WHAT WE DO
To preserve and enhance non-motorized trail access in Whatcom County through stewardship, education, and advocacy.
The Whatcom Mountain Bike Coalition (WMBC) is a federal non-profit, 501(c)3, organization. We work with many diverse groups such as land managers, elected officials and educational institutions to promote continued and expanded access for mountain biking and cycling.
Every year the WMBC coordinates hundreds of volunteers amounting to thousands of volunteer hours for the trails and youth outreach in Whatcom County. We also coordinate the construction and maintenance of the Civic Field Dirt Jump Park, Whatcom Falls and Waterfront Bike parks.
We have a strong youth involvement and work with the Bellingham, Meridian, Ferndale and Skagit School Districts, Vamos Outdoors Project, Boy Scouts of America for Eagle Scout Projects, among others.
The WMBC maintains a Recreational Use Agreement with the owners of Galbraith Mountain and the City of Bellingham and is responsible for all trail maintenance and construction on Galbraith Mountain. All trail operations are conducted within the guidelines established by the land-use agreement between the WMBC, City of Bellingham and the land owner Janicki Logging and Construction.
EIN Number : 20-4994769
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WHIMPs founder and early mountain bike pioneer, Jim Sullivan (Sully), witnessed first hand the trail user battles in the San Francisco Bay Area and the resulting closure of trails he had ridden as a youth. Seeing an opportunity to have a different outcome here in Bellingham he decided to help create the original organization. He remarked recently, “I’d say the WHIMPs got serious around 1986-7, mainly as trail clearers and countering burgeoning anti-mountain bike efforts happening in metro areas. Beginner rides, weekly cruises just spun off as local solo riders saw value in coalescing.”
In the earlier years the WHIMPs were basically a loose knit and diverse group of mountain bikers who gathered regularly for group rides. The early trail network was in disrepair and overgrown, so clearing and maintaining trails just to make them passable became a part of the organization’s culture. It wasn’t long before Sully was leading weekly Sunday Trail Work Parties from his house on Galbraith Lane.
In the coming decades mountain biking grew rapidly in terms of popularity as did the population of Bellingham and the surrounding areas did as well. As a result the WHIMPs became further involved with trail advocacy and started working with both the Bellingham and Whatcom County Parks. In 2002 Trillium Corporation bought Galbraith Mountain and the WHIMPs forged a groundbreaking maintenance and stewardship agreement which allowed for the planning and maintenance of the trail System on Galbraith Mountain.
In 2018, the City of Bellingham, Whatcom Land Trust, and Galbraith Tree Farm LLC entered into a purchase and sale agreement that secures the public’s recreational use of up to 65 miles of trails on Galbraith Mountain in perpetuity. Bellingham City Council voted to approve the agreement on Monday night, protecting the mountain from future development. Read more about WMBC's involvement here.
As demands of the organization and its members have grown some changes have occurred along the way. The WHIMPs incorporated into a Federal Non-Profit 501 c3 organization as the WHIMPs Mountain Bike Coalition. Our executive board has expanded from three members to seven and we now have three volunteer coordinators. We have much expanded community involvement and land manager relation and hold maintenance agreements with land managers for both public and private lands. Our programs include youth programs, youth rides as well as mountain bike education and outreach.