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What are the 3 best trails in your state that you have ridden? Why?

The Midwest is small enough that a long weekend is enough to sample singletrack in one, or even two other states.

(I'm thinking this may become part of the FAQ or a top ten type of list to stay at the top of the page.)

JmZ

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As a semi-recent transplant my list is still small, but give me some more time and I'll get to some trails further down south. I'm told this is where all the good riding is in Indiana.

Indiana - Winona Lake (Outside of Warsaw Indiana) - This trail just flows right. It is fun, there are some technical sections, and other sections that even I can build up some speed.

Indiana - Town Run - (Indianapolis Indiana) A city trail. Another trail that flows pretty darn good. Some decent mileage within the city too. The trail is right along the river and has some nice terrain. Not an epic by any means, but a very fun ride.

Indiana - Franke Park - Fort Wayne - Another city trail. This trail has potential, but needs some help. It could be a great 'city' trail and has a few small downhills, and has some nice and twisty singletrack. It is currently a spiderweb, but it is similar to trails I rode in college when I first really started mountain biking.

I may have to bump Fort Wayne for Westwood (North East of Indianapolis), once it gets worn in and the loop is completed. Still not in my top three, yet, because...a few bad memories - I think I flatted more on this trail in one day than I have in YEARS! Plus it showed how truly slow I am. :O

JmZ
 

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Deadhead Biker
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sUOTE=JmZ]What are the 3 best trails in your state that you have ridden? Why?

Well Im a recent transplant to th Las Vegas area, and let me say the riding out is not as "fun" as home, Ohio. The Vultures Knob MTB trail in Wooster is a true test for any
skill level. Check out ther eweb site www.vulturesknob.com for up coming races! But for epic type rides and a few campgrounds that are just a .5 mile down a gravel road try Mohican Forest! Both of these are just a few hours from Indy!!!! :D
 

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Lazy People Suck
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South Central Indiana Trails

The best trails that I have ridden in Indiana are in the Brown County area in South Central Indiana (about an hour south of Indianapolis)

1- Gnaw Bone Camp and Valley Branch Retreat- I lump these together as they are adjoining properties with very similiar characteristics and their trails kind of intermingle. Both have many miles of trails and help dispel outsiders notions that Indiana is all flat. Both have good and boring trails and it is very helpful to ride with someone who know the trails (I would be glad to show anyone around) as you can put together some great 2-3 hour rides that will challenge you. I have not found anywhere in Indiana better than these.

2-Nebo Ridge Trail-This is probably the most frequently traveled trail in the area and most out of towners come here first. It is a very good 17.5 mile out and back and can be hooked into other trail systems in Hoosier National Forest for 30-40+ mile rides if you wish. Not super technical, but has something for everyone and is a great trail to introduce a noobie to what a "real" mountain bike trail is like. I can take my 8 and 10 yr old out on the trail (It is at the edge of their skills and endurance, they also race BMX)

3-It is only now being developed, but Brown County State Park has recently approved mountain bike trails to go into the park. A 4 mile beginner loop and a 1 mile connector loop to a parking lot are nearly complete and should be open soon. Over the next couple of years, I can see 20-25 miles of great trail going into the park. It has some of the best terrain in Indiana and the Hoosier Mountain Biking Association is working hard to get some great trails put in. It won't be long.
 

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2nd Vultures Knob!

As a Wooster, OH resident....Vultures Knob is 2 minutes from my house. It is easily one of the best places to ride in Ohio. Ride it, and donate some cash to keep the place open!

-Mike

YEM said:
sUOTE=JmZ]What are the 3 best trails in your state that you have ridden? Why?

Well Im a recent transplant to th Las Vegas area, and let me say the riding out is not as "fun" as home, Ohio. The Vultures Knob MTB trail in Wooster is a true test for any
skill level. Check out ther eweb site www.vulturesknob.com for up coming races! But for epic type rides and a few campgrounds that are just a .5 mile down a gravel road try Mohican Forest! Both of these are just a few hours from Indy!!!! :D
 

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Living in Duluth, Minnesota, I'm "lucky" enough to have some of the "biggest" hills in the Midwest out my backdoor...actually, I live on the side of the hills.

In the Duluth area:

Spirit Mountain race course: A great race course with awesome singletrack and fast descents. There are also plenty of other trails to play around on.

Mont du Lac race course: Another very rooty course. Awesome singletrack that loops around a creek with numerous fast drops that transition into steep uphills. Very exciting.

Hartley "Guardrail" loop: An unofficial course in Duluth's Hartley park. A great loop of singletrack.

If you're ever in town, stop by either Ski Hut location and ask any of us for directions, we'll be glad to help out!

-Matt
 

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3 favorite trails?

1. Ferdinand Forest, - Indiana. I love this place because it is so close to home. Plenty of climbing to go around and some real nice single track sections. It is only a 9 mile loop, but it seems longer than that.

2. Valley Branch - Indiana. I have only rode here once, but wow! what a place. Tons of different trails to ride and plenty of miles to not get bored.
A close tie in second is Gnaw bone camp. This place is similar to VBR. Probably because it is right next door. Still a fun place to ride. Now if we could just have those connected, wow!

3. Otter Creek - Kentucky. This place is up on my list becuse it is such a fun trail to ride. This place is very technical and demanding. Rocks and roots as far as you can see. For some reason I just always have fun here.
 

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Third Vulture's Knob

gatman said:
3 favorite trails?

1. Ferdinand Forest, - Indiana. I love this place because it is so close to home. Plenty of climbing to go around and some real nice single track sections. It is only a 9 mile loop, but it seems longer than that.

2. Valley Branch - Indiana. I have only rode here once, but wow! what a place. Tons of different trails to ride and plenty of miles to not get bored.
A close tie in second is Gnaw bone camp. This place is similar to VBR. Probably because it is right next door. Still a fun place to ride. Now if we could just have those connected, wow!

