Saturday, 6 February 2010

All Aboard! (Trail Building Saturday 6th February)

As the launch date for Phase II fast approaches, more and more volunteer time is required to get the trails ready. This week, the RAF were out to play on Monday, Stu, Dale and Dave were out playing Friday, today was Saturday and the usual building tomorrow makes for a busy trail building week - with a few more to follow! - The more the merrier and the quicker the trails get built, so even if you can help on one day for a few hours, you will be most welcome (see the panel to the right about trail building).

Climbing out of the car i see two big 20 ton RMC trucks roll up the driveway... 'where are they going' i thought to myself ... surely not the the trails. Then to my alarm i saw Rob riding shotgun in one of them... all i could think of was how much surfacing we are going to be shifting! 2 more truck loads (at 20 tonnes a piece) trundled up the road a while later. Throughout the week, a further four trucks had delivered surfacing to several places around the trails... we're going to need more wheel barrows! [and volunteers!].

The four truck loads have been dumped around Section 6 (the Stegosaurus Rocks, wooden bridge and skinny log section). After the big freeze, the section has suffered really badly from the ice, melt water and rider damage. As a result it is NOW CLOSED - please do not ride it until it is properly open (not 'other people are riding it' open). Please follow the diversions to the start of the fire road climb.

Trundling over to the shop, i found Sally geared up for a ride, and Jez already supping a cup of coffee! He'd already had one 'caffeine and sugar based energy related drink product' but that was obviously not enough!

Andrew rolled up, followed by the Pearson Clan so we sauntered round to the yard. The plan was for Sally, Petra, Jess and Charlotte to go have fun on their bikes while we head off to finish most of the decking to the Rainbow Bridge. On arrival, we found Bruce busy on the bridge.

After a few hours, the start of the bridge was made a little wider, nearly all of the decking was down (just a metre left at the beginning) and we had a bridge ... can't wait to ride it!

It took a few minutes to work out how to arrange the last few decking pieces so as to end the bridge nicely. Two narrow boards were too wide, one wide board was too narrow, so we opted on using one narrow board and splitting the wide one in half. Now normally this will involve a splitting axe or a bolster, but we only had small chisels and a hitting stick. After a little persuasion with a saw to start it off, Bruce got a chisel in there and the wood began to split a little until part of the chisel handle launched across the bog... oh dear. Still this isn't too much of a problem as trail builders are a fairly resourceful breed so we utilized the next best thing... By now Jez had consumed his second 'caffeine and sugar based energy related drink product' and two bananas, so was feeling particularly manly ... we dared him to split the board by hand... after a few attempts, to our amazement and amusement, he managed to spilt the board using just JezPower (assisted by two coffees, two cans of 'caffeine and sugar based energy related drink product' and two bananas). Next time Jez tells you to man up ... do it! You never know how much caffeine and potassium is running through his veins!

It was half past twelve, and time for a ride! We headed back to the Yard and got ready. Various assortments of food were consumed, and we headed out.

First stop was to see how the woodwork on Upper Cliff has progressed ... Looking Good! The Trees are quite dense in that section which will enhance the woodwork all the more! A Little further along the trail we inspected some alterations that had been made to a couple of corners and also look at what the RAF boys had done. Then it was off to have a look at the Tackeroo block ... again, looking good!

I say 'Looking Good' as until it's done, it isn't going to be good! There is so much still to do! Any help you can provide will only help the trails to be finished quicker.


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