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Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Back in the early 70s there was a minibike summer camp in PA......did anyone go?

They had Honda 50s to supply or you could bring your own mini

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

i think the y.m.c.a. had something set up with honda for that

Age: 56

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I beleive the camp was in Jamestown PA.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Brandt,
It was called Camp Trailbreaker and it was located in Johnstown, Pa. run by the Kuntz family.
It was made up of two-week sessions of 40 kids, held during the summer months. There were four cabins of ten campers & one counselor. They did use Mini-trails but when I attended in July, 1970 they also had a Trail 90, a Powell challenger and a Rokon. Campers were welcome to bring their own bike and several did - a few Trail 70s & Mini-Trails.
It was a fantastic two weeks for me - lots of trail riding, formation training in the flat track area and an overnight camping trip on the minibikes.
There was an article in MBG that came out after I attended, but I no longer have that issue.
I have a fair amount of pictures from my session that I could copy and send you, if interested. Just call or e-mail me.

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Hi, I went to camp trailbreaker in july 1970.I went with five of my friends what a blast!Four of us had our own bikes two fox trail tramps one bonanza 1500 and my hodaka bonanza 1510,mine was the fastest bike at camp.Kuntz and I ,think it was Fred,were the only ones to make it up rifle range hill.Fred was on the two wheel drive Rocon trailbreaker that the camp was named for.The camp was located in Blairsville Pa.outside of Pittsburg.We would take long rides along old rr tracks,tunnels and trails.I remember one camp counselor Fronk,rode the camps powell challenger,he was from france we gave him a hard time! Lots and lots of great times!Love to see Toms pictures,see every one at Winber and portland.

Age: 54

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I just wanted to add to this since I was thinking recently of the good times I had back at Camp Trailbreaker in the 70's. I was there in 76 and 77. Most campers rode Honda 70s but some brought their own. Awesome camp. Wood shop (with power tools), skeet and rifle shooting, and lotsa motorbike riding. They had trails all over the mountain with old wooden bridges over the creeks. A real blast to ride. I remember hill climbing and overnight trips to the strip mines where we could really open the bikes up. They had this quonset hut on the top of the mountain where we would site each night and watch old educational films while eating candy, drinking cherry soda, and whittling with the Barlow knives we bought from the camp store. Great times. You couldnt do that nowadays. The camp counseler I remember was named Hutch (or Hud) I think.

Age: 44

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I also remember "Hud" > Tom Hudson was his name ! he was My counsler 2 years ! back in 1975/76 i think ! I also remember a CIT "counsler in training" named Mike salaney who rode a Honda TL 250 ! and a big black kid named Damon Brown ! Karen Kuntz ! greg Kuntz ! the round shower and wash room ! another CIT on a IT 175 ! "kayton Hill" > I made it up that hill on Yam DT 125B
One year I was there a little kid oon an xr75 went AWOL and made it to the toll both in pittsburgh bout 45minutes away !! great memories ! I was begining to think it was all a dream cause i have searched the subject b 4 and never found anything on it ! But i Was there and I had a Yam DT 125 B with electric start ! I may have went 3 or 4 years in a row ! ?? not sure but i learned to ride trials there on a sherpa T bultaco ! still got lots of pictures ! luv to hear more on it maybe my memory will kick in better if someone jogs it a bit !! Tony kawalchuk ! 845 626 3412

Age: 46

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Yeah I went to camp trilbreaker in the early 70's in blarsville PA

Age: 48

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I went there two summers. I don't recall a lot of specifics but it was a BLAST! The first year were trail 50's and the next year were trail 70's. I remember the experienced riders who brought their own bikes did a little more riding, and they rode in with some wild grins on their faces.

I remember the .22 caliber rifle shooting, and I think I recall archery too, but can't be sure.

Can't believe I Googled it and found this. You know, I might sign up to go again tomorrow. I remember it being big-time fun.
Thanks,
Greg

Age: 51

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

What a BLAST FROM THE PAST! SO good to hear you guys talk about Camp Trailbreaker! I remember I was technically under the age limit by half a year, which must have been 12 (or 10?). So I guess I was there in 1974. Those Honda 70s were what we "renters" rode - other lucky souls brought their own bikes. Maybe my counselor's name was Barry? I remember specifically getting shocked in a mechanics seminar --instructor kick started a Honda 50 while someone held the spark plug wire and the rest of us connected holding hands. The woodworking instructor was cranky and the big thing was making a wooden ring to wear. And what about the "hill jack" thing? Anyone experience that scary-as-hell night? Had to be staged, right? Thanks for the great flashback.

