Awaba Mountain Bike Park Project – Car Park upgrade

So just why is the main car park closed – well the following pictures should answer that question.
 
As part of the overall Awaba Mountain Bike Park project the Club needs to deliver some important improvements to the infrastructure to better set up the venue for years to come. When the car park is finished it will be less prone to erosion problems, provide improved preservation and encouragement of the native foliage around it, and allow for a more structured parking plan. Future major events will also benefit from this upgrade, including increased (level) room for competitors to use as pit area, etc.
 
To help us achieve the best final outcome we really need people to stay off the area until the koppers logs and top dressing of gravel are done in the next two weeks. To help with this we have provided an alternate way to access the trail head – follow the bunting and arrows.
 
Along with the Down Hill finish area this upgraded car park will present well to new users visiting the Awaba trails, and will showcase what the ultimate goal is with the whole park. In the meantime we are also continuing work on the new trails – an update on these will be provided soon.
 

So where to now with the $450k Grant?

Well now that the dust has settled from the big announcement (a $450k grant for Awaba MTB Park if you are only just waking up from your winter hibernation) we are sure that there are plenty of questions out there about what we will be building and when it will all be done. Rest assured that our volunteer Committee are now hard at work sorting out all the details and this will be communicated to all the eager Club members and riders out there as soon as possible. In fact we are hoping that we can provide a bit more detail of how this project will unfold in early November.

But for now we need everyone to be patient and enjoy the Park as it currently is – we even fixed up the worn-out old Murderhorn for you just to keep you excited about what lays in store.
And before everyone gets carried away with their own personal game of “Fantasy Bike Park Build” here are a few important things to consider about this grant:
– the project will be completed in stages – we will not be given all of the money up front but will need to achieve specific milestones along the way to receive “progress payments” to allow us to achieve the full vision
– we will be engaging professional contractors to assist with key components of the project but will still be needing a huge volunteer input to allow us to develop all of the proposed trails, which you might be glad to hear are predominantly “gravity” focussed with plenty of “flow”
– there will be a massive improvement in accessibility to allow more members of the broader community to access the trail network – this means further refinement of the access roads and Carparks, installation of shade shelters, tables and other amenities, and increased signage, as well as trails for junior development and Adaptive MTBs
– above all this project will open up a load of options for further future expansion of the Park – the Road Gap Rd that many of you have already assisted with clearing will provide multiple high access points for other descending trails
– on the flip side this project is not about chewing up every single cent to build just one machine-built flow trail with 6′ berms and massive tabletops – this is about building a more diverse park that is in line with the current trends of MTB’ing, provides a broad range of offroad experiences to an ever increasing crowd base and fits within the beauty of the natural environment we have at Awaba.
It is our intention to keep everyone regularly informed of our progress with this project – stay tuned for some exciting updates within the next few weeks.

Trail Building Day – Sunday 7th October

AWABA MTB PARK TRAIL BUILD DAY

WHEN: Sunday morning – 7th October at 7:30am.

WHERE: Meet in the carpark at Awaba.

WHAT: Whilst it might not be strictly a yellow brick road, the proposed trail activities today will allow all riders to take a safe journey to a place of much happiness!

If we get enough Volunteers we will also continue to push through with the Road Gap Rd as part of the gravity trail development project.

WHO: Everyone is welcome!

WHAT TO BRING:

Sturdy footwear and suitable clothing and gloves.

Water to drink.

Sun Screen

Digging tools – metal rakes and McLeods are the best options if you have them

Friends and family equipped with all of the above!

 

 

https://www.facebook.com/events/495099400971866/

HMBA Update – a bright future for Awaba and beyond

Hunter Mountain Bike Association memberships continue to grow as the sport of mountain biking enjoys greater participation both locally and globally. With this popularity comes the opportunity to develop existing trails and facilities to better cater for core groups, attract new riders and entice visitors from other regions. Our elected representatives from local and state government agencies, along with awesome landowners like Forestry Corporation of NSW, have responded by providing development opportunities. This common goal caters for organic growth, prepares for the expected higher demand and provides recreational assets for a growing community accessible sport.

From its inception HMBA has always provided its members with exceptional representation, leadership and governance. It has a record of capitalising on opportunity and being on the front foot when changes in the sport affect the members – a reputation that the current committee strives to uphold. Recently the draft 10 year trail Master Plan was released and discussions with Lake Macquarie City Council and Forestry Corporation began to focus on a range of improvements to the Awaba MTB Park. These discussions included the establishment of the Road Gap Trail, the Flow Trail, the Intermediate level Down Hill Trail, an extension to the Adaptive Trail, upgrade of the access road and an upgrade of the car park. While all this potential development is pending, the club has been maintaining the existing trail network and continued to provide its members with racing opportunities throughout the Hunter region.

