Yep, after several months of weekly working bees through our wettest winter ever, we finally achieved the breakout of our latest trail, Skullduggery!
Working half-way up the steep-sided flanks of the Kaiteriteri ridge, this wholly hand-benched track has been a mission. Encountering slabs of granite rock, thick, entwined ropes of beech tree roots, pine trees and boggy gullies, every metre has been hard won.
Along the way we've had some dramas which, for those of us who worked on it, added to the sense of relief & accomplishment. In the process, many of our Park volunteers have learnt alot about track-building - not least the great feeling of camaraderie that develops amongst the w/bee regulars. While I can admire someone's riding skills, I reserve my respect for those that willingly devote hours of their time to building tracks for others to enjoy.
The crew above represent just a few of those that have contributed to Skullduggery but were the ones who were able to respond to the call last Sunday. Striking a Gandalf pose on the left is Michael Brewer, who surveyed the route, while forming a hobbit-like crew to the right is, from the front, Bryan Cohen, Steve Newport, Michael Fenwick, Ash, Murray Puklowski, Ian Marshall, Paul Herrick, Carl Thomas & Craig Skillicorn.
Skullduggery forms an integral part of our Intermediate track network that starts with Ziggy and will eventually intersect with Bay View at the junction with Rock'n'Roll. For now, it terminates at Flamin' Nora, an expert-grade descending track. While good intermediate-level riders will enjoy sections of FN's beech-forested spur, we recommend you walk the steeper bits if you find yourself out of your skill-zone.
Alternatively, you can turn around and anjoy Skullduggery 'in reverse', perhaps trying the lower, advanced-grade, section of Velocity back at the start.
Work will continue on Skullduggery for some weeks yet as we widen the track's narrower sections and generally improve the flow. A 6m bridge will also be constructed over the Flamin' Nora stream.
So, for the time being, the working bee emails will continue to be a welcome arrival in your Inbox until Sunday, Dec. 5 when we'll all pause to celebrate our year's achievements with a Volunteers & families Barbeque on the Beach.
We'll remind you nearer the time but get it into your diary now - you've earned it!