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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Now playing on a trail near you, if you live near Redwood Park in Oakland!

The EBRPD's Caterpillar grader is at it again. It has been laying waste to parts of Baccharis, Dunn, East Ridge, and West Ridge trails.

Here are some views of the damage:

Picture #1: This is on Baccharis Trail. For some reason, the grader has been making regular gouges adjacent to the trail bed. There must be a method to this seeming madness, but I'll be darned if I can figure out what it is. It just seems to be needless destruction of the foliage next to the trail.

Picture #2: This shows the point at which Dunn Trail runs into Baccharis. Here it's been widened to about 20 feet! And it won't do any good. The district does this every year or two, and each time the erosion returns as soon as the rains resume. This destruction means only that the next round of erosion will rut twice the square footage of this area as before.

Picture #3: Another picture of the widening of Dunn Trail at the intersection of Baccharis Trail. It looks like the Transamazon Highway in Brazil, a famous environmental disaster.

Picture #4: Similarly, there have been massive off-trail gouges on the steep part of West Ridge Trail, above Bridle Trail (and the trail itself has been plowed). What purpose could these possibly serve?

I personally think the district should open Orchard Trail to cyclists as a temporary emergency route while the steep part of West Ridge Trail is in this condition. It's no fun to ride down. And one can only despair on witnessing the trail damage. As with the Baccharis-Dunn intersection, it's all for naught. With next winter's rains the ruts will reappear, but now in the newly carved areas as well as the original trail bed.

Picture #5: And this ghastly bulge is on the steep part of East Ridge Trail just south of the southernmost park bench. It looks like some kind of aneurysm. What a horror.

If any of this bothers you, you can contact the East Bay Regional Park District. You can find an e-mail address for your director here: http://www.ebparks.org/district/board.htm.
 

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Could be fixed with Measure CC

If you do contact the Park District, please suggest that some of that Measure CC money be put toward realigning all of the fire roads in Redwood Park to make them more sustainable. Some road to trail conversions may also be appropriate. This project was identified as a possible item that the funds may be used for and part of the reason that BTCEB supported the measure. We should remind them of this continuously.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
NorCAMBA Prez said:
If you do contact the Park District, please suggest that some of that Measure CC money be put toward realigning all of the fire roads in Redwood Park to make them more sustainable. Some road to trail conversions may also be appropriate. This project was identified as a possible item that the funds may be used for and part of the reason that BTCEB supported the measure. We should remind them of this continuously.
Good point. The park district said that if the voters passed Measure CC it would spend half a million dollars to fix Redwood's trails. They did pass it, with BTCEB's help. BTCEB should work to see that the money is used for real trail realignments, and not to run the grader over the existing trails for years to come.
 

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One of the saddest parts about this is that if you ask other trail users, do you like what the park did they answer, "No."

And if you ask them why they think the park district did it half or more of them usually say "for bicyclists/mountain bikers?" :mad:
 

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imtnbke said:
Now playing on a trail near you, if you live near Redwood Park in Oakland!

The EBRPD's Caterpillar grader is at it again. It has been laying waste to parts of Baccharis, Dunn, East Ridge, and West Ridge trails.

Here are some views of the damage:

Picture #1: This is on Baccharis Trail. For some reason, the grader has been making regular gouges adjacent to the trail bed. There must be a method to this seeming madness, but I'll be darned if I can figure out what it is. It just seems to be needless destruction of the foliage next to the trail.

Picture #2: This shows the point at which Dunn Trail runs into Baccharis. Here it's been widened to about 20 feet! And it won't do any good. The district does this every year or two, and each time the erosion returns as soon as the rains resume. This destruction means only that the next round of erosion will rut twice the square footage of this area as before.

Picture #3: Another picture of the widening of Dunn Trail at the intersection of Baccharis Trail. It looks like the Transamazon Highway in Brazil, a famous environmental disaster.

Picture #4: Similarly, there have been massive off-trail gouges on the steep part of West Ridge Trail, above Bridle Trail (and the trail itself has been plowed). What purpose could these possibly serve?

I personally think the district should open Orchard Trail to cyclists as a temporary emergency route while the steep part of West Ridge Trail is in this condition. It's no fun to ride down. And one can only despair on witnessing the trail damage. As with the Baccharis-Dunn intersection, it's all for naught. With next winter's rains the ruts will reappear, but now in the newly carved areas as well as the original trail bed.

Picture #5: And this ghastly bulge is on the steep part of East Ridge Trail just south of the southernmost park bench. It looks like some kind of aneurysm. What a horror.

If any of this bothers you, you can contact the East Bay Regional Park District. You can find an e-mail address for your director here: http://www.ebparks.org/district/board.htm.
Will the park be rideable this w-e after all that grading work?
 

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looks like you'll need pretty good travel in your suspension to get through all that cr*p!!!

i just don't get what they are doing....seems mostly like they are pushing the trail off into the woods.

:confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
zorg said:
Will the park be rideable this w-e after all that grading work?
Yes. Just be careful of lines that may have changed. In fact it may be better this weekend than it will be in a week or two. If the trails dry out completely, the plowed areas may turn into deep dusty powder. Right now they're decently tamped down because of the recent rains, some of which fortunately came after the plowing.
 

