Trail building with the VMBA at Dockton

The new trail construction at Dockton Forest is underway! As of this writing there were two new, unnamed, black diamond lines dug out along with some pretty impressive jumps that take advantage of the natural beauty of the woods and have you sailing over mossy, fern covered gaps. The trails in and of themselves augment an already great trail system and really provide more advanced riders the opportunity to send it on this rock in the middle of Puget Sound.

On Saturday’s Vashon Mountain Biking Association (VMBA) is hosting work parties from 10am-2pm. I volunteered to sling some dirt last Saturday and was pleased to meet some great folks with a shared passion for making Vashon Island a great place for mountain bikers.

After meeting at the picnic area at 10am, Larry Dubois from the VMBA gave the volunteer work crew a walk through of the newly dug lines. The new lines are part of the Phase 1C plan that will add 5 new lines and a pump track to the existing park.

Walking the newly dug black diamond lines was nothing short of amazing, riding them will be even better and require this geezer to up his game. The new lines meet at the bottom of chairlift and both will have a mix of gaps, step ups and big ole berms that will give you plenty of speed on the descent to send it. The trail designers have done a masterful job of creating something that is beautiful and flows with some of the best trails in the PNW.

After walking the trails, we got to work digging in a tie-in trail to chairlift enabling riders to session the progressive jump line at the top of ( the trail to be named) without having to do the full trail.

As I have never dug trails before, this was a brand new experience for me. My two big takeaways are many hands make light work, and that the rake hoe is now my most favorite hand tool ever as it digs, rakes and tampers dirt like a dream. I also learned from the crew a lot about dirt, the dirt matters when trail building and on Vashon, you have to dig under the dark topsoil in the forest to find the beige, clay-sand rich, trail building gold.

In the end we completed the tie-in trail and I even got to ride on the new trails as a reward. If you are interested in helping out, come join the VMBA every Saturday (until the construction is completed) from 10am-2pm. I know I will be back and I look forward to seeing the completion of Phase 1C so we can move on to Phase 2 and Phase 3!

If you are interested in learning more about volunteering or getting on the VMBA mailing list you can go here to sign up.