[TRTC-news] American Tobacco Trail News for April 2005
billbus at gte.net
billbus at gte.net
Mon Apr 4 13:19:07 EDT 2005
Hi Friends of the American Tobacco Trail,
Spring has Sprung! This is your last minute reminder about the monthly
meeting of the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Meeting (TRTC)
coming up Monday, April 4, at 7:30 p.m. at the Woodcroft Professional
Building at the intersection of Fayetteville Rd. and Woodcroft Parkway
in south Durham. All are welcome!
We'll be discussing progress on both the southern Section of the ATT
that we are maintaining and managing for Durham, the 3.5 miles of trail
we maintain and manage in Chatham, as well as the trailhead parking
facility we are constructing on Fayetteville Road. We'll also discuss
other progress on the ATT and our other activities. We'll try to keep
the meeting short so folks can get home to watch the basketball game!
We hope you can join us.
Please note we are now utilizing an email list server run by our website
provider, www.RTPNet.org <http://www.rtpnet.org>. You can easily remove
<http://rtpnet.org/mailman/options/trtc-news> yourself from this list
serve by following the link at the bottom of this message. Or you can
contact me at billbus at gte.net as well.
*1st Stop: www.triangletrails.org
If you haven't already been there be sure to check out the Triangle
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy website at: *www.triangletrails.org *. You
can join TRTC <http://www.triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM> or make a
contribution via PayPal
here right now.
Webmaster Curt Devereux <mailto:devereux at gte.net> has recently put up a
page with Directions to locations
<http://www.triangletrails.org/DIRECTIONS.HTM> of where to access the
ATT on trail workdays. This page works for directions to trail access
points on O'Kelly Chapel and New Hope Church Roads in Chatham County, as
well as the Scott King Road Trailhead in southern Durham.
He'll be putting up a page of regular trail access points as well though
this is not yet up. This is part of our new Volunteering
<http://triangletrails.org/VOLUNTEERS.HTM> page. He's also put up a page
with links to previous American Tobacco Trail News
<http://www.triangletrails.org/ATT-ARCHIVE.HTML> as well. Check out the
News <http://triangletrails.org/NEWS.HTM> page at www.triangletrails.org
for more info and the latest news.
*American Tobacco Trail Funding in Six Year Transportation Bill *
Representative Price has secured key federal support for the American
Tobacco Trail in the Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users
(TEA-LU) which we've referred to in previous newsletters as the 6-Year
Transportation Bill. According to a release from Congressman Price's
million has been secured by Price for the ATT in Chatham and Durham
This bill has been postponed several times already with funding carrying
on at previous years levels. This bill is a biggie and has still not
passed through the House-Senate conference committee which hammers out
the final bill, nor has it been signed by the President. However, with
the announcement, chances are good that this funding will stay in place.
Stay tuned for more info.
We hope that the 109th Congress passes, and the President signs, TEA-LU
to include sufficient and increased funding for alternative and muscle
powered transportation projects like the American Tobacco Trail.
Offering safer and greater numbers of linked muscle powered
transportation facilities will help to reduce pollution from travel and
commuting, and increase the level of physical fitness, not to mention
bring neighbors together.
American Tobacco Trail Set to Receive Funding in Federal Omnibus
*We have found out a little more about the ATT receiving just under $1M
in the Federal Omnibus Spending Bill, apparently signed by the President
on December 8, 2004.
We've heard from several sources that the funds for the ATT would be
evenly split between Chatham and Durham counties. Ms. Howard of
Representative David Price's office <http://price.house.gov/> notes that
funds for the ATT would be distributed by NCDOT and perhaps other state
agencies. They probably become available locally toward the middle of
2005. This is great news because we'd like to see actual construction of
the ATT in Chatham county.
*TRTC Volunteers Honored by Volunteer Center of Durham *
TRTC members Frank Bennett, Dan Clever, Curt Devereux were honored for
their hard work on the American Tobacco Trail and for TRTC at the annual
Volunteer Center of Durham Volunteer Recognition Banquet
held March 10 at the Durham Mariott.
Frank shares Trail Boss duties with Curt on the 3-mile section of ATT in
southern Durham that TRTC has cleared, and continues to maintain and
manage for the Durham Parks and Recreation Dept. It is because of their
efforts, along with other volunteers, that this section of trail is
*open now* for public use instead of being closed until Durham can
properly manage it.
Frank also keeps our meeting minutes and is heavily involved with all
Curt is the webmaster for TRTC's website <http://triangletrails.org/>.
He worked to design the look of the site which is widely respected as
THE source of information about the American Tobacco Trail. It is linked
to by sites from all over the world. Curt is also involved in all
aspects of the ATT and TRTC.
Dan is TRTC's Treasurer. Dan has gone the extra mile to maintain our
financial records in a professional and complete manner. Dan is also
very much involved in all aspects of ATT clearing, maintenance and
upkeep, as well as in all TRTC's activities.
We are delighted and proud to have the services of Frank, Curt and Dan,
who also serve on our Board, recognized by the Volunteer Center of
Durham. Durham and indeed the entire Triangle is better because of their
efforts. Thanks Frank, Curt and Dan!
