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    GREAT MBOSC Article

    DREW PERKINS SHARES THE VALUE OF TRAIL ORGANIZATION COLLABORATION

    Posted on by Amanda Schaper


    MBOSC Trails Program Director, Drew Perkins, recently spent a week working a bit further south with two other mountain bike and trail advocacy organizations: in San Luis Obispo County he assisted the Central Coast Concerned Mountain Bikers with design and construction of a new trail at Montaña de Oro State Park, and in Santa Barbara he was asked to teach a 2-day workshop for the Santa Barbara Mountain Bike Trail Volunteers (SBMTV) crew leaders. In the story below, Drew shares how strong collaboration amongst trail organizations makes us all better trail advocates.

    .
    My first trailwork experience ever was with the Central Coast Concerned Mountain Bikers (CCCMB) as a college sophomore way back in 2002. I had just started mountain biking and my friend dragged me to a “Chris King Trail Days.” Little did I know that day would drastically alter the path I would follow in life! Chris King and CCCMB really knew how to throw a trailwork event. There must have been at least 80 volunteers, a delicious sack lunch (I still remember the sandwich, roasted pepper and spinach on fresh locally baked bread), with a great raffle and BBQ afterwards. However, the highlight of the experience was working on a great project: building a brand new singletrack trail in city open space, just a couple of minutes from my house. Fast forward 12 years later as we began work on the Flow Trail and it was easy to know what model to follow for our own trail work events.

    .As I became more involved in trailwork I kept in touch with the folks from CCCMB. They have been great mentors and teachers, and I have had the good fortune of being able to work with them on projects like the Oats Peak Trail at Montaña de Oro State Park and the trails at the Pismo Preserve. They just started another new trail project at Montaña de Oro with State Parks and asked me to come down and help by providing design assistance and construction training for CCCMB volunteers and State Parks staff.
    .
    Photo by Chris Orr / SBMTV

    In Santa Barbara I helped host a 2-day “trail academy” for their volunteers based on the courses we put on here in Santa Cruz. A large number of the trails that the Santa Barbara Mountain Bike Trail Volunteers (SBMTV) maintain were heavily impacted by fires and floods including the Thomas Fire and Montecito debris flows last winter. The trail community there really came together with funding and volunteer efforts and most of the trails are now usable again. One challenge of this upswing in volunteerism was providing adequate instruction and supervision to ensure trails were rebuilt with sustainable practices that would make them more resilient to future fire and rainfall events, as well as meet the needs of the different types of users. Because of this 2-day course, the club has a much larger group of trained trail workers to help lead workdays and implement sustainable trail maintenance techniques.


    Photo by Chris Orr / SBMTV

    So much of what I’ve learned about trails has been from working with other organizations and other trail builders. There is a great community of trail advocates all over the state, and even though each community faces different challenges and works with different land managers, there is a lot that we have in common.

    Part of our business model at MBOSC is sharing our expertise with other organizations and land managers. Not only do these activities bring in income that helps support our work here in Santa Cruz, we also learn so much from interacting with these other organizations that we can bring back to Santa Cruz. A big part of MBOSC’s success is due to the example and guidance from organizations like CCCMB & Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship (SBTS). I’m proud that MBOSC can continue the culture of teamwork toward the shared goal of great trails and strong trail advocacy across the state while still benefiting our trails here at home.

    Link to online article:
    http://mbosc.org/2019/01/trailorgcollab/

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