Film showing will benefit Owasippe trails

tagged as Blog,Fundraising,Owasippe

BLUE LAKE TWP. — A portion of Owasippe’s bike trails is set to open to the public May 1.

An upcoming “bikeumentary” showing to raise money for the trail should help get cyclists in the riding mood.

“Pedal Driven,” a film about shared stewardship of trail areas, will be shown at the Wealthy Theatre on Thursday in Grand Rapids. The film’s theme is strikingly similar to what’s been happening at the Owasippe Scout Reservation, where the West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance is refurbishing trails on the land that is owned by the Chicago Area Council of Boy Scouts of America.

The film focuses on a group of extreme mountain bikers called freeriders in Leavenworth, Wash., who have a series of secret trails on federal lands. The so-called “skate punks of the forest” are unwelcome and are constantly on the lookout for U.S. Forest Service rangers.

The film takes explores the opposing perspectives of the freeriders and the rangers who are dedicated to protecting public lands. It also offers solutions to unite both factions who are dedicated to wilderness areas.

Such a solution was forged between mountain bikers, who found themselves banned from Owasippe’s maze of trails in 2010. The bikers were blamed for trail erosion in the 4,800-acre Scout camping area in Blue Lake Township.

But last year, the WMMBA was invited to help refurbish the trails and the alliance brought in renowned trail developer Alex Stewart who found it was trail design rather than cyclists that was causing erosion problems.  (more…)

Member Meeting January 9, 2012

tagged as Bass River,Blog,Cannon Township,Community,Grand Rapids,Hardy Dam,Ionia Recreation Area Trail,Owasippe,Plainfield township,Shore Acres,Upper Macatawa,Wahlfield Park,Yankee Springs

In case you weren’t able to attend, here’s a quickie on some of the things we discussed at the meeting.  I’m not big on long formal meeting minutes, so if you need details, contact your favorite board member….better yet, come to the meeting.

New president Kevin Allen gave a recap of happenings in 2011

Yankee Springs Time Trial update – Registration has been open since mid-November. John Anderson is back with his sound system and announcing talents.  Dan Clark will design this year’s 2012 artwork for shirts, glasses and posters.  Youth Cycling will run our kid’s race event for 2012. Gault/RaceMgmt is back as our timing system operators.  As of January 9th we have over 100 pre-registered racers toward our cap of 700 for the 2012 race.  First committee meeting will be sometime in February.

Volunteers needed:  Yankee Springs Time Trial 4/22/12 (funds 40-50% of what we do), State Games of Michigan scheduled for 6/23/12, Trifecta mostly likely 5/20/12 but keep checking to be sure.  Give a shout out to Kevin Allen so he can get you on the volunteer list. (more…)

Owasippe Trail Day – Sat, Nov 26th

tagged as Blog,Events,Group Ride,Owasippe,Trails,Volunteer

The next Trail Day at Owasippe will be Saturday November 26th. To qualify for a 2011 Alcoa-Howmet Action Grant ($3000), a minimum of 12 Alcoa-Howmet employees will volunteer their labor for 4 hours. The planned project is to restore the eroded trail section that was bypassed with Re-Route #3. See attached map. We will have the WMMBA tool trailer on-site. Volunteers should bring gloves, water, snacks and be dressed for any kind of weather including rain/snow. Bringing along a favorite rake, hoe or shovel might also be a good idea. Please be aware that November 26th is within the deer rifle season (Nov.15-30). It is private property and not open to public hunting, but there is a hunt club that has hunting privileges. Wearing bright colors is still recommended.

FREE Lunch will be provided. Time 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM Saturday November 26th

Trail Address: 9900 Russell Road, Whitehall, MI 49461

Trail Map:


Randy Knapp
WMMBA Trail Coordinator-Owasippe

Owasippe Trail Day – Oct 15th

tagged as Blog,Events,Owasippe,Trail Day,Volunteer

10am – 2pm join us for a trail day out at Owasippe.  We’re trying to get the first 10 mile loop opened up asap, and this trail day will probably determine if it gets done before the end of this year.

FREE lunch is included.  If you have globes or rakes, please bring them.  Be sure to bring you bike as well to “test” the trail you help build!

Hope to see you all there!