With additional efforts by Steve Tipton and the Sumter Chain Gang, and other Midlands SORBA members, the group expects to have 5 new miles of singletrack in Poinsett State Park open by February 2013. The new trail mileage is being built in preparation for next spring’s Killer 3 Race, which will be held on March 3, 2013, and is part of the Southern Classic Series.
Poinsett State Park is known as the Mountains of the Midland” and The High Hills of Santee. With the terrain’s surprisingly hilly mixture of bluffs and steep hills, these new trails will add a little grind to the collection of flowy trails in Poinsett and next door Manchester State Forest. Poinsett State Park is located near Wedgefield in western Sumter, South Carolina. The Park sits on 1,000 acres west of S.C. highway 261 and east of the Wateree River’s flood plain. The mixed pine and hardwood forest grows on sandy soil pocketed with swamps and bays.
A special thank you is due to for their continued work on these trails, and to Steve Masone and Stuart White for their work coordinating this event. This work was made possible by a Memorandum of Understanding between Midland’s SORBA and South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism which was agreed to last year. Also, the work was supported by a USA Cycling/IMBA Trail Tune-Up Grant.
The Trail Care Crew, Jesse and Lori, shared their experiences in on their blog.
Combined with the 25 miles of single track maintained in the 28,000 acre Manchester State Forest, these new trail miles make Poinsett State Park a riding destination in the Southeast.