Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Work to begin soon on Galena trails

New bike trail built on Baldy


By GREG MOORE
Express Staff Writer

    Work on a plan to build 30 miles of new trails is scheduled to begin as soon as the snow melts, said Eric Rector, Blaine County Recreation District director of trails and facilities.
    The Galena Summer Trails Project will add the new trails to 18 miles of existing ones to create a “stacked-loop” non-motorized trail system with beginner-level hiking, biking and equestrian trails close to the lodge and more advanced trails as the loops progress outward. Most of the trail system will be on the east side of state Highway 75.
    Rector said crews cleared about 10 miles of brush from trail locations near the lodge last fall.
    “If we can get through that and time allows [this year], we’ll start clearing trails for another section,” he said.
    Rector said a crew of between four and eight people will work on the project. He said some volunteer work days will also be scheduled this summer.
    “It’s the largest trail project in SNRA history,” he said. “I’m really excited about getting started on it.”
    New biking opportunities will also be available on Bald Mountain this summer.
    In 2012, Sun Valley Co. announced a plan to build almost 20 miles of new trails on Forest Service and BLM land on the mountain, over a three- to six-year period. The first of those trails was completed last fall. It is a mountain bike-specific trail with rollers that starts at the top of Baldy, winds through Central Park, Upper River Run and lower Blue Grouse, crosses under the Christmas chairlift and ends on a cat track near the Roundhouse restaurant.
    Joe Miczulski, recreation forester for the Ketchum Ranger District, said he expects more trail construction to occur on National Forest land above the Roundhouse this summer, but has not yet received a work plan from Sun Valley. No one at the resort could be reached to obtain more information by press deadline Tuesday.
Greg Moore: gmoore@mtexpress.com




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