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  1. #1
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    Any good crust biking to be had?

    Anyone been out biking the crust in the boonies? There's a report of " Rock hard Icy Crust with dimpled surface to about 1700 feet, hard enough you could walk on it." at Turnagain Pass on http://www.crosscountryalaska.org/trails/index.php

  2. #2
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    ...Bethel is a great place to have a bobsled or a luge right now...
    If Huffy made an airplane, would you fly in it?

  3. #3
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    Nome certainly qualifies as the boonies. Crust exactly as you described from sea level to 800 feet, but patchy due to meltoff. Raining again though so it will probably all be gone tomorrow. Great riding the last two days if you could keep the wheels under you through the icy sections.
    The older I get the better I was...

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    Ok, thanks, but I was thinking about slightly more urban boonies, closer to Los Anchorage: Twentymile River/Portage area, Willow/Susitna Valley, Tahetna Pass...

  5. #5
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    Is there even snow in Willow?
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    I am not entirely sure it is legal to do so, but I had the time of my life riding crust from Powerline Pass today.

    Unreal.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Is there even snow in Willow?
    I just got back from a weekend of riding in Willow. Zero snow going through Wasilla, patchy coverage around Big Lake, 6" or so of re-frozen slush around Houston then 12"+ of very hard/crusty snow left in Willow. The Willow area lakes were all essentially down to bare ice but rough enough to ride OK without studded tires. The snowmachine/mushing trails off the lakes are in fantastic shape for fatbiking, very hard, fast and easily rideable. The crust conditions were solid enough that I could ride most anywhere on virgin untracked snow too, sinking maybe 1/2" into the top layer using just 3.7" tires to support my 200lbd weight.

  8. #8
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    Based on CNFAIC website, Turnagain pass is probably entirely rideable. I'd head down to try that if I didn't have a job all week and this weekend.

    Someone. Anyone. Try it?
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

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    Went to Turnagain in Saturday. Parked at the main "non-motorized" parking lot. Ride was nothing short of epic- I've never ridden anything like it (never been crust riding before). Being able to go anywhere without looking for a trail was badass.

  10. #10
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    Well I guess that does it. Biking to Taylor pass Saturday then. A beacon worthy bike ride.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  11. #11
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    Great info - thanks everyone.

    Thinking about biking this...

    Center Creek '07

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Willum View Post
    Went to Turnagain in Saturday. Parked at the main "non-motorized" parking lot. Ride was nothing short of epic- I've never ridden anything like it (never been crust riding before). Being able to go anywhere without looking for a trail was badass.
    Now this is worthy info.. Good job..
    I'm deteriorating faster than I can lower my standards

  13. #13
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    Any good crust biking to be had?

    Dang it! I was seriously tempted to drive there from the valley Saturday but life got in the way. I really want to try crust riding.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskamatt View Post
    Dang it! I was seriously tempted to drive there from the valley Saturday but life got in the way. I really want to try crust riding.
    If you are in Mat-Su valley, just make the short trip up to Willow & Nancy Lakes area for great crust conditions nearby.

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    Powerline is "interesting." The trail/road up Powerline is mostly rough, scalloped and/or lumpy ice with interspersed frozen crust which is even lumpier. Almost no snow in the valley bottom, though there may be some near the top. Studded Dillingers worked fine, but a full sus mountain bike with studs would be preferable. Marginal for dogs - next time mine would stay home. Amusing ride just to see the crazy conditions, but IMO the riding in the Campbell Tract is much better (spectacular on a 29er with studs).

  16. #16
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    Pass on Turnagain Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Willum View Post
    Went to Turnagain in Saturday. Parked at the main "non-motorized" parking lot. Ride was nothing short of epic- I've never ridden anything like it (never been crust riding before). Being able to go anywhere without looking for a trail was badass.
    This info got four of us jazzed to give the pass a try. Arrived in a blizzard Friday morning, with about five inches of fresh already accumulated in the parking lot. A quick test ride though proved we could slice through the fresh powder, yet still stay atop the crust. A couple of hours of "ride wherever you please" ended as the snow got too deep for us. The blizzard warning was predicting up to 13" of snow, and it hadn't relented by the time we left. We may have ridden during the last crust opportunity there for a while.

    A trio of Zero's in the Blizzard, along Center Creek.




    Rallying almost anywhere we wanted to.




    Paul slicing and dicing.




    Almost whiteout.




    Roosting




    If crust riding is what you really want to do, definitely avoid areas from Girdwood and beyond.
    Deceleration Trauma is my middle name

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