New trails coming to Days River Pathway area

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GLADSTONE, Mich., (WJMN) – Delta County Non-motorized Trails will start putting in 22 miles of new trail in the Days River Pathway area.

The trails will be single-track mountain biking trails. According to Rick Elrod the secretary for DCNT, they will be working closely with the DNR to put the trails together. The project is a continuation of one started several years ago as an initiative to bring more tourism to Delta County.

“The Bays De Noc convention and visitors bureau back in 2015 hired IMBA the International Mountain Bike Association to come in and do a plan proposal for single-track at Days River,” said Elrod. “So we’re really excited to kind of take that proposal and run with it, make some tweaks to it with the DNR.”

Elrod, says they will be adding several loops with varying difficulty levels. They’ll be using the former trail plan as a guide, but making changes so that it fits with the current trail system.

“Our next steps now will be working with the DNR to go out and flag the specific route out on the property and kind of narrow down where the path is actually going to go,” said Elrod. “We have a general outline, and overview of the route and the trail, we just need to focus that in a little bit more.”

The trails will be constructed with mostly volunteer help according to Elrod. Most of the work will be done by hand starting with leveling off the ground. They will need to clear the sand and then pack down the dirt underneath. He says they are selling merchandise on their website and will be applying for grants to fund costs associated with the project.

“We’re hoping in the future to get access to some heavier equipment like mini excavators whether that’s renting or purchasing our own or even working with a trail contractor to kind of speed along that process and help in building the trails,” said Elrod. “For now we’re going to get started with a group of volunteers and get out and get our hands dirty”

Elrod says the project could take a few years until it is complete. It can take volunteers a year of work to get a few miles of trail done. They’ll be starting in the Fall or early spring, as soon as they’ve marked out the routes.

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