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IMBA Restructuring Ruffling Chapter Clubs?

imba restructure club chapter

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#1 seamonkey


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Posted 01 March 2017 - 12:05 PM


IMBA seems to be getting some blowback from current chapter clubs regarding their recent restructuring (elimination of regional reps and increasing the base membership price)? Read the comments, too, on Mountain Bike Radio FB page.






Any thoughts on IMBA's relationship with Missouri or the region? Yes, they've poured their heart and soul into Northwest Arkansas but "I" feel they follow where the money is popping up. Money can change minds in government but that region has been wanting to really sell eco-tourism for a while and it's paying off for them.


I do feel like IMBA has sort of given up on the backcountry experience and has focused its efforts on bike parks and flow trails.


If we could secure just one tract of land - hopefully at least 100 acres with slope - our area could construct its own directional, flow network. Figuring out the maintenance aspect would be key, too, to keep it in proper shape. I would expect and entirely new contingent of trail builders to show up and devote their hard-earned time to design, build and maintain this network. I personally would probably not be too involved as my personal life gets busier every year.


I would, however, support any project as I do feel it's an important component to our region's riding scene and I'd love to ride it, too.


All I can say is what I've said countless times - I've looked at the same point-of-interest rock in the woods for 7-8 years at Greensfelder and we're just now getting a pin flag next to it. It's not for lack of volunteers or building days - it's a combination of design, approval, master plan, scheduling and setbacks all rolled into one. I get excited now that it's closer to reality, but I have to 'forget' how long it's taken to get to that point.



I still believe Matson Hill has the best chance to build a flow trail or at least add flow elements to it's existing network.

1. The trail is biking and hiking only

2. Has significant elevation change



This has turned into more than I was originally going to write but I feel positive about our region and I hope everyone continues to express their opinions in a constructive and positive way.







Matt Hayes
GORC Board Member
Greensfelder Steward

#2 BrianFalls21


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Posted 01 March 2017 - 07:27 PM

My rift with IMBA started when I joined, was promised a wall calendar, and never received a wall calendar.  It's been a wound that's never healed. 


In all seriousness, the author of the letter raises the same question I had about IMBA: what is the value of the dues I'm paying?  I really felt there was no value for me as a mountain bike rider in Missouri whose mountain bike rights were being fought for at a grassroots level without the help of IMBA.   It doesn't sound like there's much value for the southern California rider as well. 


As far as NW Arkansas - my understanding is that most of that money has come from the Walton Family Foundation.  Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. 


In terms of the development of progressive terrain in our area.  I've been saying for 8 years and I'll probably always feel the same way - If Upper Limits can charge ungodly membership fees to climb on plastic rocks, a privately owned mountain bike park in Missouri could surely be profitable.  I would be willing to pay up to 50 dollars a month for a membership to ride on private, maintained, purpose built mountain bike terrain.  A very quick search on Google will yield hundreds of medium to large tracts of land for sale within an hour of STL.  Average cost is $2,000 to $5,000 per acre for land 30-60 miles from STL County.  Of course, closer to STL County and that raises prices exponentially.  However, let's say...


1000 acres of land x $2,500 an acre - $2,500,000

Development of mountain bike features - $1,000,000


Total investment of $3.5 million.  That sounds like a lot, but really, in business, it's not. 


Annual membership fee - $500

Annual members - 1,000


Total revenue from membership fees, per year: $500,000


That's not to mention revenue from beer sales.  And let's face it - this place would sell A LOT of beer. 


Now overhead wouldn't be free...but c'mon, this place barely even needs enclosed structures. Taxes, insurance, machines, fuel, blah blah blah - that all costs mucho bucks, but every business has overhead and people make it work (actually, most people that try to start a business fail, badly...but they're not cool enough to start a mountain bike project). 


Anyway...those are just my hair brained ideas. 

N.F.S. Certified Sawyer & Greensfelder Sawyer

SS Rockhopper "Black Pearl"

Specialized "Blackbeard" Crave

GT "White Lightning" Zaskar (2013-2014)

#3 BrianFalls21


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Posted 01 March 2017 - 09:52 PM

I guess to get back to the IMBA thing...I have met Dave Wiens and he's a pretty nice guy.  I don't know if that's relevant to his ability to direct IMBA in a positive direction, but FWIW, I thought I'd mention it.  Most seem to have a pretty high regard for him.  He's up there with Ned Overend, Brian Lopes, and some of the other MTB legends.  


Completely useless fact - Dave Wiens won the Austin Rattler Leadville Series race this past spring.  It was a 3 lap race.  I was the very last person to finish the race without being lapped by Dave Wiens.  While crossing the finish line after lap 2, I had to go around the winners tape they had set up for him...when the announcer presented Dave as the winner, I pretended he was talking about me.  

N.F.S. Certified Sawyer & Greensfelder Sawyer

SS Rockhopper "Black Pearl"

Specialized "Blackbeard" Crave

GT "White Lightning" Zaskar (2013-2014)

#4 ZenkiS14


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Posted 02 March 2017 - 09:50 AM


Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: imba, restructure, club, chapter

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