CAMBC Quarterly Update – May 2019

 

Project Updates

Pump Track

CAMBC is offering to fund the design, materials, and construction of a small pump track in the city to promote biking and provide a place for kids and adults to work on bike skills and help with the maintenance of it in partnership with the City’s Parks and Rec team.  We intended this to be our major 2019 effort, and we had planned to do fundraising for the track, and solicit membership support for the build and maintenance of it.

We expected to work with City Parks and Rec to get formal permission on a site in McIntire Park at the bottom of the McIntire parking area.  There are no user conflicts that we are aware of, the site has parking and water access, and is close to the McIntire trails. We presented our proposal on February 25 to Parks and Rec’s director and got no response, even after a followup request.

Our next step is to prepare a presentation based on this proposal, and introduce it to the City Council at one of the public meetings.

Fundraising Items for Sale

We have the two items for sale for fundraising

  • CAMBC Cups – $20 each – Aluminum cups, silver or black, with the CAMBC logo.  These are the same ones we’ve sold in the past.
  • Tinder Bells – $25 each – Bells for the handlebar with a slider to leave the jingle on when needed vs. using your thumb to ring it.  Great for crowded trails to give fair warning that a rider is approaching vs. scaring walkers/runners with a manual bell when it’s too late.

We will be selling these at events, and are working to make them available on our website.

Albemarle High School Trails

We had a great CAMBC workday in March to connect two trail systems behind the schools.  Members of the AHS MTB team and CAMBC members participated in the effort. The existing trails are open for use, but still need to be marked.  Additional work for the area is in planning, with some re-routes and new trails. A reminder for those interested in exploring the area: this is school property, so is closed to the public during school hours.

Advocacy

There are a variety of ongoing trail access and funding initiatives in play right now.  CAMBC is monitoring them all and will provide updates and calls to action as needed.

Ragged Mountain

A judge referred the case to mediation, where it has been for the past several months.  We understand there was one actual meeting with the assigned mediator, with no resolution.  We are not sure what the next steps are. In the meantime, the City just approved funding to pick up more acreage adjacent to the existing park and plans to put in more trails.

Our position:

  • Biking should be allowed at Ragged Mountain.  It does not pose any threat to the water supply (as stated by RWSA).  
  • We support the City plan to have both shared use and hiking only trails at Ragged.  

If there are any updates or action needed, we will let you know.

In the meantime, biking is not allowed.  County code says only hiking, picnicking and birdwatching are allowed.  Interpret that as you like.

Biscuit Run

With the approval of the FY20-24 Capital Plan for the County, $2.2 million originally allocated for Hedgerow was re-allocated to Biscuit to accelerate its opening initially as a trail park.  This is good news. Our understanding is that most of these funds will be to put in formal public parking at the Rt. 20 and Avon Extended junction, which is needed as there are currently no formal public access points to the Park.  A county project manager will be assigned to the effort. The County is also working with the Foxcroft and Mill Creek HOA’s to get permission to use the existing connector to connect 5th St. Station to Biscuit. The expectation is to put in a small trailhead across from the Wegman’s Pub, re-route the trail to be grade friendly that will connect with the “Mill Creek Connector” trail that leads into the Park under 64.  If there are any readers of this newsletter that live in Mill Creek or Foxcroft, can you please contact me so we can discuss how you can help get this permission granted?  

We will continue to work with the county to be included in the Park trails planning.  We expect to do some trail work days there as the details firm up, with the first being to help re-route the trail from Wegmans down to the Mill Creek Connector.

Our position:

  • Allocate funding needed for a Soft Opening (which requires a minimal public access location, and allows the use of existing trails).
  • Open the park as a “trail park” like Preddy, then incrementally add in the other features per the Master Plan as funding becomes available.
  • Have the County work with us in trail planning, building, and maintenance.

Hedgerow

Hedgerow had funding in the 2020 County budget proposal, which was re-allocated to Biscuit.  The County is in the process of doing an environmental assessment of the property.

Our position:

  • Allocate funding only for a “soft opening” to provide basic public access and an initial trail loop.  
  • Have the County work with us in trail planning, building, and maintenance.

We will be advocating for funding for the above in the FY21 budget cycle this fall/spring.

