Trail Building in the Hawkes Bay

As I type this, the heavens above Wellington are opening up. It’s hard to believe that as few as four weeks ago our tracks were bone dry. However, the rain is a blessing and a curse. While initially it would have been welcomed by trail builders, someone upstairs appears to have forgotten to turn the tap off which is raising some concern. It’s just as well there are some resilient folks out there up for a challenge!

One such person is Hawkes Bay Mountain Bike Club secretary and trail building legend Carl Larsen who we recently sent a Trail Fund NZ t-shirt to to say ‘thank you’ for his ongoing dedication to the region’s trails. No matter how awesome our Trail Fund NZ t-shirts are, they’re hardly adequate compensation for the work that Carl’s done over the years. But it’s nice to be able to say thanks.

Ordinarily in the Hawkes Bay, track work goes on hiatus during the summer months due to conditions being overly dry and the dirt too hard. However, this year, work didn’t recommence until mid-April. And in addition, the region was under extreme fire risk conditions, resulting in teams being unable to take motorised vehicles and tools into the forest. This limited important work such as removing fallen trees and cutting long grass in addition to putting a hold on major working bees. Frustrating stuff, but just one of those things you deal with while working under extreme climatic conditions and within frameworks that are in place to protect the interests of land owners’, and the mountain bike community. Here’s hoping this wild weather isn’t doing too much damage to the trails!

For those of you who haven’t ever seen a trail being built here’s a time lapse of Carl working on Tinker Trail situated in the Pan Pac Eskdale MTB Park that was created as an instructional video for Hawkes Bay volunteer track builders. It doesn’t come with an audio track so we’ve pre-selected this clip for your listening pleasure!