Autumn Holidays! : August/September 2019
Dear Trail friends! After another successful couple of sessions, one at the famous Greenhill Pyramid feature and the second at a persistent wet section on Masterblaster, Glen Tanar - let’s talk about what’s coming up in September!
At the last committee meeting we noted that the core group has genuinely done more digging than they have riding this year, so September is an ideal time to take a breather on the trail sessions. We hope you won’t mind also taking a break from the draining, pruning, clearing, berming, rockery and de-vegetating?! So – lets go riding!
There will be some shout-outs on Instagram/Facebook and through the events page on the website for ATA social rides coming through the digital airwaves, so keep an eye open. We will take a moment to ride some of your well maintained trails of 2019; some prospective project trails for 2020. These will be wholly social rides. You are riding at your own risk, are responsible for your own bikes, protection and riding choices. Just all good vibes on good trails.
Demand for ATA support is increasing and we have some exciting community projects to develop in the next chapter of the ATA’s existence. Therefore what better way, than on two wheels on our fantastic hills, to hear from your committee about where the ATA is going next, how the longer term vision is developing, give us your ideas and feedback.
We have a small amount of Medium sized ATA riding jerseys left. These are the last of a limited design so grab them while you can! Why not add a matching mud guard also?
Lastly, check out Cycle Highlands and Bennachie Bike Bothy who are both stocking ATA mud guards. Clark at Bennachie Bike Bothy is coupling the mud guards with frame protection also.
Racing Through July
Firstly, apologies for the late update but it has been a super busy month!
Things happening in the region:
Doon the Brae Events ran the Aberdeenshire Enduro Series race at Glen Tanar wich was very well attended. The ATA alteration to the foot of Masterblaster meant that this wonderful trail was able to be used without riders exiting directly to a 60mph road. Feedback was good from the riders, where the trail had added distance and required endurance and flow skills to maintain race pace, which is tricky after riding hard for the first three quarters of this trail.
The ATA were kindly invited to participate at the Bennachie Bike Bothy/Bird Bikes Demo day, held at the wonderful Bennachie visitor centre. Ride outs and coaching sessions were held in this massively iconic landscape, showcasing what the area could achieve if natural trail mountain biking was further developed in appropriate areas of this range of hills.
The ATA have been very active in trail work to increase durability at Pitfichie so that the very popular Scottish Enduro Series, run by No Fuss Events, wouldn’t have a detrimental effect on trails used regularly by the Aberdeenshire community. We are very grateful to the support that No Fuss has provided the ATA since inception and look forward to a really positive relationship in the future. The trails were really well received by riders and the event was a fantastic one to be involved in as the ATA opted to set up a Water-Stop at the half way station.
Many thanks to all those who bought jerseys, mudguards and donated cash to our Trail Fund over the Pitfichie race weekend. Our social media interaction increased 400% over the race weekend, so hopefully positive trail vibes are reaching a wider audience. The Monymusk community also supported this event and would welcome its return in the future!
We will continue to commit the first Saturday of every month at Pitfichie as one of our only purpose made mountain bike community assets. The next trail session is the 3rd August – see our events page for more details.
WideopenMag began filming a piece on mountain bike growth in Aberdeenshire this month and the ATA were lucky enough to be invited to show pro-rider Chris Hutchens the work completed at Dee Drop in Scolty, followed by a short interview. We will be sure to link the final edit into our social media.
Our limited edition custom printed, Ride-it Scotland Jerseys have flown out the door! So much so that we only have medium sizes left! However the merchandise has grown with the addition of a very stylish mudguard. See our Support page for more details!
August will seem relatively quiet by comparison, but maybe that’s a good thing. Late 2019 and future 2020 projects are being scoped and conversations continue with land owners and managers, local businesses and community groups for future strong and positive collaborations.
June 2019! Are you ready for Summer yet?
My goodness, what a month it has been!
The ATA were represented in Demark for the IMBA Summit by Doug and Will who presented to the audience on our unique region, the opportunities and great work that all you as volunteers are achieving. Importantly our very own Tom Cole was awarded International Trail Advocate of the Year! A fantastic recognition of Tom’s work but also a huge boost for the region’s profile! Please spread the word.
Earlier in the year the ATA began registering all our events with the Take Care of Your Trails campaign. We are pleased to say that it looks like Aberdeenshire hosted the largest amount of trail work in the UK during this campaign! Well done to all the volunteers who turned up and made this possible!
And what about the Take Care of Your Trails raffle to win a Specialized Stuntjumper? Well, hold the phone - The ATA were chosen as one of only four groups around the world to receive a share of the fund raising from that raffle! Watch this space for updates on this funding release!
