Sometime back we received an email from a regular Park user wondering if there was more we could do to encourage birdlife.
We posted it on our facebook page and it seemed many of our Park friends approved.
Now, our committee already works pretty hard in managing the Park so we did the obvious thing - we asked this individual if he would like to come on board and follow through on his suggestion!
We're happy to say that Rod Markham agreed to being co-opted and, with fellow committee member and DOC Biodiversity Ranger, Ross Maley, set about contacting local groups already active in promoting birdlife in the region.
They are currently investigating how best to establish a baseline count of bird species and numbers, determining which tracks to use for a 'trapping ring', what type of predator trap to use and how to fund their purchase.
From Rod's report, "This initial circuit is just over 4km requiring 42 stoat/rat traps at the normal 100m spacing. Around $5000 will be required to set this up. Once this ring is in place we can add some traverse lines and rat traps, then, further down the track (sic), extend the trapping further out into the Park."
We see a real opportunity for Park neighbours and supporters to be involved in this project, either by funding traps or, once established, helping to monitor trap lines. We have already received some donations towards traps and welcome more!
If you would like to contribute you can either write a cheque to Kaiteriteri MTB Park, enclosing a note referencing Park Birdlife, and post to 136 Thorp St. Motueka 7120.
Alternatively, you can direct debit to the Park account 031354-0291348-00, referencing the same.
If you would like to specifically sponsor a predator trap @ $100, please reference Predator Trap and include the sponsor name.
Meanwhile, you can follow updates via our facebook page.
There's been a bit of signage going up around the Park lately: track marker posts, No Exits, etc.
You may notice this one - both a request and a riding tip :)
We find that skidding usually happens when people approach a corner too fast, then grab their rear brake.
Unfortunately, skidding breaks up the surface soil and, when it happens repeatedly, ruts soon begin to appear. And where there's a rut - water will find it!
Especially on Kaiteriteri's erosive granite soils, deep ruts can develop quickly, making a section of track unrideable.
If skidding is part of your normal riding style, there are options...
You can take a skills workshop that teaches you how to brake effectively without skidding;
You can disable the rear brake to gain more confidence in the front (a good technique for beginners);
You can ride elsewhere.
Those of you who are already skilled riders who can descend steep tracks without your rear wheel locked up will enjoy the revamped Velocity. Most of the major ruts have been removed and we will be monitoring this track over the next 12 months to see how well it holds up. If it passes muster, we'll consider similar remedial work on Flamin' Nora and Rockface.
We've just recommenced work and are in the process of going over the whole of ER once again, fine-tuning the drainage and removing the slips that have occurred in the meantime.
It's important that those sections we've just groomed get a chance to settle before people ride them. You'll know which ones they are because they'll have tape across them and, usually, a notice explaining why.
Riding them before they are ready creates ruts which means the whole grooming process must be repeated (you also might meet us working on the track and you really, really, don't want to do that!).
You may feel we're being a bit precious for a mtb track but the Grade 2 standard for Easy Rider, as part of the regional cycleway, is that the surface must be smooth for funding to be released. So, as always, thanks for your cooperation and help spread the word :-)
Finally, I took my bike to Utah last month. Shouldn't have left it out in the sun...