out the majority of the trail, while Fairfax
resident and youth-mountain-biking coach
David Simon helped coordinate the volunteer effort. Others assisted with trail design,
brainstorming and fundraising.
“There’s been a tremendous response from
the mountain bike community, because it is so
needed,” Simon notes. “People go on vacation to
ride mountain bikes in Whistler. But they don’t
have anything like this trail here in Marin. The
people who get it are so enthusiastic.”
Most single-track trails (a narrower trail
for hiking and sometimes biking) in Marin are
off-limits to bikes, a provision not necessar-
ily adhered to by all bicyclists or enforced by
all agencies. This has contributed to regular
clashes among individual trail users and deep-
seated mistrust among some groups that has
simmered — and occasionally boiled over —
throughout Marin over many years.
Simon and Jacobsen think the new flow
trail will help ameliorate such tensions. For
one thing, it’s on private land, out of the way
for anyone who doesn’t want to be there. (In
fact, it’s a bit out of the way for everyone,
requiring a 45-minute hike or 20-minute bike
ride from downtown Fairfax.) It should also
draw bicyclists away from other trails they’re
not allowed to use. Access requires purchasing an annual or $5 day pass, available online
and at local bike shops.
More important, it could offer a new model
to Bay Area land managers for reducing
trail conflicts and building safe, sustainable
trails, Jacobsen says. Unlike broad fire trails,
which allow riders to attain speeds of up to 50
miles per hour, the flow trail’s hairpin turns
limit top speeds to around 15 mph. Its single
direction of travel eliminates head-on confrontations. Multiple lines allow safe routes
for advanced-beginner, intermediate and
advanced riders. And the trail’s contours were
carefully planned to retain natural drainage
and reduce erosion.
“This project is a big step in the right
direction,” Simon reflects. “I think there’s
good potential for it to be a good resource
for the community and for it to be a win-win
for everybody.” M
the center of it all!
Leslie’s Pool Supplies l Marshalls l DSW l Panera Bread
francesca’s l Target l Costco l Sephora
Over 50 stores and restaurants, conveniently located off
of Highway 101, Rowland Boulevard exit.
Visit us online at marinmagazine.com/
flow to see a video of mountain bikers
riding the new trail.