Granby " YMCA of the Rockies to host free trail-building clinic this weekend |

Granby " YMCA of the Rockies to host free trail-building clinic this weekend

Will Bublitz
Sky-Hi Daily News


A free clinic on building and maintaining mountain bike trails is being offered at Snow Mountain Ranch-YMCA of the Rockies on Saturday and Sunday, July 26-27.

The public is encouraged to attend the two-day clinic, which is being put on by the International Mountain Biking Association’s (IMBA) Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew.

“We know this is short notice, but this clinic is really important for all of us who want to develop sustainable trails in forested areas hit hard by the pine beetle epidemic,” said Jeff Schmidt, the YMCA’s bike shop manager. “It will not only be very beneficial for all those wanting to build trails either on public land or on their own property here in Grand County, but also for those who enjoy riding them.”

During the two-day clinic, the Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew will be teaching how to build “sustainable” trails that reduce trail damage, protect the environment and enhance the enjoyment of those using the trail.

“If trails are not developed correctly, erosion can result,” said Jubil Young, the YMCA’s bike shop technician. “The IMBA crew will be teaching us the correct techniques. Once trails are built the right way, it takes a lot less to maintain and keep them in good shape.”

Anna Laxague and Jason Wells, two members of the Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew, will be the instructors for the free-of-charge weekend clinic. Its schedule of events open to the public are:

Saturday ” “Around the World with IMBA” Slideshow from 9 a.m. to noon at the YMCA’s Day Camp Building; hands-on trailbuilding on the YMCA’s trail system from 1-4 p.m.

Sunday ” IMBA Trail Building School at the YMCA Day Camp Building from 10 a.m. to noon.

Refreshments will be provided both days. Those participating in the hands-on trail building should dress appropriately and bring gloves, rakes and shovels. The YMCA will provide other equipment.

“All ages are welcome,” Young said. “We highly suggest that everyone plan on attending both the morning and afternoon sessions on Saturday.”

In recent years, Snow Mountain Ranch-YMCA of the Rockies has been conducting one of Grand County’s most aggressive forest mitigation projects to help deal with the ongoing pine-beetle epidemic. Large areas of its property have been logged, which has affected its extensive trail system used by mountain bikers, hikers, horseback riders and cross-country skiers.

“The Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew has done clinics all across the nation,” Schmidt said. “We invited them here for multiple reasons.

“The first of which is help reclaim and revamp some of our trails that have been logged off because of the pine beetles. We also want to come up with an organized plan to meet the demand here for multiple-use trails. And we just want to develop good, sustainable trails for everyone to enjoy for years to come.”

For those wanting more information about the IMBA Trail Building Clinic planned for this weekend, call the YMCA at 887-2152. Schmidt can be reached at ext. 4173 and Young at ext. 4235.