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Rad dude.
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Well my finals are done and I'm itching to get some riding in. I'm looking for something more exotic than St Edwards (har har, I know!) but not 2 hours away either. I live in N. Seattle. Once on the bike, I'm thinking 15 miles ish? I don't wanna drive a ways just to ride for 1 hour =P The tighter the trail the better as far as I'm concerned, I love the closed in feeling from really close, tall forest. I've only been back on the bicycle for a few months though, so I don't think I'm up for any killer climbs or anything.

Hot tips? :D
 

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North Seattle means the closest option would be Japanese Gulch off the North end of the runway near Paine Field in Everett. (Some of the land is also Mukilteo as well.) definately more than an hour there.
Some others are:
Lord Hill regional Park: good views, some climbing
Armstrong Tract of the Pilchuck tree farms: middle ring ramble
Cherry Valley: jumps, the falls, 2 new trails
Moss lake: unknown, just South of the Tolt pipeline/Lake Joy
Tolt MacDonald Park: real popular maze
Griffin Creek: new trails add a lot to mostly old clearcut twisties
Tokul West/Tokul East: miles and miles in the woods(big place, can be confusing)
Beaver lake: locals hang out with fun middle ring spinning.
There's a few other places nearby that won't give you the 15 miles you want though.

Check the BBTC schedule as it looks like there's some others in the same situation who are posting weekday rides atthose places. We're all working....
 

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Rad dude.
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ooh, Japanse Gulch sounds awesome, and it's against traffic too, haha. Just gotta find out where exactly it is =P Thanks for that list, I'm stickin it in the file I have of suggested rides from sites like this and BBTC. :cool:
 

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How about Issaquah for some adventure. Dave S knows this one but I will throw in a little more adventure. It really doesnt have any single track its more like double track. You start your ride from Downtown Issaquah and head up Sunset Way going east. At the end of Sunset find the bridge going over the creek to the northside of the freeway and the bike trail that follows the old railroad grade. When you get to the grade on the North Side stop to pause for a few moments. You are within 100 yards of where Ted Bundy murdered Denise Naslund and Janice Ott in 1974. He also dumped the decapitate body of a third woman at that spot. Continue your ride up the grade to Preston.
Now heres where the ride gets boring you have to ride you bike back down the road on the north side of the freeway towards Issaquah. At Highpoint loop under the freeway and go to the other side and head over to Lake Tradition. Go Past Lake Tradition and then turn left at the Powerlines. Follow the Powerline until a road comes up from the right. That will take you back to Issaquah. Towards the bottom you will find the RR Grade. Turn right and contnue north until it drops back down to Sunset. I think its in about the 13-15 mile range.

Ok so your still bored. Borneo would suggest going to the Rogue Ale House. I have one better. Go to the Rollin Log Tavern. Maybe its late in the afternoon and a few bikers and lowlifes show up. After a few beers maybe someone makes a crack about bikers in spandex. You end up in a scuffle and now you have had a perfect ride and a perfect story to tell later.
 

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Yeah Issaquah used to be a great bar fight town. The loop I mentioned only has about three miles of paved road. The rest of it is pretty smooth gravel or dirt. It has the feel of a nice competition loop and bombing down behind the high school is a gas. I forgot to mention if you decide to bomb down behind the high school a few years ago a biker had his front wheel come off and broke his neck and was killed instantly. So there is a little more adventure to think about.
 

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Before going to the Rogue, I would recommend going under I-90 at High Point and taking the first left on to that rail grade but take your right on an out and back on the Grand Ridge Trail that is also noted here on the WA page. (Read up! and see the good trail video from zdfg with his signature f-u trail skidding if you look closely...) :)

It's also the same route that RoDo does as the Thrilla in Issaquilla on Wednesday nights.

Not exactly "next door" for a North ender so not on my list due to daily traffic issues. But, fun none the less.

A couple more good North end daily jaunts would be Metcalf Trust and Fort Ebey on Whidbey Island. Also against traffic and real fun winter rides as they are in the Olympic rain shadow. Both have enough milage and the twisty deep woods flavor you are looking for.
Go to www.traxmaps.com for maps of both places and enjoy. A couple of my favorite low land winter riding options. And, fairly close with the short ferry ride.
 

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White Chuck Bench

On another track, do you happen to know if White Chuck Bench, as mentioned in Zilly (out of Darrington along the Sauk River), is winterable? Some have indicated that you can't drive to the trailhead now because of a bridge washout. I'm curious whether it would be worth the drive from south of Tacoma. If it's halfway decent, I'm willing. 'Really trying to throw some more variety in this winter (drove all the way up to ACFL last week). :-]
 

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My guess would be no. Not worth it. Most lowland stuff that is get's some press and I don't know anyone who's ridden there except John Z. Contact the local ranger station for real time conditions.
Good lowland winter stuff that's worth a drive IMHO is:
Green Mountain
Fort Ebey
Metcalf trust
ACFL
Blanchard Mountain
Japanese Gulch
Cherry Valley
Griffin Creek
Tokul West/East
Wallace Falls
Skokomish River

In no order....
 

