As spring temperatures continue to rise, more and more people are looking for ways to get outside and enjoy the weather. One option is to check out the more than 100 miles of trails around Fort Wayne.
The City of Fort Wayne and Fort Wayne Trails Inc. are once again offering organized times to do that throughout the spring and summer months through the Trek the Trails community bike ride program.
“Our community’s trail system is a real treasure for all of our citizens, and the Trek the Trails program is a great way for people to discover and enjoy them,” Angie Quinn, Sustainability Director of Fort Wayne Trails Inc. said. “Trek the Trails is a great family activity, and it provides an opportunity to meet others who bicycle at a leisurely pace.”
The program kicked-off on Tuesday and will offer free guided bicycle tours each week. This season, 22 rides are scheduled, including new routes on the Pufferbelly, Dupont Road, and Maplecrest trails. The rides are anywhere from six to nine miles long and are family-friendly.
Despite the rain, the first ride started at the Towpath Trailhead on Engle Road and finished at the Eagle Marsh Barn with a party.
Both the program and the trails have grown significantly over the years. In 2017, Fort Wayne Trails Inc. and the city celebrated the completion of the 100th mile of trails in the Fort Wayne area trail system.
Since the Trek the Trails program began in 2010, nearly 13,000 riders have joined the rides, biking a total of 106,660 miles.
“It’s thrilling to see the success of this community building initiative. We’ve had riders from as far away as Niles, Michigan participate, but the great thing for the City as that many of our own residents are now comfortable on parts of the trail network that is not in their neighborhood,” said Dawn Ritchie, Greenways and Trails Manager for the City of Fort Wayne.
The rides are designed for people of all ages and multiple ride guides will be on hand to accommodate all ability levels each week.
Safety is a key part of the program. Riders are encouraged to wear helmets. Summit City Bicycles and Fitness staff will also be at each ride to provide safety checks on bicycles.
The bicycle business will also give away a bike at the end of the season. Riders can enter a drawing each week they attend the rides.