There hasn't been a new front page post in a while because the webmaster has been slack however that doesn't mean there hasn't been some good work going down out on our trails! The weather has not cooperated with us yet again this winter however we're getting things done. Pee Wee's has been getting a lot of love for sure. Brantley from Ride-A-Bike makes it a point to get out there and do some work and clean-up from time to time. Calvin along with the help of Craig, Jesse, and others has been cleaning up a lot of the old rotted causeways in preparation to build new ones. Although we're not going to rebuild the elevated park Pee Wee's has always been known for having a few minor elevated structures here and there, Calvin would like to bring some of those back. Additionally there is some discussion of a potential trail addition out there. Lot's of good stuff on the horizon for Pee Wee's Mtn Bike Park!

Out at Poston I've been working on a few reroutes to bypass portions of the trail that were originally designed to poor standards...I was that original designer I might add. Sometimes in our rush to get trail complete so we can ride it us trail builders don't make the best decisions. Doing it right up front would save time in the end but sometimes that's just easier said than done so I'll probably never learn from my design mistakes. Two reroutes have been completed but there are a few more we need to get done at some point. One of the reroutes will need a bridge constructed soon however Russ fashioned a ghetto bridge that works well for the time being (unless we get a big storm and it washes out). Additionally in an effort to make the 2nd fiberglass bridge easier to exit Russ and I widened the turn. The benched climb off the bridge was never built up to snuff either so we've also rebuilt that climb, widening the trail a bit in order to lay down a true bench. This section of the trail should have zero maintenance problems going forward now. Gaston County Parks & Recreation has also agreed to remove the last 24 inches or so of the left handrail which will allow for a much better exit from the bridge into that tricky lefty climb. Additionally our dirt merchants, Jonboy and Matt continue to berm turns and build technical options for the brave of heart including jumps, gaps, and of course good old drops to flat. Remember to scout it before you ride it so you know what you're getting yourself into...before you're already into it!

We also have news about our other trail projects in Belmont and Kings Mountain. The trail in Belmont (Rocky Branch) is no longer being built or maintained by PASA. There is a group there that wanted to do design work themselves and two groups trying to design trail to their own standards and vision never turns out well in the end. To keep all us bikers on the same page and unified PASA has decided to drop this project and concentrate on our existing trails. The Kings Mountain project although very much still alive is kind of dead in the water. The parcels of land that we are being restricted to are simply impossible at this point to lay out a master design in. The land was clear cut not too many years back and at this point consist of thick scrub brush and dense low pines that you literally cannot move or see through without bushwhacking a path with a machete as you go. These woods need to mature and the pines need to grow so that the undergrowth dies out and we have a real forest to work in. We're estimating this will take at least 5 years so Kings Mountain as an active trail project won't likely begin until 2020, if then. It's all a guessing game at this point and a lot can change in that time span. So there will be some changes to the website trails section in the near future. The holding page for Rocky Branch will be removed altogether. The page for Kings Mountain will probably be moved into a new category called "Future Projects" or something similar.

As always thanks for your support, your volunteerism, and mostly for using and enjoying our trails! The ragtag club lives on and continues to show what can be done when a small group of dedicated misfits sticks to the mission of building the best trails in the area. Rip on rippers...

- The old rotted bridging, junking up the woods and killing the nature buzz

trail work
- After being cleaned that looks much better!

child labor
- PASA is not proud, we always approve of child labor. Calvin's rugrats being put to work for the good of The Nation...

trail work
- Fresh bench cut...a proper reroute around an old poorly designed line above the Deer Trail Climb.

trail work
- Rarely caught on film, the Poston Troll cutting a reroute around the creek dip...

trail work
- Now that's how you cut a bench! This is right after the exit of fiberglass bridge two. So took 4 hours to cut 50ft of proper bench.

Mud is a common issue on all trails in NC this year. I guess when you get 12 months worth of rain in 5 months these things happen and even the best draining trails develop trouble spots...Poston is no exception. Despite normally being amazing at shedding water Poston has plenty of sloppy spots at the moment. PASA has been working on fixing these slowly but surely. Deberming and cutting drainage trenches is tough work, during the summer it can be brutal. We have addressed most of the real bad mud holes at this point but there are a few that still need some work, be patient and we will get it all squared away in the next month or two. There was one spot that was so bad that personally I felt it was in total disrepair and that's the huge mud hole near the end of the Lake Loop...if you've been riding this summer you know the one. It's so bad most people had stopped using that last section of trail altogether, instead opting to ride around the gate on the gravel road back to the parking lot. That low spot in the trail has always gunked up during rain as it sits in the low spot and a lot of water moves through it. The last thing we wanted was to put a bunch of hours into deberming and trenching to have it look the same way next year. Additionally it was so wet and nasty I didn't even see a way to make it dry out so the slightest bit of traffic was going to wreck it again. In situations like this sometimes an elevated structure is the best option so we decided to build a boardwalk over the mud. With materials provided by Gaston County Parks and Recreation we (Matt, Scott, Steve, and myself) built a ~35 feet long boardwalk yesterday evening. The work went really smoothly and we are very pleased with the end results. An otherwise high maintenance section of trail is now no maintenance! Please note, the bridge does not have a ramp up onto it yet but lifting your front tire onto the bridge will be simple enough for intermediate mountain bikers. We decided we want to make the start of the bridge 10 - 12 feet longer but we won't have that work done for another week or so. We will also be cutting the decking to all match up and have a curved appearance (gotta make it look nice after all). I hope everyone enjoys the work and be sure to thank our hard working volunteers next time you see them!


- Matt and Steve laying out the mudsills and stringers



- The new boardwalk nearing completion!



The bikePASA website now has a calendar feature which will allow us to better organize trail work days, group rides, etc. Additionally it adds better visibility and one location to go view what might be in many locations on the forum. Work days, big group rides, and other events will still get posted on the bikePASA forum as well as on our Facebook page but we will try to make a habit of creating all events in the calendar and then referencing from there of the forums and Facebook. Currently there is only one event in the calendar but as we load more and you use the calendar please let me know if you experience anything buggy and I will work on resolving it. The calendar is available on the menu system under PASA 411/Events Calendar. I've also provided an Upcoming Events module as well as a Calendar module on each page of the website. We're a ragtag group but we're trying to get more organized people!  ;)

Well that has needed to happen for quite some time now, the new website is finally done and published! Major upgrades to the website and forum software, nicer member tables, a little Facebook integration, a new look for web links, mobile friendly, etc, etc. Of course we'll continue to try to think of new things to add to the site to keep it interesting and fresh...if you have any ideas feel free to share what you think would add to the site. I am sure I have some spelling mistakes, poor formatting, and other things that just don't look right so also please bring those to my attention. Man I'm glad that's done, now I can slack off for another 5 years...maybe go ride my bike if it ever stops raining. See you on the trails!


Please consider supporting PASA's efforts and services financially. For more information on contributing visit "PASA 411 / Contribute to PASA" on the menu. Thanks for your support!

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