VMBA is excited to announce the 10 Chapter recipients of our 2021 Trail Grants! This year, we were able to award $50,000 in total, a 300+% increase since 2014. We couldn’t do it without the support of our members – so thank you!
A committee of Chapter representatives selected the following shovel-ready projects to fund for completing in 2022. We hope you’ll come out to support their efforts through trail days and by renewing your VMBA Membership for the upcoming riding season. Congratulations again – we can’t wait to see these projects come to fruition!
2021 VMBA Trail Grants:
Brewster River Mountain Bike Club (BRMBC) – $5,000
BRMBC is excited to expand their Cricket Hill network, located in the Town of Hyde Park and owned by the Lamoille North Supervisory Union. Cricket Hill, started in 2003, has 3.7 miles of multi-use trails that caters to a wide range of riders. With the VMBA Trail Grant support, BRMBC will construct a new half-mile, downhill-only trail that will provide a more advanced option from the top of Cricket Hill and help add progression to the network.
Fellowship of the Wheel (FOTW) – $4,500
FOTW will use this VMBA Trail Grant to partially fund restorations and improvements to the Back Door trail in the Hinesburg Town Forest (HTF). HTF lays centrally among 3 contiguous FOTW networks, with Sleepy Hollow to the north and Carse Hills to the south, and Back Door plays a vital role in the connectivity of trails in this region. The current trail was installed over 15 years ago and has seen over 10,000 users since that time, leaving Back Door in need of tread improvement, bridge replacements, and minor rerouting. FOTW is aiming to overhaul this trail in a way that maintains its classic HTF character while also making it more sustainable and more accessible to a broader range of trail users.
Mendon Mountain Club (MMC) – $3,500
MMC will leverage Trail Grant funding to construct a new 1-mile multipurpose trail on public town property in Mendon (between Killington and Rutland Towns) and adopt pre-existing multi-use trails on the parcel that have fallen into disrepair. The new loop will be beginner-friendly and built to adaptive standards, and easily accessible from the Mendon Recreational Field. As a new VMBA Chapter, MMC will be working closely with volunteers from the Killington Mountain Bike Club (KMBC) and Pine Hill Partnership (PHP) to execute the build.
Mad River Riders (MRR) – $5,000
MRR will use VMBA Trail Grant funding to support Phase 2 of their Moretown School and Town Forest Project. Phase 1 consists of a 1-mile beginner loop and all-abilities skills park that are integrated into the existing recreation and education infrastructure in Moretown. Phase 2 of the project calls for 3-5 additional features in the skills park and a 0.6 mile rerouted intermediate version of the Hornbeam Ridge trail, the use of which has been discontinued due to steep slopes and inadequate drainage. Phase 2 will reopen the trail to a much wider audience, reducing impacts to habitats and downstream water sources while also furthering the goal of completing a beginner/intermediate connection between the South Hill Rd
neighborhood, the school, and Moretown village.
Ridgeline Outdoor Collective – $7,000
The Ridgeline Outdoor Collective will use VMBA Trail Grant funds to help construct the new Rube’s Run trail, a 1.0-mile DH-only trail located on private lands adjacent to the Randolph Gap Trail in Rochester, Vermont. Located along the western slope and up to the top of Randolph Gap, the new trail will be a key downhill-only trail geared toward advanced riders. Since its inception, all new trail developments within Ridgeline Outdoor Collective’s Rochester Valley Trails network have been geared toward beginner & intermediate users. Rube’s Run will be primarily hand built with occasional machine-built features such as berms and doubles and fill a growing need for an advanced downhill-specific trail.
Richmond Mountain Trails (RMT) – $7,000
RMT will apply VMBA Trail Grant funding towards the design and construction of the first uphill and first two downhill trails on a privately held 500-acre property in Bolton, Vermont. The goals of the trails are to set a new standard for inclusive trail building in Vermont without compromising fun for riders used to the challenges of Perry Hill, Cochran’s, and other nearby networks. The project is shovel-ready and will be primarily hand-built by volunteer trail builders with some limited mini-excavator assistance as needed. The proposed trails will be the first trails on property known as the “Driving Range” – there was once a driving range on the property – and they will be the backbone for a larger trail network that will evolve over the next five years and beyond. This Trail Grant funding will supplement a 2021 SunCommon Naming Grant.
Southern Vermont Trail Association (SoVTA) – $3,500
SoVTA will apply VMBA Trail Grant funds to construct and install four new trail map kiosks at the Crosstown Trail heads in West Dover. Over the last 15 years the trails and signage at the Crosstown Trail network have fallen into disrepair due to previous landowner neglect and various ACT250 permitting issues. A portion of the grant will also be used to fund the GIS mapping, layout, flagging and administrative time for achieving a permitting solution for the trails so that SoVTA can maintain and build sustainable new trails that better serve the type of users that frequent the Crosstown network, with the improved wayfinding and signage helping less experienced users better navigate the trails. This Trail Grant funding will supplement a 2021 Ranch Camp Naming Grant.
Stowe Trails Partnership (STP) – $4,500
STP will deploy Trail Grant support to address a growing need within the community for a dedicated area where children, beginners, and riders of all levels can practice and hone their biking skills through a mountain bike skills area adjacent to the popular Stowe Rec Path. The skills area will possess features that mimic those found on other trails throughout our network and beyond, including rock gardens, progression skinnies, berms, wooden features, and small jumps/drops. The skills area will be designed and built for the novice rider as well as those looking to hone their riding skills through progressively challenging, low-consequence features.
Woodstock Area Mountain Bike Association (WAMBA) – $6,000
WAMBA will use VMBA Trail Grant funding to assist in the purchase of a walk-behind rubber track carrier. With an ability to haul and dump upwards of 1,000 lbs. of soil, rocks, or materials through steep and varied terrain, this piece of equipment would be transformational for our trail work and create efficiencies that will save time and resources. In the last five years, WAMBA has constructed 30 miles of purpose-built, single-track trails across three area networks (Mt. Peg, Aqueduct, Suicide Six), and WAMBA is dedicating its efforts in 2022 to the rehabilitation, maintenance, and sustainability of our existing network. This track carrier will help WAMBA execute these trail projects in 2022 and provide a critical tool for effective and efficient trail maintenance for years to come.
Waterbury Area Trail Alliance (WATA) – $4,500
WATA will put Trail Grant funding to use in support of a complete rehabilitation of the Rastaman Trail, the longest and one of the most iconic trails within the Perry Hill network. Being one of Perry Hill’s most popular trails, it has seen wear and tear, as well as erosion, from years of use. Repairing this trail and making it more sustainable will be worth the investment as WATA looks to expand the network on neighboring private land. Ide Ride Builders, who lead the recent extension of Six Flags, will lead the construction of new rock features that will retain the trail’s challenge while enhancing it’s sustainability. This Trail Grant funding will supplement a 2021 Fuse Marketing Naming Grant.
A huge congratulations to all the recipients of 2021 Trail Grant funding. We’re thrilled to support such a great collection of trail projects for next year – and can’t wait to ride the resulting new and improved trails! And an equally huge thank you to all those who volunteer their time and energy at trail work days – these projects wouldn’t be possible without your help.
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