Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Festival of the Trails 2011 Planning to Begin

The 2011 CAMBA Festival of the Trails will be held June 3-5. The first meeting of the Festival organizing committee will be held on Friday, Dec. 3 at 6:00 p.m. at the Rivers Eatery in Cable.

CAMBA invites any interested persons to attend the meeting to offer their input and assistance in planning and executing this year's festival. Meetings will be held periodically throughout the winter and early spring with occasional phone conferences. Individuals accepting leadership responsibilities with regard to specific festival areas or tasks will work independently under the the guidance of the committee.

Many hands make light work and we welcome your involvement and participation. If you cannot make this meeting, please let us know and we will keep you in the loop regarding future meetings.

Major tasks and festival logistics include:
Tour de Trails
Taste de Trails
Twilight de Trails (Friday night ride)
Teach de Trails (educational programs)
Saturday evening filmfest
Sunday grill out
Others TBD

For further information or question, contact Ron Bergin at 715/798-3599 or camba@cheqnet.net.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Snow Comes to CAMBA Country

The area has been hit by the first real winter storm of the season. Snow has been accumulating rapidly all day and is expected to continue through Sunday.

The ground is not yet frozen and as such the trails are particularly vulnerable right now and should not be ridden. Please do not ride the trails during these conditions - the potential for damage is as great as during spring break up.

Also, please note that the Wisconsin gun deer season begins on Saturday, Nov. 20 and runs through Sunday, Nov. 28. Trail riding during the day is not advised. Be sure conditions are appropriate should you wish to ride at night during this time - i.e. the ground should be thoroughly frozen and ride singletrack only - please do not ride any ski trails. Thanks.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

CAMBA Trails Receive IMBA Epic Designation

In an announcement Thursday from the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA), the CAMBA trails have received a prestigious IMBA Epic Trail designation. The IMBA Epic singles out the premier trails and rides around the country. CAMBA has been pursuing this elite status for its trails for many years. The CAMBA Epic is only one of six Epics announced this year and joins an elite group of similar designations over the past 10 years.

"This is a great thing for the CAMBA trails in general and especially for the specific trails receiving this recognition," says CAMBA executive director Ron Bergin. "This is indeed a feather in our cap, and something we can use to further promote the excellent trails of the Chequamegon Area."

The CAMBA IMBA Epic trail is actually a compilation of trails in the Namakagon Cluster. It combines the Rock Lake, Namakagon and Patsy Lake trails. With the exception of a couple short segments of linking double-track, it is otherwise entirely singletrack. The total route is approximately 31 miles.

Information about the selection of the CAMBA trails as an IMBA Epic is posted on the IMBA website and will also be published in the IMBA newsletter. To view the IMBA announcement about this year's class of Epic rides, go to: http://www.imba.com/news/2010-epics-announcement.

Friday, November 5, 2010

CAMBA Trails Back in Shape

A little over a week ago a near hurricane force storm rolled through the area. Southern Bayfield County was particularly hard hit. For CAMBA that meant a lot of trees down in the Cable and Namakagon Clusters, with Seeley and Hayward affected, but not quite as severely.

The good news is that the trees have mostly been cleaned up and all trails (except for a short segment on Ojibwe) are good to ride.

The lumberjack of the year award goes to the team of Stan Walzack, John Leighton and Dave Wiltrout, who collectively cut 444 trees while clearing the Namakagon Cluster Trails. "I'm a lumberjack and I'm O.K..."

Weather looks great for a bonus weekend of late season riding. Last chance before the deer hunters take to the woods, beginning Nov. 19 (trail riding not advised).

Thanks to all the volunteers who helped clean up all of the trails. It's been one of those years when it seems like this stuff just never ends.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

CAMBA Annual Meeting and Work Day

Join us as we wind down the year at our annual meeting on Friday, October 8 at the Sawmill Saloon in Seeley. A social hour starting at 6:00 p.m. will precede the meeting. Beverages are on CAMBA.

