We’re pursuing getting an asphalt pumptrack in Anacortes. These things are awesome. Take everything you know about dirt pumptracks and put it on hold. The scale, design, speed, and progression that comes from a properly built asphalt pumptrack is above and beyond any dirt pumptrack we’ve seen. After looking at the land options currently available for consideration, we feel an asphalt pumptrack is the most accessible and sustainable option available to create riding with the kind of flow that many riders find lacking on Fidalgo Island. Asphalt pumptracks are usable by kids, adults, beginners, pro riders, scoot bikes, bmx, mtb, skateboards, scooters and pretty much anything that rolls. They foster community, look cool and ride awesome. We believe an asphalt pumptrack would be a great asset to the community of Anacortes.
What is an asphalt pumptrack?
Watch the video below and check out pumptrack.com
Where are we at in the process?
The idea of the asphalt pumptrack was presented to the Parks and Recreation board at their August meeting by board member Sarah Nichols. Sarah and her family had visited the Leavenworth track and were very excited about it. In September our president, Kevin Foss, was asked to come and present more information about what it would take to get one built here. Kevin had been able to be part of the Leavenworth build crew with Velosolutions and Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance. Kevin presented the costs, why we at Fidalgo Trail Riders are supporting this project, and answered questions about site feasability. The parks board decided to put together a committee of a few community members with various interests to discuss the north side of Storvik park and the possibility of putting the pumptrack in that area. Fidalgo Trail Riders was asked to suggest some community members to represent the pumptrack project on that committee. We have submitted our suggestions and are waiting for the next step.
How can you get involved?
At this point we’re building a list of people who support the project. You can add your name by joining the Anacortes Pumptrack facebook group, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and asking to be added to our email list, or become a member of Fidalgo Trail Riders, a chapter of the IMBA by clicking here.
So we’ve had a long quiet spell while we’ve gone through a long process with the Anacortes Parks Department discussing some different options and locations for a bicycle skills park. You may have heard that we were working on the possibility of a bike park in the smiley’s bottom area. That conversation spanned from just before Mark Wenzel, the current school district superintendent was hired, all the way up to the passing of the school levy last spring. After some promising conversations it ultimately ended with a final “no” from the school district office. At that point our board began the process of looking at other pieces of property with the parks department. Our ultimate desire is to have a full bicycle skills park with flow trails, progressive features like drops and jumps, and a pumptrack. After looking at many options, we’ve decided to advocate for and support the development of a Velosolutions asphalt pumptrack in an existing multi-use park facility.
Fidalgo Trail Riders has had a great winter. We pulled together over 40 people over the course of two trail maintenance days with the ACFL rangers. We had a huge age range with lots of kids and families. Thanks to all who came out!
As the dirt dries up and the bees come out, we’re transitioning to some social rides for the summer. We’re planning 3 rides for FTR members. Since there are already a lot of group rides available in town, these will be focused on creating a fun opportunity for families with kids 2-12 to get out and ride with other families. Of course you’re welcome to join us if you don’t have kids, just expect a family paced experience.
June 28th 3-5pm at Heart Lake Parking Lot
July 19th 3-5pm at Cranberry Lake Parking Lot
August 23rd 3-5pm at Whistle Lake Parking Lot
Bring your own water, snacks, etc.
On another note, the bicycle skills park project is still underway. The parks department is pursuing permission to use a piece of land for the project. It’s been a slow but steady conversation. Thanks for your support of this project, Fidalgo Trail Riders, and the IMBA. As the process continues, we’ll keep working to care for the wonderful trail system we’ve already got.
Ranger Dave with the ACFL contacted us and asked that we spread the word that the trails are in need of help. The recent snow storm left most trails blocked by blow-down. A lot of it is branches that can be moved by hand, or cut with a handsaw. Dave has invited anyone interested to head out and clear out their favorite sections of trail. We will be doing an organized work party with Dave March 8th from 9am – 12pm. The location will be determined once we see how the cleanup is going. In the mean time, grab some friends and head out for a hike. Some of our members are planning to start clearing trails this weekend and continue each weekend until it’s all cleared. To help people figure out what’s been done, and what needs to be done, we’ll be identifying cleared trails and trees that need to be cut out by Dave on our facebook page. If you don’t have facebook, use our contact form and we’ll get it added to the list.
We had a great day with kids and parents as we hosted the first local version of the IMBA’s Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day. It was a beautiful sunny day and perfect conditions for riding in the ACFL. We had a few experienced riders as well as many kids who were experiencing trail riding for the first time. Smiles were had all around. Thanks to the FTR Board Members and volunteers who made it happen.
Fidalgo Trail Riders is a new, local chapter of the International Mountain Bike Association. We have the ability to tap into the resources of an international network of advocates. We have organized in order to partner with the City of Anacortes to create a Bicycle Skills Park on Fidalgo Island. Our goal is for a multi-generational park that offers progression for all levels of riders. We expect it to become a place where families ride together, riders progress, and the community gathers. At the same time, we want to work with the city and other user groups to preserve the great riding experiences we already have on Fidalgo Island.
You can join us at www.imba.com/join and select Fidalgo Trail Riders as your local chapter.