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  1. #1
    FatBike Fiend
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    Feb 2004
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    Kepler Bradley Trails Threatened

    Here's the latest newsletter of the Valley Mountain Bike Alliance. Please note the plans for a sewer and water line across some of the sweetest trails in SouthCentral Alaska and also the IMBA Trail Building School we will be hosting in the valley this summer.

    "Newsletter #5 March 2004

    Greetings all and hope you are having a good winter. Thought I’d
    get the word out about some coming events and breaking news in
    the bike world. Here’s hoping you are enjoying this “real” winter
    and getting some pedal or ski/board time in. The days are getting
    longer and believe it or not spring is just around the corner. We
    will resume our regular newsletter schedule in April, but in the
    meantime
    :
    Colony Christmas Triathlon
    Wildfire Designs Bicycles sponsored the 4th annual Colony
    Christmas Triathlon on December 13. Conditions were good and 33
    individual racers and four teams showed up to bike 10 km, run 5
    km , and top it off with a 1/2 mile swim at the pool. James
    Knudson won the men’s race in 58 minutes, 29 seconds and Janna
    Miller won the women’s division in 1 hour 4minutes and 36
    seconds. Thanks to volunteers Dave Freer, Keenan Retherford,
    Julie and Tony Berberich, Dan Lucas, Bill Merchant, and Kathi
    Hirzinger for being race marshals at the intersections and all
    the other volunteers that made the race a go
    .
    Winter Races In February
    Hope some of you had the chance to check out some of the
    winter multisport races in the valley. The Susitna 100 and Little
    Su 50k were on Feb 14 and the Alaska Ultrasport started on Feb
    28. Congratulations to Anchorage mountain biker Peter Basinger
    who piloted one of Palmer’s own Wildfire bikes to a first place
    finish to McGrath. two brits, Carl Hutchings and Allen Tilling
    also rode Wildfire FatBikes to place in the top five cyclists. I
    did a ride with Carl in Feb to the Knik Glacier and even though
    it was his first time ever riding on ice and snow he never
    crashed once. He did, however, crash in the race and caught a
    plane out to Mcgrath, had the clinic put nine stitches in his
    head, then flew back out to Rohn to rejoin the race and still
    finished well! Stiff upper lip and all that, way to go Carl.

    VMBA to host IMBA Trail Building School

    At press time we have just got word that our club has been
    selected to host a Trail Building School conducted by the Trail
    Care Crew of the International Mountain Biking Association. We
    became an affiliate member of IMBA in September and I applied
    for a TCC visit in October. To our pleasant surprise, we were
    selected. They will also be conducting a Trail Care School in
    Fairbanks. Details have yet to be worked out, but we are
    shooting for a June 19 to 20 date for the two day workshop.

    The Trail School is a hands on workshop teaching the principle
    of sound trail design and construction. It’s likely that workshop
    will focus on constructing a short demo loop either at Crevasse
    Moraine or at Kepler Bradley park pending permission from the
    land managers

    . We view this as a great first step in showing the land
    managers that we are interested in expanding the trail system
    and that we can build sustainable multi use trails following the
    principles taught at the school. Now the next step is trying to
    get all the land managers and trail user groups to come to an
    agreement on location, get permission, deal with local politics,
    etc. I’ll update you in the April newsletter on how this is all
    going. I will be calling on some of you to assist. Many thanks to
    the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation
    Assistance program for providing some of the funds for this and
    helping to coordinate it.

    Trail Maintenance Day A Success
    Over a dozen club members showed up at the Mint Glacier Trail in
    mid September on a sunny day. We installed GeoBlock material on
    some muddy sections of the trail to stop future erosion, did
    some brushing, and general maintenance of the trail. Thanks to
    all who showed up. Melissa DeVaughn of the Anchorage Daily News
    participated and did a great article on the work and our club
    that was in the Outdoors section of the ADN. Also thanks to
    Kevin Keeler and Kevin Meyer of the NPS RTCA for providing the
    GeoBlock material and technical expertise in the installation, and
    to the Alaska State Parks Division for their cooperation and
    assistance. Everybody had a great time and we will probably do
    another trail work day up there next summer to make sure
    everything is holding together.

