Playing in Dirt: Muddbunnies TAP Dale’s Trail


_F2B1638 (534x800)Words: Moniera Khan
Pictures: Berglind Hafsteinsdottir & Gina Hopper

A couple of weeks ago Muddbunnies put a call out for volunteers for their trail day. The trail was Dale’s – probably not something I’m riding anytime soon – but trail karma doesn’t care, as long as you do your share of the work. So I signed up to help out.

We spent all day playing in dirt. I went through the bushes looking for rocks, then hauled the rocks over to where we were trying to firm up a line that was getting too smooshed up through the wet season. You know? Smooshed up? Like muddy and boggy and ikky.

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I got a quick lesson on building the rocky foundation – it’s like a 3D jigsaw really. Once the big rocks were fitted together we filled the gaps in with smaller stones. The next step was to fill the remaining gaps with gold. For trail-builder newbs like me, gold is the magic dirt that is a really stable base for trail building. You go a few feet off the trail and dig a hole. Once you get past the black organic matter you hit gold.

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My next job was digging gold for another section of the trail. I loved swinging the pick-axe ummmm … I mean the pulaski into the dirt. Once you’ve loosened some of it, you fill buckets upon buckets upon buckets of it. Another member of the chain gang hauls the buckets over to where the gold is being poured onto the trail. Singing the work song that the dwarfs in Snow White sing as they head into the mine is optional.

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I’m not sure if it’s digging in dirt, or the manual labor, or doing your share to support our ridiculously amazing network of trails – but working a trail day is deeply satisfying. Maybe it’s just spending a day outdoors with amazing people! It’s also a great opportunity to socialise with people you may not usually ride with. Being served a gourmet lunch trail side is an added benefit. Our chef served pizza with fresh arugula and truffle oil. There were brownies for dessert – I think she said something about  layers of ganache and Thomas Haas chocolate – but the happy sighs from the appreciative volunteers drowned out the details. We had chocolate – we were happy.

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You can find the trail day report here.