Slate Valley Trails News
Slate Valley Trails (SVT) plans to build more than ten miles of new trails in East Poultney this summer and fall. The network will include mountain bike-specific trails as well as hiking trails with a range of options for all abilities. Tim Johnson, local business owner and Slate Valley Trails Board chair, spoke about the group’s effort to make the trails accessible to all. “Our hope is that the trail systems we are creating will encourage community members and visitors to spend more time outdoors. To that end, we are building the trails for the broadest range of users – whether you are a seven-year-old first time mountain biker, a family of hikers, or an experienced flow trail rider, there will be something for you to enjoy.” Construction is slated for this year for use in 2019. Vermont-based trail builder Hardy Avery of Sustainable Trailworks will lead project. Each mile of trail takes hundreds of hours to build, and with a goal of building more than ten miles this year, it will be important to incorporate community support. There will be a series of volunteer workdays to supplement the professional crew. “Today’s trail standards have changed the way trails are built; trails last longer and are less vulnerable to erosion, but they also take significantly more time and energy to build,” said SVT Board member Bill Alexander. “As we work to build new trails and maintain existing ones, it will be key to continue to have help from volunteers and the community.” SVT currently manages more than 20 miles of multi-use trails in Poultney, Wells and the surrounding area. Recent trail projects include the construction of 3.5 miles of singletrack at the town-owned Delaney Woods in Wells, and more than seven miles of multi-use trails for all abilities at Endless Brook in Poultney. SVT also recently completed a project to plan and map 16 different gravel road bike routes, called the Slate Valley Gravel Ride Network. The rides showcase the scenic beauty, quiet roads, and charming villages throughout the region. For more information and to find out about volunteer opportunities, go to slatevalleytrails.org.