New trail system providing outdoor activities and opportunity in Hurricane
A new hiking trail system isn't just about building trails, but instead about a building a community, according to volunteers involved with the project.
The new trail system starts behind Hurricane City Park. It is called the 'City of Hurricane Meeks Mountain Trails.'
Project leaders say the system is a partnership between private land owners and the city. A majority of the private land has been donated to the city by the Meeks' family.
The mission of the project is to provide a network of trails to improve health and well-being and to hopefully spark economic growth in the area.
According to the project leaders, the trails wind through the woods, proving you with scenic views while you are out. Volunteers are getting ready to take on their biggest cut of the trail yet.
Over the weekend and Monday, they will be out working to move dirt on the most scenic and technical part of the trail so far.
Brandon Doerner, who has been a leader for the project, has put countless hours in to help make the trail a reality. He says several volunteers and companies have been pitching in to help build the trail.
So far, more than 5 miles of the trail have been completed and are open to the public. The trail is part of a vision called the '25526' plan -- 25526 is the zip code for Hurricane.
The goal was to have 5 miles of the trail complete in two years. And in five years, have 26 miles finished.
Doerner says the trails are perfect for those interested in sports that are a little more extreme like mountain biking, but are also good for those just looking to get out for a run or walk.
On Thursday, Tamara and Erick Ambrose were out enjoying the trails for the first time.
"We were kind of excited to check them out," Erick said. "It's our first time out here. We just got done hiking and we really enjoyed it."
They say before the trails in Hurricane opened, they always traveled to the Kanawha State Forest to hike.
Doerner says they are still welcoming companies to help out with the project.