“We need the power of the peeps”
By Than Acuff
It’s that time of year again when the Crested Butte Mountain Bike Association (CBMBA) calls on the public to head into the hills for a weekend of volunteer work this Saturday and Sunday, August 19–20. But this annual CBMBA trail work weekend is like no other. For starters, it’s the 40th anniversary of CBMBA as an organization. As a result, they’re also throwing a party with a Wailers concert at the Ambush Ranch out Brush Creek.
“We’ve hit a milestone and have more heart and soul than ever,” says CBMBA executive director Dave Ochs, who has been with CBMBA for 20 of those 40 years. “We have the best board, the best staff and the best CBCC (Crested Butte Conservation Corps) we’ve ever had.”
The annual trail work weekend has been responsible for the building and maintenance of numerous trails throughout the north end of the Gunnison Valley. This year, the effort will be focused on a .4 mile stretch of the Budd Connection trail on the Ambush Ranch property out Brush Creek. With the North Valley Trails Project plan still under review, CBMBA is focused on this unique effort on a stretch through private property.
“We’re working on private property in the hope of greater forest connectivity in the future,” says Ochs.
Thanks to the cooperation of the landowner, the trail is open to the public, but CBMBA does ask that bikers remain respectful of other users and the property owners.
“The Budd Connection is open to the public but please be aware of horses and stay on the trail,” says Ochs. “A huge shout out to the Budd Family, who continue to show so much love and support to the many nonprofits and efforts of this community.”
And, just like all previous trail work weekends, CBMBA is calling on the volunteers to show up in force. The weekend will be based out of the Tent City camping area in the Brush Creek drainage. Rim Tours will be providing the food and there will be libations from Ska Brewing, Zuni Street Brewery as well as Mountain Spirits Liquors. Typically as many as 70–90 volunteers show up for the big CBMBA weekends and Ochs is hoping for a similar turnout this year.
“We need our regular trail building community,” says Ochs. “We need the power of the peeps.”
The work begins Saturday, August 19 at 10 a.m. and continues until 3 p.m. with Sunday’s work starting again at 10 a.m. and finishing up at 3 p.m.
Ochs asks that all volunteers RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the weekend, especially if you’re camping, so that they can ensure there is enough food, libations and camping spots for everybody.
And while working in the dirt among friends and fellow trail users can be rewarding enough, this year the weekend is punctuated Saturday night by a concert on the Ambush Ranch with opening band Black Canyon Ramblers followed by headliners the Wailers. A donation to CBMBA secures you an invite to the party and the cap is 250 people with 190 invitations already secured as of Tuesday. Volunteers committed to both days of trail work get a reduced invite amount to attend the Wailers concert. The link to donate and secure your invitation, RSVP link and all things trail work weekend can be found at cbmba.org.
“We’re throwing this party to celebrate our amazing volunteers getting us here,” says Ochs.