Rivanna Trail

CAMBC is working closely with the RTF, and we’ve contributed significantly recently to trail work and re-routes.  Some recent news

  • The Willoughby horseshoe is now formally part of the RT!  The RTF has already brushed the trail to demonstrate our interest in keeping it open and hikable/ridable.  Trails into the neighborhood are private, and the RTF will be putting up signs stating as such.
  • With the Woolen Mills development comes a promised pedestrian bridge across Moores Creek at Woolen Mills.  This would provide access to that section of trail (Woolen Mills to Rt. 20), AND provide future trail access to Monticello.  Bridge planning is in the process of design and approvals. FEMA just approved the plan, which is always a significant hurdle for bridges in flood plains.  The hopeful target for bridge building is this fall/winter.
  • Brushing – it is growing season.  The RTF is trying to keep the trail clear but depends on Volunteers to do the work.  Lots of work has been done already to open Rt. 20 to 5th St., Sunset to Stribling, and OHill to Barracks.

Trailwork

Trailwork is an important part of what we do as a club and helps establish our reputation as trail advocates and trail stewards.  CAMBC is now considered a resource for trail design expertise by the local land managers. We have established a monthly trail work schedule, on the third weekends of every month.  

We’ve had several recent trail work days. Thank you to all of you who have participated.

  • March – John Lewis led a group to build a new connector trail connecting two trails behind the AHS schools.  
  • May – Bobby Casteen led a small but productive group at the Blue Ridge School with wet spot remediation.  Thanks, Bobby!

Next workdays

  • May 31 – John Lewis at Walnut Creek with the Cutaway Kids teams and parents.  4:30 PM
  • June 15 – Sam Lindblom – Wegman’s Biscuit trailhead re-route?
  • July 20 – Shannon Tevendale – TBD
  • August 17- Eric Magrum – Walnut?
  • September 21 – David Stackhouse – OHill?

Trail Champions

We are looking to find people who are willing to be the formal “trail monitors” for our area trail systems.  Our hope is that these monitors can act as liaisons between CAMBC and the trail system land managers, as well as keeping an eye on the trails, reporting issues, recommending work and leading work days.

  • Jenny Whedbee is our Champion for Walnut Creek
  • Bob Newman is our Champion for Preddy Creek

Upcoming Events

Socials

We are starting with having monthly socials, starting with the third Thursdays of every month at Peloton Station.

  • June 20
  • July 18

Events

We’d also like to have quarterly CAMBC club events that include guided rides, skills training, fire pits and food, kids and camaraderie (and even some camping…)  

This April we had a “Take a Kids Mountain Biking Day” at the Teventrails in conjunction with a Trek and Pivot demo, with free hotdogs for the kids (and kids at heart) and several guided rides.  Thanks to Jip for organizing, and for those of you who let rides, and attended.

We will be exploring a group CAMBC potluck/ride event at Walnut or Penn Park this summer and a camping trip somewhere this fall.

Also, on June 1, National Trails Day – CAMBC will be co-hosting a group ride around the Rivanna Trail with the RTF.  9:00 AM at the IX building. Expect 4-5 hours.

SERS Rides

Matt McClelland had graciously volunteered to organize this year’s SERS rides and led the first ride on May 26.

We are still looking for volunteers to lead rides! You really can be a ride leader — it just means you get to pick where you want to ride and send out an email telling people the date, time, and location to meet to go on the ride.  If you meet those requirements, you can be the ride leader. You certainly don’t have to be the strongest person on the trail to be the ride leader. If there are no volunteer ride leaders, we may have to cancel the ride. Can you help us out?  Sign up here.

Upcoming Mountain Bike Races

VORS race schedule

ABOUT CAMBC

Mission

A reminder of our Club’s mission: Our goal is to promote sustainable multi-use public trail systems within Charlottesville and surrounding counties. We emphasize responsible trail use and bicycle safety. We strive to foster positive relationships with other trail users, clubs and municipal and federal land managers. We also ride bikes!

Who We Are

CAMBC is a community of mountain bikers and trail advocates.  We are an affiliate of IMBA, who help manage our membership. The club currently comprises of 179 paid members.  Our main club mailing list has almost 400 subscribers. We have a shed with a variety of trail building tools that we use for our trail building and maintenance efforts.

Leadership

Our board of directors currently comprises the following biking and trail advocates:

  • John Lewis – President
  • David Stackhouse – Treasurer
  • Sam Lindblom – Vice President
  • Shannon Tevendale – Secretary
  • Sean Tevendale
  • Bobby Casteen
  • Eric Magrum
  • Jip Palakawongs
  • Will Stanford

We meet every other month to vote on club decisions and provide updates on ongoing projects.

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