Age: 47

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I was there in the early 70's, (74 maybe?). My counselor was a french guy named Fronc - not sure if that's spelled right. He rode a mini trail 70 with a half helmet. I brought my XR75 to camp.

I remember the hill jack stories - in fact one night they supposedly stole a pet skunk or something like that. Good times. I'd like to know where specifically the camp was. I now live in the area and would like to see some of the trails.

Age: 48

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Lets here more about the Hill Jack thing? What was it? The camp was owned by John Kuntz. It was located in Blainsville, PA

Camp Trailbreaker
R.D. 2, Box 219-S
Bllairsville, Pa 15717

I have around ten pages copied from Minibike Guide magazines on articles from Camp Trailbreaker if anybody is interested. I can copy them and send them to you for 6.50 shipped to cover the copies, envelope, and shipping.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

The hill jacks were men, who caused chaos in the area and were dangerous. I'm not sure if they were real or just made up to keep us in our cabin after lights out. It worked for me.

Age: 48

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I was there in 70 and 71. I remember my counsler had a Bonanza/Hodaka 1510 and he let me ride it. It hooked up hard and I plowed into that big wooden tower. I hurt my shoulder and broke his light off the bike! Remember when they sprayed the track because of the dust? Yeah, they sprayed oil ! Can't do that nowadays ! I have pictures to exchange. Fun time.

Age: 54

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? Camp Trail Breaker

I was there in 74/75 and 75/76. I think. I rode a rental ct 70 4 speed the 1st year. 2nd year rode my suzuki ts 100 1974, i was the blonde hair'd kid from NY State. I hurt my foot the 2nd year got ran into by a guy on the bultaco trials bike.
any one go the year we went to the parade on the bikes and got driven in the flat bed truck semi to it?
how about the dirt drags? the guy doing the crazy wheele? on the trial's bike! i think it was fred doing that big hill climb on his honda sl350 twin pipe. pushing the bikes along that dirt rd so we could ride at the pits or what ever it was called?

any one on facebook?

I have pictures 4 exchange. great times.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? Camp Trail Breaker

I use to see ads for Camp Trailbreaker in Boys Lfe Mag. back in the early 70s. I never went but really would have loved to. One of my friends, Bill Whalen was a counseler there in the early 70s. He worked there one summer when he was in college.
Someone send me some photos.....please...

Age: 47

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? Camp Trail Breaker

I also went to Camp Trailbreaker loved it! rode ct 70s with 3 speed auto.I remember going camping and going to an abandoned rail tunnel and also sticking my hand into hot coals from an old fire ! Also got hit in the head with a rock and got 3 stitches
Pete

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? Camp Trail Breaker

Someone mentioned Blairsville recently and reminded me of Camp Trailbreaker, so I googled it and found this thread!
I went in 74 and 75. I took my Yamaha GT 80 both years. It was one of the best ever experiences. No one has mentioned if it is still there...are the Kuntz still around? Funny someone mentioned Karen. I remember her being very cute!
I was there with Guy Berkebile. His mom owned Berkebile Oil, and from what Guy told us was the original developer of Castrol.
I saw the ads in Boys Life and bugged my parents till they sent me. My Kuntz had Bocchi ball courts too.

Age: 48

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? Camp Trail Breaker

I went in '74 for 2 weeks and vowed to go back, but never did. I found the ad in the back of the National Geographic. Memories are a little vague, but i remember that the Kunts's were kind and gentle souls and let me ride their best Honda SL-70. I also remember their daughter, Karen, ran the kitchen. All and all I had a great time and was sad as hell when it was time to leave.

Age: 52

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Wow tony I remember going to camp trail breaker with you ,you had a red Dt125 Yamaha,I think you won best rider award,I was the kid that worked there gassing up the bikes ,don Maloney cr125 Scott losson,spider trails capture the flag,would love to here from you I still have pictures e mil me or call 716 -545-5869

Age: 51

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Hey Tom just discovered this forum,real cool I attended the camp in 76 my councilers name was HUD,cool guy gotta be real old now I was wondering if you could forward me some pics so I can show my kids thanks mingsgary@yahoo.com

Age: 51

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Fronk you scum. That is what I remember about our counselor. Just a joke tho, he was a great guy. My best memories as a kid was going to Camp Trailbreaker in Blairsville, PA with my bike attached to the back bumper of my moms car. Long ride from NH but I went 2 years in maybe '73 and '74 first time with my XR75 and then My SL125 I could hardly touch with both feet but what I lacked in height i made up for in fearlessness :) What a great experience. Wish there was something like that for kids these days. I still have a few pictures that Mr. Kuntz took of me riding, nice B&W 5x7 pics still in great condition thanks to his great developing.
I even visited a friend Bruce H I met there at his house in MD and he came up to my place once as well. Bruce and I saw Jeff Ward (among other up and comers) at the Dunkirk PA MX track and he was showing off for the crowd and promptly dumped his bike in the mud.
Still ride today on an XR200, XRM125 and Kawasaki Rouser 220 here in the Philippines. Lots of great trail riding here year round.