The meeting will begin at 7:00 p.m. with an agenda to include: election of directors, reports on the year’s activities and discussion of future plans. The meeting is open to anyone. Members in good standing may cast votes at the meeting if they haven’t already done so by mail.

CAMBA’s Fall Work Day will focus on the Hatchery Creek Trail. Plan to meet at the Hatchery Creek Trailhead in Hayward at 9:00 a.m. Projects will include couple of minor reroutes that need to be constructed to improve the sustainability of the trail as well as other incidental maintenance. Bring water, work gloves and wear appropriate clothing. CAMBA will provide all necessary tools and a sandwich lunch for participants.

While there’s still plenty of good riding left, this informally marks the conclusion of the season here in CAMBA Country. We hope you can join us for one or both of these annual year-end activities.

Thanks to all the volunteers who have helped us out over the season and to everyone who’s had a chance to ride the new singletrack trails for their kind words.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Friday, August 13, 2010

Birkie Offers Matching Donation to CAMBA to Build Single Track

The Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) is seeking donations to complete Phase Three of their single-track project that will connect the OO trailhead of the Makwa Trail to the Ojibwa Trail near Cable. If you've had a chance to ride Makwa, you know it's a gem. It's also fun to run and in the winter it will be great for snowshoeing.

The American Birkebeiner Board of Directors is offering the following challenge to mountain bikers and other trail users. The Birkie will match donations made to CAMBA after August 15 for construction of the new trail, up to $1,000 total.

To make a donation toward this match, send your tax-deductible contribution to CAMBA, P.O. Box 141, Cable, WI 54821.

The deadline to qualify for the matching donations is September 18 - Sunday of Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival weekend.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

IMBA Tail Care Crew Coming to CAMBA Country

The Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew will be paying a visit to the Chequamegon Area August on 5-7.

The Trail Care Crew is a professional trail consulting team hired by IMBA and sponsored by Subaru. They travel across the country and even work in foreign countries assisting and teaching trail clubs, land managers and advocates how to design and construct trails according to IMBA’s sustainable trail standards.

The crew will spend a couple of days assessing some of the CAMBA trails and on Saturday and Sunday conducting classroom and fieldwork sessions where local trail advocates can learn and employ sustainable trail construction strategies and techniques.

The TCC has visited the Chequamegon area in the past and CAMBA has learned a great deal from them about sustainable trail design and construction. The classroom and fieldwork sessions are highly recommended for anyone wanting to participate in local trail development.

Saturday morning’s session will be held at the Rivers Eatery in Cable beginning at 8:30 a.m. The field sessions will take place at a near by trail construction site.

There is no cost for the classes, but if you are interested in attending please register in advance by emailing camba@cheqnet.net or calling 715/798-3599. CAMBA will sponsor coffee and rolls, and beverages at lunch. Lunch will be available to purchase.

The classroom and field sessions are open to any agency or organization interested in sustainable trail design and construction. Affiliation with CAMBA is not required.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Summer Trail Work on Track

The CAMBA summer trail crew and a small dedicated corps of volunteers have been ticking off numerous trail work projects this spring and summer. Early work included the completion of a half-mile segment of the Makwa trail removing the trail from the Birkie Trail, which was utilized as a temporary connector, and the opening of a .4-mile segment of new singletrack on the Ojibwe Trail.

In Namakagon, a series of reroutes along the outgoing Namakagon Trail have resulted in some more challenging alternatives for riders on that trail. The original two-track segments that comprised parts of the original trail will now serve as less difficult alternatives.

On the returning leg of the Namakagon Trail, a couple of miles of new trail have been completed. This trail utilizes some fun terrain and natural features, plus the occasional constructed feature,. significant among them are Sisyphus Rock and a first-of-its-kind in the CAMBA system log ride.

The CAMBA Crew will soon wrap up its stint in Namakagon and move on to begin work on the yet-to-be-named trail from OO-north. The initial leg of this trail is about 5.5 miles. It remains to be seen how much will be completed, but the crew will be at work until the end of August, so hopefully another two to three miles. The project will target tying the trail off to an intersection with another CAMBA trail or forest road to allow return routes from the new trail.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

CAMBA’s Monthly Trail Building…Have some fun digging dirt!

