Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA) announces the completion of Des Moines’ Ewing Park Flow Trail


Contact: Aaron Vance
Website: www.centraliowatrails.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/centraliowatrails

Des Moines: June 13, 2017: The Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA), a local chapter of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) is pleased to announce the completion of the Ewing Park flow trails Wednesday, June 21st. The new trails, located west of the Ashley Okland Star Playground, is the culmination of seven years of fundraising and planning. Construction was done by Singletrack Trails, Inc. from Fraser, Colorado. CITA partnered with City of Des Moines Parks and Recreation to realize the vision of a new purpose-built trail for mountain bikers of all skill levels.

Brian Sheesley, long-time trail steward at Ewing Park, and a former CITA Board President has been an advocate of this project over the years. When asked what a flow trail adds to Des Moines he said, “this project brings a unique riding experience to the central Iowa area. The public/private partnership that created the trail will hopefully serve as a model for similar projects in the future.”

A flow trail takes a mountain biker on a gravity-fed, rollercoaster-like ride, with little pedaling and braking needed. These trails feature banked turns or berms, rolling terrain, and various jumps. As a rider descends and rolls up and down and side to side, they “flow” down the trail. 

In addition, the new flow trails connect to the almost 5 miles of existing natural surface singletrack trails at Ewing Park. The existing trails are already enjoyed by mountain bikers, hikers, walkers, and trail runners.

This project was funded by grants from REI, Scheels, and Prairie Meadows. Rasmussen Bike Shop, Vanderpool Construction and 60 other individuals and organizations also sponsored the project.  CITA is donating the flow trail to the City of Des Moines as part of its ongoing partnership with Des Moines City Parks.

Come and join us at Ewing Park, 1701 E McKinley Ave, Des Moines, IA 50320 for the trail’s opening night (weather permitting) on Wednesday, June 21, 6:30pm - 9pm. Join us for a ride, meet the builders, other riders, and help us celebrate the completion of Des Moines’ newest mountain biking-focused trail.

Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA) is a non-profit chapter of the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) whose mission is to build and maintain dirt trails in Central Iowa. Formed in 1996, CITA works with local land managers to represent the mountain biking community for land access and building and maintaining trails. CITA builds and maintains single track trails, hosts group rides, skills development clinics & programs, and more.

Press Release PDF

Ewing Flow Trail Breaks Ground!

We're very excited to announce that the Ewing Flow Trail project will be breaking ground Saturday, June 3rd!

The Singletrack Trails team will be working over the next two weeks on the Ewing Flow trail which will add an exciting new dimension to the existing cross country dirt trails at Ewing Park.

As many of you know this has been in the works for a while and we appreciate the cooperation of the City of Des Moines Parks along with all the financial contributors that helped make this possible.

A special thank you to REI, Prairie Meadows, Scheels, and Rasmussen Bike Shop.  In addition 60 other individuals and organizations donated to make this happen - thank you!

We'll be keeping posting regular updates on the Flow Trail progress on the Ewing Park Trails Facebook Group and our CITA Instagram.

We're also working on an "opening night" event for everyone to come down and ride it - we're tentatively planning for the night of Friday, June 16th - more details to come. (This will be dependent on weather and progress the builders are able to make.)

Ewing Park Flow Trail - Moving Forward!

At last night's Des Moines City Council meeting CITA was given approval for the Ewing Park Flow Trail project!

We're working on final details for STI (Singletrack Trails Inc) to be boots on the ground as early as next week.

We want to thank Des Moines Parks and Recreation, City of Des Moines, STI, Brian Sheesley, John Millanes, and countless others who helped to make this a reality.

We also want to thank REI and Prairie Meadows for their generous grants, donations from Scheels and Rasmussen's Bike Shop, and the many individual donors who believe in this project and contributed to help make it happen - THANK YOU!

We'll keep everyone updated as the project progresses!

Read more about it in today's Des Moines Register article.

Also, highlighted in KCCI's Tuesday evening news.

Take Your Kid Mountain Biking Day 2016

Bring your self, your kids, their friends and join us for a fun morning of riding local trails.

When: 9am, Saturday, October 1st, 2016
Location: Grandview Park, 2300 E 32nd St, Des Moines, IA

We welcome young riders of any experience - if you've been looking for an opportunity to introduce your kids to mountain biking and want to be with a group of other parents, friends, and kids this will be for you.

They'll have an opportunity to do some skills development, we'll talk trail riding etiquette, how we can all help maintain them, and of course go out for a ride!  Depending on how many we have and skill levels we may break up into groups, so we'll adapt to the experience of the group.

We'll have free snacks and drinks.

Bring a bike that can handle some dirt trails, a helmet, and a smile.

RSVP and see event details on Facebook.

Help us select photos for the CITA trailer

We've had a (smaller) trailer on the north side of Des Moines for a few months.  We want to get it wrapped with some photos.

Ken Sherman (K&K Photography) has taken some great photos and we'd welcome you to vote on your favorites.

Thank you Ken and our trail volunteers for helping showcase Sycamore Trails so nicely.

Your vote can be cast starting today (Sunday evening) and will close Wednesday night.



