Love the Lupines this Saturday

“We’re psyched to be doing a maintenance project”

By Than Acuff 

For those of you reading the Crested Butte News online from somewhere outside of the Gunnison Valley, or just getting back to town ready to hit bike season hard, it’s going to be a while before 401 is ready. In fact, it will be a while before several of the local trails are ready as the Crested Butte Conservation Corps (CBCC) has been out since May 15 and finding it’s not just downed trees that are holding things up, it’s water.

“We’re mitigating massive amounts of water,” says Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association (CBMBA) executive director Dave Ochs. “It’s not even traditional snowmelt, it’s ground water bubbling up. We’re just trying to raise tread, harden surfaces and move water off the trail.”

Fortunately, the timing couldn’t be better for CBMBA’s annual season kickoff party and National Trails Day workday on Friday and Saturday, June 2-3. The annual kickoff party starts at 4 p.m. at the Rainbow Park Pavilion with their annual membership meeting offering CBMBA members and interested individuals an opportunity to meet the current board members and ask some questions. The party then starts at 5:30 p.m. with pizza from Mikey’s Pizza and beverages complements of Ska Brewing that is open to all members and supporters of CBMBA.

The party will also provide the fuel for CBMBA’s first trailwork day of the season on Saturday, June 3, which always coincides with National Trails Day. While in past years the day is often used to start or finish new trails, this year the goal is maintenance, and CBMBA is partnering with the Crested Butte Land Trust, the town of Crested Butte and the Adaptive Sports Center to tackle the Lupine trail system.

“Love the Lupines,” says Ochs. “The CBCC is too busy so we’re calling on the people.”

The plan is to not only address water issues on Lupine II, but also continue their effort to make Lupine I accessible to all by widening it.

“Lupine II is still a riparian wetland, it’s not good,” says Ochs. “The plan is to also make Lupine I adaptive sports friendly. We have a little more to do.”

The workday starts at 10 a.m. on Saturday and will be based out of the cul-de-sac in the Saddle Ridge development where the Lupine trail system begins. While parking will be allowed there on this day only, Ochs urges people to minimize the number of vehicles there.

“We’re grateful to the HOA, so don’t abuse it,” says Ochs. “Hike, bike or carpool there. There’s limited parking available.”

The work concludes at 4 p.m. with, you guessed it, a party in the cul-de-sac complete with a BBQ, more Ska Brewing libations and prizes galore to dole out to volunteers. 

“We’re psyched to be doing a maintenance project,” says Ochs. “We want to make the Lupines the best experience possible.”

As for the remainder of the trails within CBMBA’s vast network, Ochs preaches patience.

“Be patient, don’t damage the resource,” says Ochs. “Sacrifice some time to let trails open on their own.”

For all kickoff party, trailwork day info and the current status of trail openings, check out Remember, if you’re truly jonesing, there’s always the Clark’s Market Parking Lot Loop.

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