In 1998, the revised Forest Plan for the red rock area first identified a "trail access hub" to access a robust non-motorized trail system in the Western Gateway area. On November 8, 2018 ground broke on this trail access hub now commonly referred to as the Western Gateway - a 29 mile non-motorized trail system in West Sedona.
Approximately 30 volunteers and Forest Service trail crew members attended the first of 12 Western Gateway volunteer workdays.
These workdays are sponsored by the Sedona Red Rock Trail Fund "SRRTF" through a generous grant by REI. Justin Ingles of REI Flagstaff was on hand with raffle prizes for the volunteers. On January 9th, two four person American Conservation Experience "ACE" crews from Flagstaff will begin 8 weeks of construction of the Western Gateway. The ACE crews are funded by a National Forest Foundation grant awarded to the SRRTF with the matching funds provided by the VVCC.
The work day goal was to construct a re-route of a portion of the Girdner Trail to eliminate a fall line section and have the trail hug the hillside above the Dry Creek flood plain.
When the volunteers returned to the trail head after the work day concluded, they were greeted with delicious pizza courtesy of Famous Pizza, cold water/gatorade, and a cooler stocked with an an assortment of beers from Lagunitas Brewery provided by the VVCC. One lucky volunteer won a back pack and water bottle courtesy of REI.
The next Western Gateway volunteer work day is November 17th at 8:30AM. Volunteers will meet at the Girdner Trailhead just off Cultural Park way in West Sedona.