Grooming Report #4

Date: 12/10/18

Time: 3:35

NWS Forecast here.

Well we had a stellar weekend on the Traverse City trails. We groomed almost the entire 22 mile system only leaving loggers run untouched. With the warming weather and the self grooming packing down the summer trench we will be holding off on grooming again until we get a significant amount of snow.

Cadillac, Glacial and Bike Leelanau (Leelanau State Park in Northport) are all waiting to receive more snow also.

My apologies to all of those who purchased badges at Brew and missed this weekends reports.

You can thank Dave Sunset Scott and Chelsea Schlick for poking me to add everyone and removing a couple very large leaning trees from the winter singletrack.

Don't worry about hurting the trails by riding on them there is not enough snow to do significant damage.

Happy trails,

Don't Wonder, Know: Get Your Grooming Badge AND Get Trail Reports In Your Inbox

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Your grooming badge doesn’t just put gas in the tank of our grooming sleds. It doesn’t just help us build and fix grooming equipment. It doesn’t just put well-earned beer in the cooler. It also gives you access to the most up-to-date trail reports around!

It’s weeks exactly like this that having timely, accurate trail information to decide whether or not to make the trip to the trail. Freezing temps overnight, sunny and above freezing daily highs, and only the odd chance of snow makes nearly every day this week a bit of a crap shoot. Luckily, those who have already purchased their grooming badges have been getting grooming reports!

It’s a system we’ve implemented for years now, and it’s proven to be one of the most useful tools fat bikers can use to plan their rides. Unless you’re lucky enough to live right next to the Winter Sports Trail, the Cadillac Pathway, the Winter Sports Trail at Leelanau State Park, or Glacial Hills, it’s often just a bit of a hike to get the trail head, and knowing the conditions before you head out can be key.

We offer grooming reports every single time we head out to work on the trails. Our groomers all over northern Michigan relay what they see on the ground so that we can direct riders to the best places to ride, alert them of any trail issues, and keep everyone in the loop for trail events. It’s definitely a great tool when we have a lot of snow, but it’s these more uncertain days that we can often help you save a trip to the trail for less than ideal, or even dangerous, conditions due to weather.

Trail reports come from trail crews at all of our trails, including the trails at Leelanau State Park and Glacial Hills. Because most folks don’t live close to these trails, they’re perhaps the most important to have accurate information on so you know you’re getting to experience the very best of these two very fun and unique winter trails. It’s been a ton of fun working to bringing you these opportunities, and we really hope you make the trip to all of our trails over the course of this winter!

We’re only just getting started for what looks to be a beautiful winter if we can hold on to the snow that we have! As always, use your best judgement as we roll into what could turn into a weekend warm-up; riding Monday through Wednesday in the morning may provide the best riding conditions. We should also note that muzzle loader season is still open, so while you’ll see fewer hunters in the woods, make sure you have plenty of blaze orange or bright colors to help keep everyone safe out there.

Don’t have your grooming badge yet and want to get those Grooming Reports in your inbox? There’s a lot of winter left to enjoy! Get your badge today and help us get things rocking as we await a long overdue blizzard.

New NMMBA Gear: Show Your Home Trail Pride


Long awaited and highly anticipated, NMMBA logo gear has finally arrived.

We’ve been talking about offering NMMBA gear for a long time now, and just in time for the holidays, we’ve finally made it happen! We just received a fresh shipment of NMMBA hats, t-shirts, and hooded sweatshirts and have them ready to order online.

Each color option is an ode to a different NMMBA trail system. By flashing your Bike Leelanau Blue or Cadillac Pathway Red, you’re showing folks where your home trail is and that you’re one of the hundreds, even thousands of trail users who volunteer, donate, and support these non-motorized recreational destinations. We’ve Glacial Hills Green and NMMBA’s new white-and-black look, too, and the hardest thing about choosing a gift will be knowing which trail they love the most!

Inventory is updated and accurate, so if there’s an item that's getting low, pull the trigger early to make sure you get it in time for the holidays. We’ll also continue to offer our logo gear in-person at events and rides. The next time you’ll see our stuff in the flesh is at our Annual Meeting at Timber Ridge on Sunday, January 6, so if you need anything before then, get on it.

