Author Archives: ebxtreme

Whatcom Falls Pump Track Grand Opening Celebration!

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Ribbon Cutting!  Photo:  Eric Mickelson

We had an incredible turnout of 300+ folks for the grand opening celebration of the Whatcom Falls pump track.  5 of our 7 City Council members came to show their support and hang out with an amazing group of folks.  Photo credits go to Eric Mickelson.

 

There are too many people to thank individually, but we need to say THANK YOU to our volunteers….you are what make our little organization what it is in our community.

  • Bellingham Parks and Recreation:  Huge thanks to Josh, Leslie, Nicole and the Park’s Ops team who have supported this effort  from the beginning.
  • Bellingham City Council who voted in favor of this pump track 7-0 and their support at the opening ceremony.
  • Bill Hasenjaeger and the entire Bellingham Parks Board for their support.
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Speeches before the ribbon cutting. City Council members:  Pinky Vargas, Roxanne Murphy, Dan Hammill and April Barker were in attendance. Leslie Bryson and Josh Neyman from Bellingham Parks and Recreation. (Not pictured: Michael Lilliquist)  Photo:  Eric Mickelson

 

The pump track  had a lot of business support and we need to thank the following sponsors and people:

  • REI – Pat Kennedy for a grant that paid for our dirt.
  • Construction by Champion – Chris Luna for all his help getting machinery and advice during construction.
  • Ram Construction – Josh Erholm and Shane Kelling for their machine time and expertise.
  • Gateway Controls – Jonathan Huffman for the use of their mini excavator
  • Transition Bikes – Kevin and Kyle for their support of the WMBC and this project.
  • Crank Brothers – Kellen Trachy, Jill Kintner and Bryn Atkinson provided the seed money that covered our wetland delineation and gave our site the thumbs up.
  • Freeland and Associates – JP Slagle for his design work of our stormwater mitigation system that allowed us to get permits for this project.
  • Fanatik Bike – Luke, Mark, Kathy and Kyle S. for our stormwater basins and sponsoring the grand opening celebration.
  • Momentum Trail Concepts – Steve, Matt and Moga for a great design and build out.
  • Donkelope Bikes – Greg Heath for our job box that will allow us to securely keep our tools on site.
  • Freehub Magazine – The autograph session with Bryn and Jill was amazing.
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Erik and Will from Fanatik Bike leading the charge on the BBQ.

Donate to the WMBC! 

The WMBC’s cost for this project was $47k and, while we did raise $20k via businesses, individuals and in-kind donations, we ended up pulling $26k from our general operating budget.  If you’d like to support this project and future pump track projects, please consider a donation to the WMBC!

 

Alert: Upcoming Timber Harvest and Spraying Plans

Hi all,

The Janicki crews are about to start a month of harvest activity on Galbraith.  As such, there will be more vehicle activity during the weekdays, so please be courteous and move over when you come across a logging truck during the day.  Also, it is imperative that these closures are respected for your safety and the crew’s safety.

We will sign and flag the trails as closed on the following dates, but these dates are always subject to change.

Cedar Dust – July 10 -24th

Please Use Family Fun Center while all timber activity is taking place on Cedar Dust.

  1. July 10th – 17th – Cutting
  2. July 17- 24th – Log hauling
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Cedar Dust Logging. July 10-24th

Oly, 187, Lost Sole, Cougar  – July 17th – 31st.

Please use Vitamin R or Kaiser to avoid this area.

  1. July 17th – 24th – Cutting
  2. July 24th – 31st – Log hauling
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Oly, Lost Sole, Cougar and 187 Logging. July 17-31

Lower Mullet, Upper 911 and Jack and the Beanstalk – July 31st – August 14th

Do not exit from Kaiser on to Mullet.  For 911, use Cheech and Chong’s

  1. July 31st – August 7 – Cutting
  2. August 7- 14 – Log hauling
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Mullet and 911 Logging – July 31 – Aug 14

IMPORTANT: 

Road spraying:  There will be one day  in August (Date – TBD) of a FULL MOUNTAIN CLOSURE due to spraying on every single road.

Aerial Spraying:  There will be several days where certain trails / areas will be closed due to aerial spraying.  TBD on specific trails and dates.

We will update you on the above dates as soon as we  know.

 

Whatcom Mountain Bike Coalition Supports Sale of Galbraith Mountain

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Bellingham with Galbraith Mountain in the background.  Photo:  Nick Kelly

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Bellingham, Washington (July 5, 2017) – Eric Brown, Trail Director for the non-profit organization, Whatcom Mountain Bike Coalition (WMBC), has expressed his organization’s support for the sale of the 2,240-acre tree farm on Galbraith Mountain to Galbraith Tree Farm, LLC.  The tree farm will continue to be managed by Janicki Logging and Construction, which has operated the farm since 2010.

