Teri’s Notebook: Jeff Potter, Carson City trail builder, wins national award
For the Nevada Appeal
Jeff Potter, the trails coordinator for Muscle Powered, received a national award for the work he did in building and coordinating the Ash to Kings Canyon trail west of Carson City.
“As the recreation trails manager for Nevada State Parks, I meet a large number of fabulous people who qualify for these awards,” said Jenny Scanland. “I nominated Jeff because of his undying dedication, top-notch trail skills, and humble nature which set him apart from others.”
American Trails presented Potter with the Trail Worker award during the International Trails Symposium, which is held every two years.
“This award recognizes an individual that has made outstanding contributions and provided consistent support for trail planning, development, or maintenance,” according to American Trails. “It is intended to recognize the efforts of a private or public sector individual working for enhanced trail recreation on either the local, state or national level.”
Potter first took his trail proposal to city officials in 2007. Officials liked the idea and gave him the simple mandate to figure out a way to make it happen.
After years of planning and obtaining the proper permissions and permits, he and fellow volunteers broke ground in 2012.
A ribbon-cutting to present the 7-mile trail, which starts at 5,600 feet and climbs about 1,100 feet to the highest point, to the public is planned for this summer (although it’s already a popular trail for mountain bikers and hikers).
“Jeff personally led the project by coordinating efforts from multiple agencies, land owners and user types,” according to American Trails. “He determined the best alignment, oversaw design and construction and developed partnerships necessary for the project’s completion. Jeff was instrumental in gathering more than 1,000 volunteers and not only instructing them in the construction of the trail, but also educating them in planning, design, sustainability and stewardship.”
Ann Bollinger, of Carson City Open Space Administration, said that was key to the trail’s success.
“In addition to Jeff’s vision, he has the ability to recruit and retain a dedicated trail team and many volunteers,” Bollinger said. “With their assistance, the first trail has been completed. It will be a great asset to our community.”
To view complete descriptions and photos of each 2015 awards recipient, visit http://www.AmericanTrails.org/awards/2015.
Teri Vance is a journalist, freelance writer and native Nevadan. Contact her with column ideas at email@example.com.