One of the top amenities in Bend Oregon is our amazing trail system, especially for mountain biking. In fact, many of our Discovery West residents cite access to trails as one of their top reasons for moving into the neighborhood. Did you ever wonder how the trails were developed, and who maintains them? A lot of the work in our region is done by nonprofit organization, the Central Oregon Trail Alliance (COTA). We interviewed Emmy Andrews, the organization’s executive director, for our latest YouTube video installment on the Discovery West YouTube Channel.
COTA is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year in Central Oregon. The group works with the Forest Service and other land managers to both develop and care for area trails. Their mission is to develop, protect and enhance the Central Oregon mountain bike experience through trail stewardship, advocacy, collaboration and education. Emmy says that while taking care of the trails is a large part of what COTA does, they also focus on rider education, advocacy to land managers, and collaborating with all those who enjoy public lands to build and maintain trails.
During the video, Emmy talked in more detail about the hundreds of miles of trails in the Bend Oregon area, and where to go to find maps and further information on specific routes. She covers some of the benefits of riding, and trail etiquette as well. You can watch here.
COTA is a 100% donation-based organization, and Emmy talks about the need for further community involvement. The group is currently caring for more than 500 miles of trails throughout Central Oregon, which much work done by volunteers. In 2021 alone, volunteers logged almost 14,000 hours of work! To get involved or check out some online resources, visit cotamtb.com. Emmy says we’re lucky people to live in such a great place…we agree – lucky us!