Welcoming our newest chapter: Pemi Valley NEMBA

Friday, June 6, 2014

On behalf of NEMBA's Board of Directors, we welcome our newest chapter representing the Plymouth, Campton, Thornton and Waterville Valley areas of New Hampshire.

Here is their petition to form a new chapter:

Please consider this our formal petition to become a chapter of the New England
Mountain Bike Association (NEMBA). Upon acceptance by the NEMBA Board of Directors,
our group will be called “The Pemi-Valley NEMBA (PEMI-VALLEYNEMBA)”.

Over the past three decades, our local mountain biking community has established a large network of trails in the Plymouth, Campton, Thornton and Waterville Valley areas. These trails range from beginner to advanced, and are built on a combination of private, public and federal land. The majority of our core riders believe it is in the best interest of the community and trails to form an organized group under the NEMBA affiliation.

On May 2, 2014, a meeting was held in Campton, NH with the purpose of determining
if there was enough interest to support a local NEMBA chapter. The group of twenty individuals in attendance represented the core of our mountain biking community, as well as the two local bike shops. The overall consensus was extremely positive, and the decision to approach NEMBA was unanimous. Since our initial meeting, our membership email list has increased to over 100 recipients and is growing.

Subsequently, on May 22, 2014, a small group met with NEMBA representation to discuss the petitioning process, and as a result formed an interim board of directors:

Jeremy Hillger - President
Mike Avery - Vice President
Craig Antonides - Vice President
Sean O’Leary - Treasurer
Butch Simones - Trail Manager
Slade Warner - Public Relations
Mike “Shredder” Bombara

In addition, the group recognized three immediate priorities; formation of the chapter, construction of a beginner trail network in Waterville Valley, and re-establishing a productive relationship with the National Forest Service.

Although our trail networks are expansive, much of the past work has been done in an informal fashion and is currently unmarked. Currently there is single track riding at multiple areas in Plymouth (Gyroscope, Langdon Park and Fox Park), the Holderness Preparatory School, Rattlesnake Mountain in Rumney, the Welch-Dickey region in Thornton, as well as the National Forest Recreation Area known as Smarts Brook. The latter is the trail system of most concern as the riding is excellent, but any historical relationships with the Forest Service have been inconsistent. Currently, this particular area is at the top of our priority list.

We believe the time has come to legitimize the riding in this area by organizing a formal group that will build relationships with landowners and agencies. Through these partnerships we hope to preserve, build and maintain environmentally conscious trail systems, as well as promote responsible mountain bike riding across the region. We look forward to working with private landowners and organizations, like the Waterville Valley Foundation, Beebe River Nature Conservancy, Waterville Estates, while also building a functional relationship with the National Forest Service.

In addition, we are optimistic that any relationship with NEMBA will bring the resources we need to increase local and long range enthusiasm for the area. We look forward to hosting events that will promote proper trail building and maintenance, as well as riding etiquette. Eventually, we will reach the point where we can provide legitimate literature and maps, that will help the novice rider enjoy all the area has to offer. It is our sincere hope that these efforts will improve our already great riding, as well as support our local communities by raising interest and environmental awareness.

Mission Statement

Pemi-Valley NEMBA is a non-profit organization dedicated to working with other
organizations to plan, build, maintain, promote, and enjoy sustainable mountain bike trail
systems in the Pemi-Valley Region of New Hampshire. We work closely with land managers, private landowners, local governments, and Federal groups to preserve access to sustainable trails for mountain bicyclists of all abilities. We sponsor events to promote wellness through sustainable outdoor recreation.

On behalf of the Pemi-Valley Board of Directors, I want to thank you for your time, patience and consideration.

Sincerely,

Jeremy Hillger
Interim President