Ultimate guide to Wet Trails FAQ
TMBR collaborates with land managers/partners to provide high quality trails for use by the general public. At times, weather conditions will render the dirt surface trails susceptible to damage from foot and tire traffic. When trails are in this condition, the land manager has agreed that the trails will not be open to the general public. Trail closure and subsequent reopening is determined jointly by the land manager and TMBR. TMBR relies on volunteers to monitor trails, communicate with land managers, and distribute timely information through our website at tmbrtrails.org.
Common and Consistent Questions
Q. It’s a public park, and I’m a taxpayer! Don’t I have the right to use it anytime I want?
A. No. Many of our municipal facilities are managed with limited public access based on hours, seasonality, and other factors. Trail closures fall under the authority of our land managers. Citations for trespassing and damage to public property can be given by these organizations (Rangers / Dubuque County Conservation) to offenders that violate trail closures.
Q. Can I check on a closed trail and update the status to ‘open’ on Trailforks?
A. Maybe. TMBR relies on volunteers that check trails and communicate with stakeholders. If you would like to be one of these trusted individuals, please contact TMBR: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are not an identified trail steward, your ‘status update’ on Trailforks will be denied by the administrator for these reasons.
Stewardship of Trails and Education
Q. Why can’t TMBR update the trail status every day?
A. The TMBR trail steward is a valuable role in our community. These people lead on-going maintenance, manage relationships, plan continuous improvement, and act as ambassadors at each of our trail systems. On top of it all, they have a regular life, and most have full-time jobs. They are expected to update information when the status changes, and anything beyond that is at the discretion of each trail steward.
Q. Why hasn’t the trail status been updated in the last few days? Does that mean the trails are not being checked on and could be dry?
A. No, the date usually indicates the last time the status changed from open to closed, or vice versa. At times, it might indicate when comments were added to the status. Our trail stewards monitor the trail regularly without posting updates.
Q. Why are the trails closed sometimes even though it hasn’t rained for multiple days?
A. The length of time for a trail closure depends on volume and duration of the rain, existing moisture content, sunshine, temperature, wind, and even the forest canopy. Our trail stewards know best how long it takes for the trail to dry, and they ultimately bear responsibility for repairing damage. In the Spring a small rain can close trails for days. If it’s been dry, the same rain might only close it for an afternoon. We leave that up to the land manager and trail steward to make the call.
Q. If chains are down, does that mean the trail is open?
A. No. The chains are utilized for extended closures. Always check tmbrtrails.org for the latest trail status report. Also, be aware of posted signs at the trailheads for more information.
Q. If chains are across the trail, does that mean the trail is closed?
A. Yes. Chains across the trail access points always mean it is closed.