Join us at REI for Dirt Trail Etiquette & Usage

Join CITA at REI in West Des Moines on Wednesday, August 3rd to talk about trail use and etiquette.

From REI's site:

Should you go hiking after it rains? Are you allowed to bring your dog? Join Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA) at REI as they discuss the appropriate usage of soft trails in the Des Moines metro, and what you should know before heading out. CITA will also provide information and maps about their maintained off-road trails for hiking, trail running, or mountain biking.

Ewing Park Flow Trail Update

UPDATED: We've raised $1k in less than 24 hours. Help us keep the momentum going to achieve our $5k goal!  Thank you if you've already given!     Donate via Paypal.

Great news! After years of planning, fundraising and grant writing we are finally within striking distance of making the Ewing flow trail a reality. As soon as this Fall we could have our very own bike-powered rollercoaster made of dirt!

Thanks to a recent $5,000 grant from Prairie Meadows we have reached $12,500 of our $22,500 total goal. To gain the last $10,000 that is needed, CITA has decided to kickstart the final push by allocating $5,000 of a recent REI grant to this project, meaning we only have $5,000 left to raise.

What will this money buy? A professionally designed and built system of 3 separate trails featuring one beginner (green) and 2 progressively difficult intermediate (blue, dark blue) routes. The system will be well-connected to Ewing's other trails and will feature a route to return to the top of the hill to do it all over again. This facility will be very unique to Iowa and will offer fun for all levels of riders from kids to serious gravity-loving daredevils.

See the map for a conceptual rendering of what the system will look like. Final design will be done in collaboration with the professional firm that is chosen for the work.

We have set up a Paypal page to so you can make a tax-deductible contribution (we are a 501c3) to this project. See the link for further details. Help us reach our $5,000 goal and then come on out in October to boldly explore the great mysteries of the Ewingverse....

Donate via Paypal.

 Mock-up of the 3 proposed flow lines.  Top of image is "north", BMX track on the left, soap-box track along the bottom/south side. This is just south of McKinley Ave in Des Moines.

Mock-up of the 3 proposed flow lines.  Top of image is "north", BMX track on the left, soap-box track along the bottom/south side. This is just south of McKinley Ave in Des Moines.

 A shot of a flow trail.

A shot of a flow trail.

Ewing Park Trails - Work day and Race!

Just a reminder we're hosting a workday at Ewing Park this Saturday, July 9th at 9am.  We want to put the final touches on the trails for the race coming up Sunday July 17th.

We're targeting mowing/trimming and a bridge project on Trail 1.

Come out and help us out - if you haven't been to Ewing yet, you should definitely check it out!

Check out the workday details on the Facebook event page.

Check out the race details on Facebook.

CITA Receives Grant from REI to Support New and Improved Dirt Trails in Des Moines

Des Moines, IA – The Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA) recently received a $10,000 grant from Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) to support new and improved dirt trails in the Des Moines area. Celebrating its twentieth anniversary this year, CITA has collaborated with the City of Des Moines, Polk County Conservation, and the Department of Natural Resources to build and maintain forty miles of singletrack trail for hiking, mountain biking, trail running, and bird watching. The organization plans to continue its growth in the community for many more years.

The grant will be used to help CITA maintain and refine existing completed trails as well as provide capital to pursue new trail sites in the Des Moines metro. In the last several years the City of Des Moines has partnered with CITA to close un-sustainable trail and replace it with professionally built, sustainable trail at Greenwood Park, in addition to breaking new ground on several miles of trail at Ewing Park and Grandview Park. CITA would like to continue this momentum and several potential new sites for singletrack development have been identified. Part of the grant funds will be used for professional teams to plan and design trail systems that utilize the Iowa terrain and can be enjoyed by various users.

New to the West Des Moines community in the fall of 2015, REI shares CITA’s passion and commitment to the soft trails in the area. REI has already collaborated with CITA for CITA’s annual Des Moines Dirty Duathlon, and REI has presented a local dirt trail class for interested trail users. CITA and REI will continue to partner together to inspire new trail users.

About Central Iowa Trail Association (CITA)

Founded in 1996, CITA in a not-for-profit subordinate to the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) working to educate Iowans on the value of sustainable multi-use natural surface wilderness paths often hidden within the City. CITA’s central purpose is to encourage outdoor activity and wellness by designing, constructing and maintaining shared use trails in partnership with city, county, state, and private landowners. CITA educates land managers and trail users through advocacy, mapping, planning, outreach, trail work days and social events. The organization is entirely based on volunteers, including its trail stewards, board members, and contribution members. For information on upcoming CITA events and volunteer opportunities, visit www.centraliowatrails.com.

About Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI)

REI’s core purpose is to inspire, educate and outfit people in order to experience the benefits of active outdoor lifestyles, protecting and enhancing shared natural spaces, and mentoring the next generation of outdoor stewards. Each year, REI donates millions of dollars to support conservation efforts nationwide and sends dedicated teams of volunteers—members, customers and REI employees—to build trails, clean up beaches, restore local habitats and more. Through responsible business practices across the company, REI strives to reduce their environmental footprint. For more information about REI’s stewardship and work in the community, visit www.rei.com/stewardship.