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  1. #1
    Knomer
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    Ride Sullivan Canyon while you can

    Many of you will remember after the storms a couple years ago, that the Gas Company(who own the canyon) dug up a pipe junction on the south end of the canyon. I stopped one day and asked what was up, and was told they were installing a "pig" into the pipe. A pig is a robotic device that crawls thru pipes and detects cracks and thin spots in the pipe walls. I asked where it was heading, was told "the valley" and that it will take over a year to get there!

    Fast forward 1.5 years and many of you will have noticed the pipe work that has been taking place on Mulholland at the top of Sullivan Ridge the past 3-4 weeks. We rode by yesterday and saw 2 "pigs" laid up on flatbeds, which means that work site was/is the pig extraction. The pigs basically look like a jet engine with a couple red collars and sensors on the sides. 1.5 years to travel 4 miles! Crazy.

    Now, Sullivan canyon is more fun than I can ever remember it. I went YEARS without riding it because it was so damn boring. The extraction of the pigs means 1 of 2 things....

    1. The pipes are fine and the Gas Co. is clear to get into the canyon and scrape the canyon to cover the exposed pipe and improve vehicle access.

    2. The pipe needs work which means the Gas Co. will close the canyon, rip it apart, fix/replace the pipe, then scrape the canyon.

    Either way, I think it's safe to that the canyon will be enduring some sort of renovation this summer, so you should ride it as much as possible before then.

    It was fun while it lasted!

  2. #2
    Rocky Mountain High
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Bottoms
    Many of you will remember after the storms a couple years ago, that the Gas Company(who own the canyon) dug up a pipe junction on the south end of the canyon. I stopped one day and asked what was up, and was told they were installing a "pig" into the pipe. A pig is a robotic device that crawls thru pipes and detects cracks and thin spots in the pipe walls. I asked where it was heading, was told "the valley" and that it will take over a year to get there!

    Fast forward 1.5 years and many of you will have noticed the pipe work that has been taking place on Mulholland at the top of Sullivan Ridge the past 3-4 weeks. We rode by yesterday and saw 2 "pigs" laid up on flatbeds, which means that work site was/is the pig extraction. The pigs basically look like a jet engine with a couple red collars and sensors on the sides. 1.5 years to travel 4 miles! Crazy.

    Now, Sullivan canyon is more fun than I can ever remember it. I went YEARS without riding it because it was so damn boring. The extraction of the pigs means 1 of 2 things....

    1. The pipes are fine and the Gas Co. is clear to get into the canyon and scrape the canyon to cover the exposed pipe and improve vehicle access.

    2. The pipe needs work which means the Gas Co. will close the canyon, rip it apart, fix/replace the pipe, then scrape the canyon.

    Either way, I think it's safe to that the canyon will be enduring some sort of renovation this summer, so you should ride it as much as possible before then.

    It was fun while it lasted!
    Someone should stick you in a pipe for a few years.

  3. #3
    Rocky Mountain High
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Bottoms
    Many of you will remember after the storms a couple years ago, that the Gas Company(who own the canyon) dug up a pipe junction on the south end of the canyon. I stopped one day and asked what was up, and was told they were installing a "pig" into the pipe. A pig is a robotic device that crawls thru pipes and detects cracks and thin spots in the pipe walls. I asked where it was heading, was told "the valley" and that it will take over a year to get there!

    Fast forward 1.5 years and many of you will have noticed the pipe work that has been taking place on Mulholland at the top of Sullivan Ridge the past 3-4 weeks. We rode by yesterday and saw 2 "pigs" laid up on flatbeds, which means that work site was/is the pig extraction. The pigs basically look like a jet engine with a couple red collars and sensors on the sides. 1.5 years to travel 4 miles! Crazy.

    Now, Sullivan canyon is more fun than I can ever remember it. I went YEARS without riding it because it was so damn boring. The extraction of the pigs means 1 of 2 things....

    1. The pipes are fine and the Gas Co. is clear to get into the canyon and scrape the canyon to cover the exposed pipe and improve vehicle access.