“The WMBC is excited about having Galbraith Tree Farm, LLC be the new owners. We already have a positive working relationship with Janicki Logging,” says Brown.

”One of the motivating factors behind the purchase of the tree farm at Galbraith Mountain was our desire to provide continued access to the 45-plus miles of trails that are used year-round by tens of thousands of bikers, hikers, and runners,” says Kiersten Sahlberg, spokesperson for Galbraith Tree Farm LLC.  The efforts of the Whatcom Mountain Bike Coalition began 31 years ago, when a group of mountain bikers known as WHIMPS began building and maintaining a network of trails. WMBC has been the official steward of Galbraith Mountain since 2002, organizing 50+ trail days throughout the year and thousands of hours of maintenance.

A survey conducted by the WMBC last year found that the trails play an important role in the economic health of the region. “We manage a large network of trails that are not only a destination regionally, but also nationally, and Galbraith is the lynchpin of that network,” says Brown.

The study found that 41 percent of visitors to Galbraith Mountain are from the Seattle/Bellevue area, and 14 percent are from British Columbia. Another 25 percent of respondents were from areas outside of the region and country, including Michigan, Alaska, Utah, Florida, New Jersey, Montana, Texas, California and China.

Closer to home, 61 percent of the study’s respondents who moved to Bellingham/Whatcom County stated that easy access to the trails played an important role in their decision to move to the area. In addition, 82 percent of long-time residents stated that easy access to trails/recreation played a very important role in their decision to stay in Whatcom County.

Brown says that WMBC hopes to build on its alliance with Janicki Logging and the new owner, Galbraith Tree Farm, LLC.

“Janicki Logging shares its harvest plans with us. It also takes steps to avoid impacting high-value trail features and minimizes its trail crossings. Any changes to the harvest plans are communicated with us quickly, and I can pick up the phone to contact the crew with any concerns. We have even walked the trails together when necessary.  The WMBC looks forward to continuing this strong, cooperative relationship with Janicki and Galbraith,” says Brown.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Eric Brown, Trail Director

wmbcmtb@gmail.com

Galbraith Tree Farm, LLC

https://www.galbraithtreefarm.com/

 

 

 

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Galbraith Brushing Update

 

 

A huge thanks to those who have already stepped up to help brush on Galby these past couple of weeks.   With the increased timber harvest in recent years, this has become an increasingly large and important task to take on.

Many hands make for light work!

  • SST / Golden Spike – Fanatik Bike Crew
  • Here to There, Pick up Sticks, Lower Candy, El Pollo connector – Lacy Kemp, Spencer Paxson and Sarah Paxson (with baby Paxson in tow!)
  • Brown Dog, Dos Copas, and Back Door – James and Liz Waltman
  • Pony Express to Brick (3 Pig), Meth Lab – Lincoln Humphrey
  • Tough Love (top) – Tyler Byrnes and EB
  • Tough Love (bottom) – Alex Martin, Chris Luna and EB
  • Devilcross – Matt Shelton and Kona Crew
  • Bandito (south end) – Bill Hasenjaeger
  • Family Fun Center (east end) – Javon Smith and Alex Martin
  • Candy – Tim Williamson, Javon and EB
  • Hopscotch – Chad Anderson
  • New Issues – Chris Rose, Paris Gore, Javon and EB
  • Cedar Dust – Forrest Montgomery, Lincoln Humphrey, Jake, Isaac, and EB
  • Bandito (north end) – Bill Hasenjaeger,
  • Mullet and Cheech and Chongs – Dash
  • Dos Copas (upper) – James Waltman
  • Air Chair (Bottom) / Dos Copas – Ryan Balfour
  • Rock n Roll – Kulshan Brewing / Dave Vitt and crew
  • Mole Trap – Chris Rose
  • Irish Death (bottom) – Steve and Allie Vidito and Jeff Jaap
  • Lair of the Bear (bottom) – Steve and Allie Vidito and Jeff Jaap
  • Bottle Opener – Mike Brodskey, Jon Hereen and EB
  • Kaiser – Phillips 66 Crew and James Steele
  • Oly – Bellingham Cycle Works/Ryan Joslin and “friends of Ed Cruz”
  • Papa Bear  – Todd Wiersum
  • Lost Sole – Todd Wiersum
  • WECU crew / Brian Rhodes – Family Fun Center (50%)
  • The Ridge – Javon Smith / Mike Naselow

Civic DJ June Recap

On Saturday, Mike Storm and a crew of 4 guys worked on several of the takeoffs and landings on the medium and advanced lines at the dirt jumps.  In total, they cleaned up 5 jumps and the build session went for 3 1/2 hours.  Kudos to Dash Willis who weedeated the entire DJ park last week as well.

Afterwards, Mike grilled some burgers and they rode for a while after to test the jumps and sample their hard work.  Thanks all!

