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Discussion Starter #1
So in order to ride anything in this goofy weather, I've been on all three of these in the past week.

:wtf:


Hopefully I can just stick to the sled for a couple weeks ...
 

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more like the lottery lately,,, I had an awesome motorcycle ride on street bike last weekend. more miles on that this winter.
 

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Lol. Just the other day I was looking at my mountain bike and thinking I should take it for a spin since no snow. Now I’m getting ready to mountain bike and we are getting snow. Wtf. Weather make up your damn mind.
 

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i have been bouncing back and forth from the fat bike to the sled. my boys rode skinny tires wed night. we had some killer snow to ride on but of course it melted. now the sled is coming back in to play.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Things are looking up. Clubs worked magic with what little snow they got over the weekend. 220 mi loop from Pulaski to Woodhull and back yesterday. I was happy to be on a sled and not a bike.

Great job PBSC, Valley, and Trackside. Nobody got a ton of snow in any one place, but those three clubs' trails were about as good as they get, and while the day had plenty of traffic, their trails stayed set up nicey nice all day. There are still soft spots and water cuts all over the place but they are making really good progress to (re) establish a base.

The day had a little bit of everything and a couple surprises. Like this, halfway from Montague to Flat Rock. "Dude, Where's my Truck?"



Saw a lot of this yesterday:



Lunch stop ... the food came out right away (out of my bag) ... but I did spend an hour taking in the view. For all I know I might have been the first person to see it since before the Halloween storm. It sure felt that way.



Little further up that very off-the-beaten-path trail was a NYS Forest Ranger working on a downed tree ... His was the only other sled I saw in a couple-hour stretch out there. He was having a little trouble with whatever folding saw contraption had been issued to him, and was about to go back to his truck for a chainsaw. Instead we took turns with my little $9 walmart special, cutting and tossing branches to get it cleaned up as good as we could until a groomer gets through there (if it ever does).




Groom groom groom groom groom ... that's what pretty much all the clubs did, all day. It worked out! Last 20 miles of the day were easily the best, and that is at the end of a day that saw plenty of traffic. And they were still at it as I was loading up to head home.



In closing, an observation about the Hill, where I've been riding on and off since about 1992. I usually try to go elsewhere to avoid the circus, but sometimes it's the only show (snow) in town, and I have to make Hill miles if I want to make miles. Going in, I had low expectations what with it being a holiday Monday and one of the first rideable days of the season.

What actually happened was a really pleasant surprise: I saw 0 dumb, dangerous, or thoughtless moves (not counting the knucklehead who thought his Dodge pickup was a snowmobile). Not one. Every sledder I saw was hugging their side, stopping to the side of the trail and not in the middle of it, approaching corners and hilltops with the unknown in mind, yielding to groomers, etc. The riders I overtook all either slowed down for me on wide open sections of trail, or pulled to the side at intersections; the riders who overtook me waited for me to do the same. I didn't see anyone blow a corner, no neon morons showcasing their mad backcountry skillz, nobody coming at me sideways with the track locked up. If I didn't know better, I'd swear that common sense and common courtesy had taken over the Hill for the day. And that, combined with the surprisingly good trails, made for a great day!
 

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Thanks for the post Wantry. In your opinion, do you think the trails will hold up after 2 days (Thursday and Friday) with temps above freezing? Looking to ride this weekend.
 

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My son, his friend and I went up today. Most trails where pretty good. A few were really bad.

We unloaded on Hanifin Rd. in Empeyville. Rode up to Turin/Lyons Falls area, then back to The Hideaway for dinner. About 90 miles. Great time.

NYH1.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the post Wantry. In your opinion, do you think the trails will hold up after 2 days (Thursday and Friday) with temps above freezing? Looking to ride this weekend.
Definitely maybe? The temps will be below freezing every night, and the clubs seemed to be making up for lost time with their grooming effort so far.

But ... it's spring conditions and it will be worse by the weekend. So be ready for water cuts across the trail, holes, ice, rocks and branches sticking up in funny places, etc.

I'm planning to ride the weekend (and possibly tomorrow/Friday if I can). But I'm going into it expecting a wide range of trail conditions, not all good.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I rode today out of Winona...

On the fatbike.

Did 8 miles. Fell down 4 times in the mashed potato rutted up bumpy corners ... and that's on the non-motorized trails! The best riding was on the main sled trails because at least on those, the base was worn down pretty flat. To their credit, the two sledders that passed me 3 times in half an hour (because I think they were stuck riding loops around the Forest) were courteous and gave me plenty of room. Which is good, because even on 5" tires at 2 PSI, what snow their was was so mashed potatoes soft that I didn't have a ton of control on the bike.

On the way back to the barn, there was another truck stuck in the trail. So I'm 3 for 3 on rides/seeing stuck trucks north of Rt. 49 this year, just in case I had missed the previous signs that winter hasn't yet started to cooperate.