Come help complete the Sugarbush connection to Makwa this weekend!

WHEN: Saturday, June 26 starting at 9am

WHERE: We will be meeting a couple of miles east of Mosquito Brook Rd on Phipps and walking (driving if you have 4-wheel drive) to intersection where Makwa and Sugarbush cross.

DIRECTIONS:Take Phipps Firelane east from Mosquito Brook Rd to a logging road between H4 and H5 on the Hayward cluster map. H4 is the intersection of Whitetail Trail and Phipps Firelane. H5 is the intersection of Loop Descente and Phipps Firelane. Suggest driving Mosquito Brook Rd to Phipps Firelane, then going east on the Firelane, unless you are coming from the east, in which case you would use Gravel Pit Rd off highway 77. Logging road will be marked with a CAMBA sign and some flagging tape. Logging road leads to the work site on the south side of Phipps Firelane. If you have 4wd, you can drive the forest road almost to the site. If not, it's a short walk from the Firelane.

QUESTIONS: Contact Darren Winchester mwinchester@centurytel.net

Thursday, June 17, 2010


$2,000 Challenge Remaining to be Raised

Please help CAMBA its singletrack trail building initiative by making a donation to the “Save the Trails” fund facilitated by the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival. When you do, Trek Bicycles will match your donation.

The Save the Trails fund is a program that allows mountain bikers to make donations to be directed to support CAMBA’s trail development efforts. Trek has generously agreed to match up to $10,000 of these donations. To date this year $8,000 has been received. That leaves $2,000 to be raised in order to qualify for the full matching donation from Trek.

Make a Donation Online

You can help CAMBA reach this goal by making a generous donation to the Save the Trails fund. To do so please send a check payable to Save the Trails and mail it to Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival, P.O. Box 267, Cable, WI 54821.

As you may know, CAMBA has been building an extensive network of singletrack trails in northern Sawyer and southern Bayfield Counties. In just the last four years close to 50 miles of new trails have been constructed. This is an ambitious and expensive proposition, however, costing $3,500 to $4,500 per mile!

Your assistance is greatly needed and greatly appreciated. Thank you for helping us make the Chequamegon Area one of the best places to ride a fat tire bike in the country.

Feel free to forward this appeal to all of your mountain biking friends, business associates and others who you feel might support this effort.


Friday, June 4, 2010

Festival of the Trails Update - Friday, June 4

The second annual Festival of the Trails is upon us. We have about 100 pre-registered and expect to reach 150 to 175 total participants.

Online registration is now closed. You may register on-site today, Friday, at Hatchery Creek Park beginning at noon. Late registration/pick-up will be Saturday morning at Mosquito Brook Trailhead beginning at 9:00.

The weather forecast calls for rain today tapering off into the afternoon.

The remainder of the weekend calls for 30% chances of showers - NO BIG DEAL!

We do not expect any major changes in the Festival agenda at this time. All of CAMBA's singletrack trails are designed to IMBA standards and drain very well. We do not expect the rain to have any impact on the trails, especially considering how dry conditions have been and how quickly recent rainfall has drained. We will monitor the situation should we receive a substantial amount of rain.

Have fun at the Festival of the Trails.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

CAMBA Festival of the Trails Set to “T” Off - National Trails Day and Appearance by Gary Fisher to Highlight Weekend

The second annual Festival of the Trails will kick of on Friday, June 4 and run through Sunday, June 6. Presented by the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA), the event will showcase the outstanding singletrack mountain bike trails in the Cable-Hayward Area of rural northwest Wisconsin.

“The event is intended to give riders a chance to explore the mile and miles of singletrack trails we have developed in the area over the past 10 years,” explains CAMBA executive director Ron Bergin. “We now have over 65 miles of pure singletrack trails and have plans to bring that up to over 100 miles over the next five years,” Bergin adds.

The Festival of the Trails is an ideal way to get to know the CAMBA singletrack trails, as well as some of the 200-plus additional miles of marked and mapped off-road bike trails that comprise the entire CAMBA trail system.