The club’s members are seen participating in the sport of mountain biking all over Australia and around the world, and in doing so bring back enthusiasm and ideas. On the back of this the club has now expanded its mountain bike advocacy to other local regions and community sectors. Club members are at the forefront with developments in the Port Stephens area (Gan Gan and Wallaroo), Kurri Kurri and Singleton; officiate at a senior level in MTBA and UCI sanctioned events; have gone into the community as coaches; advocate for the inclusion of people with a disability; and accept invitations from national bodies to take committee positions for the benefit of the sport.

Through its members the club is recognised by the sport’s peak national body, MTBA, and the Olney State Forest land owner, Forestry Corporation of NSW, as a model example for other MTB clubs to follow.  Aside from receiving the 2017 MTBA National “Friends of the Trail” Award and drawing up to 500 riders per week to the Park, this recognition provides an excellent platform to attract development funding from state based authorities and the private sector. On this front, the club has an expectation that it will be successful in being granted funds for the trail and car park development and will see those improvements completed in early 2019. On the back of this, discussions between Lake Macquarie City Council and Destination NSW have matured to the point where we also have an expectation of a tripartite agreement for funding large events at Awaba MTB Park over the next three years (2019 to 2021).

In addition to government based funding, the club has been liaising with Lake Macquarie City Council’s economic development company, Dantia, in collaboration with Forestry Corporation of NSW to facilitate potential for local businesses to benefit from what is expected to be an a new, State-significant, Outdoor Adventure hub. The Awaba MTB Park is located in a wilderness area that provides a range of outdoor activities including, but not limited to, abseiling, bush walking, trail running, orienteering, rock climbing, 4X4, and motorcycle trail riding. These activities attract commercial operators and investors. The potential for associated food and accommodation offerings is attracting interest from the private sector. Aside from being HMBA club members, you are all members of the private sector and these opportunities are available to us all.

It is at this point where we can now provide our members with opportunity to voluntarily and commercially participate in, and benefit from, the expansion of Awaba and the Outdoor Adventure Hub.  We would like to accept expressions of interest from active club members who may be able to offer the skills required to assist with the development of Awaba – the skills required include land clearing, earth moving, road building, bridge building, power and water supply, social media, engineering, survey, tree lopping, mulching, landscaping, building supplies, sign writing, bus hire, amenities (Dunny) hire, Solar power, general building and of course, opportunity for all to ‘carry heavy things’. Some of these skills and services will also be required for other developments in the area and in this regard the club can facilitate advertising and is always open to sponsorship from those members whose businesses would benefit from some exposure and association with outdoor adventure types.  Please use the website contact page or send an email to presidenthmba@gmail.com

So, from the current HMBA committee we extend our thanks to those who have gone before us and the members who are with us today for making this club the awesome entity it is. We look forward to working with you all, and welcoming new members to share these exciting times.

See you on the trails.

HMBA Trail Building Day Report – 01/07/18

What a day – lots of HMBA club members out and about with build works going on at Awaba and a special crew travelling to the Ourimbah Superflow to get the low down from the Rocky Trail Entertainment crew on the new HMBA timing system (yes, we have invested in a new computer and RFID timing system – more details soon).

At the build day we had over 30 willing and able volunteers braving the chilly conditions to make a huge impact on the Park. The rickety Mawks bridge is rickety no more with a brilliant makeover (and we do mean brilliant – check out the yellow deck!) – thanks bridge crew.
And on the upper reaches an equally massive effort clearing and grubbing on one of the planned new developments – the awesome Road Gap trail – this work was above the proposed finish area, so join the dots and figure out what this means for one of the club’s future directions!
Thanks to everyone who came and thanks to two of our favourite sponsors – Wyee Transport for donating the truck for the day and Carrolls Timber and Hardware for another load of building materials.
Awesome.

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HMBA Trail Building Day – Sunday 1st July

This weekend we will be undertaking another of our trail building days – these are always good fun and give you plenty of good karma, so come along and be part of what makes this club great!
AWABA MTB PARK TRAIL BUILD DAY
WHEN: Sunday morning – 1st July at 7:30am.
WHERE: Meet in the main carpark at Awaba.
WHAT: This will all depend on the numbers that we get attending.  We hope to be able to commence clearing some new areas in an ‘elevated’ section of the park as well as some work on the XC trail network.
WHO: Everyone is welcome! As the picture says, these trails don’t build themselves so if you ride in the park then come along and put something back in.
WHAT TO BRING:
Sturdy footwear and suitable clothing and gloves.
Water to drink.
Sun Screen
Digging tools – metal rakes and McLeods.
Friends and family equipped with all of the above!