r By Arianne Brown
Between the third mile marker and Maple Dell Scout Camp on the east side of Payson Canyon lies a series of trails known by locals as “Four Bay.” This trail system that has over eight miles of trail was built by a local firefighter, Carey Pierce, and maintained by him and locals like Darce and Nancy Trotter. And thanks to their continued efforts, the trails are now useable during the winter.
After several frustrating attempts at riding their fat bikes on the trails, the Trotters decided to purchase a SnowDog to carve out the trails. After each snowstorm, Darce drives the SnowDog that does most of the carving while Nancy sits on the attached sled with a rake combing down the excess snow. This process often takes several hours, but the Trotters say they enjoy it.
“Being a long time mountain biker with some history of designing and building trails systems from my time at Sundance, I have interest in helping them become more useable year around,” Darce Trotter said. “After struggles from the last few years to ride in the snow, it became apparent to me that packing and grooming would have to happen to make it useable for trail running, fat biking, cross country skiing and while not necessary for snowshoeing, it would help mark the trails and routes for that also.”
The Trotters and Pierce are part of a growing community known as “Friends of Four Bay” who are working hard to both keep the area nice and to spread the word of this rare gem in Payson Canyon.
“It’s amazing to see locals like Darce and Nancy provide a service like this,” Pierce said.“It’s efforts like the ones put forth by the Trotters, and the continued responsible use of the trails that help the cause in the long-term as we look toward the future of Four Bay. In fact, a recent meeting with Mayor William Wright and City Councilman, Doug Welton proved promising toward efforts to keep the area that is primarily owned by the city, open to residents for recreational use.”
Darce Trotter was quick to give credit where he says it’s due, back to Pierce who created the trail system.
“I have watched Carey carefully design and develop the trail system at Four Bay for nearly 15 years,” Trotter said. “He has worked with Payson City, the Forest Service, Strawberry Water Users and private landowners to produce a hidden gem right in our backyard. Most of the work he did himself, but every year without fail, he would add to, connect and improve trails that are both sensitive to the area and adapted to the terrain.
“Nancy and I enjoy grooming the area as much as we like to ride our bikes on these same trails,” Darce Trotter continued. “We feel we are just polishing up the diamond that Carey has created and opened up access to more and more residents of our area. We are blessed to have this in our lives, and while we take some ownership and pride in such a gem, we really are blessed by efforts to preserve and protect this island in a world of overdevelopment. Come and enjoy what we have found.”
To learn more about the Four Bay trail system, and to see what you can do to maintain the area, go to the “#4bay4ever Friends Of Four Bay” Facebook page.