I did the bulk of the logistical work with the landowner and organization on the first Big Timber Race. It is cool to see someone fired up to resurrect it. There are a few things you should know about first before you get to far along...
1) Tack Van Cleve (landowner) was not happy with the kayak community prior to the original Big T race, but is a very good and reasonable man. He afforded us the opportunity to host the race if we would get the boating community to drop the Thug Life shtick and be respectful during access and scouting/safety on his property. Tack Van Cleve is capable of effectively shuting down access to this creek because he owns land above the high water mark that is needed for safety/scouting/portaging at certain points along the run. He knows this, but as I said, he was willing to keep everything cool if we did the same. He needs to be treated with the utmost respect throughout this process. I have been in touch with him several times since the original race (he actually handwrites a letter every year or so) and he was pleased with the rise in respectfulness from boaters, so thanks to everyone that has been up that way since then.
2) Tack required that he be named as an additional insured on the insurance certificate for the race. This insurance was obtained through the ACA and is around $500.00, if the safety plan is approved. I am happy to help you with these logistics if you are serious about moving forward.
3) Forest Service permit was required, but was fairly straightforward to obtain. Again, happy to help with this.
4) Do not name a date prior to approval from Tack. He runs a business at that ranch and certain weekends they have stuff going on and don't want a hundred people up that way for an event.
5) If you get this far, include the Pinch. It was incredible to have your race start with that drop, and bomber safety and medical personnel can be set up at the bottom of it. I would also recommend stopping the race at the bridge, as the mank below there is more trouble than it is worth and volunteers can be hard to come by when everybody wants to watch the runs at the pinch and gambler.
6) It is an awesome venue for an event and something I would love to see happen again, but it must be approached with a long-term mindset. If you are serious about making this go down, drop me an email. [email protected]
So you know, it cost a lot of money out of pocket from a handful of us to pull off last time even after "entry fees" ($500.00 - $700.00), but was worth every penny.
7) You cannot book out the campground from the Forest Service. We showed up the "day before the night before" the race and bought up all available campsites and told the two groups of non-boaters that were there what was about to happen that weekend, so they could leave or get ready. Sites have to be paid for and something resembling a "camp" has to be set-up until real crews roll in. This cost about $250.00 or so.
Don't let this list put you off... This is well worth it, but it is not a simple venue and requires substantial legwork to ensure the bridge repaired with the Van Cleve family remains intact. It sure would be nice to see the Maple Leaf gang get beat after dominating that first event. Not to many "real deal" US boaters made the trip for the original. We had set up for 50 racers, did not get quite that many, but could easily have accomodated that number. Much over that (including shuttle bunnies, photogs, safety, friends of friends, etc.) starts to push the number of people you want to have in there as far as noise and cluster fuck goes. We had requested people sign-up in advance and email in the number in their group. Generally speaking, this helped things out quite a bit.