Thursday, November 5, 2009

October is Busy Month for CAMBA

The season may be nearing an end, but that doesn't mean CAMBA activities slow down. The month of October has seen continued trail work, special projects, meetings and planning. Here are a few highlights.

Successful Fall Work Day

Our fall work day this year focused on the Patsy Lake Trail in Namakagon. A relocation of a lengthy segment of the trail is underway to site the trail on easy-riding singletrack and remove it from segments of existing trail that have been or will be affected by logging and possible ATV use.

About 20 people turned out on the brisk Oct. 10 morning and were greeted by a light topping of snow. We worked until about 12:30 digging a winding trail through a pine forest east of FR 203. In only about 3 ½ hours, an amazing 1,310 feet of trail was completed.

This is a very pleasant riding piece of trail and a great addition to the cluster. It is quite easy, offering a nice balance to some of the more difficult trail in the Namakagon Cluster. Thanks to everyone who came out and to John Leighton for prepping the trail.

Makwa Trail Dedication

On Saturday afternoon following our morning trail work, a brief ceremony was held at the OO Trailhead to formally dedicate the recently completed Makwa Trail. A ribbon cutting ceremony (flagging tape as ribbon and loppers to do the cutting) included brief comments by CAMBA president Darren October Weekend 2009 014Winchester, Makwa project leader Steve Morales, and CAMBA executive director Ron Bergin. Winchester reflected on the hours, days and weeks of walking the woods flagging the route. Morales related his experiences working on the trail and expressed his gratitude to CAMBA for being able to realize his dream. Bergin thanked the county forestry department for the privilege of being able to build this trail on the county forest.

Once the ribbon was cut, CAMBA board member Harry Spehar headed down the trail for the "official" inaugural ride on the Makwa.

October Weekend 2009 015

CAMBA Annual Meeting

The CAMBA Annual Meeting was held on Friday evening, October 9 at the Rivers Eatery in Cable. A robust turnout enjoyed the evening's reports and discussion. Darren Winchester welcomed the crowd and introduced the board of directors and candidates for the two open seats on the board. Ron Bergin highlighted the many positive accomplishments during the 2009 season - perhaps one of the most successful on many levels, in the history of the organization. Steve Morales and John Leighton reported on the significant amount of trail development that they have overseen in Hayward/Seeley and Namakagon.

Two new directors, Matt Dale and Stan Walczak, were elected. CAMBA welcomes Matt and Stan to the board and looks forward to your insights and guidance in helping direct CAMBA's efforts in the coming years.

Makwa Boardwalk Completed

One of the final pieces of the Makwa Trail was completed on October 25. A 100 foot boardwalk, 32 inches wide, was constructed to bridge a low lying and usually wet area on the Makwa Trail about 1/4 mile east of Gravel Pit Road. The trail had been routed around the wet area, which due the continuing drought, has been fairly dry this year. However, in normal years this area is wet and impassable.

The boardwalk was constructed under the direction of volunteer Mike Haag, who helped pre-fab the components and deliver them to the site with the help of several other volunteers. From Thursday through Sunday, crews cut and assembled the beams, delivered the material and placed the footings. The final assembly took about 4 1/2 hours.

Steve Morales and a volunteer crew built an additional 300 feet of trail to connect to the boardwalk. The existing bypass will continue to be a part of the trail, so riders will have the option of riding the bridge, or staying on the dirt.


This project has been on the "to do" list since last fall, and it has finally been completed. It's a handsome structure and adds a nice touch of character to the Makwa Trail. John Saunders, who helped coordinate the logistics of the project, sends a special thanks to all of the volunteers who pitched in and helped CAMBA finish yet one more great trail project.

Planning, Planning

As one season concludes, the next one begins. Discussions are already underway in the CAMBA Trail and Festival Committees. Both committees are looking at the past season, analyzing our successes and shortcomings, and making plans for 2010. If you have any thoughts, suggestions or ideas related to either of these topics (or any other topic), feel free to email CAMBA with your input.

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