*TRTC Makes ATT Presentation before Chatham County Commissioners
*On March 7, TRTC President Bill Bussey made a presentation about
regional and Chatham County progress on the American Tobacco Trail to
the Chatham County Commissioners
at their Monday work session. Over 1100 volunteer person hours, plus
over $1200 in donated materials and supplies have been spent by TRTC and
other volunteers on the ATT in Chatham.
We are requesting that the commissioners approve $100,000 already in
county coffers from the county recreation exaction fee, for match funds
which may be needed for the ATT, in their 2005-06 Capital Improvements
You can help with this progress it is critical to keep those cards,
letters and emails to Chatham County Commissioners
in order for them to see the need to support the ATT with planning and
other funding. Tell them thanks for the budgetary funding, and urge them
to continue their support for the American Tobacco Trail. For the
commissioners names and addresses see our website at
Also, please contact Congressman David Price
<http://www.house.gov/price/Email_David.htm> and tell him thanks for
doing all he can to complete the American Tobaccco Trail in Chatham as
soon as possible. The two trestles over Northeast and Panther Creek's
need to be decked in order to complete the ATT. The trail itself in
Chatham needs to be constructed and signage installed. Unlike Durham and
Wake counties, Chatham doesn't have the large urban constituent base or
lobbyists to ask for his support of Chatham County projects. Thus, your
letters, emails and phone calls thanking him for he has done and asking
him to do all he can for particularly Chatham County, carries
significant weight here.
These two bridges over Northeast and Panther Creeks could be privately
funded as well. Private funds could speed up their construction
dramatically. If you, your company, organization or foundation is
looking for a legacy project with potential naming rights to be enjoyed
by thousands a year for years to come, please contact us
<mailto:billbus at gte.net> and we'll put you in touch with the appropriate
*Chatham Recreation Advisory Board Awards Grant to TRTC*
In a further demonstration of commitment to the American Tobacco Trail,
the Chatham County Recreation Advisory Board in the Fall awarded TRTC
grant funds for up to three gates for additional trail crossings in
*TRTC Info Table at Cisco Systems, Durham Healthy Kids Day, and Others*
TRTC hosted an information table at the Cisco Systems
<http://www.cisco.com/warp/public/687/rtp.html> Health Fair on a rainy
March 16. We met with many Cisco staff who wanted to learn more about
the American Tobacco Trail.
TRTC hosted an info table at the Durham YMCA
<http://www.ymcatriangle.org/Downtown_Durham.aspx> Healthy Kids Day
celebration on April 2, at the Downtown Durham Y. It was neat to meet
the many kids and adults who use the ATT on a regular basis, as well as
encourage those who haven't to get out and walk, run or ride on the trail.
TRTC President Bill Bussey will be giving a presentation on the ATT and
TRTC to the Durham Chapter of the National Association of Women in
Construction <http://www.nawic.org/> meeting coming up on April 7 at the
Spartacus Restaurant in Durham. Bill met with their organization Board
in late February.
TRTC will also be setting up information table at the upcoming Wake
County Earth Day
<http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/harrislake/Programs.htm> (bottom of
page!) at Harris Lake Park in April 23. This event will run from 10 to 3.
We also hope to share a table with the Durham Open Space and Trails
Commission at the Durham Earth Day <http://www.durhamearthday.org/>,
also on the same date. We'll be doing our best to be in two places at
once! If you want to help staff our table and learn more about the ATT,
please contact Bill Bussey <mailto:billbus at gte.net>.
TRTC is also looking forward to hosting an information table at a
GlaxoSmithKline <http://www.gsk.com/index.htm> staff health fair on
Wednesday, May 18.
*Take Part in the Great Human Race
<http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/Ghr.htm> in Durham April 9 at Mile 0
of ATT in Durham*
TRTC is one of the registered nonprofits
participating in the Great Human Race 5K Run and Walk
<http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/vcd/events/GHR/walk.htm> in downtown
Durham next Saturday, April 9 starting at 8 a.m. at the American Tobacco
Complex at Blackwell and Willard Streets across from the Durham Bulls
Athletic Park and right up the street from the American Tobacco Trail
Mile 0 in Durham. The race itself begins at 9:30.
Come on out and sign up to help the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
<http://www.triangletrails.org/> build the American Tobacco Trail. When
you sign up for the race or walk
<http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/vcd/events/GHR/walk.htm>, say you are
walking or running for the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. Raise
funds for TRTC by getting your family and friends to sponso
<http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/vcd/events/GHR/walk.htm>r you as you
walk for TRTC and the American Tobacco Trail. All funds raised for TRTC
will go to help maintain the American Tobacco Trail in southern Durham.
For more info, check out the Great Human Race website
<http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/Ghr.htm>. For assistance and more
info, contact Marti Dreyer <mailto:marti at thevolunteercenter.org> at the
Volunteer Center of Durham at 688-8977 x23 or Carmen Westbrook
<mailto:carmen at thevolunteercenter.org> at 688-8977 x22.
*Wake County American Tobacco Trail Workday A Big Success!
*On Saturday March 19, 22 volunteers from TRTC
<http://www.triangletrails.org>, the Jordan Lake Trails Conservation
Association <http://www.jordanlaketrails.org/>, the Volunteer Center of
Durham <http://www.thevolunteercenter.org/> and others cleaned and
cleared the new 1.3 mile long Phase II section (see below) of the
American Tobacco Trail in Wake County.
