In 1988, an organization known as PUMP — Portland United Mountain Pedalers — was founded. This organization was started with 9 members and an eye towards opening up trail access to mountain bikes in Portland. In 2009 and with less than 50 members, PUMP updated and expanded their mission and vision, becoming Northwest Trail Alliance (NWTA) and enrolling in the newly created International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) chapter program, becoming the first IMBA chapter in the Northwest.
Fast-forward another 14 years to today. NWTA now has over 5,000 members, stewards over 250 miles of trails across 15 locations, and works with 11 different land managers as trusted partners in mountain bike trail maintenance, construction, management and programming — all within a fast-growing metropolitan region. NWTA is truly at an exciting and new inflection point of our organization; poised to build upon this remarkable foundation.
At the January 24 member meeting, we welcomed three new volunteers to our all-volunteer, working Board of Directors: Chloé Hammond-Bradley, Will Heiberg, and Charlie Kohlmeier. We are beyond excited to have them commit to Board service; dedicating their own time, experience and talents to the next stages of growth for NWTA.
As part of this growth, and with the addition of our full-time Executive Director, we will be embarking on a number of projects that strengthen NWTA’s organizational foundation. As was presented at the member meeting, you can look forward to seeing a 2023 membership survey, a new Bylaws update, and our 2022 Annual Report. Thank you to all of our members for their feedback and involvement as we continue with these big administrative projects!
Despite these big projects, the trail work doesn’t stop! We will still be advocating, building, and stewarding trails. Our new season of youth mountain bike programming will kick off this spring, and social rides and clinics, including BIPOC- and women-led events, will consistently be added to the calendar. It is all of this work combined that supports our mission to advocate for new trails; to protect, improve, and build sustainable mountain bike trails; and to create more recreation opportunities for mountain biking.
The NWTA mission is now as strong as ever. We execute our mission through our values of stewardship, community, passion, education, advocacy, access, inclusiveness and FUN. It is the dedication, hard work and fun that characterized NWTA’s roots and is evident in our success today.
Thank you to all of our members, volunteers, community partners, and Board members for joining us on this ride.