    Crevasse Moraine Trails Association Applies for Trail Grant

    The CMTA is in the process of applying for a grant for
    materials and equipment for upgrades to the Crevasse Moraine
    Trail system. If accepted this will mean improvements to this
    heavily used trail in the form of trail hardening materials and
    possible reroutes of several problem (wet) areas of the trail Our
    club will probably be called upon to assist.

    Proposed Sewer Line to New Hospital

    At press time we have learned that the City of Palmer has been
    awarded the contract to construct a new water and sewer line to
    the new site of the Valley hospital which is to be located at
    the Parks Highway and Trunk road intersection. While this is good
    news for the City of Palmer, we have serious concerns about
    their proposed route and lack of public input and notification to
    the various user groups which would be impacted.

    Apparently the plan is to cross the Glenn Highway near the AS&G
    gravel pit, run it through the pit and follow a route leading
    just north of Long Lake along the edge of Kepler Bradley State
    Recreation Area and Mat-Su Borough lands, then feed it through
    the University of Alaska Experimental Farm fields to the new
    site.

    Anybody familiar with that are knows that the terrain there is
    rugged with many steep hills, wetlands, and gulches. The plan
    apparently calls for the use of as many as seven pumping
    stations along the way which would obviously call for the
    construction of vehicle access roads and other infrastructure
    in addition to the line itself.

    Not to mention the fact the this line would seriously alter
    and/or obliterate many of our favorite local singletrack trails
    used not only by us bikers but skiers, trail runners, hikers, and
    equestrians. This area has become very popular with all these
    uses. We find it very ironic that the borough has refused VMBA
    permission to construct low impact new trails in the area but a
    sewer line, hey no problem.

    VMBA members along with other user groups have put a lot of
    sweat equity into these trails to keep them maintained. The
    borough has only last year contracted with the International
    Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) to provide a plan for
    sustainable new trails and the IMBA folds have put a lot of time
    into mapping the existing trails and made recommendations for
    new trails and alterations to old ones. This utility line would
    directly impact plans for these new trails.

    A big concern is that the utility line right-of-way and
    associated roads would allow snowmachine and four wheeler
    access into the area which until now has been essentially
    nonmotorized. It would also cut in two one of the last
    undeveloped continuous tracts of land in the core area of the
    valley. There has been a lot of press on trails issues of late
    in the valley and Anchorage media and I think we’ve done a lot
    to make them a consideration in new projects like this. As many
    of you are painfully aware, many local mountain biking trails in
    the valley have been lost to development and it’s ver important
    that we try to preserve what little we have left, especially
    world class singletrack like the trails in this area. There have
    also been increasing numbers of out of area folks using these
    trails and they have all benefited the Palmer and Valley
    economy. Trails like this have done a lot to enhance our
    lifestyle in the valley.

    Another troubling concern is the lack of notification to the
    public and affected user groups. We only found out about this by
    putting two and two together. There has been some articles in
    the local media but no specifics on where the line would be
    constructed. it almost seems as if the City of palmer is trying
    to keep the route low profile until construction, which I believe
    would start this summer, begins and it’s too late.

    Once a septic/power/water line goes through this area there is
    bound to be pressure by real estate developers for land
    disposals of borough and university lands. After all, what’s the
    sense of a utility line if no one can hook up to it. This
    corridor is immediately adjacent to the land that was designated
    for public recreation following the public outcry during the
    recent land swap/subdivision proposal.

    While no one questions the need for a utility line to the
    hospital, we do think reasonable alternatives exist i.e. along the
    Glenn and Parks corridor or out Palmer Wasilla Highway and down
    Trunk Rd. This would benefit local residents and business
    allowing them to hook up and generate revenue to the city in the
    form of utilities payments.

    We invite you to submit letters of concern to your local Borough
    Assemblyman, also:

    Mayor Jim Cooper
    City of Palmer
    231 W. Evergreen
    Palmer AK 99645
    email [email protected]

    Mat-Su Borough
    Parks and Rec Dept
    W. Dahlia St
    Palmer AK 99645

    Also please spread the word and let’s see if we can have some
    input into this process.



