Monday, January 13, 2014

Syllamo's Revenge and Subaru/ IMBA Trail Team Weekend

It's likely way too late to register for Syllamo's Revenge since registration opened yesterday and the race usually sell out within hours. Here's the lowdown, anyway:

Registration for the 10th Anniversary of the Syllamo's Revenge, which will be held on May 17th, 2014, opens tomorrow, January 12th @ 6am CST.  Due to Forest Service concerns of overcrowding, the field will be limited to 400 this year, down from 450 in previous years.  Registration for last year's Revenge sold out in less than 6 hours, so set your clocks, get registered, and take off for a training ride to prepare for 50 miles of single track that will test your nerve as much as your fitness! 

This year's Revenge be dedicated to the 50 Mile event only and will not include the NUE Series race.  That will allow more awards and increased prize money for all divisions, bonuses for all top 10 finishers and a $250 winner's bonus.  Check out the website @ for details and for the link to the registration site.  

I got the news just yesterday that the back campground is scheduled to open the week before the race, so more campsites will be available.  In previous years, all sites in Blanchard Springs Campground were first come first serve, but this year, scheduled to begin in March, sites will be able to be reserved in advance at  I'll let everyone know when the Forest Service has that ready to go.    

I've also reserved both group campsites that are adjacent to the start/finish area.  Those areas will accommodate a total of 60 tent sites.  I'm going to add an option during Registration to purchase those sites for both Friday and Saturday night for $5.  If you need additional room, you can purchase more than 1 site.

IMBA trail work is going on this weekend, and another huge work day is planned for the weekend of January 31st, and February 1st and 2nd.   There is no doubt in my mind that the trails will be brought back to the condition they were in when they received IMBA Epic status.  I hope to see a bunch of you in Mountain View for the work weekend!  

Be sure to like Syllamo's Revenge on Facebook @  

I'll see 400 of you in May!


Subaru/ IMBA Trail Team Weekend

IMBA is coming to Arkansas! Jesse and Lori of the Subaru/IMBA Trail Care Crew will be in:

Mountain View: Jan 30 - Feb 2

You are invited to join the crew as well as the Friends of Syllamo Trail for the weekend.

The visit features IMBA's Trail Building School on Saturday. This is your opportunity hang out with like-minded trail lovers while learning about building and maintaining sweet, sustainable singletrack.

Click on the town listed above for more information and to register.

You are receiving this email as an IMBA member or contact. Help us get the word out. Please forward this invitation to other area mountain bikers, land managers and trail users. The more the merrier!

If the events are too far away for you to attend, we understand. We sent you this email to not just invite you but also let you know about the important work IMBA is doing in your area.

We hope to see you there!

Marty Caivano, IMBA Field Programs Coordinator

Editorial Comment: Who Should Be Responsible For Trail Maintenance?

There has been some lively discussion among my Bike Nerd friends about who should be responsible for trail maintenance and repair, especially before and after events such as Syllamo's revenge. Some think that the promoter should have to get the trails in shape and then repair any damages done during the event since the promoter stands to profit. The general consensus is that there isn't any real profit in these events and promoters mostly put in the effort simply for the good of the community and to maintain the traditions of long-standing races. An accounting of the  successful Carpe Diem event held at Camp Robinson a few years ago showed that the riders' swag bags cost more than was raised through registrations and only through sponsorships did the race break even.
My opinion is that if the burden of maintaining the public trails on which most events are held falls to the promoter, then events like Syllamo's Revenge would fade faster than hydraulic brakes with a line cut. When it comes down to it, these events are the product of the willingness of a few individuals to put in a lot of hard work in organizing, getting permits, arranging for emergency services and port-a-potties, advertising, producing awards, and listening to a lot of complaints. Their reward is satisfaction and a few "thank-you"s. Add the job of fixing up 50 miles of single-track to the list and would-be promoters would likely decide to pay their money and enter a race themselves. That is, if they can find a race to enter.
I'm not deeply immersed in mountain biking, but almost all of the trail building/work that I've witnessed has been done by volunteers, either as individuals or as part of community efforts. A good example of a well-organized community effort is Salida Mountain Trails. Take a look at their website and see what good things can happen when riders get together and go to work with local bike shops and other stakeholders.

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