I was planning to ride (sleds) Saturday, but after what I saw today, I'm gonna keep my powder dry.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
150+ on a 50/50 day

50/50 yesterday. Half excellent, half terrible, nothing in between. But everywhere we went was at least passable (by my standards anyway).

The boy hasn't missed a day of school all year. So instead of putting him on the bus I took him riding. Which he seemed to like.



Trees down and low hanging branches everywhere ... We made a lot of first tracks and moved a LOT of trees yesterday. It got better (but snow got skimpier) the further east we went from the I-81 corridor. Traffic was light.

The worst of the day were the slush pits and water cuts around Redfield and Osceola; and the trail coming down from Smith Road toward C'ville. Seasonal roads everywhere else were generally good to great. Clubs were doing all they could but the water was winning in some places.

Spring conditions can be rough on the equipment and this time it was my turn to pay, and all my fault. I came upon a little "surprise" in the trail, had to make a 50/50 call on the fly and I called it wrong, pounding the front end into a foot-deep cut almost perpendicular. Didn't quite flip the sled or break the bulkhead, but smoked the A-arm about 30 miles from the truck.

I love that my son is a ball buster ... gee I wonder where he gets that from. Here, he is laughing at me as he reminds me that I was the one who told him to go slow because there might be water cuts across the trail.



Nursed it home just fine, she just pulled to the right a little is all. We were doing somewhat better than the guys we came across at east end of Halsey Rd, three big boys all covered in mud, one had the front end of his sled strapped together with a tow strap so he could steer what was left of it. That was about the best thing he had going ... they had lost half of their riding group down the paved county road, their truck was all the way back in C'ville, and they were headed the wrong way. They got turned around and I hope they got where they were going.

After we got done talking to those guys, I found cell service and called Ingles from trailside, and a new A-arm and the tab were waiting for me an hour later on the way home, I didn't even have to wait on line which is a good thing cause the place was packed. Had everything bolted back together and realigned not long after dinner.

I put this piece on the "wall of shame" that I keep in the garage to remind me that I am not indestructible.



Bottom line, the clubs are working even if winter is not ... if the sledding and the biking don't start to work out a little better, my fat ass is gonna have to start running on the treadmill (and nobody wants to see that)...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Some good, some bad ... Nah, it's all good!

Got off the beaten path up in St. Lawrence Co. The drive out on Friday was the sketchiest part, 2"-3" per hour plus wind driven squalls from C Square to about Pulaski, the wind let up but the snow got heavier the further east we went from 81. 2.5 hour drive took an extra hour, no biggie.

We weren't sure how it was going to play out or if we would even try to ride Friday ... got tracks turning @ 4 p.m. for an exploratory mission. Jackpot!



After sunset it was heavy snow and a big bright full moon lighting everything up like it was the middle of the day. We got into a steak dinner @ Thirsty Moose that would have been worth the price of admission by itself, even if we hadn't just come off a great ride. Super food, even nicer folks.

Saturday was bitter cold at the higher elevations. We didn't find temps above 0º until we loaded up the truck (it was 3º at 4:30). From launch to lunch we saw 3 groomers, and 2 sleds. I bet we saw a total of 25 sleds all day, and half that was the same group of 6, twice. About half of the day's riding looked just like this.



Certainly the best stretch of riding I have ever seen in NYS, maybe it was the best stretch of riding I have ever seen anywhere. If that's the debate I'm having inside my helmet ... it's all good.

It was not a high-mileage day, we broke a lot of trail, checked out a bunch of secondary trails and out of the way places, and did a little extra-special breakage (trail, and sled) between Cedar Lodge and S. Colton, where C8 goes through the trees in White Hill Forest and isn't groomed. Second one of these in two weeks. Oops!



Ran 75 miles back to the truck hanging off the starboard running board and steering on one ski. Trails were flat enough that it was kinda fun. Ingles has me set up with new part already even though the whole world's phones and 'net were down when I tried to get through on Saturday.

Headed for Maine end of the week ... and I'm not so sure I want to leave NY behind! For a winter that didn't look like it was going to be winter, we're doing all right ... get out and ride!
 

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My son and I just got back from riding. We rode the trail that follows Rt. 31 on the south shore of Oneida Lake.

Unloaded in Bridgeport (Rt. 31 and Rt. 298 area). Headed west towards Cicero, stopped by Borio's and went out on the lake for a bit, tons of ice fishermen/women/kids/dogs and a few sleds. We got back on the trail and headed west towards Rt. 81. Stopped at Gander Mountain. Then headed back east where we came from.

Back at Bridgeport we crossed Chittenango Creek (Rt 31 bridge) and continued east all the way to the Rt 31 and Rt. 13 area. Jumped back on the lake and rode back to Borio's to get the trail to go to Bridgeport to load up to go home.

We did about 60 miles. It was nice to trailer less then 10 minutes from the house. Trails were really good in most areas, a few were rough. Great time for sure.

NYH1.
 
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