    2. The pipe needs work which means the Gas Co. will close the canyon, rip it apart, fix/replace the pipe, then scrape the canyon.

    Either way, I think it's safe to that the canyon will be enduring some sort of renovation this summer, so you should ride it as much as possible before then.

    It was fun while it lasted!
    Or the alternate ending....

    "1.5 years to travel 4 miles!!! Crazy."

    Sounds like Macrider is working for the Gas Co.

  4. #4
    Stray Bullet
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Bottoms
    Many of you will remember after the storms a couple years ago, that the Gas Company(who own the canyon) dug up a pipe junction on the south end of the canyon. I stopped one day and asked what was up, and was told they were installing a "pig" into the pipe. A pig is a robotic device that crawls thru pipes and detects cracks and thin spots in the pipe walls. I asked where it was heading, was told "the valley" and that it will take over a year to get there!

    Fast forward 1.5 years and many of you will have noticed the pipe work that has been taking place on Mulholland at the top of Sullivan Ridge the past 3-4 weeks. We rode by yesterday and saw 2 "pigs" laid up on flatbeds, which means that work site was/is the pig extraction. The pigs basically look like a jet engine with a couple red collars and sensors on the sides. 1.5 years to travel 4 miles! Crazy.

    Now, Sullivan canyon is more fun than I can ever remember it. I went YEARS without riding it because it was so damn boring. The extraction of the pigs means 1 of 2 things....

    1. The pipes are fine and the Gas Co. is clear to get into the canyon and scrape the canyon to cover the exposed pipe and improve vehicle access.

    2. The pipe needs work which means the Gas Co. will close the canyon, rip it apart, fix/replace the pipe, then scrape the canyon.

    Either way, I think it's safe to that the canyon will be enduring some sort of renovation this summer, so you should ride it as much as possible before then.

    It was fun while it lasted!
    I really hope you are wrong. Sully is a gem.

  5. #5
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    And there's also the possibility they don't need to fuss with anything in the inaccessilble canyon and we've got great riding for a while more. I'm gonna hope for that.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0gravity
    And there's also the possibility they don't need to fuss with anything in the inaccessilble canyon and we've got great riding for a while more. I'm gonna hope for that.
    unlikely though - at the very least they have to bury the exposed portions of pipe - can't be too safe having a gas pipeline exposed like that...things like brush fires, rock fall and lightning strikes have to make them uncomfortable....

    it is in tasty shape right now....
    "Cram as much pleasure into life, and rail against the pain you have to suffer as a result" - Shane MacGowan

  7. #7
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    you forgot option 3.

    3. 'pigs' are used to build new and exciting extreme freeride stunts on existing multi-use trails. In 1.5 years the gas company expects Sullivan Canyon will be the SoCal equivalent of 'A River Runs through it'.

  8. #8
    pewpewpew Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Bottoms
    Either way, I think it's safe to that the canyon will be enduring some sort of renovation this summer, so you should ride it as much as possible before then.

    It was fun while it lasted!
    Hopefully, if this does happen, another El nino will soon make things interesting all over again.

    Sully is definitely fun, but I must confess that I also really liked the time right after the floods - when the terrain was all new and the lines weren't so well defined & there weren't 5982739482749382 people there on the weekends.
    Love, Impy

  9. #9
    cask conditioned
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    I was told a while back by a Gas Co worker that the cyn was supposed to be graded in March of last year. Another worker told me last week that they've been waiting for the approval of permits to grade the cyn. But then again... I ran into a few workers on a smoking break next to the "NO SMOKING" signs around their worksite. So who knows.
    Buy a bell, help the trails....