Over five tons of trash ranging from scrap paper, bottles and cans, to
junk televisions, ranges and refridgerators were cleaned from the ATT
and adjacent areas. Several old trash dumps were completely removed, bag
by bag, by the volunteers. The trail is virtually spotless! Thanks to
everyone who helped. Also thanks to Wake County Parks staff who hauled
most of it all away!
*Construction of Phase II of the ATT in Wake County Almost Complete*
Construction of Phase II of the American Tobacco Trail in Wake County is
nearing completion. The trail itself is open 1.3 miles from the Wimberly
Road Parking Area north to the not-yet-open White Oak Church Road
Parking Area. To access this newest section of the ATT, park at either
the Wimberly Road Parking Area or the New Hill-Olive Chapel Road Parking
The White Oak Church Road Parking Area is still not open due to weather
related construction delays. The gate to the parking area is currently
gated and locked, so for your own safety, *please don't try to access
this parking area yet.* It should be open by the middle of April. The
new restroom facilities will not be complete until the middle of April.
Hours of operation for the ATT in Wake County are daily 8 a.m. to an
hour before sunset. Right now, the ATT closes about 7 p.m. Check the
sign upon entering the parking areas to verify closing times. If the
gates at the trailheads are closed, the trail is closed.
Also, please be sure to check out the trail information kiosks just
installed at the trailheads. Here you'll find information to make your
ATT experience more enjoyable.
For more trail information and comments, contact the American Tobacco
Trail <http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/atc/default.htm> manager,
Tony D'Amico <mailto:Tony.D%27Amico at co.wake.nc.us> or Debra Bradsher
<mailto:Debra.Bradsher at co.wake.nc.us> at 919 387-2117
Programs on the ATT in Wake*
Wake County Parks is offering several neat programs
<http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/atc/programs.htm> on the ATT during
April and May. These programs are suitable for the entire family. There
is a modest charge for each.
TRTC applauds Wake County Parks and Recreation Department
<http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/default.htm> for offering programs
on the American Tobacco Trail. We encourage other parks and recreation
programs in the Triangle and elsewhere to offer programs such as nature
appreciation and bird walks, trail safety and etiquette and others, on
trails and greenways, just as they offer programs in their other park
facilities. Trails and greenways are open to everyone and offer many
opportunities for organized programs.
/Directions to Currently Open Wake ATT Trailheads
There are two trailhead parking areas
<http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/atc/directions.htm> on the Wake
County portion of the ATT. Here is the Wake County Parks link to
directions <http://www.wakegov.com/county/parks/atc/directions.htm> for
The principal parking area is off of New Hill-Olive Chapel Road, two
miles south of US 64. This trailhead is the largest trailhead currently
planned and is designed to handle equestrian, bus and personal vehicle
*The other parking area on Wimberly Road is designed for only personal
vehicle parking because it isn't large enough to safely accomodate
equestrian trailers. If you want to park your equestrian trailer please
go to the New Hill-Olive Chapel Road trailhead.
We'll post directions to the new White Oak Church Road Parking Area in
the May ATT News.
*No Roadside ATT Parking in Wake County*
Please do not access the trail by parking on Goodwin Road or Olive
Chapel Road. The Goodwin Road crossing is in a neighborhood and the
trail is adjacent to a driveway used by several families. If you park on
the driveway or the trail, you will be towed, as well as make a lot of
people unhappy. Olive Chapel Road is a heavily traveled, fairly high
speed, narrow road where there is no formal parking area. It is
hazardous to get in and out of your vehicle here alongside the road.
/Please use the above mentioned parking areas which are conveniently
located, safe and dedicated to trail use./
*TRTC Can't Do It Alone*
TRTC and other governmental organizations working on the ATT have
received grants in the past from Carolina Tarwheels Bike Club
<http://www.tarwheels.org/> , Durham
Open Space and Trails Commission
NC State Adopt-A-Trail Program
Community Foundation <http://trianglecf.org/>, Whole Foods Market
<http://wholefoods.com/stores/durham/index.html>, REI <http://rei.com/>
and* *National Recreational Trails Fund.
The City of Durham and Wake County have received major funding from the
Federal Transportation Enhancements Program
<http://www.enhancements.org/> administered by the NC Dept. of
Transportation Bike/Ped Division.
<http://www.ncdot.org/transit/bicycle/default.html> TRTC is grateful to
both of these organizations for helping to build the American Tobacco Trail.
Shared Use Trail Etiquette
While many of you know to say a quick hello when meeting or passing
fellow trail users, a lot of you may not have been on greenways or
trails used by horses.
The key thing to remember is that "Wheels Yield to Heels." Bicyclists
and other wheeled users yield to those on either two or four feet!
Hikers should yield to equestrians. If you aren't sure what to do, stop,
and let the equestrian pass. Feel free to ask the horse rider what you
should do. Most folks riding horses will gladly chat with you about
If you meet a trail visitor on horseback while they are crossing a
bridge, or while they are in the tunnel, stop and let them completely
cross or exit before you enter or cross.
While many horses are fine in confined spaces with others, some may not
be as comfortable in proximity to strangers on/in these places. Slow
down and wait a few seconds and let them clear. Everyone will enjoy the
trail a lot more. Don't forget to say hi to the rider!