Have you ordered your ATA Custom Riding Jersey yet? Great feedback, great product, great design, cool features, represent the region, support the trail work! Email us with your size and PayPal address and we will invoice and deliver your jersey! The current stock are on sale at a superb introductory price of £34 + £5 delivery (or collect for free).
The ATA kicked off the summer season with the first evening trail session at Pitfichie. Kindly supported by Pizza Box Scotland and Bennachie Bike Bothy over 40 fantastic volunteers devoured fine pizza and hit the Whitelady/Boglouster trail to invest some flow back into the corners of this fantastic trail.
We kicked June off in style at Fort William World Cup where Will, Chris R, Doug, Aspen and Angus prepped and taped the Mini DH race course! Great feedback from all the little rippers set to shred! Scottish Cycling were very grateful and will make a donation to the ATA for the efforts. Then came race day….. well I am sure you all know by now that it was an absolute classic world cup race which reiterates Scotland as a class destination!
So what’s in store for the rest of June? More trail dig sessions of course. Check the Upcoming Events page for…..the upcoming events!
May the Force Be With You!
Wow! We cant believe May is here already. Trail conditions have been wildfire dry and now soaking wet. Crazy weather! The ATA’s good work has continued with a trail diversion at Glen Tanar, which will contribute to the Doon the Brae event later this year, and our continued work at Pitfichie. The was all delivered as part of Take Care of Your Trails Month and it looks like Aberdeenshire might top the league for most work conducted in Scotland, if not the UK! As always, thanks to all the brilliant volunteers!
New work dates have been posted on the Upcoming Events page. Get involved! We’d love to have your input.
What will be happening in May? We are aiming to complete Cairn William on the 4th of May, then begin targeting some of the other trails in this area in collaboration with No Fuss Events and representatives from Gravitate North East. Watch this space for a new work venue coming soon!
The Forestry Commission Scotland/Forest Enterprise Scotland have restructured themselves to become Forest and Land Scotland. The ATA are really proud to be working with FLS to keep riders safe during extensive planned forestry works at Pitfichie during May. Watch our social media for updates.
We will also see another group of riders become trained trail inspectors and coordinators through support from DMBinS and the ATA. We look forward to doubling the association size and capability in the near future!
Check out our support page for new merchandise dropping soon! Who wouldn’t want to represent the region when out in the hills and forests!
With so much going on, please keep in touch via Instagram and tag us in all your great riding shots. May the 4th be with you!
Spring has Sprung!
Great to see the local trail conditions are improving after the winter! April is going to be a busy month in the region with multiple groups hosting Take Care of Your Trails events. The ATA events kick off on the 6th April with more to come throughout the month. We will keep you updated through the usual channels!
The ATA has had some really positive industry interest recently and we are actively looking for mountain bike related businesses who could offer support for the ATA’s mission as well as cross marketing collaboration. Be in touch!
We shall be launching an online survey soon to find out more about our community and how we can evolve the ATA to the next level. Of course we shall be massively grateful for your input - thanks in advance!
With support from Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland, there is to be another round of funded training in the subjects of Trail Inspection and Trail Maintenance. This is a fantastic couple of days and was the foundation stone of setting up the ATA. Only a limited number of places are available so if you are keen to get involved and contribute to safe, sustainable trails in Aberdeenshire then send an e-mail with a bit of background about yourself, why you want to be involved and which maintenance dates you can attend between now and April 2020.
For more information, questions or to submit your application contact: email@example.com
The ATA has made another round of investment in tool purchases to keep our volunteers well equipped. We hope you enjoy TCOYT month and that everyone’s efforts help put Aberdeenshire firmly on the map as a well cared for trail destination!
Pitfichie is GO!
Welcome to the first news story from the ATA! You will have learnt a lot from the website, Instagram and Facebook already, but the real deal is now here.
We are set up with tools, safety equipment, insurance, risk assessments, trained staff and bundles of enthusiasm!
We are very pleased to announce that Forest Enterprise have approved our plans for a monthly maintenance session on the trails at Pitfichie, near Monymusk. We will be starting on the 6th April and plan to be working at Pitfichie for the first Saturday of every month for a wee while. Check the Upcoming Events page for more information.
As well as volunteering we hope you will all want to represent the region, wherever you are racing and riding in 2019. For this reason the ATA have designed some merchandise which will be released for sale and pre-order very soon. Your purchases will go along way to funding insurance and tools so that we can invest our efforts in Aberdeenshire’s Trails.
Hope to see you all on the trails soon!