National Trails Day Recap – Lake Whatcom Park

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National Trails Day! Volunteers from the WMBC, WTA and GBRC were motivated to get going on Stewart Mountain.

Well, it was a long time coming, but we finally put tools into the dirt on Stewart Mountain on what will become an up-route for cyclists and bi-directional trail for hikers.

This project started a couple of months ago when Eric, Arlen Bogaards (Washington Trails Association) and Reid Parker scouted and planned the route using some of the pre-existing trails by drastically taking the grade down on other sections.  The goal is to have a 7% overall grade that makes it pleasant for riders to ascend on their bikes.  The trail tread is being cut with a small mini-ex and then volunteers will do the finish work behind the machine.  Trail days will be scheduled up there over the summer!

 

 

DNR Update and Board of Natural Resources Speech

 

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Eric went to Olympia to speak in front of the Board of Natural Resources and Commissioner Franz.

Last Tuesday, Eric and Mike McGlenn from Backcountry Horsemen drove down to Olympia to present info. to the Board of Natural Resources about the Baker to Bellingham Recreation Planning process. We also discussed how the Draft Marbled Murrelet Long-Term Conservation strategy could impact recreation in Whatcom County and across the state on DNR lands.   In our speeches, we echoed the concerns from our committee’s letter which you can read here.

The Baker to Bellingham Recreation Planning Committee is still meeting and we’re in the process of determining appropriate locations for the various recreation groups.  We’ll have more information for everyone in the Fall and expect at least 1-2 more public meetings before our plan is finalized.  More to come on that.

Logging on Art’s and Bunny Trails

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The Northern end of Bunny and Art’s trail will be harvested beginning on May 24th.

Head’s up, folks!

The Janicki crew is starting to harvest in the area with Bunny and Art’s trails today. Thanks to Devon Pelkie and Russ Lambert’s efforts, Kaya, Hopscotch and the southern end of Bunny are re-opened (but still need work), but we’ll be closing the northern end of these trails today.

 

Please share with your riding and running friends.

Whatcom Falls Pump Track Build Day

We had our first public build day on the pump track this Sunday.  The weather was incredible and the day was a super family/kid-friendly day.  Thanks to our parents, we had lots of groms out with us as well.  Also, many thanks to Nate Champagne for grabbing lunch and provisions mid-day and Bill Hasenjaeger for help digging and taking photos!

Things that we tackled on Sunday were:

  • Moving bark around the grom track and then adding dirt to the sides.  By softening the edges, we made it a bit safer in case the kids go off track.
  • We cleaned up the area around the dispersion trench.
  • We did a lot of grading and clean-up in-between the tracks.
  • Fully rebuilt the one problem berm on the Expert track.  That is a LOT of fresh dirt in it now, so it will be soft for a bit and see more love this week.  With the sunny weather, this should dry up soon though.
  • Added dirt and extended the satellite berm in the back corner of the Expert loop.  This will allow riders to carry more speed into/out of this section.
  • The middle line of the Intermediate track had several berms that got more berms and packing.

We’ve still got lots to do, so we’ll be keeping folks posted about upcoming build days!

Needless to say, everyone is super excited to ride the pump track and it’s still not officially open right now.  Additionally, we are asking folks who do want to give it a go, please no-knobby tires right now.  Knobby tires will dig into the dirt and ruin everyone’s hard work.   Thanks!!

2016 WMBC Trail Survey Summary

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2016 WMBC Trail Survey – A small example of the diverse users of our trail systems

Hi folks,

Over the course of a 12 week period between May and August 2016, the WMBC conducted a survey to learn more about trail users recreating on Galbraith Mountain and elsewhere in Whatcom County.

You can read our entire summary here.

This survey was done entirely online utilizing surveymonkey web-based software.  The survey was sent out to the WMBC’s email list and promoted on the WMBC web site, Facebook, Instagram and mtbr.com.  Additionally, it was sent out to the Bellingham trail running community and promoted to BC riders via the North Shore Mountain Bike Association.  In total, 1,026 people completed the survey with 255 of those respondents residing outside of Whatcom County.

After a respondent completed the online survey, a cookie was dropped on their computer to ensure they couldn’t fill it out the survey more than once.  If a respondent tried to access the online survey again, they were redirected to the WMBC’s website (www.wmbcmtb.org).

Respondents were asked about their use of Galbraith Mountain trails, frequency of use, transportation and access points, preferred riding styles, gender, age, duration of visit, family income, mt. biking experience and area of residence.

Tourists:  For any non-Whatcom County residents, we asked about their use of local businesses during their visits to Galbraith Mountain and nearby trails.

Locals:  For residents of Bellingham and Whatcom County, we asked them about the importance of access to trails and how they affect the quality of their lives.  While we did add a couple of new questions, this year’s survey was very similar in content to our 2010 and 2014 Trail Surveys.