Our first trail day at Kent Ridge was dirt-licious! Everyone got some DirTy action and fun – what a way to spend a Sunday for the trails that we love.
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An eager trail crew + a swig of redbull = recipe for DirT-saster…
The group of eager volunteers gathered at Kent Ridge Car park A for a Sunday of workout.
Armed with books, photos and clinometers, I gave an easy brief on what are the essential elements for building a sustainable trail. Indeed what we are looking at are trails that will take the brute of weekly rides. In particular for the tropics, where rainfall is way beyond crazy compared to most places, proper trail building technique know how is a lot more important.
We were lucky to have Redbull popping by to fuel the group.
Just like what is written in redbull knowhow, in exactly 20mins the cans of redbull and caffeine kicked in giving the workforce a good ‘bull’ run. Ready set GO!
The Shore deserves a good bath…
Today’s objective is to prepare ‘the shore’ for riding, do something to the fallen log and save the precious trees.
With much of the construction materials and old rubbish dumped into that area still buried and remaining uncleared, the Shore hasn’t been a very safe place to ride. We certainly don’t want to see riders getting into trouble while negotiating this first skills park of its kind in Singapore.
We were glad to see volunteers and some new faces in the bunch of trail builders. And always happy to have Monero, Liyana and PeiYi from National Parks Board helping out and getting ‘DirTy’ too.
With left-over wood, we constructed a new entrance and exit at the apex of the old bend, giving a nice ride down for newbies and a less muddy landing for those who want to dropoff.
Samuel became our wheelbarrow man, navigating the wheelbarrow nicely on the skinnies to ferry material on and off the site. Meanwhile, Nik started a good archeological dig, where broken porcelain and glass shard are dug out, even after a serious excavation of at least half a feet. Darn! We don’t think anyone wants to land on those!
Old dumping dating back to a very long time ago really makes this place dangerous. Apart from the glass fragments, we managed to dig out some big fat car wheel, lots of rebars, telephone wires and a whole bunch of plastics buried somewhere.
Dump the Stumps; Remove the Trunks
With the team of 15 volunteers, we managed to move 3-4 big redundant trunks to a safer place, allowing for safer fall zones in the event of bailout while negotiating the technical trail features. Old stumps are not spared as these are potential impalers when a bad fall occurs.
With most of the natural trunks and branches taken out from the skill park, we shifted our focus to the recently
1.5ft in diameter trunk which had recently fallen right in the middle of the trail. We explored the An idea placing a small ramp on the trunk so to turn it into a trail feature. After a few rounds of trial and error, this offcamber obstacle is simply not offering the flow needed to follow through nicely.
With the help of riders who appeared on the trail, and assisted by the brute force of [RED]bull power, the big trunk is pushed aside.
Until we find a better use for that trunk, it’s going to stay off the main trail.
After 2 hours of toiling, clearing trunks and rubbish, we shifted our focus to the next point : the ‘My Precious’ tree.
This was a very badly abused area as cyclists stray off track at around 4 different points, creating more avenues for further errosion.
With future reroutes in mind, we did a temporary fix to recover and redefine the trail so that the original lines are used instead of those new illegal clearings.
We certainly hope the community will help by not straying off the trails, otherwise the mountain biker may in the eyes of the public be seen to be a bunch of environmentally irresponsible people.
With 3 solid hours of work, we will be able to present a safer skill park, Still, one should be cautious when riding on that skill park – and ride within your skills level!
We would like to thank all who gave up their Sunday morning so that others can ride more safely :
- Pei Ling
- Ling the Merciless
- Pei Yi
- Ian Krempf
- Jason Tan
Until the next trail day, have fun riding! ..
Photos available here (courtesy of Ling the Merciless)
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