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by endo verendo
    I was told a while back by a Gas Co worker that the cyn was supposed to be graded in March of last year. Another worker told me last week that they've been waiting for the approval of permits to grade the cyn. But then again... I ran into a few workers on a smoking break next to the "NO SMOKING" signs around their worksite. So who knows.
    ha! I saw the same thing back when they put the "pigs" in the line - Dusty and I rode by and at least one guy was smoking - and the whole area smelled of gas....of course, you generally need an enclosed space to get natural gas to explode...
    "Cram as much pleasure into life, and rail against the pain you have to suffer as a result" - Shane MacGowan

  11. #11
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    It would be a major shame if they graded the whole thing. I can understand getting in there and covering up exposed pipe here and there, but why would they undertake such a massive job as grading the entire thing. Has anyone been around long enough to say this is a regular thing. I've only been here a year and I love that trail. Although, I mostly ride it at night, and NEVER on weekends because of how much traffic there's on it.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0gravity
    It would be a major shame if they graded the whole thing. I can understand getting in there and covering up exposed pipe here and there, but why would they undertake such a massive job as grading the entire thing. Has anyone been around long enough to say this is a regular thing. I've only been here a year and I love that trail. Although, I mostly ride it at night, and NEVER on weekends because of how much traffic there's on it.
    well, they have a right-of-way in there (at the least - might even own the cyn) - and in the past, yes, any work they have done in the cyn has been large-scale - big machines, tear everything out etc. - I don't have any hope for the trail as it is now in the long run...

    so as Dusty says, enjoy it while it lasts...
    "Cram as much pleasure into life, and rail against the pain you have to suffer as a result" - Shane MacGowan

  13. #13
    pewpewpew Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0gravity
    It would be a major shame if they graded the whole thing. I can understand getting in there and covering up exposed pipe here and there, but why would they undertake such a massive job as grading the entire thing. Has anyone been around long enough to say this is a regular thing. I've only been here a year and I love that trail. Although, I mostly ride it at night, and NEVER on weekends because of how much traffic there's on it.
    The grading is expected although it's nice it has taken them forever to "pig the pipe" or whatever. It's hard to fathom how different the trail has been in the past - but quite a few tons of debris were excavated out & washed down by the rains in the canyon 2 years ago to create the sullivan of today. It was a straight buff fast trail before that.
    Love, Impy

  14. #14
    cask conditioned
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0gravity
    Has anyone been around long enough to say this is a regular thing.
    They've graded the canyon a few times since I've lived here.
    Buy a bell, help the trails....

    http://www.corbamtb.com/store/store.shtml

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  15. #15
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    I worked for Unocal 76 Pipeline for many years. I am sure that refined gas line pigs are no different than natural gas ones. Those don't take years at all! Maybe hours. Think about it, the pig is blocking the line, there is NO WAY they would render their line useless for that long.

    Yes, the pigs detect leaks in the line etc, but I really think you are being Chicken Little. I am not insulting you by saying that, what I mean is that I think you are over reacting. That's all.

  16. #16
    Knomer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobby Peru
    I worked for Unocal 76 Pipeline for many years. I am sure that refined gas line pigs are no different than natural gas ones. Those don't take years at all! Maybe hours. Think about it, the pig is blocking the line, there is NO WAY they would render their line useless for that long.

    Yes, the pigs detect leaks in the line etc, but I really think you are being Chicken Little. I am not insulting you by saying that, what I mean is that I think you are over reacting. That's all.
    Hmmmmm, I saw them installing the pigs, and I saw them extracting the pigs 1.5 years later. I'm not speculating on anything, nor am I pretending to know the process. I've been riding the area long enough to have witnessed them scraping the entire canyon top to bottom at least 3 times. They have NEVER "spot" scraped. Think about it, in order for them to scrape the middle of the canyon they need to get the equipment in there, ie scrape on the way down. The bottom line is, it's their canyon and their top priority is accessing and servicing their line. As of now, MANY sections of their line are exposed and most importantly, inaccessible by equipment. As we've seen in the past, they'll scrape it so it's 20 feet wide and you can drive a MACK truck down it.

    I don't WANT it to happen, I'm just putting the word out that it probably will, so you should hit all those 3 footers while you can!

  17. #17
    Bored Carp
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    DB is right, they will grade it eventually. They graded it twice in the 10 years I lived there. It becomes the flattest, smoothest street in the mountains and requires another good rainy season to "fix" it after the work is done.

