Monday, September 17, 2007

Nat and Rachael Lopes of Hilride

Nat and Rachael Lopes were part of the IMBA Trail Care Crew for 3 years and in that time had traveled across 46 states and 9 Canadian provinces. Soon after "retiring" from the TCC, they came home to California to form Hilride Progression Development Group. Hilride is dedicated to realizing the potential of the global mountain biking movement by helping with community planning and assisting with the creation of the facilities and trails to realize the full economic potential of mountain biking. Hilride has also assisted in running events like the IMBA California Ales and Trails in Marin County earlier this summer. Currently, Hilride is helping to develop mountain bike tourism in Croatia.

MBOSC hired Hilride to attend a meeting with our District State Parks office and help us do a trail assessment in Castle Rock. This assessment helped the District determine the multi-use suitability of the Castle Rock portion of the Bay Area Ridge trail. They also attended the MBOSC meeting that evening and entertained us with movies and stories of mountain biking in far away places.

I really admired their professionalism and experience. On the trail in Castle Rock they would immediately recognize issues and prescribe solutions. They educated the State Parks staff about trail issues which related to mountain biking which included safety, mitigating trail use conflict, maintenance, environmental sustainability and providing a great user experience. Nat and Rachael work really well as a team. Their experience and backgrounds perfectly complement each other. They produced a high quality trail assessment very soon after the walk.

I really enjoyed working with Hilride and I would highly recommend their services. If your community needs experienced mountain bike advocate/trail/tourism consultants then consider hiring them. MBOSC would gladly hire them again and we hope to work with them again in the near future.

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