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  1. #1
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    West Mag conditions

    For some stupid reason I decided to give West Mag a try today. Bad idea.

    It actually wouldn't have been horrible if it wasn't for the remnants of the recent tree work up there. It looks like a war zone.

    Aspen Alley...gone. No longer a trail at least. Just DEEP mud.

    Many of the other trails would be in good shape in another week or two depending on how warm it stays up there, but there are also very large piles of trees across the former trails. The crews obviously did not care to move those piles 5 feet one way or the other. Real bummer.

    It's going to take A LOT of work to get things rideable again.

    Here are some pics:

    Pungy Stick:

    West Mag conditions-img_20130515_122319.jpg

    West Mag conditions-pano_20130515_122352.jpg

    West Mag conditions-img_20130515_122541.jpg

    Top of Aspen Alley:

    West Mag conditions-img_20130515_122808.jpg

    West Mag conditions-pano_20130515_122859.jpg

    Aspen Alley proper (once you get into the Apsens it turns to DEEP mud for as long as you can see):

    West Mag conditions-img_20130515_123129.jpg

    Observatory parking lot:

    West Mag conditions-pano_20130515_124402.jpg

    West Mag conditions-pano_20130515_124458.jpg

    Observatory:

    West Mag conditions-img_20130515_124821.jpg

    View from YMCA/Hobbit 3 intersection:

    West Mag conditions-pano_20130515_130606.jpg

  2. #2
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    West Mag conditions

    Very sad

  3. #3
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    Looks like a blank slate to me.
    Take the long cut, we'll get there eventually.

  4. #4
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    Man, you didn't post any pics of the monster clear cuts. The pics you posted do not do the injustice justice. The hobbits have been wiped out. Everything down on the flat sections of west mag is GONE! The greed of logging married to the blind eye of the forest service has created a moonscape that will take a decade to start to sort out. Did you see the 40 foot tall slash piles?
    Everyone should go up there for a look.
    ****

  5. #5
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    sloppyart - You see my tracks from yesterday? Sounds like we had about the same adventure.

    Reroot has seen some reroute as well.

    West Mag conditions-20130513_192503.jpg

    West Mag conditions-20130513_193029.jpg

    West Mag conditions-20130513_193458.jpg

  6. #6
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    Oooooooooooooooo, nice spec'y evo you got there Thump. How is it treating you?
    ****

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    The greed of logging married to the blind eye of the forest service
    It was my understanding that there was no greed of logging involved, that it was all for fire suppression and that the wood involved isn't really worth a damn thing. Not saying that's right, just what has been said. If that isn't the case, I'd like to know more.


    Also, does anyone know if the giant slash piles are all staying? or is the contractor still coming back for more cleanup?

  8. #8
    Kaj
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    Based on these fotos and some others I've seen of west mag I'm guessing that Reynolds Ranch aka Dot trails aka boy scout trails might be about ready. They don't get as much sun in spots as west mag does.

    Anyone been around the dots yet?
    Helping folks shred in Boulder & Colorado since 1982 www.fullcyclebikes.com

  9. #9
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    Kaj, I haven't been, but based on my drive up to Ned 10 days ago, and given the recent weather, if they're not there they have to be pretty close.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bagwhan View Post
    It was my understanding that there was no greed of logging involved, that it was all for fire suppression and that the wood involved isn't really worth a damn thing. Not saying that's right, just what has been said. If that isn't the case, I'd like to know more.


    Also, does anyone know if the giant slash piles are all staying? or is the contractor still coming back for more cleanup?
    Go there and see it for yourself, and tell me how the sight makes you feel. Ride the fire roads in a south east direction to get back to the largest clearcut, and ask yourself why that was necessary.
    ****

  11. #11
    zrm
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    These kinds of timber sales have nothing to do with greed. The timber in cuts like these has little or no commercial value. The reasoning is firebreaks in the urban/wildland interface.

    When wildfires happen and there's a lot of property loss, people clamor and rail against the terrible bureaucracy that prevents timber cuts. When no wildfire happens but timber is cut people clamor and rail against the horrible timber cuts. It's a win-win situation for people who like to complain but are unencumbered by the thought process.

    All that said, I agree that these cuts look awful and the contractors and FS need to accommodate trail corridors. (if they're not legal trails the FS doesn't recognize they exist from a management point of view so it shouldn't be surprising that they don't make contractors go to the extra trouble to keep the corridors clear). I'd get with the dispersed rec person at the ranger district and get them to get the trails cleared, even if it has to be done by volunteers. Here in Summit County there have been a lot of these fire break timber sales and when they were up for public comment we made sure that the subject was addressed. The contractors have actually done a pretty good job of keeping the trails clear.

    Have faith though. in the grand scheme of things, those timber cuts will regenerate and the opened up areas will get all kinds of great wildflowers that couldn't live under a dense forest canopy.
    Last edited by zrm; 05-19-2013 at 08:24 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Debaser View Post
    Looks like a blank slate to me.
    agreed

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by zrm View Post
    Have faith though. in the grand scheme of things, those timber cuts will regenerate and the opened up areas will get all kinds of great wildflowers that couldn't live under a dense forest canopy.
    +1 Agreed

  14. #14
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    I thought the contractor had to pull out to go to forest fires last fall, but that they weren't finished and would be back to continue the work. Maybe I heard wrong. Can't believe they would just leave it like that. Or maybe they would.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    Go there and see it for yourself, and tell me how the sight makes you feel. Ride the fire roads in a south east direction to get back to the largest clearcut, and ask yourself why that was necessary.
    I don't doubt that it would elicit a very emotional response. But emotional responses, while important and valuable, aren't facts, and I was asking about facts.

