DAMB - Delta

DAMBikers End-of-Year Report

January 18, 2016
The DAMB Chapter held its quarterly business meeting on November 2, 2015. The primary business was election of COPMOBA committee members and organization officers. 

Jason Love was elected to be the new president of DAMB, taking over the position previously held by Jere Page. Jason's first official act was to appoint Fred McNorton as his assistant. Elections were also held for COPMOBA committee members. The new committee consists of Michael Vaughn, who was retained as the committee chairman, Alan "Ace" Brown, Tim Gallegos, and new committee members Sven Edstrom and Jason Love. The Committee also proposed Michael Vaughn to serve as the representative to the COBMOBA Board of Directors.

Over the summer and fall, DAMB has continued its advocacy for new singletrack trails in Delta County, although progress has been slow. Tim Gallegos and Stephen Barnes (RAT chapter) attended a BLM function highlighting the recreational opportunities in the Gunnison Gorge NCA, including the Smith Mountain trails system. All three Delta County County Commissioners plus many other stakeholders were present and learned of plans for future development. However, progress remains slow. The BLM has yet to establish a timeline for completing trails they paid to have designed and mapped over five years ago. This area is the most promising Delta County has to offer: it is easily accessible from all directions, can be ridden nearly year-round, has an overlook into the Gunnison Gorge, and has an established campground with pit toilet on a gold-medal fishing section of the Gunnison River. The topography is similar to 18 Road in Fruita but with more elevation change from top to bottom.

In the Domingues/Escalante NCA, John Hodge recently led a group ride on the Lower Sawmill Mesa's Escalante Rim to acquaint participants of the potential for trails in the area being considered by BLM. Bill Harris from the Uncompahgre Chapter, who also sits on the DENCA advisory council, provided information on future singletrack trail development in the area. Again, progress is not expected for several years. In the meantime, existing jeep trails and the only singletrack section, Stone Basin trail, are being utilized for bike recreation.

On the Grand Mesa, committee member, Ace Brown, led DAMB's efforts in developing what is now known as the County Line trail. This easy/intermediate trail is the first part of a potential system which lies primarily in Mesa County. Additional work is required before this part of the trail is completed; however, weather has halted building activity until spring. Some DAMB members have taken exploratory rides on an existing trail known as the Drop Off Trail, which goes from the Flowing Park area down into Delta. While this route is extremely rugged, DAMB has interest in re-development of this trail for use by mountain bikes.

DAMB members continue to be active, individually, in volunteering for trail building activities in the COPMOBA area, with several members attending the summer's IMBA training in Montrose. Several DAMB members also volunteered for trail building activities in the RAT area and on the Grand Mesa's Mesa Top trail. However, the group’s largest effort was for the very successful Uncompahgre Bash. Again, Ace Brown led the organization of this trail maintenance activity, with help from many others and with participants from the West End, Grand Valley Canyons, and Uncompahgre Chapters.

DAMB continues to be very active in promoting mountain biking by organizing group activities. Over the summer and fall, DAMB members have hosted group rides from locations as diverse as Crested Butte, Goblin Valley, Monarch Crest, and the White Rim trail.
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