Topic: Trail Management Plan

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    Hi all, sorry about all the emails but they are designed to inform you and educate us all to get the best help for you. I have forward an email about the cutters and access, in the containers are also rake hoes, rakes both plastic leaf style and metal. Shovels and spades, Mattocks, and some other tools. I am starting the process of getting a few sledge hammers as the Wobbygong crew find it the best way to remove the tops of rocks rather than dig them out. We are also going to purchase some new rake hoes. And perhaps we can distribute some on the hills to leave for a couple of trails to share?? We can start a topic on the trails forum between the trail adoptees about where we are leaving them for the trail nearby too use.

    I have attached a Trail Management Plan. It is the handy work of Peter Gibson. He is a trail adoptee with some others on Lower Blue Ring. This is as good a plan as it gets. Peter works for the dry tropics department. Basically it’s his job to be so awesome at this. He has run many of our big races such as the Paluma push for many years and is currently our Mountain Bike Townsville festival organiser. All of this is not to bamboozle you except to say this is what an A+ plan looks like. So don’t be put off by it. My trail plan consist of crap that’s broken or not working well better do something about that. One at a time and no plan!!!

    But Peter has been kind enough to share this and allow everyone to use it. You can go somewhere in between. Peter is also having success in the management of chonky apple bush. It is a pest and he is currently putting together a proposal to help eradicate it properly. Stay posted and we will be hopefully purchasing the right stuff and showing all how to be rid of this.

    Another thing I wanted to share was the use of Face book as a forum for trails. I have a Keelback Page set up, as does Wobbygong and some others. It’s a great way to organise between a few of you. It also means when someone new comes on they can be added and get a history and learn from all the previous posts. Photos, plans etc. I encourage you to do this.

    One other thing, please all join trailforks if possible. You can start an account by joining pinkbike here. Then add trail forks which they own. You can link your Strava to directly upload to trailforks. This helps trail check-ins, and KPI’s. The club use this for funding and information of how or why we are important. I also do trail reports as found on our website here, to let other riders in our area know whether or not we have done trail works that we need them to stay off etc. But also I would love you to logon after you have done trail maintenance and post a report and log your hours, the club can then quantify to councils and land advocacy can show how valuable our asset is so it never gets taken away.

    I hope this helps you, please ask questions, as I do, go and make mistakes on your trails, then learn from them, fix them and make our trails and club the best, as it always has been!

    "I never said it was going to be easy, I said it was going to be worth it!" "Cake or Death?"

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    Words from the wise, an old email from Haydn, explains why our trails are unique and what we need to do to maintain them!

    “Whilst riding the recently cut UTR last week with Geoff Jordan , we both agreed about how enjoyable it was with longer site lines, readily visible apex’s and the “feel” of the freshly cut grass seeming to add some traction to the dry dusty, soil.

    It was great to see the grass hadn’t been raked but was being allowed to decompose and add some much needed organic matter to the tread.

    Whilst the subject of our poor quality soils is where many a TBC conversation begins and ends there are some things we can do to help, like not raking the freshly cut trail . One of the contributing factors that makes our soils highly erodible, is the lack of organic matter, resins etc. to hold them in place. We place high value on our trees at Douglas because they are a great source of this organic “glue” that binds the soil particles together.

    We don’t have a heavy forest canopy to provide lots of leaf matter or shade to retain moisture and provide protection from torrential rain drops. The steeper slopes add to this problem of lack of water retention, and topsoil runoff. We’ve all seen the luxurious canopy of Melaleucas’ alongside the Ross River as well as the surrounding vegetation and native forest. This is especially visible on the riverside bike path at Douglas. It’s no accident that before the development of that suburb this was where we had one of our most memorable MTB trails.

    It was originally created by Motos and dropped off the highest bank down onto the lower riverside area slaloming between the large healthy trees. We named it “as good as it gets” the soil was river loam, sticky when wet, grippy, even when dry and not a rock or pebble anywhere in sight. The challenge was to see just how fast we could rail the naturally evolving berms and it wasn’t uncommon to howl with delight at the amount of traction and G forces it provided.

    What’s the connection with our current hillside trails you’re asking? Well over the hundreds of thousands of years the Ross has been travelling down its path it has been bringing topsoil and it’s nutrients onto its flooded banks in the wet and they also happen to be where a lot of the organic nutrients contained in the topsoil that originate on the Douglas hill slopes end up after heavy summer rains.

    So by building contour trails along our hill sides (think of the terraces on the hillsides in S E Asia ,slowing the water flow) and retaining as many trees as possible and leaving the freshly cut grass on the trails we are adding to the organic base of our soil and therefore assisting in  making our trails more sustainable. Thoughts from the Trails”

    "I never said it was going to be easy, I said it was going to be worth it!" "Cake or Death?"

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