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Volunteers revamp BMX track at Torguson Park

Dayton Hughes of North Bend soars on wheels during a recent ride at the new Torguson bike park. Riders say they’re looking forward to telling friends to ride in North Bend instead of further afield. - Seth Truscott / Snoqualmie Valley Record
Dayton Hughes of North Bend soars on wheels during a recent ride at the new Torguson bike park. Riders say they’re looking forward to telling friends to ride in North Bend instead of further afield.
— image credit: Seth Truscott / Snoqualmie Valley Record

Tabletop, whoops, rhythm section and berm. What do all these terms have in common?

If you like doing tricks on two wheels, you probably know that they’re all bike track features designed to help you catch air or provide similar thrills.

You can now find them all on a newly revamped 100-yard track at Torguson Park in North Bend, the Valley’s only circuit dedicated to bicyclists.

“There’s skate parks where kids can BMX, and some downhill-related tracks, but nothing with good jumps like this,” said Joel Burklund, who helped coordinate efforts to beef up the track last fall.

More than a dozen volunteers showed up on a Saturday in November to pick up trash, then form dirt into a track.

The site used to be a homestead, said Mark Pray, lead parks technician for the city of North Bend. But in recent years, it became a dumping ground.

An avid bicyclist, Burklund had long been envisioning a re-tooled track at Torguson. The park’s old one was razed two years ago to make room for a soccer field. A small track was built in the site of the new one, “but it needed help,” he said.

Burklund suggested a renovation to the parks commission and City Councilman Ross Loudenback. Not long after, Pray and Rob McFall, an experienced BMX racer, were putting together a design.

Local contractor Points West Services and others including Nels Melgaard donated time and services to the project; the city ended up spending only about $2,000 to claim back and re-purpose the land.

Pray said that on a nice day, between 20 and 50 bicyclists would hit the old track. Once the weather improves, he expects that even more will take advantage of the newly rebuilt track.

“It’s a much more rider-friendly version, with some better corners and jumps, and some whoop-de-doo,” he said.

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