New Trail Area Potentially!

Also, I wanted to add to the discussion on BNS. I agree that BNS did have an athlete development and competition focus for quite some time and I agree with Randy that it has to do with those who volunteer for BNS. I would have to say that Randy, Sue, and myself all have to take some blame (probably not the best word to use, maybe ‘credit’ is a better word) in the BNS agenda being athlete/competition centered say in the '90s and early 2000’s. Of course this was the time in which all 3 of us were more focussed on racing/coaching, etc. Plus it was the time when we actually had time to volunteer with BNS. I know that both Sue and Randy have always had other items on their agendas (e.g. trail development, etc.) but for me I know I pushed the athlete/competition item as my sole issue. There were others like me on the BNS Board so BNS was pretty centered on the athlete/competition issue.

I would like to say though that I see BNS having moved away from the athlete/competition focus in the last few years (maybe to the detriment of some things such as the CG teams e.g. no women’s CG team). Even though this moving away may not be the best for those focussed on competition, I see some really positive things that have been done by BNS that has helped grow the sport of cycling. One action in particualr was BNS voting to have first time females joining BNS for free. I know this helped with more women and girls in the province getting involved in cycling particularly in mountain biking as there are 4 all-women mountain bike clubs in NS now. As well, the BNS Board had/have some strong and active trails and transportation folks who sat on many committees including the NS Bikeways Coalition. Definitely a way for BNS to be involved in developing cycling outside of the competition stream. Plus I’m sure BNS has been involved in many other ways that we just don’t see or hear of (maybe they need to update their website more often).

Basically I think that BNS has been doing a great job considering how difficult it is is getting people to volunteer for these types of organizations. And, as Randy noted, those who do volunteer have the opportunity to push their own agenda. With the upcoming BNS AGM taking place this weekend (sunday, Dec 6), I encourage folks to attend and vote for who you think is most likely to hear and act on your items and concerns. And, if you really want to make sure BNS hears you, why not consider running for one of the available BNS positions!!

I am scouting out a new area for trail building in the Bedford/Dartmouth area. Looking at Google Maps, it appears to be similar to Fight Trail and Whopper in topography. We’ll see how it looks tomorrow when I ride up there with the GPS for a little visit. I really hope this place has potential. It’s along the powerline from the Bedford end of Rocky Lake Road near Lily Lake, and heads towards Burnside. Looks like some good woods around there. Specially interesting near Anderson Lake and Little Lake. I may have to dig out some real-live maps to see who owns what, but here’s hoping! … h&z=13

Good luck on that! New trails kick ass!!

I would love to put together a proposal to have the provincial government contribute a piece of land to a trail area that could be developed into something not unlike the Kingdom Trails in Vermont. It seems a shame that there is never any guarantee our trails will be safe, especially after all the work that goes into them.

Great Idea Sue

Kingdom is amazing

I would love to put together a proposal to have the provincial government contribute a piece of land to a trail area that could be developed into something not unlike the Kingdom Trails in Vermont. It seems a shame that there is never any guarantee our trails will be safe, especially after all the work that goes into them.
It’s in the works. If my proposal is accepted, then it will be as good as a guarantee as any land permission ever warrants. But if the protected woodlands of the UNB Woodlot can turn into a Home Depot, then I’m sure just about anywhere can! Fortunately the woods of Porter’s Lake aren’t very high on the list of prime places to develop.

And word in the DNR offices is that Nova Scotia is actually buying land for the crown on account of a general shortage, so if you can find a spot of crown land where you’d like to develop I’d say go for it! They are used to getting proposals for logging, pipelines and all kinds of other awful things… singletrack trails have a relatively insignificant impact, and the guys at DNR (who are awesome by the way) seem keen to allow such things.

I don’t doubt that I’m going to run into hurdles along the way, but so far so good!

The fly’s are to bad in Porters lake, to much bog.

You’re getting soft Jim.

Well, obviously we’ll be lucky to get whatever we can get our hands on and Porter’s Lake sounds like a viable option for those Metro-lly located. I’d like to find something a little more central as well that could accomodate riders from several areas of the province in less than an hour’s drive. This province has a lot of bog and it’s something we usually have to work around, however it would be nice to find an area where building with wood can be minimal so that the trails sustain themselves for the most part.

The northern border of this block of land is at the airport. That’s a little more convenient for the Valley folk isn’t it? If this flies it won’t be perfect for everyone, it just happens to be perfect for me!