Age: 51

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Is there any support from you guys for creating a group Facebook page? May be another way to connect with others from CTb.
I'll create page if anyone is interested.

Age: 51

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

Hi, Yes i would like a facebook group or other page related page. Lets try and find more Camp Trailbreaker Alumni? Cheers, Andrew

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I would like to see about a free Wordpress or other blog site where we could have more control and offer more privacy for Alumni. It's just a small group sharing personal memories. I don't do Facebook.

Gosh -- Weren't those great summers

Age: 56

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

OMG - It is wonderful reading all these messages. I cannot connect the names but I was there in 1970 and 71 I recall - they had honda 50's one years then honda 70's the next. I bought a gold honda 70 in the mean time (or rather my parents did) and took it the second year.

I do remember someone attending who had a Yamaha 125 with "Autolube".

I do remember Franc - the counselor from France who was pretty cool - I never met anyone from France before. In fact, I remember meeting a lot of kids from different parts of the East coast.

I also remember meeting for the first time, an African American kid, as a fellow camper, who had a red Honda Trail 70, and we became friends.

I remember a camper from Chevy Chase Maryland.

I remember John Koontz the owner, was an observant Christian. He read from the book of John before meals, and Sunday was a day of rest. No riding Sunday -- We took a hike and picked Huckleberries and had them over ice-cream. Franc sat at the picnic table studying english. We listened to KDKA Pittsburgh, and chilled, had a great roast beef that evening.

I called the phone number for John Koontz in 1997 hoping they were in business and wanted to send my nephew. The camp was closed in 1977 because the insurance was horrendous - even though they had no accidents. I spoke to John Koontz in 97 and he was surprised I remembered "Bodger" the Dog, His son Fred and and John Jr. I think.

The long overnight ride to an area of dams and railroads people are referring to was to the Conemaugh Lake National Recreation Area - aka Virginia Farms.

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.4469877,-79.2966233,4016m/data=!3m1!1e3

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

Thank you for some of your emails and responses. Below is a Yahoo Map link that will show you to Camp Trailbreaker as it looks today. This was a fun way to kill part of a sunday afternoon! Many aspects are recognizable and it brings back a lot of memories. There are now private homes there, Mr. Koontz told me when I spoke to him in 1997, so we should not disturb them if we are in the area. Yahoo's Map was much clearer than Google's Map.

https://maps.yahoo.com/place/?lat=40.499641894418765&lon=-79.2750209569931&q=blairsville%20pa&t=h&bb=40.50226474125333%2C-79.27856415510178%2C40.497018945034675%2C-79.27147775888443&addr=blairsville%20pa

Notes: The entrance was on highway 217 north, just below the Ferguson School road. You can see the private drive near the big field where we all pulled in and offloaded our bikes. Then up that long winding drive largely obscured by trees, then emerging near the old main riding field. Then a short hop to the lodge clearly visible, with with the posts on porch facing west. The barn where the bikes were held is just north of the lodge. Northwest of the Barn a ways looks like a roof from one of the cabins. Due east of the Barn is the cleared trail down that steep trail to the cabins where mostly those that brought their own bike stayed - Mr. Koontz said we needed the additional exercise! all I see there now is a clearing.

If you look down near highway 217, the old craft barn (white roof) is visible near one of the family's house, The field north of the craft barn I believe was the rifle range. North of the entrance field was another field with a track we practiced on regularly.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

So here's a crazy Idea!
What if we, collectively started a new Camp like Trailbreaker?? We seem to all agree that an experience like this is over the top!

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

That's a fun thought! Do kids even ride now or think of riding? We can make it a family camp - Kids can stay in the quonset hut or the lodge all day with wifi, texting or gaming, and the adults can come and ride the mini bikes around -- or perhaps Honda 125s at this age.

One of the big draws of Trailbreaker was that many of us in the suburbs had few if any legal places to ride; we had to dodge cars, the cops, or irate owners of vacant lots. I live in California now, and there are a lot of state designated off road riding areas. However, it is almost impossible to RENT a dirt bike and go do it.