    I have always regarded Sully as a very changeable trail. One of my favorites when it is in post-rain form, and a mellow road bike ride after grading.

    Cheers,
    C
    I only attempt to change the world in the appropriate World-Changing venues and forums.

  18. #18
    That's gonna leave a mark
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    Man, thanks for the update Musty Gloves. I'm riding Sully this weekend.
    Fat fanatic.

    "Where the Fox Hat?" Endurance Team
    SoCal Colavita Road/MTB club

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobby Peru
    I worked for Unocal 76 Pipeline for many years. I am sure that refined gas line pigs are no different than natural gas ones. Those don't take years at all! Maybe hours. Think about it, the pig is blocking the line, there is NO WAY they would render their line useless for that long.

    Yes, the pigs detect leaks in the line etc, but I really think you are being Chicken Little. I am not insulting you by saying that, what I mean is that I think you are over reacting. That's all.
    I rode it up and back last night on our regular night ride. I too saw one pig up at the top on a trialer. It would make more sense that the whole, shall I say, pigging process takes place over a much shorter period of time. Yes, why would they render the line useless for that long. And furthermore, on our ride, I saw at least three fancy looking sensors scattered throughout the trail which would suggest they have something to do with tracking or communicating with the pig as it goes through the pipe. Those have not been there and they don't look like the kind of equipment they will leave around for very long. I'll bet they're running the pigs right now and the whole process is only taking days not the 1.5 years. Either way, it's likely they'll grade it based on past history. Major bummer. I wish they would wait until next fall/winter so there's a better chance of a major rain coming through and making the trail more interesting.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2w4s
    you forgot option 3.

    3. 'pigs' are used to build new and exciting extreme freeride stunts on existing multi-use trails. In 1.5 years the gas company expects Sullivan Canyon will be the SoCal equivalent of 'A River Runs through it'.
    Fo sho! After they move all the dirt, the conservitives cant complain about a 'little' digging.

  21. #21
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    and i got used to doing the long 'pipe ride' in the middle of the trail. anyone else ride the gas pipe?

  22. #22
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    Unocal 76 has a pipeline that goes right by the Getty Center, sort of. It runs up Mandiville (SP?) Canyon Road. From there it goes over the hill really close to the jumps @ Kenter. I used to explore the Nike site (before it was a museum- it was just an abandoned tower at the time) off the fire road during breaks while we were "chasing the pig." This is a process that is done about once a year to detect leaks, etc.

    We would do this at night so there was very little traffic. The pig would go up over the hill and back down in about 6 hours. The pigs were the same as you described, very futuristic looking things. Almost like a bomb. We would follow the pig with our work trucks and follow it to make sure it didn't get stuck.

    I worked for Unocal for almost 12 years so this is something I have done many, many times. I can't imagine a pig taking a year and a half to check a line? Seems really silly. Maybe the workers were messing with you just to play on your fears? I don't know. Either way, seems silly to say Sullivan is done. I've heard the same thing about the Kenter Coaster as well.

  23. #23
    wii!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydman
    and i got used to doing the long 'pipe ride' in the middle of the trail. anyone else ride the gas pipe?
    always, and I laugh every time thinking about the fact that I am riding a gas pipe.
    something funny

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobby Peru
    Either way, seems silly to say Sullivan is done. I've heard the same thing about the Kenter Coaster as well.
    Except that, as noted by several people, the gas company already has graded sullivan in the past, twice that I remember. I still don't know why they grade it, though. Is it to cover up the exposed pipes or to make access to the pipes easier? anywho, if they touch kenter they're going to have to answer to the very powerful and united DJ'ers of Kenter union. We may be small, poor and disorganized, but we will cry, scream and generally look really mean...

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2w4s
    We may be small, poor and disorganized, but we will cry, scream and generally look really mean...
    don't forget, drunk, dirty and bleeding....
    "Cram as much pleasure into life, and rail against the pain you have to suffer as a result" - Shane MacGowan

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