Clearing mountain trails: 'We want to give back to what we're using'

LORANE, Ore. -- The local mountain biking non-profit Disciples Of Dirt spent Saturday clearing the trail system at the Carpenter Bypass of downed trees and limbs broken during last week's ice storm.

About three weeks ago hundreds of bikers came out to the area south of Lorane to ride in the Disciples' 10th annual All-Comers Meet. Disciples Of Dirt member Shawn Litson said the terrain condition has since deteriorated to the point where it could be dangerous for anyone to hit the trails.

"With low hanging limbs and potentially falling limbs, we need to get out here and inspect the entire perimeter of the trail," Litson said.

Nearly 50 members of the non-profit cleared logs, cut branches and moved stumps from the trails.

Litson says the Bureau of Land Management gave the Disciples Of Dirt the right to legally maintain the trail systems.

After spending several thousand hours of volunteer trail work, Litson said their teams have the trail work down to a science.

"We go ahead with loppers to clear the branches, so the chainsaw can go through and clear the main trees. People behind that sweep everything off and do any trail maintenance that needs to be done," said Liston. "We're mountain bikers and this is the terrain we like to ride. We want to give back to what we're using."

The disciples of dirt will be clearing the approximately trails spanning roughly 18-square miles over the next few weekends.