Fun is the word of the day, however, with a multitude of trail-based events that encourage riders to ride as many different trails as possible over the course of the three-day weekend. And the letter “T” features prominently in all of the Festival’s events:

Tour de Trails – a series of self-guided tours on seven different singletrack trails. Riders punch their Tally de Trails card midway through to record each ride. For each punch they get a ticket for random drawings at the conclusion of the event.

Taste de Trails – a rolling food fest over a 12 mile route where riders get to sample specialty foods from five area restaurants: Brick House CafĂ©, Mooselips Java Joint, Lakewoods Resort, Rivers Eatery and the Rookery Pub.

Teach de Trails – a series of educational events covering riding skills, trailside bike repair, building sustainable trails and an introduction to geocaching.

Test de Trails – an obstacle course where riders navigate tight turns, logs ramps, and other challenges without having to stop or put a foot down.

Twi-Night de Trails – a kick-off night ride held on Friday night.

Riders also receive a Tally de Trails punch for all additional events in which they participate, increasing their odds in the grand finale swag drawing. With 10 punches, they receive a five-ticket bonus.

Social events are a big part of the festival as well, with a Meet & Greet held on Friday, a mountain bike video fest on Saturday night and a grill-out party on Sunday afternoon. The Fest concludes with the huge swag drawing with over $10,000 in merchandise prizes to be given away.

A sure to be highlight of the 2010 Festival is an appearance by mountain biking legend Gary Fisher. Fisher has been credited with helping create the sport of mountain biking in the early ‘80s in Marin County, California. He has gone on to develop a line of mountain bikes and recently road bikes, which are produced in conjunction with Wisconsin-based Trek Bicycles.

This year’s Festival of the Trails also coincides with National Trails Day held this year on Saturday, June 5. National Trails Day annually celebrates the importance of trails across the country. Sponsored by the American Hiking Society, the day sees a wide variety of trail-based events, from trail openings and dedications to trail work to festivals and special events.

On-site registration for the CAMBA Festival of the Trails begins on Friday at noon at Hatchery Creek Park in Hayward. Many of the Festival’s events and activities are based at the park with other events held at other CAMBA trailheads. Mail-in registration is closed, but online registration at www.signmeupsports.com will remain open until Thursday, June 3.

For more information about the second annual Festival of the Trails, contact CAMBA at (715)798-3599 or camba@cheqnet.net or visit www.cambatrails.org.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Logging Resumes Along Segment of Ojibwe - 1.5 Miles Closed Weekdays

Begun last fall, logging has resumed along the Ojibwe Trail from C29 at the west crossing of Timber Trail Road to C28 at the southern most crossing of the Birkie Trail. It is not certain how long this job will take, but for safety reasons it will be necessary to close this portion of the trail during the week. Riders may use the trail on the weekend. It will be possible to bypass this segment by utilizing Timber Trail Road and the Birkie Trail.

Because work will be continuing in this area for at least several weeks, we will not be doing anything to repair or clean up the trail until logging work concludes. You may encounter ruts and incidental debris on or close to the trail.

Please observe all closure notices and do not ride on this segment of trail during the week until it is reopened. Thanks for your cooperation.

To reiterate, this segment only of the Ojibwe Trail is closed Monday through Friday until further notice. The trail will be open on weekends, but this section of the trail may not be in top condition.

Friday, May 14, 2010

CAMBA Trail Building Season Sees Early Start and Ambitious Agenda

CAMBA’s trail building got off to an early start on April 19 as John Leighton, Dave Wiltrout, Ken Brummel, and Stan Walczak started work on a short segment of singletrack in the Namakagon Cluster from N10 to N11 off Rock Lake Road.

Technically speaking, the trail work season for Leighton & Co. started the third week of March following the very early departure of this past winter’s snow.


Other work thus far has included building short segments of singletrack to remove the trail from two-track woods roads on the out going Namakagon Trail from the Namakagon Trailhead.