This spot will be a big battle with wet ground, but there is enough rock and high ground that it shouldn’t all be a fruitless effort.

I’d like to find something a little more central as well that could accomodate riders from several areas of the province in less than an hour’s drive.
I was at the Recreation Nova Scotia Conference and met Garnett MacLaughlin of Cobequid Trail Consultants. They have started on a new trail system in Hardwood Lands area. Some of you are familiar with Garnett’s work with the trails near Sugar Moon Farm.

Garnett is also the Chairperson of the Cobequid-Eco Trails Society and the Kenomee Trail Society. If you check out the CE-TS site ( you will find a model landowner agreement. As well, when I was talking to Garnett he expressed a keen interest in getting together with trail builders in the mountain bike community to help out with securing land for building trails. I know that part of the interest is because building trails is his livelihood, however, he is very passionate about seeing that trails are built and kept for all types of users and genuinely wants to be able to assist regardless of whether or not his company is involved in the building.

I’m wondering if you mountain bike trail builders would like to have a meeting set up with Garnett (and possibly others) to share in his knowledge as well as bringing your knowledge to the table regarding securing land for trail building use. I think it’s a terrible shame that the Spider Lake trails are being lost after all the hard work put into them. Having a meeting on securing land for trail use in order to share knowledge and ideas may help to avoid such a trajedies in the future. Anyone keen for such a meeting?

Here’s a link to a great resource for trail building: Here you will find a copy of the trail construction manual ‘Developing Recreation Trails in Nova Scotia: Planning, Design, Construction, Maintenance, and Management’ Scroll down to the bottom to get the online PDF format. There’s great info on securing land access.

Sorry - Couldn’t copy this image

Hi Sherry,

The BNS MTB Committee is looking to re-instate the Trail Advocacy position in 2010. Should the motion be accepted I’ll be sure that the person contacts Mr. MacLaughlin… there’s no point re-inventing the wheel! We might as well share our resources.

Why wait. Trails aren’t just for racers. Let’s set up a meeting asap.

Go for it!

Though for the record, BNS and its sub-committees aren’t entirely focused on racing!

I think it’s great that the BNS mtb committee is reinstating the BNS trail advocacy position…the more trail advocates, the better! Also, I met Friedemann Brauer, Doug Regular, and Bob White at the Nova Scotia Cycling Summit this past spring. These guys are BNS’s VPs of Advocacy and Transportation, Education, and Touring and Trails respectively. Being away from BNS’s BOD for a number of years, I learned from these guys the most recent directions of BNS. It was great to find out that the focus is not entirely on racing and athlete development. These guys along with others at the BNS Board level have been doing a lot in the above mentioned VP areas which certainly benefits all cyclists.

Anyhoo, let’s get back to the notion of having a meeting regarding mountain bike trails. As I said, I think it’s pertinent to do all that we can to avoid such trajedies as Spider Lake. There have been numerous trails built by mountain bikers and in the end have been taken away. I think we should get together soon before more mtn bike trail builders get out there and start to put lots more hard work into doomed trails.

I’m willing to help set up such a meeting. I’m just wondering who, where, and when. As for who, for a first initial meeting I’m thinking of Garnett MacLaughlin and all the mtn bike trail builders we know of (eg. Sue E, Troy T, Andre Lowery aka O9 Man, Jim aka Spin, Shawn Skelhorn, Randy Gray, those guys in the Valley, Connor Scallion, etc., etc., etc…just give me all the names). As for where, I’m thinking either a boring old meeting in Halifax or East Hants for centrality purposes OR a great little ride of the trails near Sugar Moon Farm with a meeting at the farm after scoping out the work that has been done in this area. As for when, I’m thinking very soon as in before December. Let me know what you all think!!

Lets set something up for Dec 5th, 6th, 12 or 13th Sherry. I like the sugar moon idea.

I think that’s a great idea, Sherry, It would be nice if we could hold the meeting as centrally as possible to make it equally possible for everyone to show up - maybe in Truro?

The BNS MTB Committe meeting to wrap up 2009 is on November 8th and the BNS AGM is on December 6th. I suggest waiting until the New Year where you’ll have new BNS faces all around, eager to work, AND folks will be finished with the Holidays.

Wow. I just mentioned I’m going exploring, and look at what starts! Awesome. O9, it’s really really nice to see you here being helpful and nice and mountain bikey. Kudos from Beaver Bank!

I like the direction all this is going in. Count me in whenever I can help out!