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NW Trail Alliance is getting kids on mountain bikes (and you can too)

Thursday, September 27th, 2012
Still from new video

As we shared back in July, the Northwest Trail Alliance (NWTA) held their first summer kid’s camp this past summer. A new video (watch it below) released today shares the impact that camp had on the kids, in their own words.

Over the four day camp, 20 kids (led by experienced guides) visited different riding spots throughout the Portland region. They learned about nature, how to be good trail stewards, and of course, they learned how to ride in a way most of them had never even considered before. It’s one thing to hop down a curb in front of your house, but it’s an entirely different experience to roll over a log while riding down a trail in the forest, or to move smoothly over a berm at a pump track at the local park. (more…)

Like to mountain bike? Local trail group has ’10 things to do before fall’

Friday, August 24th, 2012

In case you haven’t noticed, Portland-based Northwest Trail Alliance is really becoming a strong force for good in the region. They are building trails, building relationships, and building a movement around mountain biking. NWTA President Jon Pheanis just shared a cool checklist in their monthly newsletter that’s worth more attention. Check it out…

The Mountain Biker Checklist: 10 Things You Should Do Before Fall

VOLUNTEER: Help get the trails you ride into shape. Or help at any of our upcoming events like Sunday Parkways or Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day. Check out the calendar to find out more.
EXPLORE: Go somewhere new. Check out our website and see what’s near you.
GO FAR: Summer is winding down so now is the time to ride any of our regions’ single track.
STAY CLOSE: There’s no need to drive. Ride the Springwater Trail out to Powell Butte or take Max to the Ventura Park pump track.
INTRODUCE A FRIEND: Take someone new out on a mountain bike and share your passion.
RECYCLE: Take your old mountain bike or bike parts to the Community Cycling Center. Someone will really appreciate it.
DONATE: Your cash donations go directly to supporting all of our excellent programs. Even just a little goes a long way.
TELL US A STORY: Go somewhere new this summer? Have advice, something amazing, or funny to tell us? Send us your story and we’ll get it on our website or our newsletter. You can always submit a topic to present at our monthly membership meetings.
LEAD: We need your help guiding a ride, heading one of our programs and volunteering your time as a board member. Contact us for more information.
GET INVOLVED: Frustrated, passionate or just grateful? Come early to one of our monthly membership meetings and see what you can do. We’re also looking for a few 2013-2014 board members.

Popular trail at Mt. Tabor Park now signed “No Bikes” – UPDATED

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

Trail use conflicts continue to plague one of Portland’s most popular urban sanctuaries: Mt. Tabor Park. For many years, the several miles of narrow singletrack trails looping around the park have been known as a fun place to ride a mountain bike. But, given the park’s urban setting and natural beauty, the crowded trails are also known as a place where user conflicts are common.

Last year I reported that complaints about trail conflicts between people walking and biking, led to the installation of a new “No Bicycles Please” sign on the Green Trail. The Green Trail is a 1.7 mile loop and is one of three trail loops that circumnavigates the park. Earlier this week a reader contacted me saying that several more signs had recently gone up.
(more…)

At Riverview property, off-road riding advocates invest sweat equity

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012
A trail into the Riverview natural area.

Portland Parks & Recreation will host a trail work party at their newly acquired Riverview natural area next week and many of the volunteers that show up will be from the Northwest Trail Alliance, a group eager to expand local off-road riding opportunities and willing to invest sweat equity to make it happen.

Back in May of 2011, Portland Parks & Recreation teamed up with the City’s Bureau of Environmental Services and Metro to buy 146 acres of forested land located just south of Riverview Cemetery and the Sellwood Bridge. The parcel of land was previously owned by the adjacent Riverview Cemetery. Technically, the land was private, but over the past two decades people have been hiking and biking through it and a mish-mash network of trails has developed. To my knowledge, Riverview Cemetery (to their credit) has chosen to look the other way instead of cracking down on trespassers.

With the City of Portland’s well-known lack of close-in singletrack trail riding opportunities, the purchase of this land — known as the “LC Trails” (due to nearby Lewis & Clark College) or simply “the cemetery” — immediately piqued the interest of off-road riding advocates. Local business owner and well-known rider Erik Tonkin has ridden the trails for 18 years. He says he “can’t imagine” a place where he’d rather see a public and professionally managed network of off-road bike trails. (more…)

Summer camp teaches next generation of trail riders, stewards

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012
(Photos: Dan Kaufman/CrankMyChain! CycleTV)

The Northwest Trail Alliance recently wrapped up their first ever kids summer camp last week. The Portland-based non-profit teamed up with lots of local and national partners to put 20 kids on bikes (donated by the Bureau of Transportation) for the three-day camp to learn all the essential skills of off-road riding — including how to take care of trails and riding areas.

The kids ventured from the Ventura Park Pump Track and Powell Butte Nature Park in Portland, to the budding trail system that’s emerged at Sandy Ridge and Cascade Locks (in the Columbia River Gorge).

NWTA’s director of advocacy, Tom Archer called the camp a “huge success.”

(more…)

A new era has begun: City of Portland officially opens first pump track

Monday, July 9th, 2012
Ventura Park Pump Track grand opening-19

(more…)

NW Trail Alliance kicks off annual ‘Trailfest’ with Forest Park ride tonight

Thursday, July 5th, 2012
Detail of event poster.

With summer weather finally looking like it’s here to stay, I can’t think of a better time to kick-off the Northwest Trail Alliance’s annual Trailfest mountain biking festival. This year’s theme is “Fun in every direction!”

Beginning this evening with a ride in Forest Park (meet at 5:30 pm in parking lot of Fat Tire Farm on NW 27th and Thurman), the Northwest Trail Alliance will host five days of rides and events. Trailfest is a way for the group to highlight local off-road riding opportunities, share what they’ve accomplished in the last year, and find more members and volunteers for their advocacy efforts. (more…)

NW Trail Alliance teams with Portland Parks & Rec for kids MTB camp

Friday, June 22nd, 2012
Kids swarming the Ventura Park
pumptrack.
(Photo: NW Trail Alliance)

For the first time ever, the City of Portland Parks & Recreation bureau will team up with local off-road cycling non-profit Northwest Trail Alliance to hold a kids mountain biking camp.

“Whether you want to become a mountain bike pro or are just checking out the sport for the first time,” reads the camp description, “this 4-day camp will give you the hands-on experience you need to safely shred on your bike.” The collaboration with Portland Parks is a great match, says NWTA’s Director of Advocacy Tom Archer. The City provides the platform for the camp through their summer teen program, and the non-profit brings quality instruction and insider knowledge about the best local riding spots.
(more…)

Video: East Portland pump track proves popular with kids

Thursday, January 19th, 2012
Breathless and tired from riding,
this kid is why pump tracks rule.
(Still from video – Watch it below)

I just watched a video that, in just over one minute, makes the case for pump tracks better than anything I’ve ever read, seen, or heard. The video (watch it below) was shot by Northwest Trail Alliance President Tom Archer back in September and uploaded to the City’s website a few days ago. It shows a swarm of kids devouring the newly built Ventura Park Pump Track out in East Portland.

If you have a heart and you love bikes, I will guarantee this is the best thing you will watch all week… (more…)

NWTA’s trail building tools, trailer recovered

Saturday, December 31st, 2011
NWTA’s trail building equipment
recovered near Forest Grove

A trailer full of equipment, including an $80,000 trail building machine, that was stolen from Stub Stewart State Park in November has been recovered by the Oregon State Police (OSP).

The trailer and its contents are owned by local non-profit the Northwest Trail Alliance (NWTA). (more…)

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