If you overtake a horse, cyclist, walker or runner from behind, make
verbal contact with the trail user."On your left" will generally do it.
A quick "thanks" after passing is always a good idea.
If you come across park staff or volunteers doing work on the Wake
County or southern Durham portions of the ATT, first, catch their
attention, and indicate you want to pass. For your safety, stop until
they give permisson to pass. They may have to move or stop what they are
doing to allow you to safely pass.
This is particularly true when the workers are working with motorized
machinery. They may not hear your approach because of the noise of the
machinery they are operating. If they don't see you, wave your arms a
bit until they acknowledge your presence and motion you to pass.
You'll no doubt see some horse droppings on this portion of the trail.
Step or ride around it just as you do the occasional fallen branches or
mud puddles. The trail surface is a minimum of ten feet wide, and
sometimes more than that (we measured!) so it is easy to find room to go
Keep in mind that unlike dogs, cats (and people!) droppings, horse
droppings are plant based. It will go away quickly after a rain.
There is now a group of primarily equestrian volunteers who are
patrolling the ATT in Wake on a regular basis. These volunteers are
spending time off their horses so that all of us can better enjoy the
trail. Their job is to remove horse dung from the trail surface, pick up
the occasional litter, answer questions about the ATT and help serve as
additional eyes on the trail. They wear distinctive blaze orange vests
with "Volunteer" printed on the back and will probably have a dust pan
in their hands!
Please* thank them* for their service. Don't forget you can help too by
packing your trash out and picking up and packing out at least one piece
of trash, removing a fallen limb or kicking away some dry dung, on your
trip to the ATT.
Of course, if you see anything of interest, or have any comments or
questions feel free to contact ATT Manager Tony D'Amico at
Tony.D'Amico at co.wake.nc.us , or me, billbus at gte.net and I'll pass it on.
*The American Tobacco Trail is Outside*
/*Duh!*/ Every effort will be made to keep the ATT clean and safe by
staff and volunteers. As an ATT user, you can do your part as well by
taking your trash home with you and respecting your fellow trail users.
However, do note that part of the experience of a rural and urban trail,
and for being outside in general, are the occasional horse droppings,
downed limbs, rough weather and bugbites. Take precautions for the
things you can - like bug and tick bites, hydration and the weather (Is
it drizzling? Is it cold?, Is it hot?) - and enjoy the American Tobacco
Trail for the experience and treasure that it is.
The "outside" aspect of the ATT was brought home to me personally
yesterday when I was riding on the ATT in Durham. Because of the
wonderful trees enveloping the ATT north Solite Park, I didn't see the
approaching threatening clouds moving in from the west until I crossed
Fayetteville Road into Solite Park.
The clouds began to look more ominous as I dropped by to chat with good
friend Sid Smith
at his Bike Rental store at the park. <http://www.ttbikes.com/>
When I told him I was parked back at the Durham Freeway (across from the
Durham Bulls Athletic Park) trail access point, Sid said that I would
certainly get rained on during the ride back. He offered a spare jacket
which I readily accepted as I was wearing only a polo shirt. Sure,
enough, shortly after starting north, the rain and winds came. It even
started sleeting slightly. I wasn't alone as I passed several cyclists,
walkers and runners coming from the opposite direction. I told them to
head for the shelter at Solite Park. I managed to find and crouch under
a dump truck in the parking lot of Hillside High School, until I heard
thunder nearby. I figured then it was best to be a moving target and get
a little damp than to be sitting on wet ground surrounded by a large
hunk of metal!
The point is that bad weather can strike at any time. The American
Tobacco Trail is fairly unique among rail-trails in that many parts of
it are delightfully surrounded - and even completely enveloped - by
trees and shrubs. Thus, you may not see bad weather until it is on top
of you. Be aware of the forecast and conditions and be prepared.
Trail Etiquette Continued
Bring along a friend to enjoy the trail with you.
The ATT is only open during daylight hours.
Say hello or at least offer a nod to fellow trail users. We've found
that folks who use trails are about the friendliest folks around.
Don't use the ATT at night because unless you are a licensed hunter, it
Bring along a cell phone if you have one.
If you see any suspicious behavior, contact 911 or Tony D'Amico at 919
Don't leave valuables in parked vehicles.
Don't carry much cash or valuables with you.
Bring water with you. Currently there is no water available at trailheads.
Stay on the trail.
Take it slow and enjoy the scenery. Seven miles from end to end, and
back, can take an hour and a half on a bike, and three hours or more on
foot. On the paved ATT in Durham, it is a 13 mile round trip! Add
another 3 miles if you do the Riddle Road Spur! If you aren't
experienced or in shape yet for these hikes or rides, do a shorter trip,
and save the rest to explore later.
Remember, the more we use the American Tobacco Trail and other greenways
throughout the Triangle, the safer they will be. Crime doesn't like crowds.
Also, the more we use the ATT and other area greenways, the better shape
and fit YOU will be!
