Trail association board announced

Group looks to the future of trails in the community

Board Members L to R: Sam Loxton, Mike Sleziak, Erik Wyatt, Carmen Ruiz, Jase Petersen, Ryan Witzaney, Sydney Johnsen. Not pictured are board members Brad Harrison and Jim Alix. Photo supplied.

Sun Peaks Recreational Trail Association (SPRTA) has a new board leading the organization into its fourth year.
Jase Petersen, Mike Sleziak, Sam Loxton, Brad Harrison, Erik Wyatt, Jim Alix, Sydney Johnsen, Ryan Witzaney and Carmen Ruiz form the expanded board.
“We’re super excited to have our new board in place, which is an important piece of what we
hope will be a big year ahead for SPRTA,” said SPRTA president Jase Petersen. “All of the board members have tons of relevant experience and plenty of passion for mountain biking, so it’s a really strong team.”
Ruiz said she was interested in SPRTA because she feels they have the best intentions for the future of mountain biking in Sun Peaks.
“It was started by a passionate group of people who love the sport and just want to share their love by improving our existing network of trails,” she said.
After joining she applied to become a board member and became director of membership.
“I decided to join the board because I’m an avid cross country biker but I find myself riding the same two or three trails because our trails, though really fun, are lacking.”
Ruiz hopes to engage the community, build new trails and inspire those who haven’t tried the sport to give it a shot.
“Speaking long term,” she said. “I’d love to see more trails of all levels of difficulty. A few scenic loops wouldn’t hurt either.”
The main goals for the group this year include working with Sun Peaks Resort LLP to secure liability insurance and the ability to work within the Controlled Recreation Area, creating a formal membership structure and planning trails to build this summer.
At an initial meeting on Jan. 4 the group also discussed finding grants to help fund construction of new trails and other mountain bike related infrastructure.
“Working with the resort to get the proper permissions in place to start working on trails is our main priority over the next few months,” Petersen said. “We’re aiming to have everything ready for trail building season in spring, so we can get started on our trails master plan as soon as possible. Once the work starts we’ll be able to involve the community more with things like trail building days and memberships, which we’re really looking forward to.”