West Australian Mountain Bike Association (WAMBA) is the state representative body for the West Australian mountain bike community.

A volunteer organisation, WAMBA works collaboratively with key stakeholders to identify, develop and sustain mountain bike experiences in Western Australia.

And also acts as a resource for clubs looking for help on trail advocacy and grants, and co-ordinates the racing calendar.

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The passion shown by the community over the past week and the clear desire to drive change has been incredible to see. . .

As reported in The West Australian last week, trail rehabilitation works done by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation & Attractions (DBCA) in the Kalamunda Valley caused outrage within the mountain bike community - A crackdown on illegal trails causes anger amoung mountain-bikers

WAMBA had a great meeting with the Kalamunda Mountain Bike Collective (KMBC) on Wednesday night and despite the problems over the last week, we see a lot of positives that can come out of this situation as we move forward. The passion shown by the community over the past week and the clear desire to drive change has been incredible to see and in most cases, is a credit to our community. 

Much has been said about the consultation that did or did not occur ahead of the rehabilitation works in the Valley. WAMBA maintains that the contact made by DBCA via the Association’s President Alex Wade on 31 May 2018 fell well short of “consultation” or even formal “advice”.  WAMBA requested more information from DBCA on 1 June 2018, so that the community could be properly informed of the intended works and the reasons for it. That information was not provided before the rehabilitation works were completed. WAMBA, DBCA and WestCycle are working to ensure this does not happen in the future.  

As much as our community does not like to see trails removed, DBCA is the land manager for much of the area where the trails are located. They have the responsibility to manage those lands and take out works as required. WAMBA has and will continue to lobby DBCA and others, so that existing trails remain and that new trails can be developed over time.

We also have to acknowledge, that based on the feedback shared on various forums, WAMBA is not doing enough to keep you all informed of what we do. As such, we are committed to providing more visibility on what we do for mountain biking. As a small group of volunteers we would appreciate any additional support that you, as an individual and as a community, are able to provide to help us do this.

To start things off, here are a few key things the committee has been working on over the past few months:

  • Policy 13: WAMBA has also been actively engaged in high level lobbying in relation to the review process, and is currently working on a response to the policy redraft. During earlier discussions, we were focussed on making sure that it was clearly understood that unsanctioned trails were an indication of the demand within the community.  Now that the initial consultation has concluded and draft policy has been released for stakeholder comment, our key focus is on ensuring that government’s obligation to grow the trail network outside of water catchment areas is recognised in the revised Policy. We are also focussing on making sure that the Policy is clear and easy to interpret. 
  • Goat Farm Mountain Bike Park: WAMBA is represented on the Steering Committee that manages the Goat Farm Redevelopment. The Concept plan is in the final stages of completion and will be released shortly. The Steering Committee is currently working on the grant application with Lotterywest to secure funding to move on to the next stage of the process - corridor evaluation and detailed design.
  • Jarrahadale, Turner Hill and Marrinup Reinvigoration: WAMBA is working with Southern Hills Mountain Bikers at Jarrahdale, Turner Hill and Marrinup. Work is moving forward on signage and repair of Yellow Brick Road at Jarrahdale as a priority, and sponsorship options are being explored for these trails. There is a maintenance day this Sunday at Marrinup and another planned for Jarrahdale in July.  Please visit the Southern Hills Mountain Bikers Facebook page if you want more information or would like to lend a hand  - https://www.facebook.com/groups/1422600544622675/.

We are also pleased to advise that Parks and Wildlife have commenced preliminary works at Lane Pool in the Murray Valley.  These are important precursor works for the trails planned for that area. 

As we move forward, WAMBA intends to provide a monthly newsletter to summarise what’s going in our community. We would love some help compiling and publishing this document, so please get in touch on via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you can spare a few hours a month to support this critical activity.

We also have our AGM on Tuesday 30 October 2018 and would love more volunteers to join the committee and help the Mountain Bike community get what we so desperately need - more trails. We all have a role to play in this.

Finally, on Friday WestCycle released a statement titled “The Future of Mountain Bike Trails in Western Australia” (https://westcycle.org.au/future-of-mountain-bike-trails/).  It is targeted at government and points out that the political decision-makers have plans on their desks to approve for more than 200km of trails in the Perth Hills alone. Let’s keep the pressure on our departments and ministers by writing letters, sending emails and demanding action on those approvals - not only for the Perth Hills, but across the state.

 

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