Again, we encourage all trail users to bring along a plastic grocery bag
to pick up trash when using the ATT or any trail in the Triangle. Put a
few in your daypack. You'll find trash cans located at many trailheads
on the ATT in Wake county and in Durham. These are soon to come in
Chatham! If everyone *picked at least one piece of trash *on their visit
to the ATT, the ATT would soon be *spotless*. Please keep the ATT clean
*TRTC Opens A Store*
Speaking of stores, a great way to help the American Tobacco Trail is to
purchase ATT and TRTC logo items from our new store. Please visit
http://www.cafepress.com/trtc and check out the items we have listed
there. These are made and shipped to order. I ordered a golf style
shirt, a license plate frame and a sticker and am very satisfied with
the quality and service. I'll be ordering more soon! On neat feature
added is that you can easily track your order on the site. We hope this
will be of service to our members and trail users. Show your pride in
the ATT! Please let us know what you think and feel free to suggest any
items you'd like to see at our store.
If you or your organization would like to get a shop at your own, please
check out the home page of the site. Please access the information site
at : http://www.cafepress.com/cp/info/storeref.aspx?refby=trtc and tell
them you heard it from TRTC.
*Durham Trail Maps
*There are maps of the ATT and other Durham Greenways available online
for printing and download at the Durham Parks website:
*I-40 Bridge Project Update* /*
The most frequently asked question we get at our recent information
booth and tables at Festival for the Eno
<http://www.enoriver.org/festival/>, at the Durham Earthday
<http://www.durhamearthday.org/> and recently at Whole Foods Market in
Durham <http://www.wholefoods.com/stores/durham/index.html> is: 'When
will they finish the ATT (or Bike/pedestrian) bridge over I-40?" Our
answer - two years, though I've been saying that for the past four years!
The last *update* we have is that the process to begin planning for this
bridge begun moving again. Apparently, the NCDOT Bicycle-Pedestrian
Division will be the "Lead Agency" at DOT on this project. Next stop is
the City of Durham lawyers to look over the agreements necessary. That
may take awhile! However, we'll let you know as the process moves forward.
Durham Parks and Recreation earlier reported that Durham Parks will
finally initiate the process of planning and design for the American
Tobacco Trail bridge over I-40 soon with the delayed start of a
previously awarded contract with Parsons Brinckerhoff
<http://www.pbworld.com/default.asp>*. *Though funds are in place for a
"bare bones" Corten (rust colored steel) bridge, similar to the ATT
bridges over University Drive and Roxboro Street in Durham, it is hoped
that additional funding, such as those requested by US Representative
David Price in the next Transportation Bill in Senate/House conference
committee, or perhaps in the Omnibus Spending Bill, described above, can
be found to build the bridge in a more architecturally significant manner.
If all goes well, we should have an American Tobacco Trail bridge across
I-40 in the next two or three years.*
TRTC Continues Construction of Durham South portion of ATT*
TRTC has been working on construction of the ATT from Massey Chapel Rd.
to the Chatham County line. Workdays are scheduled the *first and third
Saturdays* of each month. Meet at 9 a.m. where the future ATT crosses
Scott King Rd. in southern Durham County. For more information on these
workdays contact new Trail Bosses,* Frank Bennett
<mailto:FJB675 at hotmail.com>* and *Curt Devereux
<mailto:devereux at gte.net> . *
Working under a grant from the Durham Open Space and Trails Commission,
and led by *Thad Howard* and others, volunteers have been clearing trash
and brush, improving drainage, filling in holes, installing fences and
traffic control bollards, and making other improvements in order to get
this portion of the trail open sooner than it normally would be without
volunteer help. TRTC has written agreements with both the City and
County of Durham, along with insurance to facilitate this work.
The City of Durham is supposed to eventually take over the management of
this portion of trail when TRTC are finished with this construction.
However, we have recently learned that TRTC will probably be managing
this ourselves on at least an informal basis until the trail is built by
Durham. *Your membership and donations will help us keep this three-mile
stretch of trail open for folks in the rapidly growing southern Durham
area. Your donations also help us on the 3.5 mile section in Chatham
A *BIG THANKS* to everyone who has helped with this effort. Your hard
work helps to s-t-r-e-t-c-h very limited grant funds. Though sometimes
with the rains it is slightly muddy in places, we have made a LOT of
improvement on the drainage of this portion of the trail. Over 20 tons
of trash have been removed in this area as well. It is open during
daylight hours and used by over a thousand folks per month. During all
weekends and most afternoons, the along the road parking area at Scott
King Road is lined with vehicles, including equestrian trailers.
*Please Leash Your Dog on the ATT in Southern Durham
*Due to some recent complaints and concerns, we are now asking that
trail users on the ATT between Massey Chapel Road and the Northeast
Creek trestle in southern Durham please keep their dogs on a leash.
Signage to this effect is now in place. While this rule has always been
effect in all Durham and Wake County Parks - not to mention pretty much
any park in the world! - it has been pretty much overlooked on this
southern Durham portion of the ATT due to a comparative small number of
trail users with dogs.
However, with increasing trail use by walkers, runners, walkers and
runners with dogs, bike riders and equestrians, we are requiring that
dog users maintain control of their dogs at all times by keeping them on
a leash, unless no one else is around. Use common sense here and
continue to enjoy the trail with your pet.
*TRTC's Trail Work in Perspective
*TRTC maintains, manages, makes safe for public use, /*over 6.5 miles*/
of American Tobacco Trail in southern Durham and Chatham counties. This
is more than the combined greenway systems of Apex and Morrisville. It
compares with the Cary Greenway System
<http://www.townofcary.org/depts/prdept/greenway/gwylist.htm>. (I'll add
that like the ATT in southern Durham and Chatham counties, Cary
Greenways do not yet have any dedicated off-road parking facilities!)
