While we have all been revelling in this incredible weather of late, with dusty trails and summer vibes, the knock-on effect on the work being undertaken on the Glentress Masterplan trails has been pretty damaging. The lack of rainfall in the past few weeks has meant that the important trail surfacing work has been difficult to complete, with on-site contractors OnTrack, having to use time consuming techniques to finish this aspect of the work.
FLS had hoped that the construction of the new trails would be complete mid–June, this latest setback now means that the new trails will now not open to the public until September.
FLS have stated that the trails that will be used as part of the 2023 Cycling World Championships XC events will be ready however the UCI have asked that the trails remain closed until after the event, due to some safety concerns.
We totally appreciate that this will be a real disappointment to riders hoping to ride the new trails over the summer holidays and a real issue for some local businesses and service providers who were gearing up for a bumper summer of new Glentress trails.
Please be assured that we are doing all that we can to find a way to support the folks and businesses that are directly affected by this.
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Glentress Masterplan trails off limits until September
Mountain bikers hoping for a sneak preview of the new Glentress Masterplan trails that are facilitating the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championship event in Aug, are to be disappointed after the hot, dry weather – and safety concerns - has resulted in the UCI team asking that the trails remain closed prior to the event.
The call comes after trail-builders, On Track, advised Forestry and Land Scotland that the lack of rainfall in recent weeks has made it more difficult to complete the trail surfacing work to an acceptable, sustainable standard by early June.
The safety concerns are that if the Masterplan trails were made accessible, fencing off the event features would be extremely difficult to police, which might result in some mountain bikers straying onto event features that would be beyond their capabilities as riders.
Martin Page, FLS’ South region Visitor Services Manager, said; John Dougan, FLS’ South Region Manager, said;
“We remain confident that everything will be ready to go for the main event in August. However, we’ve been asked that the new-build Masterplan trails are kept under wraps until after the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships.
“We appreciate that this will be disappointing but we know that everyone understands how huge this event will be for the area and would expect everyone to respect the decision and help give the competitors an occasion – and a course – that they will never forget.
“Everyone involved is working extremely hard to pull this together and is intent on ensuring that these new trails are built to the highest possible standard, so that anyone visiting Glentress from September onwards will be able to experience the Glentress Masterplan upgrades.
“We all want to ensure that Glentress’ first ever appearance on the global mountain biking stage is a huge success and we would hope that local riders will lend their support.”
Ensuring that the trails benefit from the proper degree of compaction means working with wet materials. In the current conditions, the only workable solution is to water the stone while it is being raked and shaped, which takes more time.
Not getting this right could mean that the lifespan of the trails could be reduced by as much as 30 per cent.
A period of rainfall would go a long way to further consolidate the compaction.
The wider trail network at Glentress will continue to be accessible for several weeks, although the Masterplan trails and taster tracks will not open until September.
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