Friends of Rotary Park

This is a service provided to the users of Rotary Park in Clarksville, Montgomery County, Tennessee. It is hosted by Friends of Rotary Park, a newly formed volunteer group that is dilligently working to improve the trail network at the park. This site provides information about current, past, and future trail development.


Rotary Park is a county-owned natural park in Clarksville, Montgomery County, Tennessee. It consists of two adjoining tracts of land that make up about 95 acres of mostly undeveloped, wooded land. There is one park entrance/exit that is paved and runs to the back of the park. There are three pavilions along the roadway with the largest being at the road's end. Rotary Park has an extensive trail network and is open to hikers and bikers. The new push for extensive trail work is necessary because most trails were improperly built by ATVs and motorcycles. Motorized vehicles are now banned from the park. Furthermore, the trails are showing signs of serious erosion. Most recently, a large amount of sustainable trail located outside of the park's boundary has been taken by development. The Friends of Rotary Park is dedicated to restoring and improving the park. Those interested in joining Friends of Rotary Park can do so by contacting Chris Clark at 931-801-3898. Dues are $25.00 for a family membership.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Workday and Newsletter

Hey gang:

I just got back in town from a two-week vacation of sorts (one week of vacation and one week of conference). I am happy to say that I am well rested and re-energized about the park. It is a great time of year to build some trail and complete some of our projects. Lets get started, shall we?


Saturday, November 10th, will be our next workday. We will meet at 8:00 a.m. in the parking lot at the bottom of the hill near the creek-side trailhead. Look for my maroon pickup truck with camper shell. I will try to make a sign this time.

We have two main projects for the workday. One or two crews will be covering some of the logging roads left by the loggers after the tornado. Another small crew will continue installing sign posts if David and his auger are available. If not, I have other projects.

The reason that the old logging roads need to be covered is two-fold. First, they are susceptible to serious erosion due to their layout, the way they were constructed, and their width. If there is a good side to the drought this summer, it is that we did not suffer serious erosion at the park in these areas. We have already built new trails bypassing the areas that we will be covering. The second reason for covering these logging roads goes back to one of FORP's original goals: create a stacked loop trail network that is easy to follow. By closing off these random logging roads that lead nowhere, it will cut down on the confusion at the park and allow people to learn the new loop system.


As I stated above, we have already built new trails bypassing the logging roads that are to be covered. I built one of those this past Saturday. I spent five hours at the park on Saturday connecting two existing trails and bypassing a logging road. This new section is located on the trail leading to the amphitheater and is located just above the creek. It is part of the White Oak Loop. I have been scouting this area for several months now trying to find the best way to site this section of trail. I have flagged it different ways but not been totally happy with those options. On Saturday, I made some changes that work very well. I flagged the trail, cleared the corridor, removed deadfall and downed trees, and installed an erosion control devise above one of the turns. The trail is open, fully marked, and ready for use. The only thing left to do on it is to install one additional erosion control devise that I will do sometime this week or next.

I am very excited about this new section of trail. It is not incredibly long but is very fun. It is built to proper trail-building standards for avoiding erosion and blends very naturally with the landscape. Please enjoy the new section of trail and enjoy not having to use the logging road. Mountain bikers, you will be happy to find that one of the two turns is in-sloped (bermed) so you can maintain your momentum in the turn. I may extend the bermed area at a later date as I feel it would benefit the trail.


While in Florida and Chattanooga, I rode some of the local trails. Each was quite different and unique in many ways. I learned something from the trail builders in both locations, particularly Raccoon Mountain in Chattanooga. I am excited about taking what I learned at both trails and applying it at Rotary Park. Above all, my visit to both sites reassured me that we are building great trail at Rotary Park and doing the right thing by taking our time and building it right the first time. One of the trail's I visited is less than a year old and already suffers from serious erosion issues as a result of poor trail placement.

I look forward to seeing everyone on the trails.



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