John Kuntz said when I talked to him he had to shut the camp down because he couldn't get insurance, even though there were no serious accidents.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

My thoughts on the insurance issue was; Mr. Kuntz was one man. Collectively we could incorporate and work the insurance premiums into the operating cost.
Very funny scenario regarding the kids (video games) issue. I think that ALL kids would love to ride rather than sit and "thumb" with their devices....

Anyone else intrested in this idea? Maybe we could arrange a web meeting...

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

I Like The Idea Of A New Camp TrailBreaker. I Am In :-)

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

Here are some photos I would like to share.

First is me on a Camp Trailbreaker Honda 50 in 1970. Taken in front of the main dining lodge building.

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f184/kg129/mini-bike_zps4d0550e6.jpg

Second is a two sided photo postcard of me riding my own Trail 70 a year later in 1971. I actually spilled it a second later! Greg or Fred Kuntz took these I think during a ride, then they had them made in to a postcard and mailed it to me at home. John Kuntz personalized it but I don't know about "glenn's goat" - a Goat back then might have been a Pontiac GTO.

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f184/kg129/PostCard-redacted_zpse6e8cadb.jpg

The postcard does demonstrate the Kuntz's had some early marketing savvy. I learned about the camp by seeing display in a regional mall near Pittsburgh. Greg actually rolled in a few Honda 50 minibikes in to the mall as part of the display; we got to sit on them, and EVERY kid in that mall dragged their parents over to have a look.

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

Hi Keith, what a great memory. I was never at that camp, but I do remember those days when I was a kid. Minibikes were just about every boys dream. Those were the bests days.

Age: 18 @ Heart

Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

My brother and I attended Camp Trailbreaker - i think it was the summer of 1971. We had Yamaha Mini Enduros we brought with us. On the overnight, we were among the group that planted a snake in someone's sleeping bag. It was kind of horrifying looking back on it. But funny then.

Does anyone remember us - Greg and Steve

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

Many in this forum have commented on the overnight ride and camp event and it was indeed a great part of the experience. The area is now part of the West Penn Trail and is open to hike and bike. Links are below to the website and a google map.

http://www.transalleghenytrails.com/trails/west-penn-trail.aspx

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.4469877,-79.2966233,4016m/data=!3m1!1e3

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

I got the biggest kick out of reading all the posts. I attended Camp Trailbreaker the summer of I think 1974 and what an adventure! Many of the memories Keith shared brought back the most memories for me...I had brought my own bikes (Honda CR125 & Yamaha DT175) so I do remember staying in the cabins down the hill. I want to say there were 2 or 3 cabins down there and I stayed in the one on the right.

I had totally forgotten that they did not allow riding on Sundays and John's strong faith. I also remember the discipline and respect for the sport, road laws, & other peoples property they instilled upon the campers. Like rides off property...we would have to walk our bikes on public roads as not to break the law and the respect for the farmer's properties we crossed to get to other ride locations.

One of the rides I remember the most was the Conemaugh Lake National Recreation Area with the abandoned railroad that crossed the rivers...I think the railroad ended at a closed tunnel. Also riding along the river flood plain on the mud flats. They had also started offering Trails riding on TL125's and I remember going down into the woods practicing how long we could stand still on the bikes without touching our feet.

I would also like making contacts with other former campers...especially trading pictures as I only have one.

Age: 54

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

I remember Franc! I was there that year and think I even have a pic of him and and another guy, who was also a counselor. Your memory far exceeds mine. My father started his own bike camp shortly after, called camp timberidge in selingsgrove pa. It ran for 3 years and was a great time to be a kid. I rode daily all summer for a few years. There was also a long haired kid named Seth at camp trailbreaker. I have a pic of him on the Yellow Rokon Trailbreaker the camp owned.

Age: 55

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go?? (Repost)

My memory of that RR bridge was that you could see through the ties and it scared the hell out of me. Although I could have re-invented it over the years in my dreams :-)
Kuntz Obit :-(
http://obituaries.expressionstributes.com/?m=a591240908&prnt=3

Age: 55

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Re: Mini bike summer camp in PA....anyone go??

I remember it well, they had those old Honda trail 50's and 70's, I think Honda 4 stroke trials bikes too... A big round riding oval track with a hill to ride over, lots of trails, and cabins like the good old YMCA camps all have, a big pool to cool off in... Great old times in the 70's

Feel free to email me about it

Age: 54