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Borneo said:
My guess would be no. Not worth it. Most lowland stuff that is get's some press and I don't know anyone who's ridden there except John Z. Contact the local ranger station for real time conditions.
Good lowland winter stuff that's worth a drive IMHO is:
Green Mountain
Fort Ebey
Metcalf trust
ACFL
Blanchard Mountain
Japanese Gulch
Cherry Valley
Griffin Creek
Tokul West/East
Wallace Falls
Skokomish River

In no order....
I suspected as much. Most of the good stuff you listed I've done, although Ebey, Blanchard (and Mt. Constitution) are still on the board. Some of the others raise red flags. A guy from Everett I tagged along with at ACFL last week rides JG all the time. He didn't seem to think it would be worth the drive in winter. I've heard similar negative things about Cherry too. New trail is new trail, but I'm trying to prioritize things a little and leave the most dismal (damp) prospects to the most desperate times. ;-)

Skokomish River? You're not talking about the Lower South Fork are you, near Shelton? That's already close to home and muy familiar.
 

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It's all about perspective. (negative reports) I hear bad ones about awesome places all the time.
CV is an underrated blast IF you know how to ride it and where all the singletrack is. A trip out to the waterfall on Cherry creek is worth it alone.
JG would be really fun too for something different. There's a lot more packed in there than most people know. maybe 15-16 miles of trail? It's also subject to some trial and error as far as better routes go. Killer side hill bench cut trails for a "local" area.
And, when ridden the right way, super fun for a local spot.

Granted, neither are as good as ACFL for the pure forest experience. But, they sure are a lot closer!

Unfortunately, a lot of bikers will go one place once and get a little turned around and then call the place [email protected] Then, the ***** on the internet about there not being any place good to ride around here...

Yeah, Skokomish. (Which is a long drive for me...)

Not to derail the thread, but I'd be interested about other places people have told you are not worth it.
 

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Borneo said:
It's all about perspective. (negative reports) I hear bad ones about awesome places all the time.
CV is an underrated blast IF you know how to ride it and where all the singletrack is. A trip out to the waterfall on Cherry creek is worth it alone.
JG would be really fun too for something different. There's a lot more packed in there than most people know. maybe 15-16 miles of trail? It's also subject to some trial and error as far as better routes go. Killer side hill bench cut trails for a "local" area.
And, when ridden the right way, super fun for a local spot.

Granted, neither are as good as ACFL for the pure forest experience. But, they sure are a lot closer!

Unfortunately, a lot of bikers will go one place once and get a little turned around and then call the place [email protected] Then, the ***** on the internet about there not being any place good to ride around here...

Yeah, Skokomish. (Which is a long drive for me...)

Not to derail the thread, but I'd be interested about other places people have told you are not worth it.
That's it pretty much. I've heard it both ways about JG, and I might have Cherry mistaken for someplace else. There's Walker Valley too (which you didn't list) which sounds pretty soggy in winter. Metcalf and Griffin I don't know; everything else I've ridden (except Blanchard and Ebey). Some people might suggest Tahuya too but I avoid that altogether in winter (good riding but the wet sand just tears the gear up -- much worse than Capitol).

I don't mind getting turned around usually; that just means I get to come back till I've figured it out! and before I form an opinion. :)

As for perspective, ACFL is 'OK' -- fun for sure -- but while the summer's Cascadian memories still linger, it's still just another 'sh_t winter trail' in my book and not something I'm likely to repeat. I know that sounds harsh but, hey, I have Cap right down the road. If I were you, Skokomish would be a one-shot too (and for the same reason ;-).

Ha! my buddy heard somebody say once, 'Yeah, there's nowhere to ride around here -- 'cept maybe Victor Falls!' We used to say that to each other all the time and laugh, going into our fourth year of few repeats. For winter though, I can only identify some 400-600 miles of single-track within an hour of my door, so I guess that guy was partly right. ;-)
 

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Hehehehe.
I usually don't even bother with Walker anymore. We had to ride it back in the day when there were not many other places to ride.
Now, never....
It's just a muddy moto pit that dries out maybe one month out of the year.

Surprised at your assessment about ACFL though. Hmmm.
Well, you wouldn't like Metcalf and Griffin then. Both are great for close rides and for what they are.

Can't compare the after work and lowland rides with the epic summer stuff. Two different things...
 

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Borneo said:
Can't compare the after work and lowland rides with the epic summer stuff. Two different things...
Yeah you can, if you factor in Cap. But I've beaten this horse to death and don't want to revive the topic. Perspective, right? Cap is a good example of people coming away with negative reports without enough experience. :-o

Generally speaking though, you're right unfortunately. :-|
 
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