Care For Your Trails

Care For Your Trails It Takes a Village

We’ve all been there: Out for a quick lunchtime rip, roosting the tops off our favorite series of berms, then suddenly blasting past a trail crew

that’s been busy packing in those very berms. In a rush to get back to the office, we’ve slowed down for only a few seconds to utter a sheepish “thanks for the awesome work, guys” before blazing on down the trail.

Wracked with guilt and an overwhelming sense of shame for being “that guy,” the only chance for redemption was to attend the next major trail day, bringing extra beverages for the volunteers and making a public apology for the embarrassing breach of mountain biking protocol. Newly forgiven and with reputation restored, how good did it feel to put in some sweat equity with that shovel?

That feeling of satisfaction, and the deeper connection it provides us with our trails, might be more important now than it ever has been. With last year’s COVID-19 lockdowns leading to an unprecedented surge in outdoor recreation, trails around the world have seen record numbers of users, from hikers to runners and more mountain bikers than we’ve seen before in our lifetimes. With such a dramatic increase in users, many of our finest trails have become more blown out than ever before—a phenomenon that will require substantially more trailbuilding and maintenance to keep pace with skyrocketing traffic levels.

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