3. Otter Creek - Kentucky. This place is up on my list becuse it is such a fun trail to ride. This place is very technical and demanding. Rocks and roots as far as you can see. For some reason I just always have fun here.
Vulture's Knob is by far the most challenging trail in Ohio. It has a little of everything thrown in it. Mohican Wilderness is where you want to go if you love fast, tight, single track and climing. It will reward you with a fast, twisty, downhill single track run at the end of your clime.
 

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An Illinois response

My three responses in no particular order.
Kickapoo State Park, Oakwood IL. It's about a 10 mi loop that has a bit of everything. It is almost all singletrack and is maintained really well by the local club. There is a little bit of everything, but the trail has a really nice flow. No super long climbs or downhills but enough ups and downs to keep you honest.
Jubilee College State Park, Peoria IL. Alot of the same things that make Kickapoo fun, but more of it. There are a few more downhills also. It's a stacked loop system so you can put together any number of different routes. Most of the trails are multi-use so you have to watch out for hikers and horses.
Independence Park, Pekin/Peoria IL. A little more punishing than the other two, but worth every bit of it. Nice natural jumps and super flowy downhill sections; always something to keep you on your toes. This also a stacked loop system and the trails are maintained really well also.
 

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Vultures Knob

Ohio Mike said:
As a Wooster, OH resident....Vultures Knob is 2 minutes from my house. It is easily one of the best places to ride in Ohio. Ride it, and donate some cash to keep the place open!

-Mike
I made my first trip to the Knob today. It was fanastic. By far the most fun I have had on a trail in my short time cycling. I can't wait to go back.
 

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JmZ said:
What are the 3 best trails in your state that you have ridden? Why?

Town Run in Indy - A city park trail (like JmZ said). Flows really nicely with sections along the White River. Beautiful when the fall leaves are at peak color. Lots of squirrels and the occasional deer add to flavor to the ride. Not too technical, but more than a few collarbones have been broken by those trying to ride it too fast for their ability. The new section (about a month old) adds some tight wooded singletrack.
Why is it my fav? Like the old song says- "Love the one you're with.." Its so close to my home I can ride to it with ease. Thanks to Hoosier Mountian Bike Assn members (and the Indianapolis Parks Dept) for building & maintaining this great urban trail !!!!!!
 

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#1 - Farmdale Park, East Peoria - Tons of singletrack, a dedicated DH course, a mountain cross course (still under construction), and lots of open fire road for beginners (plus, little hidden gems for the crazies) make this an all around MTB haven.

#2 - Independence Park, North Pekin - Killer climbs, flowy roller coaster singletrack, and awesome scenery.

#3 - Dirksen Park, Pekin - Technical, twisty, challenging trails with lots of short(ish), steep, small ring grinder hills.
 

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Ohio Mike said:
As a Wooster, OH resident....Vultures Knob is 2 minutes from my house. It is easily one of the best places to ride in Ohio. Ride it, and donate some cash to keep the place open!

-Mike
To the vultures knob guys...is there anyone out there cutting line for some flowy fast DH type stuff? I remember this place vaguely from 2001 and remember there are some spots with some hills that could have some pretty sweet stuff on it. Just curious if anyone has gotten the go ahead to build a "quality" line for the bigger bikes? I'm a transplant from Washington state and need somewhere to commute to for fun. Unfortunently I'm in the Rocky River/Bay village/westlake area so I think vultures would probably be the closest for me to drive to...
 

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It's all ball bearings
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N Ky

If you ever stray south of the river, Try Tower Park in Ft Thomas Ky- it's a pretty technical sigletrack with a series of hairpin switchbacks that are a challenge for the best riders

England Idelwild in Burlington KY is also an awesome trail system- Hats off to Bill Renner and his guys, theyve done an awesome job pulling it together- It has a nice variety of technical and fast free flow trails- I ride both of these on a regular basis and love them both

If youre up north, try Ray's Indoor MTB in Cleveland- It rocks- I had more fun there than Ive had in years. It's a complete blast- tons of challenging obstacles, and lots of great jumps
 

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Ohio DH at V-Knob

Well, as I'm sure you already know, Ohio is not the best place for DH runs. We just don't have the looooonnnnnng downhills that other states have. I'm dreaming of Porc Rim, Amasa, South Mtn, Milagrosa, Vail, etc....Spring Break, Baby! Next Week I'll be riding those trails!

Anyway.......I digress...

Mark (Dr. Knob) is working on some DH stuff out at Vultures Knob. I have not personally seen the trails yet (kinda sad, since I live about 1 mile away from the Knob), but he calls it the "Super D Downhill" and there is a downhill race set for July 10. I'm a lardass, so It's mandatory that I race the Super D.

For some other DH fun in Ohio, you owe it to yourself to check out the DH trail at Mohican Wilderness in Loudonville. The trail at MW is arguably the best downhill in the state of Ohio, but you PAY for it going up! The XC trail has a killer downhill. They've built a DH run that criss-crosses the XC trail. REALLY fun, and pretty tough. There are a couple sick drops off boulders and such.

Check it out!

www.vulturesknob.com

www.mohican.net

-Mike

O~Hi~O said:
To the vultures knob guys...is there anyone out there cutting line for some flowy fast DH type stuff? I remember this place vaguely from 2001 and remember there are some spots with some hills that could have some pretty sweet stuff on it. Just curious if anyone has gotten the go ahead to build a "quality" line for the bigger bikes? I'm a transplant from Washington state and need somewhere to commute to for fun. Unfortunently I'm in the Rocky River/Bay village/westlake area so I think vultures would probably be the closest for me to drive to...
 
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