    Alaska Railroad Palmer Projects

    The Alaska Railroad has some projects on the slate for this
    summer which will benefit Palmer Area cyclists. Ground has been
    broken on an intermodal commuter hub at the Alaska State
    fairgrounds which will allow commuters to park and ride the
    train to Anchorage. There will be parking facilities for busses,
    cars, motorcycles, and bicycles. Also in the works is a paved
    bike path extending through Palmer from the fairgrounds to the
    North end of town providing for a hook-up to the old railroad
    grade trail to Moose Creek. Also the railroad has donated the
    right of way from Palmer to the Tsadaka Canyon on Moose Creek
    to the Borough for use as a non-motorized trail. It’s unclear
    whether the Borough has plans to improve the trail but this is a
    great first step.

    Wildfire Cycles to Celebrate 5th Anniversary

    Can’t believe it’s been five years since I quit my real job and
    opened up the shop, but April fool’s day will mark start of my
    fifth year in business. Thanks to all my customers
    for your support and patronage to make it possible and stay
    tuned for a party announcement in the April newsletter.. We will
    resume our summer schedule in April. If you need to get your
    bike ready for spring, don’t wait too long for repairs and
    tune-ups as there can be longer turnarounds as we get busier.
    That’s all for now, see you in the spring or stop by the shop
    for the latest gossip. - Mark Gronewald

    Note: OK folks, time to pony up a $20 donation to the club. We’ve
    got some big projects for this year and it’s gonna take a little
    money to make it happen. I spent a lot of my own modest supply
    of money last year plus put in a lot of time so would appreciate
    some financial help to keep this club going. Please send a check
    to Wildfire Designs/VMBA or call with a credit card number. To
    those who donated last year I thank you and also thanks to all
    the volunteers in the club events. Talk to you soon.













    Valley Mountain Bike Alliance
    824 S. Colony Way
    Palmer, AK 99645

    (907)-745-2453

    email: [email protected] "

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: AkDave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    540

    Good job! How about an address for your shop......

    Quote Originally Posted by Wildfire
    Here's the latest newsletter of the Valley Mountain Bike Alliance. Please note the plans for a sewer and water line across some of the sweetest trails in SouthCentral Alaska and also the IMBA Trail Building School we will be hosting in the valley this summer.

    "Newsletter #5 March 2004

    Greetings all and hope you are having a good winter. Thought Iíd
    get the word out about some coming events and breaking news in
    the bike world. Hereís hoping you are enjoying this ďrealĒ winter
    and getting some pedal or ski/board time in. The days are getting
    longer and believe it or not spring is just around the corner. We
    will resume our regular newsletter schedule in April, but in the
    meantime
    :
    Colony Christmas Triathlon
    Wildfire Designs Bicycles sponsored the 4th annual Colony
    Christmas Triathlon on December 13. Conditions were good and 33
    individual racers and four teams showed up to bike 10 km, run 5
    km , and top it off with a 1/2 mile swim at the pool. James
    Knudson won the menís race in 58 minutes, 29 seconds and Janna
    Miller won the womenís division in 1 hour 4minutes and 36
    seconds. Thanks to volunteers Dave Freer, Keenan Retherford,
    Julie and Tony Berberich, Dan Lucas, Bill Merchant, and Kathi
    Hirzinger for being race marshals at the intersections and all
    the other volunteers that made the race a go
    .
    Winter Races In February
    Hope some of you had the chance to check out some of the
    winter multisport races in the valley. The Susitna 100 and Little
    Su 50k were on Feb 14 and the Alaska Ultrasport started on Feb
    28. Congratulations to Anchorage mountain biker Peter Basinger
    who piloted one of Palmerís own Wildfire bikes to a first place
    finish to McGrath. two brits, Carl Hutchings and Allen Tilling
    also rode Wildfire FatBikes to place in the top five cyclists. I
    did a ride with Carl in Feb to the Knik Glacier and even though
    it was his first time ever riding on ice and snow he never
    crashed once. He did, however, crash in the race and caught a
    plane out to Mcgrath, had the clinic put nine stitches in his
    head, then flew back out to Rohn to rejoin the race and still
    finished well! Stiff upper lip and all that, way to go Carl.

    VMBA to host IMBA Trail Building School

    At press time we have just got word that our club has been
    selected to host a Trail Building School conducted by the Trail
    Care Crew of the International Mountain Biking Association. We
    became an affiliate member of IMBA in September and I applied
    for a TCC visit in October. To our pleasant surprise, we were
    selected. They will also be conducting a Trail Care School in
    Fairbanks. Details have yet to be worked out, but we are
    shooting for a June 19 to 20 date for the two day workshop.

