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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last night I rode this trail for the first time since 2002 (when I used to ride it a few times a week).

The trail has lost about 2" of soil everywhere - the rocks appear to have grown out of the ground. The switchbacks are now sand pits. There are braking bumps and ruts into some of the corners.

Could mountain bikes have caused that much damage? That's insane......

I'm not really complaining, just kind of shocked. I'll have to do some digging when my back is better.
 

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I'd be willing to bet most of the 2" of soil lost is erosion caused by weathering...e.g. hard rain storms. Some of the switchbacks may have been deposition zones.....shrug.
 

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Erosion

Well, it's from the heavy, stationary rains we had in June although the trail has been eroding rapidly in the last 3 years.

Some of the rock outcrops that used to be ridable are now really hard to clean. All of the FR trails are in bad shape now especially Apex.

We all need to sack up and do some volunteer trail maintenance I would say.
 

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Agreed on doing volunteer work.

I wonder how much long term studying has been done to produce long lasting trails, and then of course how much of that info gained been passed onto land owners (like Jeffco OS) through some type of training.

For instance, Jeffco's log water bars....not soo good. They just end up staircasing the trail....least that's what some dude told me. :)

FWIW, IMBA just came out with a great book on the subject.
 

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Te mortuo heres tibi sim?
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Sin said:
The harder it is the better more rocks more roots tighter switch backs yeah
i, and many others agree. "The harder it is the better more rocks more roots tighter switch backs yeah" (sic)

but you're missing the point. WE like it hard; rooty/rocky and so on. but many of the average Denverite weekend warior types don't; as well as the hikers and equestrians. they will complain, and the Open Space folks will either shut down the trail, or go in and for all intents and purposes, pave the stuff. not good.

why can't the county build good techy trails, but do some studying to figure out how to make them sustainable? it is a doable thing. WE ALL, as riders, need to be in on the process, and make our wants know to the counties. if we don't then we will end up with babby @ss smooth, boring trails; because that is what the county will think is wanted.
you can build good techy trail, and make it last. many other places have.
 

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Yeah I hear ya......Just the old saying can't make everyone happy and that is the case with making multiuse trails.....I wish I was super rich so I could buy a mountain and make the ultimate MTB park kind of like Bootleg Canyon in Nevada. They have DH trails and some of the best XC trails even hiking trails. Why can't they do something like that out here? I know ski resorts have DH and XC trails but u have to pay to play. Im not good at understanding politics, but why cant they do it for free.....free I dont think there is such a thing . But im sure someone would ***** about that 2.

http://content.mtbr.com/pscTrails/U...otleg,Canyon,MTB,Park/PRD_168905_4562crx.aspx
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't have any complaints with technical trails per se. And to be honest it made it a lot more fun to ride up. But there's nothing challenging or technical about riding down it - except the sharper and looser of the switch backs - at least for me with my 44" wheel base :p. All those exposed rocks just kind of mess with the trail's flow and slows you down. Not because you have to slow down for them, but hitting a lot of square edge stuff on a less than steep trail at 10-20mph slows you down like it or not. The net result is a slower, less flowy (not that it was very flowy in the first place) trail, that isn't any more technically challenging (on the way down).

I need to find out how to get from the bottom of Apex to the start of Chimney. Enchanted forest and Apex make for a better decent anyway.

If the erosion continues that that rate though, the trail will be a mess in another 2 years.

Just my $0.02 :)
 

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yeah...

scrublover said:
i, and many others agree. "The harder it is the better more rocks more roots tighter switch backs yeah" (sic)

but you're missing the point. WE like it hard; rooty/rocky and so on. but many of the average Denverite weekend warior types don't; as well as the hikers and equestrians. they will complain, and the Open Space folks will either shut down the trail, or go in and for all intents and purposes, pave the stuff. not good.

why can't the county build good techy trails, but do some studying to figure out how to make them sustainable? it is a doable thing. WE ALL, as riders, need to be in on the process, and make our wants know to the counties. if we don't then we will end up with babby @ss smooth, boring trails; because that is what the county will think is wanted.
you can build good techy trail, and make it last. many other places have.
If you're curious to see how they "fix" erosion around here, just see D. Ridge, Wh. Ranch, Apex, Deer Creek.... All these trails used to be way more rocky/ technical than they are today...
 

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Really? I've ridden D' ridge for the last 5 years and haven't noticed much/if any trail work done on it. When where they even more techy?

I'd say it with upper Matthew's loop can make for a damn techy ride still...least one I can't clean yet.
 

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dbabuser said:
If you're curious to see how they "fix" erosion around here, just see D. Ridge, Wh. Ranch, Apex, Deer Creek.... All these trails used to be way more rocky/ technical than they are today...
DB, reread my post. i know exactly what happens to trails here when they "fix' them. they get dumbed down, and less technical. not what we want!
 

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sub-optimal trail design ...

Steve71 said:
Last night I rode this trail for the first time since 2002 (when I used to ride it a few times a week).

The trail has lost about 2" of soil everywhere - the rocks appear to have grown out of the ground. The switchbacks are now sand pits. There are braking bumps and ruts into some of the corners.

Could mountain bikes have caused that much damage? That's insane......

I'm not really complaining, just kind of shocked. I'll have to do some digging when my back is better.
I've been helping to build trails for the last 8 years. I'm a trained crew leader, so
I've done a few ours of trail work.

I think the main problem with the trails is poor design.

As others have pointed out, the main direct cause of erosion is weather (namely
rain). Look at the grand canon. :) But trails can be designed so that the
rain doesn't erode them. But many of the trails around here evolved instead of
being designed (or so it seems).

Look at the Palmer trail in Colorado Springs (Chey. Canon State Park). That
trail is, what, 100 years old? True, it erodes some over the years, but nothing
like the stuff up around here does.

When you design a trail so that water runs down the trail, erosion will just be
a fact of life. If you design the trail so that water flows sideways, in a laminar
flow (i.e. no turbulence), erose is much less. Manu of our trails look like water
troughs, channelling the water right down the trail. :-(

Another point: even the best trails need regular maintenance. If we have the
time to ride on them, surely we have the time to work on them (even if it's just
once a year).
 

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scrublover said:
DB, reread my post. i know exactly what happens to trails here when they "fix' them. they get dumbed down, and less technical. not what we want!
Umm, yeah, I was agreeing. :p BTW, you getting any use out of that x-9 derailleur ya bought off me thru ebay?

I guess it's been awhile since they've worked on D. Ridge, I moved out here in '97. All that log erosion control nightmare on the ridge used to be rocky, and IMO, more enjoyable. And that was with 2.25" of sweet AMP travel and semi slicks... ;)
 

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dbabuser said:
Umm, yeah, I was agreeing. :p BTW, you getting any use out of that x-9 derailleur ya bought off me thru ebay?

yep! it was on the Curtlo (now sadly demised) and now resides on the back of the new rocky mtn. flow frame. it's taken a beating, but is working beautifully!
 

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Steve71 said:
I need to find out how to get from the bottom of Apex to the start of Chimney. Enchanted forest and Apex make for a better decent anyway.
Take Kinney Run trail, which is the paved bike path that heads north right from the base of Apex. Head north, don't get lost in the neighborhood (read the sign about continuing on Kinney run) Hit 19th st. and head north on that for a short amount of time.
 
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