Karen builds a mountain bike trail

Santa Cruz journalist and mountain biker Karen Kefauver spends a day building a new trail.

Those of you following along for the past three years might remember the process of getting a new trail proposed and approved in Santa Cruz’s Pogonip Park. In spite of heavy opposition from some conservationists who want to preserve Pogonip for walk-only access, city council approved the new trail last April.

This came about in large part because the the Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz pledged to pay for and build the trail. Volunteers have busted their tails on trail work through the summer and fall. Karen reports on last weekend’s efforts on Pogonip and encourages you to sign up for the final work day on December 2.

The Santa Cruz city council plans to formally dub the trail the Emma McCrary Trail at 3 PM, Monday December 10 during the city council meeting. Emma was wife to Bud McCrary, who owns Big Creek Lumber with his brother Lud. Emma built most of the public trails used by hikers, equestrians, and mountain bikers throughout Santa Cruz County. Even into her 70s, she would stand on her horse while operating a chainsaw to clear limbs and brush from a trail. She continued with her trail maintenance work almost to the day of her death last year. The only concession she allowed for her illness: a chainsaw that starts with a push-button rather than a rip cord.

On the day she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2010, she testified to the city Parks & Rec Commission to support the new Pogonip trail. Mrs McCrary passed at age 80 on June 24, 2011.

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