This 6.5 miles is also the length of the completed paved urban American
Tobacco Trail in Durham.
If not for TRTC's efforts, and your contributions
<http://triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM>, these 6.5 miles of trail in
Durham and Chatham counties would *not be open at all*, nor would they
be open for more several years in the future.
Over a thousand folks per month happily use the ATT between Massey
Chapel Road and the Northeast Creek trestle. We see these numbers
continue to increase. This past weekend, the Scott King Road trailhead
had as many as 18 vehicles parked alongside the road, with over eight
there on a constant basis. A growing number of trail users are using the
Chatham County sections as well. We do this on a completely volunteer
basis with very little financial or staff help.
*The Job Being Done*
At the risk of tooting our own horn, when you use the trail I think
you'll see we do a darned good job of it! The trail gets mowed. Holes
and ruts are filled. Trash is emptied regularly and is never
overflowing. User conflicts are resolved. Equipment and trail
infrastructure is maintained and cleaned. Questions are answered.
Questions and concerns are fowarded to the appropriate trail owners and
managers. Signage is posted, and a host of other needed activities are
performed. TRTC volunteers do these things because local governments
aren't prepared to do them.
To the average trail user, these efforts are invisible and seamless. If
you haven't visited these sections of trail yet, do so. Follow the
directions listed elsewhere in this message. I think you'll be
As is usually the case with volunteer ventures, most of these duties are
performed by a small number of individuals who devote a lot of time,
over many years, to keeping the ATT clean, clear and safe. These are the
folks you see the links to in this message. There are many, many more.
All deserve our thanks!
Thus, your financial contributions
<http://triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM> and volunteer contributions
<http://www.rtpnet.org/mailman/listinfo/trtc-volunteers/> are *vitally
important!* If nothing else, get outside and use the American Tobacco
Trail and other trails and greenways this late Winter and Spring. If you
see trail workers, or have to dodge a vehicle, tractor or mower on the
trail, give them a word of thanks. Know that they are working hard to
offer you and the rest of the Triangle something very special.
*For Your Safety...*
Please don't park directly in front of obvious trail or greenway
entrances, in front of trail bollards or gates or where the greenways
and trails obviously cross the road. This can prevent emergency and work
vehicles from entering or exiting the trail if needed.
Also, the future ATT south of Massey Chapel Road accesses NC Wildlife
Resources managed gamelands near the intersection of Massey Chapel Road
and lands surrounding Northeast Creek. The ATT in Wake County also
accesses NC Wildlife Resources managed gamelands. Hunters utilize the
future ATT to access these gamelands.
Hunters, hikers and other trail users can all use the ATT together,
however, it is recommended that everyone take appropriate precautions,
follow any posted signage, stay on the trail unless hunting, and be
aware of potential hunting in this area. Hunting season will continue
through the winter. It is beyond the scope of this newsletter to
describe the hunting season, rules and regulations. For more information
on hunting please go to: http://www.ncwildlife.com .
*How to Help*
If you want to help with this project we start at 9 a.m. at the trail
crossing at Scott King Rd. on the *first* and* third* Saturdays of each
month. As mentioned above, we'll be doing a lot of work at the ATT
parking area on Fayetteville Road, about 2 miles from the Scott King
Road crossing this summer. If you don't see anyone at Scott King Road at
9 or 9:30 on Saturday morning, come on up to Fayetteville Road, where it
crosses over the ATT about a mile south of I-40, and you'll probably see
We'll also be working on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays this late Winter and
Spring on the ATT in Chatham County. Meet at the trail crossing of
O'Kelly Chapel Road at 9 a.m. If you have any questions, contact the
All you need to bring to any workday are work gloves, a snack and water.
Stay for only an hour, or for more than an hour. We need you as long as
you are able. If you have some tools that you want to bring, please
check with the contacts below.
Please contact *Frank Bennett <mailto:FJB675 at hotmail.com> * Hm. 919
851-3992, *Curt Devereux <mailto:devereux at gte.net>* Hm.919-544-3948, or
*Bill Bussey* <mailto:billbus at gte.net> at Hm. 919 545-9104 for more info
on Trail workdays.
*Workday on Eagle Spur a Huge Success!
On March 13, ten TRTC volunteers cleared a number of downed trees that
had fallen along this 2 1/2 mile fairly rugged old rail bed which dead
ends at Jordan Lake.Starting at the Stagecoach Road trail terminus, the
group cleared three major and about ten minor downed tree blockages as
well as repaired the Wildlife Resources Commission trail entry gate. The
weather was perfect, and the crew was great! Thanks to all who did this
great work in reopening this trail for trail users as well as hunters.
**I'd rather be Riding on the American Tobacco Trail!*
Please get out and use the ATT and other area greenways and trails.
Enjoying our trails and greenways not only helps your health, it
demonstrates to municipal staff and elected officials and leaders that
these facilities are needed and appreciated.
While you are on the greenways, why not carry along a plastic grocery
bag and pick up at least one piece of trash. If everyone picked up at
least one piece of trash on their greenway visit, our trails and
greenways would be spotless!
