The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

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The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Thu Feb 03, 2011 6:53 pm

I plan to show up at Beverly Park at 37th Ave Saturday morning to give the snowshoe trail grooming concept a try. I currently have three pairs of snowshoes to loan out for use by people without shoes.

My vote is for making a trail up from the road to the green beginner trail and over to the backstop as a trial run. If that is rideable with at least a Pugsley/Mukluk, we can do the green loop north of the power lines and think about continuing on to the inner loop or all the way down the main green trail along the power lines and down to Hwy 30, or maybe connect King Dr out in the west meadow.

If bikes are still not rideable on the packed snow, my plan is to either snowshoe around the park or ride south on 21st-26th St or possibly around 33rd Ave and roads to the north.

Post if you are interested or if you want to show up at another time Saturday or on Sunday.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Rage » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:58 pm

I'm hoping this amount of snow doesn't prove to be too much... I think this would work well with lesser amounts, not as sure with this much. Let the experiment begin!

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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:24 pm

Got some arranging to do and will get back... thinking Sunday afternoon, at this point. Some folks are skiing @ Morgan Creek this Saturday @ 1 PM, which will be fun with fire, drink, snack, etc.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Fri Feb 04, 2011 7:19 am

What is the thinking about snow bikes on groomed ski trails? They are probably plenty wide for bikes to ride without damaging the ski lane. I snowshoed at Wickiup Hill a couple weekends ago and the areas that there groomed seem packed down pretty good, but the snow was not very deep then.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Rage » Fri Feb 04, 2011 10:15 pm

Jaxon wrote:What is the thinking about snow bikes on groomed ski trails?

I think that's a good way to not make friends with XC skiers... Snowmobile trails are the way to go.

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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:02 am

I'm heading out shortly to give it a try. I found this post about Minnesota riders who have done the same thing successfully.

http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=596524
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Sat Feb 05, 2011 7:31 pm

How'd it go? I saw your tracks, shoe and large tyre. I was able to get out there a little bit today. I could be wrong, but we're supposed to get a few more inches, no big deal, but then it is supposed to get cold... I would imagine having everything tramped damped tamped down prior to this freeze would be ideal. How about tomorrow AM? Another group is shoeing around 1 PM, but that's not at Beverly; Shaver.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:01 pm

Lazy copy/paste from earlier email to knbrkr:

I packed down a trail from the road over to the backstop on the beginner trail. I'm declaring "Jaxon's Folly" a part failure and part success. The main problem is the rear wheel spinning out when climbing or taking off from a stop. Going downhill was moderately successful if you can stay on the trail and keep the front wheel from washing out. The trail was still a little too soft to keep from sinking in slightly after several passes with snowshoes. I'm not sure the surface would be firm enough even with four people walking laps.


I PM'ed the guy on the mtbr forum to see if he could provide some details on the methods to their madness. Maybe riding on packed snow only works when it's well below 20 degrees. I thought it was still pretty cold out when I was there before 10, but maybe it warmed up quickly. I thought I was overheating from being overdressed.

We can continue on with snowshoe grooming on the main green loop and see if it can be ridden when it gets colder later in the week. Otherwise, we can wait until the snow thins out some and try again. I'm hoping snow bikes can prep the trails and make them rideable by normal bikes. I'm not sure how snow bikes will do in the period between thin/no snow and drying out for everyone to ride in March or April. Hopefully the trails can still be ridden in the morning before it gets above freezing.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:42 pm

How about rockin' it out one more time, tomorrow around 9 AM?
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Sun Feb 06, 2011 6:26 am

I'll be there at 9 with snowshoes available for a couple more walkers if anyone else wants to join.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Sun Feb 06, 2011 1:43 pm

Progress report:

Ken arrived with the Kiddos and Buddy Dog in tow. Everyone proceeded to join the mad trail grooming rampage. We packed down a clockwise route on the green trail north of the powerlines and down the new trail that was cut in late in the fall. Ken, the Kiddos and Buddy Dog headed out. Jaxon finished packing down the beginner trail and the counterclockwise side of the green trail. These trails could certainly use more people walking more passes on then with snowshoes.

The area that was groomed yesterday felt more solid today after time to settle and a freeze overnight. It's looking more likely now that this experiment might have decent results.

Ken and I have set up a fee structure for charging admission to the trails if they become rideable by snowbike or regular mtn bike. Fee is discounted or waived if you show up to help groom the trails. OK, that didn't really happen, but I was thinking about it. I might consider letting people ride a lap on my snow bike if they show up to help expand the route.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Sun Feb 06, 2011 9:16 pm

With the low temps coming, I am 70% certain the singletrack will be snow bike rideable; I'd take that any day over roads, paths, ditches, etc... not to knock those things. Anyway, thanks Jaxon for the idea, work, and loaner snowshoes
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Thu Feb 10, 2011 8:03 pm

I stopped out tonight and rode a couple laps of the beginner trail and part of the green loop. The good news is that the trail is pretty firm and a snow bike is fairly rideable. I was able to climb moderate hills with little problem. The bad news is you have to be very careful to stay on the packed area or it's like going off a cliff and you stop immediately. My handling skills might be a bit rusty, so that didn't help. It's also pretty exhausting to keep the bike moving. Maybe I am way out of shape or maybe it's just really hard work keeping a heavy bike with wide, low pressure tires moving on a somewhat bumpy surface. It would be a lot better if the trail was another snowshoe wider and people had ridden several passes with snow bikes to smooth the trail. I cannot say how normal mtn bikes would do or how rideable the trails will be this weekend when it warms up.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:09 pm

Nothing worthwhile is ever very easy, eh? So we're planning to shoe again this Saturday around 4 in the PM... we'll see what the weather does and if perhaps another crowd hitting the trails could set up some good conditions??? Should probably get your shoes back to you as well.....
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Jaxon » Fri Feb 11, 2011 7:05 pm

Here's a howto video. Their trails look a little wider than what we've made.

http://milltowncycles.blogspot.com/2011 ... video.html
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Garasaki » Sun Feb 13, 2011 12:39 am

How'd you guys do?

To sloppy to ride on the snow right now???
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Sun Feb 13, 2011 8:57 am

Shoed all over the place but too wet for tyres no matter how fat, below freezing would do the trick however nothing but meltage for the foreseeable future... http://www.weather.com/weather/tenday/52405

Got to try to skiing this AM, rather, one last push; until the March snowstorm that will inevitably hit.
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Ken » Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:59 pm

Revitalize this effort?

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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby dgw2jr » Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:16 pm

Yes! :lol:
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Re: The Great Snowshoe Trail Grooming Experiment of 2011

Postby Stumpy » Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:18 pm

Do we need snow shoes or can we just show up and walk around?
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