Thursday, July 13, 2006

Flirting with trouble


I knew I was flirting with danger soon after borrowing that Karate Monkey the first time. I even tried to resist borrowing it the second time. But, after the third, well, sometimes one must just admit defeat and jump in. So .... since I live on the east side of town and Wilderness is not always convenient, I was thinking a track around the horse pasture would be a good idea. Dad has a pile of downed trees, a tractor for moving them around, and there's a nice little creek with steep banks along with a good number of scrubby and larger trees. Hmm. I wonder how one goes about planning a trail? I guess I could start with the horse paths and branch off of those. Advice?

8 comments:

gravy said...

http://www.americantrails.org/resources/trailbuilding/basics.pdf

You should ask 3p0 about the psy-cow-path people. I think they built theirs out of a cow pasture.

sydney_b said...

Good link, thx.

gravy said...
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Beerorkid said...

ummmm.....

lots of beer and an eye patch. just ask CVO ;)

or how they made the path that avoids the bog in wilderness. Get a child drunk and give him a lawnmower;)

or spray paint where you want a trail, get a keg, and set up a mini race to see who can get the most laps while drinking a beer at the keg every lap. you would have twisty singletrack in no time.

3p0 said...

Steve, you are a very smart, and very dangerous man..

I like you man,

beer, weed eater, spray paint, and host a party sounds purdy good

sydney_b said...

Brilliant. Definitely sounds like the fastest way to get a trail in place. Stay tuned.

sydney_b said...

well, cool. Just got off the phone with my mom and she says the land is under utilized anyway and suggested some additional spaces that might be of interest. She did say tho, that if we were going to put a trail in, to make it good one worth racing on.

dale said...

Hi Syd,
Good trails don't just happen, they take some thought and knowledge of what to look for and how to design/build one. I highly suggest buying or borrowing a copy of "Trail Solutions: IMBA's Guide to Building Sweet Singletrack". Put in a good trail the first time, otherwise it won't get used much and you'll stop maintaining it or you'll need to reroute it.

It took 91 hours of work to get the first phase of the Tranquility Park Mountain Bike Trail approved. 25 hours of that was just walking around the land, taking notes, drawing possibile layouts, and envisioning a great finished product. I got an aerial photo with topographical lines and drew out several different designs and sought feedback from experienced trailbuilders before finalizing the layout. Even then, when flagging the route, some minor changes were made.

Tranquility involved very little dirt scraping for the initial cut, mostly weed eating and branch trimming. Final tread work was done later.

I suggest waiting for the vegetation to die back (Oct/Nov) time frame before starting to cut (mow/trim) in new trail. You get a better view of the topography and it takes much less work.

I would also suggest putting in a section (phase) at a time and riding it so you can put the experience gained into improving the design of later sections.

Envisioning and designing a trail is the favorite part of the trail building process for me. I would enjoy looking over the area for the trail with you and brainstorm some possibilites.