$48k needed to finish 9-mile loop trail in the Uinta Mountains
With construction set to begin this spring, the South Summit Trails Foundation still needs to raise another $48,000 to start construction on the second phase of the Slate Creek trail - an additional 9-mile loop in the Uinta Mountains. KPCW’s Leslie Thatcher has more.
The Slate Creek trail is the first mountain bike trail to be built in the Uinta Mountains. A 5-mile loop opened last year and the new president of the South Summit Trails Foundation, Corey Curwick-Dutton, says it’s been incredibly popular.
“We opened that in June and within 30 days,” Dutton said, “we had over 1200 mountain bikers using that trail, which is incredible for a new trail that hasn't been marketed at all.”
While they’re ready to launch the second phase, she says they’re still short the money they need to finish it.
“Unfortunately, the U.S. Forest Service has limited resources and even their labor for this new phase two of this trail, we won't be able to rely on the U.S. Forest Service labor this time,” she said. “We've been able to raise grant money $175,000 of the total $215,000 trail cost but it is a matching grant. So, we rely heavily on generous donations from people in the community to match that money that we've received in grants.”
The foundation will be rolling out a sponsorship program to give sponsors recognition on social media and if the grants are large enough, identifying signage along the new trail. To donate, go to southsummittrails.org.
Even without all of the money in hand, she says they will start on the project.
It's going to be almost a two year project,” she explained. “It’s a huge, massive undertaking up there in the Uintas with that challenging terrain that we're going to be dealing with.”
Meanwhile the foundation continues to try to get an off-road trail built between Kamas and Oakley along State Route 32.Years ago, a trail was paved from Kamas to Marion, but she says then it just ends, and the project hasn’t been finished.
“The county has sort of stalled on that,” she said, “so we want to urge members of the community to reach out to the county, attend the county meetings and voice their opinion that they want that – that they want that to be continued because they sort of stalled out on that project and funding for that project.”
The foundation is also working with South Summit municipalities to incorporate the trails master plan into all of their general plans. She says as the area grows, developers will be required to adhere to the trails master plan, so that trails get built in places where they can eventually connect with one another.