They say to achieve optimum health and wellness, one should endeavor to take 10,000 steps each day. But how many steps does it take to maintain optimum bike park health? Since the FAR Bike Crew started up spring trail work last Monday, the trusty old pedometer says we have been putting on about 18,000 steps a day per person. Depending on your stride length, that is about 14 kilometers each. While some may judge that distance as minor, consider all the steps behind the scenes that contribute to one Legendary Bike Park.
Our spring race began last week with a bolt out of the start gate. Of course, there is HR, safety and training type things that must be completed before our treads can even hit the trails. Next, segregated summer storage is emptied with stock and supplies safely delivered to their respective seasonal homes. Wood is milled and delivered, signs are machined, fasteners and other tools are ordered. Staff are hired, budgets are adhered to, and schedules are made. Events are planned, posters are printed, uniforms are assigned, and sponsors are secured. Chainsaws are sharpened, tires are inflated, and machines are fueled and enroute.
Now the pressure is on. Every spring our crew walks each one of our 42 trails inspecting for anything and everything you could (or couldn't!) dream might happen under 30 feet of legendary winter snowfall. We give each trail a top to bottom buff that includes cutting back vegetation, filling bomb holes, repairing major erosion, falling hazard trees, replacing missing signage, raking and rock picking. We also give our technical terrain features an in-depth review for rot and damage. When required we rebuild, reshape and re-contour where ever we can to give you the best riding experience possible.
This spring saw a deep winter snow pack melt over a very short period of time. For our crew, this translated to overwhelmed drainage channels and dammed up culverts which forced water down the path of least resistance to base via our bike trails. As we speak, lower Alternate Flight Pattern sits about 3 feet below grade, a river is still running down Trac II despite all efforts to re-route it, and I'm still not quite sure where parts of Rumplstumpskin are under all that snow. Fernie is experiencing a heavy rainfall warning today so maybe we will all need to bring our life jackets and dinghies to work this week. In spite of these challenges, we are confident that this will be the most legendary summer at Fernie Alpine Resort ever.
With general spring inspections now complete, we are transitioning focus on building new features and hammering out a couple of other surprises for preview weekend June 23/24th. We lucked out last fall and acquired a stock pile of perfect loamy soil which is currently being distributed around the mountain as new rollers and trail resurfacing on our most popular areas like Mr. Berms. We are also finalizing traffic control plans in the base area in response to the installation of the NEW Aerials Playground and Rippin' Zipline. It looks like Top Gun, Alternate Flight Pattern, Power Carve and CCDH will have an all NEW, dedicated bike lane bringing riders into the base; furthermore, we've spent a lot of time amping up Monorail and the Rockstar tree island in expectation of the increased traffic.
Stand by for updates on what happens in our next 216,000 steps. If you are interested in walking a kilometer in our shoes, Fernie Alpine Resort is hosting a job fair this week - check out our website, www.skifernie.com/summer, for details. Otherwise, we'll see you at the finish line on June 23rd folks.
Your Fernie Alpine Resort Bike Crew