    Quote Originally Posted by brokefork View Post
    I thought the contractor had to pull out to go to forest fires last fall, but that they weren't finished and would be back to continue the work. Maybe I heard wrong. Can't believe they would just leave it like that. Or maybe they would.
    That was my understanding too, that they were not finished.

  16. #16
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    The slash piles are left like that all over the wildland-urban interface west of Boulder. We have had them in our neighborhood for years now outside of Ned. The forest service was going to burn them, but after burning some on Sugarloaf (January of '11 I think) it started a fire when winds came up afterwards. They have been moving very slowly on getting rid of them ever since. As I understand it, the crews are coming back into West Mag to deal with it, but I wouldn't hold your breath on it happening so we can bike the trails. I think the thing to do now is to wait for trail build/volunteer days and ride other areas until then. There really won't be much to ride up there for awhile.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    Oooooooooooooooo, nice spec'y evo you got there Thump. How is it treating you?
    I've got no complaints. They nailed it with this one. Pedals great and feels bulletproof.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kaj View Post
    Anyone been around the dots yet?
    I took them over there from my house. Boot/Reboot was in pretty good shape with minimal drift busting. I'd image they whole thing will be good to go by this weekend.

    Few more pics.. It's my understanding that the project budget includes cleanup, but I don't believe they're even fully done with the cutting yet.

    West Mag conditions-20130513_193551.jpg

    West Mag conditions-20130513_190750.jpg

    West Mag conditions-20130513_190718.jpg

  18. #18
    Who said Punisher?
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    From the last meeting I went to at the Ned Community Center, The FS said the following:
    1) There is more work to do at west mag--not specific of how much, but definitely not done yet. Plan to resume this summer and only close off specific work areas instead of the whole area.
    2) They will be planting 1000 trees this summer--pondo and fir
    3) They will be planting much more than that next summer of same variety
    4) Slash piles are slated to be dealt with this coming winter--they have a chipper contract and are slowing moving around the area shipping slash piles with that. may burn some in the winter also.
    5) part of the contract is possibly to "restore" the old trails--so Hobbit 1, which is gone may get for example the trees/brush moved off to the side to "open" the trail.

    That is all I have folks.

  19. #19
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    Dots= dry. I wouldn't waste your time trying West Mag.

  20. #20
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    Slightly off-topic but given the conditions in Wet Mag, does this mean that Sourdough and SSV are close to being ready to ride?

  21. #21
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    Sourdough and SSV are still pretty snowed in.
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  22. #22
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    Anyone know what elevation the snow line is at on schoolbus?

    Dots were great yesterday, but the rest was depressing... As Thump called out reroot has been plundered or 'rerouted' and linking up a good ride is almost impossible

  23. #23
    Kaj
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    I'm planning on riding the hobbits (what's left of them) to school bus till the snow hits after work today. I'll bring the garmin and note where the snow turns me around.
    Helping folks shred in Boulder & Colorado since 1982 www.fullcyclebikes.com

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by edenger View Post
    Anyone know what elevation the snow line is at on schoolbus?

    Dots were great yesterday, but the rest was depressing... As Thump called out reroot has been plundered or 'rerouted' and linking up a good ride is almost impossible
    I wasn't on Bus, but did some clearing on the stuff further back today and would estimate the snow pack gets solid around 9100-9200. Eg. the top of Sweet is pure white on the northish side.

  25. #25
    Kaj
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    Ride report: I parked near the Observatory parking lot, just west of it where I would normally park for my after work spin. Rode Hobbit 1, Hobbit 2 then up School Bus and back down to Hobbit 3, and back to the car, I would usually ride Observatory but it's got a closed sign on it.

    This is my favorite after work spin, about 10 miles. I'll throw in the trails to Rollinsville if I have time (maybe total 15/16 miles) but tonight I didn't get there early enough.

    So what's changed from this ride? Basically the parking lot at Observatory and the first 60% of Hobbit one, or the first mile are clear cut. I can ride the Hobbit 1 trail because I know where it should be, but it's clear cut the first mile of it is tough to follow, but the last 1/2 mile is back in the woods. Then the next 9 miles are more or less the same as before. I know an optimists point of view, but really Hobbit 2, School Bus and Hobbit 3 are more or less untouched so far. They ride the same.

    Based on the reports so far, I'm pretty happy that at least this route is still about as fun as before. I miss that first mile of Hobbit 1 which was beyond awesome in the trees, but the trail is more or less still there.

    School Bus elevation report: I went 1/2 mile up past the bus before I turned around. Up till there-there is one mud/water spot down low and 2 or 3 snow drifts of about 5 feet long / 3 inches deep you need to ride through.

    Based on what I expected it was pretty eff'n awesome overall.
    Helping folks shred in Boulder & Colorado since 1982 www.fullcyclebikes.com

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