We’re also gearing up big-time for grooming! We’ve gotten plenty of hopefully emails from locals and out-of-towners alike, wondering if any trails in the region have snow. Unfortunately, what little snow we had is largely gone after a warm and rainy weekend; a dusting overnight has us wishing for a lot more. On the positive side, the freezing temperatures all week should help get the ground frozen for the next round of snow, and with a chance of powder near the end of the week, we might have just a little to enjoy heading into Saturday.

If you do plan on hitting the trails, remember that muzzle loader season starts December 7, so wear orange and be smart about where and when you ride. You can expect some fast dirt from the Cadillac Pathway to Glacial Hills, and every singletrack in between! In case you’re looking for a ride to join, Friday Night Lights has kicked off for the season, riding from Timber Ridge at 6:30 each week. Remember to purchase your Timber Ridge pass for just $25 if you have your NMMBA grooming badge!

Grab a shirt, then grab a pal and go ride!

NMMBA Annual Meeting: January 6, 2019

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Meetings are never this fun! Join us at Timber Ridge on Sunday, January 6 to ride, eat, and learn more about our big plans for 2019 and beyond!

We work hard to keep our members informed and engaged with everything we’ve got going on, and that’s a lot! We’re working on trail days and a full season of winter grooming at the Winter Sports Trail, Cadillac Pathway, Glacial Hills, and Leelanau State Park. But beyond the next several months of fat bike fun, we’ve got trail proposals and trail building opportunities all over our region. We want to get our members together to let them know what’s on the docket, put more names to faces, and get in some saddle time.

We’re back at Timber Ride for a full afternoon of fun to kick off January. Just as the new year starts to get revved up, we’re calling on members to join us for a ride, a meal, and an opportunity to voice your own priorities, questions, and concerns. We’ll get things rolling, literally, with a group ride at 3pm, with at least two groups heading out to enjoy the Winter Sports Trail, including a few new miles that have been added for this season! We’ll all be back by 5pm to dig into a potluck, so consider bringing a little something to share.

After eating and spending some time to talk to all of our trail reps, we’ll have a short formal presentation from the board and highlight some of our goals for 2019, 2020, and beyond. You’ll get updates from each trail, a schedule of NMMBA events, including the Traverse City Trail Festival and Bear Claw Epic, updates on the Glacial Hills signage project, and a lot of big things happening in Leelanau County, including more on Palmer Woods.

We are really excited about what we have lined up to offer quality, natural, fun, and sustainable places to ride and reconnect with nature. The trails are such a vital part of the northern Michigan way of life, and we take that connection very seriously. Providing individuals and families a safe place to unplug and a great place to learn and develop a passion for mountain biking is at the heart of our mission. In 2019, we’re stepping up our game even more!

Make sure you check out the Facebook event to stay up-to-date on ride and meeting details here.

Urban Friday Night Lights: Thank You!


The second edition of the Urban Friday Night Lights was even better than last year! We had nearly 60 riders join us for a nocturnal romp behind the historic Old State Hospital Grounds to kick off winter in style, and raise some funds, too!

With rifle season in full swing, this is the second time we’ve opted to kick off fat bike season in town, and the first time we lucked out with perfect weather for it. Day-long temperatures in the mid-to-low 40s made the riding rather comfortable, but didn’t do much to melt the linger snowfall in the woods just a few blocks away from our start and finish spot, Brew.

We had nearly 60 riders light up Seventh Street on the way over to ride, with all sorts of groups sorting themselves out and putting in some very vertical loops. We were lucky to have Brew owner Sean Kickbush show us some of his favorite singletrack circuits, and Norte’s Varsity super-star, Kyan Olshove, absolutely shred the downhill descents.

Once back at Brew, we had dozens more friends and NMMBA members join us for some Short’s and Starcut Ciders refreshments. The Mosa cider was the hot (or cold?) ticket for the night, pairing surprisingly well with Brew’s famous homemade Cheeseburger-and-Beer Soup. We also got a chance to show-off our full line-up of NMMBA hoodies, t-shirts, hats, and memberships.

Altogether, we raised nearly $2,000 on the night, a huge help as we gear up for some ambitious projects, including supporting the proposed 11 miles of new singletrack in Cadillac, trail proposals at Lake Dubbonet, new permanent signage at Glacial Hills, plus winter grooming at all our trail networks!

Thanks to Brew and Short’s for hosting this event, and thanks to everyone who showed up and took the opportunity to reconnect with all their biking buds for the first time since Iceman at the start of the month.

Did you miss the chance to join up? You can always become a NMMBA member online right here!