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imtnbke said:
Yes. Just be careful of lines that may have changed. In fact it may be better this weekend than it will be in a week or two. If the trails dry out completely, the plowed areas may turn into deep dusty powder. Right now they're decently tamped down because of the recent rains, some of which fortunately came after the plowing.
Thanks, I might then do a quick Redwood Park/JMP loop Saturday morning.
 

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zorg said:
Will the park be rideable this w-e after all that grading work?
It's not that bad that you should avoid it... not good, but still rideable. I went through today on the hardtail and some of Baccharis and most of Dunn is untouched. Some of the turns on the steep part of West Ridge are bermed for some interesting fun.

But I have grown tired of this annual ritual, and will put a letter together to fire off to ebrpd. With some planning and a little more work, the need for this yearly exercise can be eliminated. The only excuse for a well built fireroad to become this damaged **should be** park and fire vehicle traffic when wet, but alas, that's not the problem here.
 

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Speedub.Nate said:
It's not that bad that you should avoid it... not good, but still rideable. I went through today on the hardtail and some of Baccharis and most of Dunn is untouched. Some of the turns on the steep part of West Ridge are bermed for some interesting fun.

But I have grown tired of this annual ritual, and will put a letter together to fire off to ebrpd. With some planning and a little more work, the need for this yearly exercise can be eliminated. The only excuse for a well built fireroad to become this damaged **should be** park and fire vehicle traffic when wet, but alas, that's not the problem here.
I guess we can safely assume that the fire road climb from the golf course at Chabot is next on the rotodiller's list.
 

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zorg said:
I guess we can safely assume that the fire road climb from the golf course at Chabot is next on the rotodiller's list.
Ugh, yeah, probably, although that trail has weathered pretty will this time around.

As long as they don't touch Red Tail. Was it last year or the year before that they cleared and grubbed that whole southern stretch, leaving what liberally can be described as legal "singletrack" to a 6' wide fireroad. Blah!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The rain last night will help repair the damage. It can't undo the bizarre gouges that the grader dug into the sides of the trails, but it'll compact the two or three inches of loose dirt that the grader leaves in its wake. Nature is on our side.
 

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imtnbke said:
The rain last night will help repair the damage. It can't undo the bizarre gouges that the grader dug into the sides of the trails, but it'll compact the two or three inches of loose dirt that the grader leaves in its wake. Nature is on our side.
Looking at the pictures, what you describe as bizarre gouges are pretty common on graded fire roads. I'm sure there is a technical term for them, but they serve two functions. One is as a drain to divert water off the road, and the other is to push lose dirt off the newly graded portions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Redwood Park Meets the Nazca Lines

HarryCallahan said:
Looking at the pictures, what you describe as bizarre gouges are pretty common on graded fire roads. I'm sure there is a technical term for them, but they serve two functions. One is as a drain to divert water off the road, and the other is to push lose dirt off the newly graded portions.
Those two possible functions occurred to me as well. I don't mean to be too argumentative, but a number of the bizarre gouges in Redwood--I will stick with that characterization--don't fit the model you suggest. On some of them, the water would have to flow uphill from the trailbed to go into the gouge areas. On others, the size of the gouges is such that it's hard to believe they're simply middens of discarded dirt. See the two following pictures for examples. In the first, the trailbed is essentially flat and I don't see how the water could reach the gouge. In the second, the gouge looks it was deliberately carved out to enlarge the bare dirt adjacent to the trailbed, and is not simply a discard area. But I'm not a professional trail-builder. Does anyone else have an opinion? Could these be akin to crop circles or the Nazca Lines in Peru, i.e., works of man whose purpose will forever remain a mystery? What would Erich von Daniken say? Markers pointing toward landing sites for alien beings? (OK, now I'm getting truly nutty!)
 

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imtnbke,
I see what you mean. Taking another look at the photos, the best sense I can make of it is the bulldozer operator was working uphill, and periodically pushing the dirt out. That doesn't make sense to me in terms of good trail or road management. It would make sense to do that if all you were concerned about was cost in terms of doing the grading in the fastest amount of time possible; i. e. instead of driving up a hill and grading back down, the equipment operator is just looping all the trails, grading as he goes.

I'm not an expert either; I'd love to hear from anyone who could shed more light on this.
 

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Chabot/Brandon climb......to go under the knife soon

zorg said:
I guess we can safely assume that the fire road climb from the golf course at Chabot is next on the rotodiller's list.
We can only hope so..... and with their new federal grant money this year they can finally pave the entire 1.4 mile grind. Then Chester can break his personal records without all those pesky rocks and bumps getting in the way :D
Burgers for everyone bartender.........
 

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Chester said:
We can only hope so..... and with their new federal grant money this year they can finally pave the entire 1.4 mile grind. Then Chester can break his personal records without all those pesky rocks and bumps getting in the way :D
Burgers for everyone bartender.........
lol

FWIW, we started at Redwood gate and went up Canyon something. The fireroad is now a fire boulevard, but thanks to the recent rains, it's actually in pretty good shape and definitely rideable. BTW, for anybody so inclined, that Canyon trail lends itself to some pretty good jumps on the way down, if anybody wants to try. We dropped off into JMP, and came back through McDonald in Chabot, so I don't know how the rest of the trails are holding up.
 
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