A short section of single track was opened on April 29. The trail features some interesting rock work and the most difficult sections have ride-around options. Riders have the option of riding the double track or the more difficult single track. This trail was built by volunteers Dave Wiltrout, Gary Meloy, and Stan Walczak, and CAMBA’s trail crew: Chris Ransom, Colin Davis, Kleighton Kuth and Nickolas Kunath.


Work continued into the second week of May with the completion of three out of six short sections between the Town Hall and N1. Each section has some technical trail challenges with ride-around options at the more difficult points. Riders also have the option to by-pass and continue to ride the double track.

CAMBA Spring Work Day
CAMBA Spring Work Day was held on Saturday, April 29. A small but productive crew completed around 400 feet on the one remaining segment of the Makwa Trail where it has temporarily being running on the Birkie trail. This section had previously been cleared and pin flagged and the gang built a cool piece of new trail. This section won't be opened until the trail progresses further up the Birkie, as there is no outlet. Project leader Steve Morales is anxious to get the Makwa off the steep hill on the Birkie as soon as possible. CAMBA’s trail crew moved to this project in early May and will work on it to its completion.

In addition, Morales and compadre’ Darren Winchester will be spending time working on the Sugarbush Trail flagging and brushing a section to create a Makwa to Sugarbush Loop.

OO to Ojibwe
Finally, two lengthy sections of the new singletrack from OO north to the Bayfield County line have been flagged. Working from the south, Stan Walczak and John Leighton flagged 5.3 miles from the OO Trailhead to Boedecker Rd. at S6. Ron Bergin has set a flag line from the southernmost point on the Ojibwe Trail south over Firetower Hill to a point east of S17, about 4.3 miles. This leaves a gap of about 2 miles or so that will be flagged this fall or next spring. This piece of trail traverses some of the most dramatic terrain in the CAMBA trail system and will result in a trail of considerable challenge due to the significant amount of climbing required to traverse the area. We hope to start on a portion of this trail later in the summer, but do not anticipate finishing it until summer 2011.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Wisconsin Bike Summit Coming!

The Wisconsin Bike Summit will be held in Madison on Wednesday, April 21 followed by a day of bicycle lobbying on Thursday April 22, The Summit will provide inspiration and practical ideas for making Wisconsin an even better place to bike.

The keynote speaker at the Summit on April 21 will be Andreas Rohl, who has led the charge in making Copenhagen, Denmark, the world’s best bicycling city. An amazing 40% of people who work or study in Copenhagen make their commutes by bike, and among folks who also live in Copenhagen, the rate is even higher – about 55%. This is a huge change from the 1970s, when the percentage of Copenhagen residents who used the bicycle as everyday transportation was in the single digits – not unlike in Madison today, where about 4% of commuting trips are taken by bike.

Andreas will give an inspiring presentation on the exciting bike innovations happening in Copenhagen and share ideas about how municipalities can make it easier for residents to get around by bike.

Following Andreas will be a presentation by “20 by 2020”, a group of Wisconsin government and business leaders who are working together to help Madison reach a goal of 20% of residents using alternative modes of transportation by 2020. They will discuss what they learned on a recent tour of cities in Europe where bicycle mode share is 25% to 35%, and what ideas could work here.

The Summit will also include afternoon workshop sessions in two tracks—Transportation and Mountain Biking. Topics include:
Implementing Safe Routes to School programs that teach our children how to walk and bike to school safely.
Strategies and opportunities to build more bicycle-friendly communities in Wisconsin.
Creating community partnerships for effective bicycle trails advocacy
Building an economic case for your community to develop & maintain mountain bike trails
On April 22, Lobby Day, bicycle advocates will inform Wisconsin legislators on the importance of cycling, both directly and through the $1.5 billion that bicycling contributes annually to the state’s economy.

Registration for the Bike Summit on April 21 is $25 and includes refreshments. Registration for Lobby Day is free.

To register, go to www.bfw.org.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Spring Trail Work Begins

The first spring trail clearing is nearly complete at Rock Lake/Namakagon. We intend to resume cutting the corridor for the new trail between N 17 and N 30 next week.
Submitted by John Leighton