Building Mountain Bike Trails and Community Stoke in Tillamook County, Oregon
WRITTEN BY Jessica Dangerabout 2 months ago
When Marty Wisehart and Josh Venti founded Tillamook Off Road Trail Alliance (TORTA) together in 2018 it was with one goal in mind: to continue to build community in Tillamook County by way of trailways. Their website reads, “Torta is a group of passionate individuals who love mountain biking and love where they live,” and that is more than apparent to anyone who knows Marty Wisehart, president of TORTA.
<iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/365898184" width="640" height="320" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; fullscreen; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe> <p><a href="https://vimeo.com/365898184">TORTA - Grant Video</a> from <a href="https://vimeo.com/user4092220">NH FILMS</a> on <a href="https://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>
The impetus of TORTA was when the Sand Lake Project Area came available. “We have a couple private trails bordering there on Josh’s property and so we know how good the dirt is, that locale is second to none, it looks right over the ocean, it runs right to the beach, there's a lot of awesome details about it,” Wisehart said on a phone call about the project. “So it was obvious that we needed to form a 5013c and start a nonprofit to then go looking for money and do it the right way for sanctioned trails,” Wisehart said.
While they sorted out the paperwork and legalities, the group started to meet with the Forest Service, going out and scoping areas, flagging trails, and writing grants. “We secured three rather decent sized grants in a two year period and we are at the point now where the NEPA, it's what the forest has to do a NEPA study for environmental impact. That’s in its very final stage right now and in its very final stage of review... I think we’ve got like 38 miles of trails in there,” Wisehart said. “It was a lot of work.”
“One of the really neat parts of the story, aside from the obvious - all the volunteer hours, all the stoke, all the community coming together for this goal of another recreation asset here in an area that is dense in outdoor assets, is Josh and Jason,” said Wisehart.
That would be Josh Venti and Jason Wells. “Josh owns a landscape company here, and in his spare time, he builds trails. Turns out the world has deemed his trails the most amazing trails! They are damned good. He has had riders from all over the world - pro riders - have just gone nuts over the builds he does...They’ve brought on one of the best builders in the country, Jason Wells,” Wisehart told us. The trail system, currently being referred to as the Buzzard Butte Trail Network, will bring a mix of shuttle-access freeride, downhill, and all-mountain trails to the Tillamook area, with trail options suitable for riders of all ages and abilities.
Venti thinks it’s the perfect spot to build. “The Oregon Coast has some of the best trail building dirt and topography in the world. The sandy loam we have here in Tillamook county is ideal to build with: It offers riders a perfect balance of grip and speed, drains well, and never gets too dry thanks to the cool breeze off the ocean,” he writes on the website.
To help raise more funds for the trail building, which is set to begin in 2021, TORTA has kicked off a fundraising campaign with support from Norco Bicycles, Lolo Racks, Dakine and BUBS Naturals.
For the purchase price of a (gorgeously designed) sticker, you’ll be automatically entered to win one of four amazing prizes:
- •First prize is a 2021 Norco Sight A2- in the frame size, wheel size, and color of your choosing, valued at $3800 USD
- •Second Prize is a Lolo rack valued at over $600USD
- •Third Prize is a hydration pack, knee pads, waist bag and more from Dakine, a value of $250+
- •Fourth Prize is a collection supplements including collagen protein powder from our friends at Bubs Naturals
You can get your stickers and read more about TORTA and what they’re doing at their website. https://vimeo.com/365898184