A Trail Association's First Steps on Trailforks

Nov 10, 2016 at 11:30
by Brent Hillier  
Trailforks blog header

Trailforks has quickly become the largest trail database in the world, and it's the most used trail app by Mountain Bikers of all types. It's used by tourists to avoid getting lost, locals wanting to check the conditions and status of their home trails and professional builders planning new projects. But Trailforks was designed for Trail Associations, and this list will help you start the process of optimizing Trailforks in your community.

New to Trailforks? Have a look at the Top 5 Trailforks Features.

Step 1: Check to make sure your Trail Association is listed.

A Trail Association is a non-profit group who either maintains local trails and/or advocates for there existence and access by the community. Your group might be a grassroots organization, a couple of "Trail Fairies" or a full fledge chapter of a larger organization, like IMBA, Evergreen, VMBA or NEMBA.

If your local Trail Association is missing from our directory listing we encourage you to add it.

Step 2: Can your local Trail Association receive Trail Karma donations?

Trail Karma allows a Trailforks user to donate directly to a local Trail Association that is responsible for advocating and maintaining the trails they ride. Donations go directly from the user to the Trail Association and can be done on the website or right from the Trailforks App.

The process of connecting a Trail Association to Trail Karma is very simple. We simply connect the email that the club uses with PayPal; global admins at Trailforks will verify this information and once approved than any donations from users will go directly to the group. Trailforks does not take a cut and the only fees associated with the program are taken by PayPal.

If your local Trail Association's PayPal info is missing than please send Trailforks an email to [email protected].

Trailforks Trail Karma feature.

Step 3: Get you and your board setup with admin access.

If you have a personal Pinkbike account than just send us your username and we'll add you to an Admin group for your Trail Association. If you don't have a personal Pinkbike account than you can create one HERE.


Shared accounts have a number of disadvantages, including a lack of accountability and communication. We also want all of your board members to take advantage of using the site as users, that includes sharing rides, liking trails and submitting Trail Reports.

Step 4: Are your trails in the database?

If we're missing your local trails, don't worry. Trails can easily be added, and if you're an admin you can make additions and edit without needing approval from Global Admins. Here's some helpful tutorials for adding trails:

It's best to start by adding a Riding Area

Then you can add a trail to it, there’s a few methods.

With a GPS file from your Garmin or other GPS Device or App
With a Strava Ride
Or by drawing it in 
You can also edit the track after using any of the above methods

Step 5: Tag Regions you manage with your Trail Association.

Trail Associations are attached to Regions, including Riding Areas and City Regions. There is no need to tag a Trail Association to individual trails and when this is done it can take away from the clubs region representation on the website and app. The Trail Supporter field is for individual Builders, Professional Trail Building Company and Corporate Sponsors.

Step 6: Edit your trails!

Trails aren't constant, they change and evolve and Trailforks allows these changes to be updated on the map quickly and easily. Not only can you edit details but you can also edit the GPS track itself. The Trailforks heatmap can help you create the most accurate GPS content on the web.

Learn more HERE.

Step 7: Hide Illegal or Sensitive Trails.

Not every trail should be publicly displayed on the internet. The last thing that Trailforks wants to do is damage any current or future relationship that a Trail Association has or will have with a Land Manager. That said, the internet has changed how trails are shared but Trailforks wants to be part of the solution, not the problem. When a trail is hidden on Trailforks it's removed from all other features, including the Heatmap, and in addition any Ridelogs that include hidden trails are made private and hidden automatically.

Learn more: Hiding a Trail

Step 8: Mark trails as Unsanctioned.

Not every, trail or region should be connected to your Trail Association. When a Trail or Region is marked as unsanctioned a Trail Association is not attached to it and your logo is not represented. In addition, a disclaimer is included in red: "This trail is Unsanctioned, Ride at your own Risk!

Learn more: Marking a Trail Unsanctioned

Step 9: Share on Social Media

We make it easy to promote Trailforks on your Facebook Page with Pre-made Social Media Posts. Just click share, copy and paste the text, customize if you'd like and share. It's that easy!

Author Info:
brenthillier avatar

Member since May 11, 2006
57 articles