It is strange how certain things suddenly happen, different bits slot together and a picture starts to develop. Various ideas have been around for many years regarding a mountain bike, walking or jogging trail following the Els River valley and gave rise to the Source to Sea project. The Glencairn Trail or perhaps Els River Trail or even Else River Trail (the word Else flow more easily on the tongue) proposal would be a means of discovering the Valley, a path for a family walk, a bicycle trail, a means of staying on a maintained path without having to "bundu bash".
Philippe Samouilhan, email address
is passionate about this...
Glen Ridge and possible walking, jogging and mountain bike trails
Philippe Samouilhan, an ardent marathon cyclist and cycle mechanic, was talking to me this morning about his passion of developing a mountain bike cycle track around Glen Ridge.
There are many hundreds of cyclists on the roads and, in Philippes estimate, a large majority of them would prefer to use a cross-country trail to risking their lives on the public roads. They would get their exercise, admire the view from different angles and generally get a feeling of satisfaction at their achievement.
Philippe has a mental plan of where this trail would go, very roughly marked in the Google aerial photograph above (this particular one would be 12 kilometres long). This would mean co-operation and permission from a number of organizations such as Navy, Table Mountain Parks, Rotary and others. Once the influential persons have got together and given the green light to this plan, a public stomp day would be planned. This would be a fun day where people would get together to follow a pre-marked route generally stomping, following the route on foot. Mountain cyclists would also join in and test the terrain!
This idea would, in a way, form part of the proposed Source to Sea path of rivers in the region such as following the Els River from Kleinplaasie Dam to Glencairn Beach. Shorter and easier mountain bike trails could, perhaps, go around the Glencairn Wetland up the valley, along Rotary land to the Navy sports fields for example.
This idea of mountain bike trails has been spoken about for many years, perhaps not reaching the ears of influential persons. It is not a wild, crazy idea for only a few bicycle maniacs, but a general family outing project for all. Obviously people could begin their trail anywhere along the course if nearer to their home, but somewhere there ought to be an entry payment such as for parking at the Rotary fields, security guards, picnic facilities etc. This point could come in for discussion later once the project is off the ground.
We cant wait another decade for this plan to start, there are hundreds of people who will enjoy this trail and the more it is used the safer it will be for lone walkers or cyclists.
Let us make it happen.