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Eastern States Office of External Affairs
Release Date: 08/21/13
Contacts: Diane Hendry , 703-339-8561 ,

Construction Continues on New Mountain Bike Trails

LORTON, Va. – Area biking enthusiasts and the Bureau of Land Management Eastern States (BLM ES), have entered into the next phase of their partnership to complete new mountain bike trails that, when finished, will be unique to the mid-Atlantic region. A new Challenge Cost Share agreement was signed by the BLM ES and Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts (MORE) to build 2.5 miles of mountain bike specific trails at the Meadowood Special Recreation Management Area (SRMA). Doug Vinson, BLM Recreation Technician and Project Leader for bike trail construction, said, “The trails are designed and built with a rider’s progression in mind, and allow for different challenges as the rider’s skill develops.”

There is still time to volunteer to work with BLM staff and members of MORE! Join the fun on Saturday, 24th from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm. Volunteers should meet at 10207 Old Colchester Rd., Lorton, VA, 22079 or, for more information, call Doug Vinson at 703-339-3465. Volunteers helping to build the bike trails have included 115 individuals of all ages, and represent the biking community, local schools and members of local service groups. Together, they have donated 1,157 hours saving $26,150 in actual labor costs to the Federal government.                                                      
Three trails are in the process of being developed, each with distinct technical challenges. One example of the trails being built is the already-completed Yard Sale trail, which, because of its characteristics, is known by biking enthusiasts as a “downhill pump track.” Translated, this type of trail consists of rollers to build and maintain speed that are interspersed with tabletops and banked turns. Features such as these exist to some degree on other nearby trails, but they are not strung together in a rhythmic pattern such as they are here.
Another trail features banked turns on wooden planks, a 300-foot long curvy “ladder” bridge, and drops and rock gardens. It’s the wooden features that make the trails unique to the local area. Vinson explained, “It’s something you may see at bike parks or lift-served downhill bike trails at ski resorts located out west.” One trail will be entirely hand-built utilizing natural obstacles. A portion of it is expected to be built by 125 Hilton employees who will volunteer during Hilton’s Day of Service corporate workday this Fall.
What has made the trails possible? $32,800 in donations (to date) with $24,000 in cash raised that includes $12,500 from Recreational Equipment Inc. (REI), plus $8,800 in donated goods and services. Generous donations from MORE members and REI paid for the ladder bridge. It is the longest one of its kind that has ever been installed by the manufacturer. In fulfilling their partnership commitment, MORE contracted with the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) to create the design and to lay out trails on the ground. Trail construction is being accomplished by BLM employees and volunteers.
Vinson commented on the real value of the trails to the local community, saying, “Even more significant than the construction of the bike trails is the community of enthusiastic volunteers that has grown around this project at Meadowood. Volunteers take great pride in the trails they are helping to build and will have lasting satisfaction in the knowledge that, ‘I helped build that.’ We’ve seen at Meadowood that communities build great trails, and great trails build communities.”

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Last updated: 08-21-2013