Welcome to our first newsletter of 2016 and the first one since Nov 2012!

Chairman's Report

Hi Guys and Girls

Last year we came through a transition year where we made our focus 'Family Riding on Safe MTB Trails'. Our Focus was and still is on the Baakens Valley and with the help of CONTINENTAL TYRE we did a lot of work and it is ongoing. In the Trails report you will see detail progress where Andrew and his team are doing a massive job!! The Strava segments are taking strain under the relentless attacks from Strava'ites burning those tyres in pursuit of that eluding KOM!

In December we took on board PEGC and our partnership with them is blooming as more and more MTB'ers ride the 4.6 km trail around the Golf course! We have a beautiful trail head donated by Imbono architects and we urge members and non-members to register by writing their names in the book provided. It is not only about the R20 honesty fee for the PEGC but also to see who rides and enjoys the facility so we can focus on what the riders want.

It is one of our top priorities to develop a suitable link between PEGC and the Baakens Valley to extend our trails network. We have identified the route; it's just to DO IT!!

In March this year we partnered with Norm Hudlin (NH) and signed a contract to make this the 'Conti Fattracks Norm Hudlin Trails'. Most of us know NH as a family friendly safe place to ride your MTB. We will work on the trails and other facilities to open more opportunities as a Trails Venue. Fattracks Members ride for free!!

The building of our 'Trail Head' at the Profiles parking area has started! The Containers are placed in position and painted Fattracks Green and the wood cladding work is starting this week. We want to give it a name so people refer to it by that name as a meeting place for a ride and will ask on FB for suggestions. This facility will provide shelter, shade, seating and will run completely green with a solar system providing power for Alarm system and lights and water tanks to catch rainwater for water bottles and to water the 20 trees that we are planting there.

Exciting times for all MTB'ers and if you ride and enjoy and see the developments and cool trails and feel you want to help or contribute, the easiest way that will help us the most is just to JOIN FATTRACKS AS A MEMBER!!

See you in the bush!!

   PEGC Trail Head and Profiles Bike Park

The Trail Report

Greetings trail hooligans, sedate pedlars, newbies and weekend warriors,

Herewith an update on what's been happening on the Baakens Valley trails in the last month or so.

Firstly, the rumours are true, those chaps seen working weekly on the trails dressed in their kaki's and lumo orange hats are in fact part of the Fattracks Trail Crew. Further to this, they access trails in the valley using none other than... mountain bikes! The club has secured three second-hand 26ers and is in the process of building a small single wheeled trailer to carry all the kit required for trail maintenance. We've also developed some pretty mean hand tools to help the guys work as efficiently as possible. Nedson, Joseph and Rabson are very keen and appreciate it hugely when cyclists and runners stop to have a quick chat and appreciation their efforts.

The immediate aim has been to sort out some of the trails that are in poor condition and we'll continue with this until these areas are under control. The amount of work required to do this should not be underestimated and it's here were you can all help . Please support the clubs efforts by encouraging cyclists that aren't members to join the club, ride the trails and pay their subs. It's a simple mantra, "Help us to help the trails"!

Completed and in progress activities are as follows:

  1. Much of the trail from Profiles down towards Bridge Street has been marked with Fattracks arrows. Unfortunately, scumbags have pinched five steel posts on the profiles side and these will be replaced with wooded members.
  2. Some of the fast and furious Mayhem ruts have been repaired and many of the tyre eating rocks removed from both the "Twisty out" and "Twisty in" sections. You'll also notice that a lot of the Mayhem track has been cleared of loose sand and pebble. Unfortunately the persisting dry conditions have taken their toll on the grass and exposed sandy patches are growing rapidly! We'll manage these as best as possibly with being too invasive. A few additional berms have started to appear although these will take time to build to the required height. Much of the surrounding ground is hard and we're not in the game of mining substrate from other areas in the valley to suit our needs. The berms will grow in both numbers and height as the year progresses and suitable materials are sourced.
  3. Much of the Baakens downhill has been cleared of sharp rocks and a few berms sculpted. Again, a good few more are needed and these will be attended too and bedded down in the coming months. A couple bridges have also been replaced with units that are safer and easier to maintain. The approach angle to painted bridge below the club road entrance will be changed and the bridge replaced shortly. Further to this, some of the particularly sand sections before the upper bridge will have sand ladders installed over the next two weeks. It"s hoped that this will both limit some of the "awkward dismounts" that taken place recently and allow for vegetation in the area to recover.
  4. Sand ladders have been installed on the soft sand strip in Dodds farm. These work very well and make that section very ride able!
  5. Some exciting progress has been made with the reconstruction of river crossings and you will notice progress with this in the next few weeks. The crossing in Dormy Place will be tackled first as a pilot. We are doing this in conjunction with Baakens valley Action (BVA) and with the expertise of Professional Civil Engineers!!

We'll give you further summary of progress in the next newsletter but until then, ride with flow and enjoy our valley of plenty.

Cheers

The Trail Crew

Trail team and development

Competitions and General

Fattracks Monthly Strava Challenge

strava logo Fat Tracks will be launching a fun monthly challenge this month. The challenge is open to all members and all you have to do, to be in contention, is to record your ride on a particular Strava segment (which the club will identify for the challenge). Keep your eyes on our Facebook page and the Fat Tracks website for more information.

Fat Tracks Photo Competition

Instagram CompetitionWe are once again running a photo competition, with the winner standing to win a new edition Fat Tracks T-shirt. Simply take a photo on the trails and post it on Instagram with #fattracksmtb, to stand a chance of winning.

FATTRACKS CODE OF CONDUCT

  1. No Helmet... No Ride!
  2. No Bike Board... No Free Ride!
  3. Bike boards must be visible on handle bars.
  4. Respect land owners & property.
  5. Respect the trails and markers.
  6. Ride only on marked routes.
  7. Do heed to Golfers teeing off.
  8. Do not litter.
  9. Do not smoke on any trails.
  10. Do not interfere with wildlife.
  11. Do not feed or hurt animals.
  12. Report anything contravening this code.
Social Rides
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Watch our Facebook page and Whatsapp groups for up to date information on our social rides.

Don't forget about our social rides that happen on a Wednesday and a Saturday.

These rides are by their very nature social rides and everyone is welcome. The speed, technical level and distance are determined by the group that arrives on the day.

The Wednesday ride is the more intermediate of the two rides and is aptly called the Valley Ride. The Saturday ride is a family, beginner and childrens ride and is held at Norm Hudlin Trails. The only social ride that is organised and hosted by the committee is the Wednesday ride.

WEDNESDAY

  • Time 16h00.
  • Starting point: It varies, but normally at Walmer Golf Course (WGC) with a pick up at Profiles at 16:20.
  • Distance: Normally 15km to 25kms - depends on the group.

SATURDAY

  • Time: 14h30.
  • Starting point: Conti Fattracks Norm Hudlin Trails, just off Kragga Kamma.
  • Distance: Up to you. There are various routes from 6km to 14km.

 

Remember, we all ride at our own risk! No helmet, no ride!

Club links and Security

facebooklogonews.pngA quick word on Facebook

Earlier this year we decided to phase out the Fattracks Group page on Facebook and concentrate on our Fattracks Community page. Therefore the Community page is the "official" Fattracks club Facebook page.

Please facebooklikelogo.png us on Facebook and visit our page regularly to keep up to date with whats happening.

FOMO? Check these out...

Conti Meerkat Challenge
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