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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was out riding the trail/jumps we built in a patch of woods down by the river when a young guy walked by with his dog (I say young, I'm 47 so he was late teens to early twenties). Anyway, he saw the jumps and asked if I would hit them as he had never seen anyone take them before. No problem, happy to show off our jump line.

After I hit it for him, he proceeds to tell about another location about a half mile from my house. Says he used to dig there a couple years back. Needless to say, on my way home that evening I stopped by where he told me to look and found the trail he had mentioned.

It was obviously taken over by nature, winos and hoodlums. Everything covered in leaves and pine straw. Trash everywhere and a wino or two ventured by while I was out there.

The jumps are small and the lips need some serious work but I did what I could to ride around a bit.

I spent the next 5 days going out there and cleaning up all the trash, and raking up tons of pine straw.

I guess I'm wondering is it okay to throw some more dirt on these features and try to build this back up? It's a fun little area to play around on. Here goes a video clip showing a good portion of what is out there. Any advise greatly appreciated.

 

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Jason B. said:
I was out riding the trail/jumps we built in a patch of woods down by the river when a young guy walked by with his dog (I say young, I'm 47 so he was late teens to early twenties). Anyway, he saw the jumps and asked if I would hit them as he had never seen anyone take them before. No problem, happy to show off our jump line.

After I hit it for him, he proceeds to tell about another location about a half mile from my house. Says he used to dig there a couple years back. Needless to say, on my way home that evening I stopped by where he told me to look and found the trail he had mentioned.

It was obviously taken over by nature, winos and hoodlums. Everything covered in leaves and pine straw. Trash everywhere and a wino or two ventured by while I was out there.

The jumps are small and the lips need some serious work but I did what I could to ride around a bit.

I spent the next 5 days going out there and cleaning up all the trash, and raking up tons of pine straw.

I guess I'm wondering is it okay to throw some more dirt on these features and try to build this back up? It's a fun little area to play around on. Here goes a video clip showing a good portion of what is out there. Any advise greatly appreciated.

check out "The Digging Rules" thread . . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
cmc4130 said:
check out "The Digging Rules" thread . . . .
Ah, gotcha. Sounds like I'm on the right path. I'll just keep up general maintenance on the place and see if any riders ever show up, make a call from there...

7. Abandoned spot is one that was built but has been completely un-ridden and un-maintained for a substantial period of time. Not just the rainy season, or not just several weeks so grass is growing. Generally you can ride there (depending on the attitude level) but you cannot change things. You can do basic maintenance like watering and patching. Eventually, the spot can become yours, but give it a while.
 

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if those trails had not been touched in what seems like years, id say build or change whatever you want. most of the "rules" from the other thread mentioned are decent, #7 seems rediculous ...."Generally you can ride there (depending on the attitude level) but you cannot change things. "
 

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JohnByrd said:
if those trails had not been touched in what seems like years, id say build or change whatever you want. most of the "rules" from the other thread mentioned are decent, #7 seems rediculous ...."Generally you can ride there (depending on the attitude level) but you cannot change things. "
The reasoning behind #7 is this: A lot of times people's perception of what an "abandoned" spot is is very different. For example, I know a guy who built his own jumps in VERY secluded area during the summer, then he went to college. Various weekends he would come home and ride them, and rode them every Christmas and spring break, then the next summer would get them super dialed again.

Well, he constantly had problems with people finding the spot, claiming it, and changing up his lines--basically ruining them because they didn't know what they were doing etc. etc.

I have also seen situations where the old locals come out of the woodwork once someone gets their spot running again, then they still act like they're in control of it (and maybe they are, but were just lazy for a while).

Big picture point is that most of the time it's better to start your own spot from scratch. If you complain "awwww that's too much work" . . . . then you're really not in this for the long haul anyway.

Alternate option is to make friends with the former locals--trust me, once a spot gets running again, people WILL come out of the woodwork--and they may be happy you're fixing the spot up.
 

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i happen to be one of the old locals you are referring to. when we started riding street/park and let our jumps come close to dying i didnt mind when we returned to the dirt to find stuff has changed, even if for the worse. it wasnt our property so we couldnt do anything about it. however, it is good to have some respect for the original builders, even if they arent around but every so often.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Most of the human evidence that I see are broken glass, aluminum foil and the works drain cleaner, and standing trees that have been set on fire. The only humans I've seen there are wino/vagrant types.

I feel as though someone needs to take a hold of this location and bring it back to its original intended use, but will give it some time (I think the word is out to the winos as they have stopped coming by after I let one of them have it for tossing his trash after I cleaned it all up).

I also found out that the spot is at least 8 years old as I found a guy that used to ride there 8 years ago (he didn't know who started it but said they all used to ride, dig and build).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Too add, I just had someone leave a comment on my youtube video and they apparently live here. Hoping to get some more info through that outlet.
 