    The Trail School is a hands on workshop teaching the principle
    of sound trail design and construction. Itís likely that workshop
    will focus on constructing a short demo loop either at Crevasse
    Moraine or at Kepler Bradley park pending permission from the
    land managers

    . We view this as a great first step in showing the land
    managers that we are interested in expanding the trail system
    and that we can build sustainable multi use trails following the
    principles taught at the school. Now the next step is trying to
    get all the land managers and trail user groups to come to an
    agreement on location, get permission, deal with local politics,
    etc. Iíll update you in the April newsletter on how this is all
    going. I will be calling on some of you to assist. Many thanks to
    the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation
    Assistance program for providing some of the funds for this and
    helping to coordinate it.

    Trail Maintenance Day A Success
    Over a dozen club members showed up at the Mint Glacier Trail in
    mid September on a sunny day. We installed GeoBlock material on
    some muddy sections of the trail to stop future erosion, did
    some brushing, and general maintenance of the trail. Thanks to
    all who showed up. Melissa DeVaughn of the Anchorage Daily News
    participated and did a great article on the work and our club
    that was in the Outdoors section of the ADN. Also thanks to
    Kevin Keeler and Kevin Meyer of the NPS RTCA for providing the
    GeoBlock material and technical expertise in the installation, and
    to the Alaska State Parks Division for their cooperation and
    assistance. Everybody had a great time and we will probably do
    another trail work day up there next summer to make sure
    everything is holding together.

    Crevasse Moraine Trails Association Applies for Trail Grant

    The CMTA is in the process of applying for a grant for
    materials and equipment for upgrades to the Crevasse Moraine
    Trail system. If accepted this will mean improvements to this
    heavily used trail in the form of trail hardening materials and
    possible reroutes of several problem (wet) areas of the trail Our
    club will probably be called upon to assist.

    Proposed Sewer Line to New Hospital

    At press time we have learned that the City of Palmer has been
    awarded the contract to construct a new water and sewer line to
    the new site of the Valley hospital which is to be located at
    the Parks Highway and Trunk road intersection. While this is good
    news for the City of Palmer, we have serious concerns about
    their proposed route and lack of public input and notification to
    the various user groups which would be impacted.

    Apparently the plan is to cross the Glenn Highway near the AS&G
    gravel pit, run it through the pit and follow a route leading
    just north of Long Lake along the edge of Kepler Bradley State
    Recreation Area and Mat-Su Borough lands, then feed it through
    the University of Alaska Experimental Farm fields to the new
    site.

    Anybody familiar with that are knows that the terrain there is
    rugged with many steep hills, wetlands, and gulches. The plan
    apparently calls for the use of as many as seven pumping
    stations along the way which would obviously call for the
    construction of vehicle access roads and other infrastructure
    in addition to the line itself.

    Not to mention the fact the this line would seriously alter
    and/or obliterate many of our favorite local singletrack trails
    used not only by us bikers but skiers, trail runners, hikers, and
    equestrians. This area has become very popular with all these
    uses. We find it very ironic that the borough has refused VMBA
    permission to construct low impact new trails in the area but a
    sewer line, hey no problem.

    VMBA members along with other user groups have put a lot of
    sweat equity into these trails to keep them maintained. The
    borough has only last year contracted with the International
    Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) to provide a plan for
    sustainable new trails and the IMBA folds have put a lot of time
    into mapping the existing trails and made recommendations for
    new trails and alterations to old ones. This utility line would
    directly impact plans for these new trails.

    A big concern is that the utility line right-of-way and
    associated roads would allow snowmachine and four wheeler
    access into the area which until now has been essentially
    nonmotorized. It would also cut in two one of the last
    undeveloped continuous tracts of land in the core area of the
    valley. There has been a lot of press on trails issues of late
    in the valley and Anchorage media and I think weíve done a lot
    to make them a consideration in new projects like this. As many
    of you are painfully aware, many local mountain biking trails in
    the valley have been lost to development and itís ver important
    that we try to preserve what little we have left, especially
    world class singletrack like the trails in this area. There have
    also been increasing numbers of out of area folks using these
    trails and they have all benefited the Palmer and Valley
    economy. Trails like this have done a lot to enhance our
    lifestyle in the valley.