*Have you Walked, Run or Ridden on ALL of the American Tobacco Trail in
*As mentioned above, I had the pleasure of visiting with Sid Smith,
owner of Tobacco Trail Bicycle Rentals <http://www.ttbikes.com/>
yesterday. In our chat he noted that many of his customers riding the
ATT did not venture north of the Fayetteville Street crossing, which is
right down the road from NC Central University, because of safety concerns.
Part of the reason for trail users concern may be a scary looking
apartment house to the west of the trail, just north of Fayetteville
Street. There may be other areas of concern in this area as well, but
mostly folks seem fearful of this crossing, so they don't go beyond it.
This is too bad because they are missing a lot!
Sid feels that this portion of the ATT which runs north from Faytteville
Street to downtown, is the among the most scenic on the trail,
particularly this time of year. I completely agree! This section of the
ATT runs through older, established neighborhoods in which the
surrounding trees completely surround and envelope the trail (as
described above!). The dogwoods and spring flowers will be blooming in
the coming days and weeks ahead as the leaves bud and spring back into a
green splendor. Also, just about the best view of the Durham skyline can
be seen just north of Enterprise Street on this section as well.
I know of no safety or security concerns or similar problems ever from
trail users in this area north of Fayetteville Street. Within sight
distance of this crossing there is a Durham Police substation, a new
Food Lion, and numerous shops, a bus stop, as well as homes, schools and
churches. This is a vibrant neighborhood! I noticed several new shops
had recently opened in my ride yesterday. Because of the all the
activity, trail users shouldn't have worries when in this area.
Like anywhere else on the trail, on sidewalks or any public place, it is
a good idea to walk, run or ride with a friend. It simply is a lot more
fun that way. You can enjoy the ATT much more with a friend. Parents
should keep within sight of their kids - hard as that may sometimes be
when they are racing ahead on their bikes! If you feel uncomfortable in
an area - any area - just keep moving. Follow the Trail Etiquette
guidelines mentioned above and at www.triangletrails.org
*Fayetteville Road Parking Area Work Continues
*Thanks to a grant from the National Recreational Trails Fund
<http://www.ils.unc.edu/parkproject/trails/grant.html>, and assistance
from the Triangle Greenways Council, <http://www.trianglegreenways.org>
which owns the property, TRTC <http://www.triangletrails.org> is
constructing a 12-vehicle parking area for public access to the American
Tobacco Trail on Fayetteville Road about a mile south of Southpoint
Mall. The facility will allow for equestrian and pet access, but will be
too small for equestrian trailer parking. When completed, it will be
donated to the City of Durham Parks and Recreation Dept. for use by the
public for years to come.
A grant from REI <http://rei.com/> will allow us to connect this
facility to the ATT with a short bridge.
This will be an important project for TRTC over the coming months.
Please come out and help us out any way you can. Your monetary
contributions or contributions of time will help us complete this
*ATT Workdays in Chatham County
*TRTC is running 2nd and 4th Saturday workdays in Chatham County right
now through April.
Want to know more? We have a separate trail workday list which you can
email trtc-volunteers-owner at rtpnet.org to join. You can find We'll keep
those on this list informed of workdays in both Chatham and Durham counties.
If you can drag a limb or heft a log, we need you. You only need work
gloves and appropriate clothing, water and snacks. If you have a chain
saw and want to use it for the ATT, please let us know. If you want to
help at these workdays, find out where the trail goes or want more info,
please contact Bill Bussey <mailto:billbus at gte.net>
Last year TRTC <http://www.triangletrails.org> hosted semi-regular
workdays in which we cleared and cleaned the future ATT in Chatham
County. Including the very successful National Trails Day workday with
REI on June 5, 2004, more than 100 people have contributed over 1200
person-hours to clip and clear the ATT of trash, trees, limbs and brush,
as well as remove trash and junk piles, fill holes and do some grading,
mowing the trail surface
We have also done many more informal workdays with smaller groups.
Traffic control gates have now been installed at three road
intersections in Chatham County. However, we still need funds to
purchase gravel to fill mud holes, funds or tractor grader donations to
grade and level the trail surface, cut and move downed trees, among
other things. Your tax deductible contributions
<http://triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM> help here!
TRTC is working with Chatham County Parks to develop a Memorandum of
Agreement about possibly constructing and maintaining on approximately
three and a half miles of American Tobacco Trail in Chatham. Your
membership <http://triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM> and donation dollars
will *help us a lot* here in Chatham. Stay tuned...
*Scouts! Where are You?!
Working on the ATT is an excellent Boy or Girl Scout, or youth project.
As described in the mention of the kiosk and fence construction above,
projects on ATT make excellent Eagle Scout projects, or other community
service project, that will challenge youths to grow in their leadership
and organization building schools.
The ATT is a community resource that will be enjoyed by generations to
come. We welcome youth groups to come help build the American Tobacco
Trail. Even if your group can spare only a morning or an afternoon, we
need you. We can arrange something that will not only help the American
Tobacco Trail, but make your group feel good about their accomplishment
as well. Please contact Bill Bussey <mailto:billbus at gte.net> if you are
interested in getting your Boy or Girl Scout, or other youth group involved.
