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Volunteer

Volunteer for the Copper Harbor Trails!

The Copper Harbor Trails Club would not be as an effective an organization without the amazing people that volunteer their time for our trails.  Whether you give an hour at a registration table or a weekend clearing trails in the spring, we appreciate every minute!  We have just one staff member (our Executive Director) who keeps the high-level pieces moving where they need to go. Everyone else?  Some of the best dang volunteers we could ever ask for.

Our volunteer needs are as varied as the people who answer the cause.  Check out some descriptions of the types of tasks we regularly need help for below!

Spring Trail Cleanups

Two women stand next to an ORV before heading out to help clean up trails.

40 miles of singletrack trail can't clear itself!  Every winter the Keweenaw sees countless storms, hundreds of inches of snow, and more downed branches than you can shake a stick at.  Before our trails can open, we must remove the downed trees and leaf blow the ENTIRE system.  That's a lot of chainsawing.  We rely on dozens of volutneers to help out with this extremely important task.  After all, we can't ride without getting dirty first! 

Spring trail work days take place once the majority of the snow has melted, typically in late-April or early-May.  We'll post trail workday announcements on the Upcoming Events page as well as send notices out by email and on our Facebook.  No prior experience is required, and we have tools to lend out as well.  If you're not comfortable with heavy power tools, there are plenty of other tasks that could use help at this time of year too.

This year's workdays are planned for the following times: 

Saturday, May 14th from 10 AM - 2 PM (rain/snow date for May 15th, same time)

Sunday, May 22 from 10 AM - 2 PM (no rain date, we'll cancel if it's a downpour or snow storm)

Plan to meet at the Trails End Campground just west of Copper Harbor on M-26. If you have tools, please bring them. In particular, we need chainsaws early and leaf blowers later. Loppers, hand saws, and rakes are helpful to an extent as well.  CHTC has some gear to lend out but not enough for everyone. Bring gloves, a snack, water, and anything else you may need for a rugged day on the trails. Thanks! For questions, please contact nathan@copperharbortrails.org

Event Support

A group of volunteers learns how to time our Enduro race

We host several events throughout the summer months, including races, clinics, and group rides. Our biggest event, the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge Copper Harbor Trails Fest, requires a huge number of volunteers to pull off – over 100 different tasks need filled!  No one person can do it all, which is why we need your help to make these events happen.  An hour or two dedicated to the cause goes a long way towards ensuring the event is a success.  Event jobs can be as easy as helping out with registration or checking IDs in the beer tent, or as complicated as setting up course markings for our 30+ mile XC race.  Every job is fulfilling though, and volunteers get free food, beer, swag, and more for their efforts.

We typically post volunteer signups a couple months ahead of each big event that is in need.  Looking to help with a big task and not sure where to turn?  Feel free to contact us if you want to get involved on a deeper level with our events!

Become a Bike Patroller

CHTC is among the first mountain bike trail networks in the nation to begin the process of setting up a volunteer Bike Patrol program.  Similar to how ski patrol programs work, we would send trained patrollers out on busy days to respond quickly to incidents on our trails.  If you have a background in ski patrol or have emergency medical training and mountain bike too, you could be a great candidate!  This program is still in development but we hope to have our first group of people assisting in 2022 after completing their required training.  Reach out if you are interested in learning more.

Bike patrollers and other medical professionals are also in need at our races in case of injuries.  We have a robust system in place to respond to these types of emergencies but the biggest piece that is needed is manpower.  If you've got the skills, let us know and we'll assign you a role that fits the bill!

Join a Committee

CHTC is run by a group of dedicated volunteer Board and Committee members. If you are looking to get involved on a more regular basis, consider being involved as a committee member!  You get an inside look at what it takes to run one of the Keweenaw's highest-funcitoning non-profit organizations and get to make decisions that will have a lasting impact on the community.  Listed below are our most active committees that are always in need of new members and ideas. Contact us if you are interested in serving in one of these roles. 

  • Events: The events committee plans and executes all event logistics including everything from race course planning to food to day-of scheduling. The events committee organizes all CHTC events both big and small, including the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge Copper Harbor Trails FestRide the Keweenaw, and our men's and women's clinics. 

  • Membership & Outreach: The membership and outreach committee seeks to make and maintain connections with community members, volunteers, and donors though the CHTC website, email, newsletter, and social media. The membership and outreach committee’s goal is to increase awareness, fundraising, and promotion for the CHTC and events. Committee members also assist with our Partner Program and attracting industry sponsors to our cause.

  • Trails & Land Access: The trails and land access committee is responsible for the continued planning and maintenance of the trails including coordinating trail work, land acquisition projects, and signage and mapping.  This group brings together community advocates, Board members, and trail builders to determine what our priorities are for the coming years ahead.

If you would like to be a part of the CHTC’s efforts to creating and maintaining a world class outdoor recreation experience please reach out!  We thrive because of the incredible passion, support, and commitment of enthusiastic volunteers like you.  We thank all of our past and future volunteers for the work that they do to make our trails so awesome.

Don't worry, we'll take you in no matter how weird you are!

Two volunteers make goofy faces

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