    Another troubling concern is the lack of notification to the
    public and affected user groups. We only found out about this by
    putting two and two together. There has been some articles in
    the local media but no specifics on where the line would be
    constructed. it almost seems as if the City of palmer is trying
    to keep the route low profile until construction, which I believe
    would start this summer, begins and itís too late.

    Once a septic/power/water line goes through this area there is
    bound to be pressure by real estate developers for land
    disposals of borough and university lands. After all, whatís the
    sense of a utility line if no one can hook up to it. This
    corridor is immediately adjacent to the land that was designated
    for public recreation following the public outcry during the
    recent land swap/subdivision proposal.

    While no one questions the need for a utility line to the
    hospital, we do think reasonable alternatives exist i.e. along the
    Glenn and Parks corridor or out Palmer Wasilla Highway and down
    Trunk Rd. This would benefit local residents and business
    allowing them to hook up and generate revenue to the city in the
    form of utilities payments.

    We invite you to submit letters of concern to your local Borough
    Assemblyman, also:

    Mayor Jim Cooper
    City of Palmer
    231 W. Evergreen
    Palmer AK 99645
    email [email protected]

    Mat-Su Borough
    Parks and Rec Dept
    W. Dahlia St
    Palmer AK 99645

    Also please spread the word and letís see if we can have some
    input into this process.



    Alaska Railroad Palmer Projects

    The Alaska Railroad has some projects on the slate for this
    summer which will benefit Palmer Area cyclists. Ground has been
    broken on an intermodal commuter hub at the Alaska State
    fairgrounds which will allow commuters to park and ride the
    train to Anchorage. There will be parking facilities for busses,
    cars, motorcycles, and bicycles. Also in the works is a paved
    bike path extending through Palmer from the fairgrounds to the
    North end of town providing for a hook-up to the old railroad
    grade trail to Moose Creek. Also the railroad has donated the
    right of way from Palmer to the Tsadaka Canyon on Moose Creek
    to the Borough for use as a non-motorized trail. Itís unclear
    whether the Borough has plans to improve the trail but this is a
    great first step.

    Wildfire Cycles to Celebrate 5th Anniversary

    Canít believe itís been five years since I quit my real job and
    opened up the shop, but April foolís day will mark start of my
    fifth year in business. Thanks to all my customers
    for your support and patronage to make it possible and stay
    tuned for a party announcement in the April newsletter.. We will
    resume our summer schedule in April. If you need to get your
    bike ready for spring, donít wait too long for repairs and
    tune-ups as there can be longer turnarounds as we get busier.
    Thatís all for now, see you in the spring or stop by the shop
    for the latest gossip. - Mark Gronewald

    Note: OK folks, time to pony up a $20 donation to the club. Weíve
    got some big projects for this year and itís gonna take a little
    money to make it happen. I spent a lot of my own modest supply
    of money last year plus put in a lot of time so would appreciate
    some financial help to keep this club going. Please send a check
    to Wildfire Designs/VMBA or call with a credit card number. To
    those who donated last year I thank you and also thanks to all
    the volunteers in the club events. Talk to you soon.













    Valley Mountain Bike Alliance
    824 S. Colony Way
    Palmer, AK 99645

    (907)-745-2453

    email: [email protected] "
    I for one would stop by and donate $20 to the VMBA . It's more fun in person......I met you a few years ago at Keppler when Joey and his trail crew partner were here and did a ride/walk around at Keppler. I was there as a rep of REI at the time.
    Dave

  3. #3
    FatBike Fiend
    Reputation: Wildfire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    974
    Quote Originally Posted by AkDave
    I for one would stop by and donate $20 to the VMBA . It's more fun in person......I met you a few years ago at Keppler when Joey and his trail crew partner were here and did a ride/walk around at Keppler. I was there as a rep of REI at the time.
    Dave
    Dave,
    I remember you and thanks for the interest. You might also be interested in the IMBA Trail Care School this summer. I'll post the details on this forum as they become finalized.The shop is on the main st (S.Colony Way) in downtown Palmer. 745-2453.

    Mark

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