* Wake Stone Joins TRTC Corporate Partners List
*We are delighted that Wake Stone <http://www.wakestonecorp.com/> has
joined the ever growing list of companies who have made in-kind
donations to the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. Mr. Jeff Mann of
Wake Stone donated 2 loads of gravel to TRTC's trail maintenance and
management projects in southern Durham and Chatham counties. These
donations came at a *very opportune* time as we really needed this
gravel to fill in both long term and more recent ruts and holes on the
trail so that they can be used safely by trail users.
Thank You Jeff and Wake Stone for your generous contribution.
If your company can help TRTC with an in-kind or even cash donation,
please contact <mailto:americantobaccotriail at earthlink.net> us
We welcome these and all contributions which we'll use to continue our
construction, maintenance and management activities which have opened
the ATT in southern Durham and Chatham counties for *safe public use
NOW* instead of having to wait four or more years for the governments to
build, open and manage the trail.
*Your Membership is Very Important*
Your tax deductible membership <http://triangletrails.org/MEMBERS.HTM>
contributions and donations help us match grants and pay for projects
that help build the American Tobacco Trail. Because of City of Durham
requirements we had to purchase more insurance for our trail workdays.
Unfortunately insurance is a fact of life when doing almost anything
these days. We just got the bill for insurance the upcoming year. Yep,
just like your own personal or property insurance, it went up a
Because of greater than expected challenges with City of Durham
beauracracy, we are experiencing some additional costs related to our
construction of the Chancellor's Ridge trailhead. Your membership and
donations help that effort.
And funding for all Eagle Spur cleanups come completely from TRTC
memberships and contributions.
Right now work in Chatham, from gravel to fill mud holes to any truck
rentals to haul out downed trees is paid for with contributions and TRTC
<http://triangletrails.org/> membership funds. Insurance costs
$1,300/year, a load of gravel costs $250, a days rental of a chipper or
Bobcat is $250, a tank of diesel fuel costs $35, an information kiosk
costs $500-'$1000, brochures are 20 cents each. The list goes on...
Your tax-deductable (we're a 501 (c) (3) corporation ya' know!) cash and
in-kind contributions are very much welcomed to help us fund these
projects so we can continue our work to build the American Tobacco Trail
so you and everyone else can use it NOW.
Please note that the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is not a
chapter of, nor does it receive any funds or support from the national
Rails to Trails Conservancy (RTC). RTC has offices in various states,
(unfortunately not, NC) but no chapters. If you join RTC, the Triangle
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy and the American Tobacco Trail receives no
funding, nor any help from them. While RTC puts out a great magazine,
and offers a nice website (of which we were the October Trail of the
Month! <http://www.railstrails.org/find/totm/archives/03-10.asp>, only
by joining or making contributions to TRTC can you help build the
American Tobacco Trail, as well as other rail trail projects in our area.
We hope you'll consider joining us as a new member, or renewing your
membership in TRTC. You can even now join or make a contribution online
at our site. So joining is easier than ever!
For a form to join the Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy see our
website at www.triangletrails.org. Or send $25 for an Individual
membership, $35 for a Family, or a donation of any size, along with your
name, address, phone, Email, and Comments on a piece of paper to: TRTC
<http://triangletrails.org/> PO Box 61091 Durham, NC 27715-1091.
Thanks to the many who have recently joined and renewed their
membership! We are utilizing these funds to meet necessary expenses and
other important needs.
*Sign Up Now For The Triangle Greenways Council
Are you interested in greenways advocacy for the Triangle region?
Do you want to keep up with the latest developments regarding Triangle
Would you like to know how to reach the key people in your community who
are working for greenways?
Every other month, TGC's E-Newsletter delivers:
*The latest news on greenway programs in the Triangle region
*Progress reports on greenway trails under construction
*Links to key organizations and individuals who support, build, and
promote a network of Triangle greenways
*Links to articles and reports about greenways
If you would like to receive the Triangle Greenways Council
e-newsletter, please send an e-mail to: trianglegreenways at yahoo.com and
type "subscribe" in the subject line.
Or to subscribe yourself go to our new Greenway-News listserve
Thanks, and we look forward to informing you about Triangle Greenways!
*Board Members for Worthy Trail Organizations Wanted
*If you've read this far, you must really care about trails and
greenways in the Triangle!
If so, you are a perfect candidate for the Board of either the Triangle
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy or the Triangle Greenways Council. If you
are interested in serving on the Board of one of these fine
organizations, or know someone who might be a good candidate, please
contact Bill Bussey <mailto:billbuss at earthlink.net>.
All we ask is that Board members attend most regularly scheduled
meetings. TRTC meets the first Monday of each month in southern Durham.
TGC meets the 4th Monday of each month in Raleigh, at The Healing Place,
near the State Farmers Market. Serving on one of these boards is a great
way to be of service to the community. We are accomplishing a lot and
working to make the Triangle better! Many of our members have gone on to
bigger and better things! We welcome your participation.
If you'd like to be removed from this list, please email Bill Bussey
at billbus at gte.net or 919 545-9104. You can use this contact info for
more info. You can unsubscribe by following the links to
Whew! There is a lot going on! If you are still with me, thanks for
sticking through to the end. Hope you have fun with the links. Let me
know if I can answer any questions or in any way be of help. Thanks
again for all of your support. See you on the ATT.
Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
billbus at gte.net
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