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alexrex20 said:
lol @ rules about what you can and cannot do to property that is neither yours nor theirs.
i know you're probably just joking . . .

. . . .but i've heard that comment before, so i'm going to address it: if you think that property ownership is the issue, then you're completely missing the point !! .. in Trail Etiquette, ownership of the trails goes to the diggers who built them. it's like basic respect for other people's hard work.

The Digging Rules were not just made up, they were re-told from years of being in the BMX scene. For example, see this interview discussing trail etiquette: http://trubmx.blogspot.com/2009/10/trails-etiqette-prt-6turnando.html

Remember, the positive aspect of all this is that if you go start a new spot from scratch, then riders (who understand trail etiquette) will not mess with them and (if they really understand trail etiquette) will help you build and maintain if they plan on riding.
 

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Jason B. said:
Here goes a video clip showing a good portion of what is out there. Any advise greatly appreciated.
i just got to see the video. pretty beginnerish spot, but does have potential. what is that dirt like? i've noticed that around pine trees, around here at least, soil tends to be very silty and sandy. you need good clay to make good jumps. also the spot looks pretty flat. if you're wanting to build some bigger jumps, you may want to try to find an area that has a natural drop-in type terrain--like ravine washout etc. it kinda looks like the original builders were going for more a pump track figure 8 ish setup. you may want to start an entirely new jump line instead of trying to tweak existing jumps.

#1 trait of true diggers is they are not afraid to start new lines from scratch and put the time and effort into moving the dirt it takes to finish to completion (expect to move 15 to 20 wheelbarrows worth per day for several weeks or months). the typical fake digger in my book is someone who doesn't move any new dirt but simply "carves" new transitions into existing jumps or packs on about one wheelbarrow's worth of dirt just onto the lip of a jump. don't be THAT GUY. !!! good luck, man!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
cmc,
I hear ya. I have 2.5 miles of trail with a set of 3 jumps on a line I built from scratch so i'm not afraid to move some dirt and start from scratch (got some pointers from you when I was building that line). This spot is just so close to the house it seems silly not to make it a bit more fun and challenging.

The dirt is (red) clay once you get down about a foot (several huge pits dug out there and you can see the layers of soil composition). In the video you can see the berms are all made of red clay.

The thought of the original build being more of a pump track had crossed my mind and the thoughts of an entirely new set of jumps had also. :)
 

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cmc4130 said:
i know you're probably just joking . . .
what part of my post did you misinterpret as a joke?

if the jumps are built on public land, then the jumps are also public. like you said, if you want to cry about people messing with jumps on public land, buy your own land and build your own damn jumps. then you will have credibility when you cry, "get off my land!"
 

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Yeah, you're totally missing the point. It's not about ownership, it's about respect. If you want to make something different then dig your own trail instead of messing with someone else's.
 

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alexrex20 I think we all get your point about trail builders not actually owning that piece of the land, but what we're talking about is common courtesy/respect whatever you may call it. While someone may have a right to do what they want, they're still a ****** and thats kinda the point everyone's trying to make with rule #7.
Edit:
sry forgot the original intent of this thread, JasonB I think the spot is clearly yours since no one rides it and the people who used to ride there don't really mind that you are there.
Also im pretty sure that the place was intended to be a pumptrack, the jumps are way too small. I'd recommend incorporating jumps into the track mainly because I think jumps and pump tracks shouldn't be two different things. For example look at the post office jumps, they have pump track features as well as proper big jumps, thats got some nice flowy creative lines!
Oh and how do you get water at that spot? do you wait for rain or do you carry water? Looks like hot and dustry conditions in your area, where i live its very hot (so no rain) and I'm really the only one who builds jumps. I usually end up carrying water in a backpack with milk bottles full of water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
My ex had two boys I helped raise (I'm 48) and I bought them GT BMX bikes for Christmas about 15 years ago. Was talking with the youngest one last Sunday and he mentioned that he used to ride and build on these trails way back then. Pretty wild...

I've started a line of jumps (a rhythm section). Nothing large yet as I'm a newbie. I've never hit a rhythm section so I'm starting small to get the feel and to cut my teeth of the build. Trying to follow some of the plans posted by cmc as far as spacing and such. Worked on the first pit today.

 

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Jason B. said:
My ex had two boys I helped raise (I'm 48) and I bought them GT BMX bikes for Christmas about 15 years ago. Was talking with the youngest one last Sunday and he mentioned that he used to ride and build on these trails way back then. Pretty wild...

I've started a line of jumps (a rhythm section). Nothing large yet as I'm a newbie. I've never hit a rhythm section so I'm starting small to get the feel and to cut my teeth of the build. Trying to follow some of the plans posted by cmc as far as spacing and such. Worked on the first pit today.

that actually looks like an awesome start ! nice work. : )
 
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