Trail Alliance – Who? What? When? Official Press Release

Download the full press release here

Who are we?

The Trail Alliance of Cairns is a newly formed subcommittee of the Cairns Mountain Bike Club.

We are a group of likeminded passionate mountain bikers, walkers and trail runners, who have banded together to build, maintain, and improve the many trails we have in and around Cairns.

Our primary focus is to learn, educate and execute the ongoing maintenance and upgrades of the Smithfield Conservation Park trail network. The Cairns Mountain Bike Club have a lease on the area to run events and maintain the trail network which has been built over the past 15 years.

The Smithfield Conservation Park trails are not maintained by governing bodies, they rely wholly on volunteers to keep the open and maintained for all to enjoy. The Trail Alliance will engage professionals such as World Trail to help develop and grow the trail networks. Our key goal is to unite all of the independent trail builders of the area, consult the professionals and combine our efforts in a uniformed approach. This will enable us to build a respectable portfolio of the work we are doing in the park and to lobby support from the Government and 3rd parties to assist financially.

 

What do we do?

The Trail Alliance has been setup to perform many functions including;

  • Work with land managers and Government Departments in ensuring there are adequate trails to support the ever growing mountain biking and adventure sport community.
  • Consult users and land managers on what works are needed on the existing trail networks
  • Consult trail building professionals (ie. World Trail) and approved and sustainable trail design to ensure trails are built to last, while still keeping them fun and challenging.
  • Engage and coordinate volunteers, contractors and 3rd parties to complete trail building and maintenance work.
  • Generate awareness of the Trail Alliance and the need and use of mountain bike trails within the community.
  • Educate users and keen trail builders on the correct way to build and maintain trails in our region, to IMBA standards.
  • Unify the mountain biking community of passionate trail builders and trail users in Cairns.
  • Raise funds to be used for the construction and maintenance of the trail networks.

 

What are the future plans?

The Cairns Mountain Bike Club has secured some Government funding to be able to engage with trail building professionals World Trail to complete a rebuild of many of the Smithfield Trails. We are in a very unique position to have access to Glen Jacob’s (owner of World Trail) who calls Cairns his hometown. Glen is incredibly passionate about the trails in the Cairns area and will share his expertise, passion and experience with this trail building project. Glen has offered to donate many hours of his time to draw up a master plan and educate us on best practice trail design and construction.

Beyond the Smithfield Trails project, Trail Alliance is looking to extend the Smithfield Trail network and explore other opportunities within the Cairns and surrounding area.

None of this will happen without your help and with enough volunteer hours we can speed up the rebuilding of our trail network.

 

Why Join In?

The Trail Alliance needs your support, whether you are a competitive or recreational user of the trails in the Smithfield Conservation Park. If you enjoy using the area and would like to help out and learn all about sustainable trail building, please support and join the Trail Alliance.

We ask you to allocate some of your time to one or a couple of working bees per year. The more people who help out, the more work we will be able to achieve.

If you don’t have time to join one of our Trail Alliance working bees, we encourage you to join the Cairns Mountain Bike Club. By joining the Mountain Bike Club, all membership funds are used to support the work being done by Trail Alliance. These are things like, materials, machinery, fuel, contractors and hire equipment. The stronger the membership base for the Mountain Bike Club, the greater leverage we have as a community when lobbying Government Departments and other groups for grants and funding.

“Add to your riding experience and be a part of the trail alliance. You can appreciate the trails more, when you have been involved in the creation and maintenance and you understand why they are built a certain way…”

 

When are Trail Alliance working bees?

We plan to have working bees of no more than 4 hours on Sunday morning’s approximately every 4 weeks. We encourage and request you come along to as many of these as you can allow.

Notices of dates for working bees will be communicated on the Cairns Mountain Bike Club website https://cairnsmtb.com/ on the calendar and Trail Alliance Forum. The website will also be used to share pictures and video of trail upgrades we do. Please stay tuned and get involved in the Trail Alliance of Cairns.

By coming along to our trail working bees, you will be able to learn the correct approach to building trails which are sustainable and fun, and will hold up to the weather we have in Far North Queensland.

 

A word from the man himself, Glen Jacobs (Owner – World Trail)

“Cairns is where I am from and trails are what I love doing, so to see Smithfield Conservation Park grow into a world class destination where I can go and ride my bike in the bush, I am more than pleased to be a part of the Trail Alliance.

Smithfield is an integral part of mountain biking in North Queensland and the world and now is the time to repair these trails and bring them up to scratch using new trail technologies, and methodologies which have long lasting benefits for the environment and us, as trail users.”