Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Autumn is the best time to ride in Southern New England, and it came early this year.
As I write this in mid-late September, we’re being treated to a spell of unseasonably cool and dry air. In a place where summer will often assert itself until mid-October the respite from heat, humidity, and bugs was a treat indeed. This, combined with virus-mandated leisure time, has kept the trails unusually busy. Mountain bikers have been conducting themselves responsibly on the crowded trails. Thanks to all of you for doing that.
The biggest news since last report is the completion and opening of Paulik Hill Bike Park in Tolland, CT. This was a cooperative venture with the Quiet Corner Chapter, spearheaded by Jon Petersen, CCT NEMBA board member. It’s a trail system with bike park features such as roll overs, hucks, and skinnies for different ability levels. It’s been very popular and is getting rave reviews. Thanks to the many of you who donated funds for this project.
The new Dividend Pond trails have also become very popular, especially with new riders and families. This is exactly what we hoped would happen and it’s great to see people enjoying the fruits of our labor. By the time this issue is distributed the new informational kiosks, built by a local Eagle Scout, should be in place.
Most of our time since last report has been spent clearing trails of storm damage.
Hurricane Isaias cut a destructive path through central Connecticut in early August. Most areas were rendered unrideable, but they didn’t remain that way for long. The weekend after the storm mountain bikers were out in force clearing the trails in socially distant fashion and as a result some were rideable again by Sunday afternoon. Thanks to everyone who helped, and special thanks to Luis Moreira who put in over 40 hours clearing in the Middletown Cromwell area.
Many of the downed trees were turned into features.
Three new skinnies were built at River Highlands, bringing that area’s total to seven. Luis and I built a teeter at Dividend Pond in mid-September. It was our first attempt at building such a feature and it came out well and is small enough to pivot quickly, but large enough to stay in one place.
Lastly, I was given an award from Bike Walk CT for my trail stewardship and ride leading activities. I couldn’t have done it without the help of many, many people- too many to list. Thanks to all of you. Although I’m not in this for notoriety, it was requested that we share the picture in this report. I guess it’s ok just this one time.
Glenn Vernes, Prez