After another long winter, and some great Fat Biking, spring has finally arrived.
However, our normal routine of dusting off and tuning up the trusty steed to ride the trails has been delayed as we have worked to minimize the spread of COVID-19. We have been in close contact with the Middlebury Area Land Trust through all of this and they have decided it is in the best interest of the community to have the trails open, but with precautions. We as a club have decided to follow their lead and post that our trails are officially open. Here is what they sent to their member list https://www.maltvt.org/trails. The club is following guidelines put out by the CDC to minimize contact on the trails. For now we are open, but are not overly advertising it. If you do not live locally within Addison County we are strongly discouraging you making the drive to ride. More networks are likely to open up soon.
We have always been pretty lucky here in the Middlebury area as our trails dry out a lot faster than other trail networks in VT. The trails for the most part are in great shape! However, with the rain expected this week the trails will be unrideable for a few days. Once they dry out there will still be some occasional wet areas so please walk your bike through these sections, minimize tire rutts and don’t ride off trail. If you see other trail users, slow down, communicate, keep a safe distance, say “thank you” for letting you pass, tell them to have a great run, hike or ride. If you see individuals out working on the trail, say “thank you.” We are all out to enjoy the trails. Follow the guideline of using trails only within a 10 mile radius of where you live, avoid crowded parking lots, no group rides, families riding together are just fine and great! Be safe and be smart! More info on trail use can be found here VMBA and VT Department of Forest, Parks and Recreation.
The club will try to post as quickly as possible if trails are closed and when other trails in our area open up, which you can find on trail forks and on our COMING SOON new website.
In regards to trail work on our existing trails, as a club we are only condoning and doing minimal cleaning as individuals on our main trails. No group trail work! However, you may see MALT working on some bigger projects. You as individuals can help by kicking off the occasional branch or emailing the club if you see a tree down that needs to be cut or a potential bigger project. We are hoping to schedule some group trail work days this summer, but all is on hold until further notice.
There are some bigger projects on the horizon, which we are excited about. First, we will be helping MALT with some sidehill work on the Jackson trail, so we can officially open this section to mountain bikes. Second, we have received permission from the land owner that the High Power trail (adjacent to Means Woods) is located on, to build some additional trails. A trail has been laid out by our trail guru, Andrew. We will let you know when it is ready to ride. We continue to make headway with a new trail in Vergennes and hope to break ground this summer, thanks to Scott Hardy for all of your efforts. The Bristol trails are drying out and we can’t wait to get back out to New Leaf to ride and help continue building their trail system. Finally, some work is being planned for the Oak Ridge and Moosalamoo Trails, stay tuned for more info.
Lastly, a reminder to renew your VMBA membership. Support the trails we all love and ride!