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  1. #1
    Salad Days
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    Montana winter trail report:

    Covered in snow. Maybe pipestone or lewis and clark caverns? Anyone know?
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  2. #2
    stone cold lampin'
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    Pipestone was icy but rideable last week. Things may have changed after the last storm though.

    Sweet shot BTW. I'll be getting some of that this weekend.

  3. #3
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    Ever go to Bridger? Maybe we could hook up?

  4. #4
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    Man John, you take some great pictures. I just saw the one in Carve magazine that won you $50 worth of food from the Naked Noodle too.

    I was able to ride on the snow up to the bridge on the Sourdough trail last weekend but past that it was too soft. I got a lot of bewildered looks from xc skiers as I passed them (all except for Cliff Montagne, that guy skated by me like I was standing still) - that was fun.

    I wonder if any others are rideable. Maybe Bracket Creek or anything else that gets packed down by other users?

  5. #5
    TRAIL KUBUKI CORNDOGGER
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    Quote Originally Posted by dir-T
    I passed them (all except for Cliff Montagne, that guy skated by me like I was standing still)
    Damn. He was doing that 20 years ago when I lived there.
    Nobody cares what kind of bike you ride.

  6. #6
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    trail conditions

    Quote Originally Posted by jparker164
    Covered in snow. Maybe pipestone or lewis and clark caverns? Anyone know?


    yep...snow, snow, and snow are your options over in this corner of the state.
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  7. #7
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    Cool bike

    Cool bike!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by nwmtb
    yep...snow, snow, and snow are your options over in this corner of the state.
    Cool, you got the pugsley! How's the flotation?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jparker164
    Cool, you got the pugsley! How's the flotation?


    they're awesome John....look me up the next time you come back to visit the parents and we'll take them out. The flotation is perfect...i couldn't help but keep thinking how far i'd have gotten on that sled trail if i were on the bike that only supports 2.3's...not very far !


    BTW.....i loved the pics from your ROAD TRIP .


    later

  10. #10
    Flip, spin and grind
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    Any lower elavation stuff around Helena is bone dry. MT Helena has some patchy ice spots, snow in the shade, but not too bad.

    Haven't been there recently, but the scratchgravel hills look completly dry. No snow anywere.




    (Nice Endomorph nwmtb !)

  11. #11
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    Chad,
    If you ever sell the Pug let me know.

  12. #12
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    Bone dry, my @ss

    Literally. I had a Looney-Tunes type fall walking the dog on Rodney Ridge this past Saturday. It looked just like that scene towards the end of The 40 Year Old Virgin, and I said pretty much the same things. I'm still living on Advil. We've had stretches of solid ice on the trails since the weather warmed up in late December. Granted they're ablating somewhat, but walking in the South Hills without Yaktrax is still death on any stretch of trail that doesn't get good afternoon sun. The entire Archery Ridge trail is iced, for example. I suspect you're right about the Scratchgravels, though.
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

    Riding in Helena? Everything you need to know, right here.

  13. #13
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    On Saturday I used the South Cottonwood trail to access some splitboarding terrain. The trail is so packed by hikers and skiers etc that you could easily ride it with studded tires (it's pretty darn icy). In fact we followed a set of bike tracks for about 4 miles before we turned off the trail.

  14. #14
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    Caverns

    I rode all the trails at Lewis and Clark Caverns this morning. The trails are mostly dry and completely ridable. Riding on dirt sure was fun. My friend Ian rode at Pipestone yesterday and said it was in similar condition.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jparker164
    I rode all the trails at Lewis and Clark Caverns this morning. The trails are mostly dry and completely ridable. Riding on dirt sure was fun. My friend Ian rode at Pipestone yesterday and said it was in similar condition.
    Did he say whether he ran into any snow in the bottoms of the gullies or thick trees?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dir-T
    Did he say whether he ran into any snow in the bottoms of the gullies or thick trees?
    He said it was "ridable" I imagine that there was snow in the bottoms of gullies and in thick trees. It was probably like the snow at the caverns though, either not deep or hard enough you could ride on top of it.

    I might be trying to go ride the caverns or pipestone or both on saturday this weekend if it doesn't snow a bunch.

  17. #17
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    Let us know how it goes. I'll be spending an early Valentines Day weekend at Mammoth Lodge xc-skiing, etc.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dir-T
    Let us know how it goes. I'll be spending an early Valentines Day weekend at Mammoth Lodge xc-skiing, etc.
    It was nice and clear, a little bit of snow and ice on the way up but clear trails on the way down, at least in the figure eight that I rode.
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  19. #19
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    timer shot ?


    the dirt looks nice...thanks for sharing JP


    later, Chad

  20. #20
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    I'm headed to Big Sky in mid-March for a week of dh and xc skiing with my wife, nephew, and niece.

    We'll be driving over on interstate 90 from Oregon/Washington, and I just wondered if anyone had any recommendations for a quick trail ride I could grab on the way over or back?

    I'm sure the skiing will be great, but I'll be getting itchy to ride by then!

  21. #21
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    This way to Pipestone

    Quote Originally Posted by kosmo
    I'm headed to Big Sky in mid-March for a week of dh and xc skiing with my wife, nephew, and niece.

    We'll be driving over on interstate 90 from Oregon/Washington, and I just wondered if anyone had any recommendations for a quick trail ride I could grab on the way over or back?

    I'm sure the skiing will be great, but I'll be getting itchy to ride by then!
    If the weather out here is average, Pipestone should be really good at that time of the spring. West of Butte, at the east base of Homestake Pass, take the Pipestone exit. I think it's #241. Go to the north side of the exit, then turn back west on the dirt frontage road. It will curve up the hill about 1-1/2 miles and cross some RR tracks. Park on the right. There is plenty of easy loops of double track on both sides of the road uphill of the tracks. There is a great singletrack test that returns to the parking lot. Find it by riding up the road about 2 miles, passing the ATV parking lot on the left, then continue on the road towards Spire Rock, right in front of you. About a 1/2 mile beyond the ATV lot, there is an opening in the fence on your left. Go through the fence, then turn right. This trail has a number of junctions, but just stay on the singletrack and stay uphill of the RR track and you'll be good. This trail is pretty technical, and typically takes about 1 butt-kicking hour to get back to where you're parked.

    I'll warn you, this is an ATV area, and they are allowed on almost all of the trails. The singletrack trail allows motorcycles. The trails change fast at Pipestone because of the sandy soil and the motorized impacts, but they are pretty fun now, and are best when frozen or wet.

    Gregb

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregB406
    If the weather out here is average, Pipestone should be really good at that time of the spring. West of Butte, at the east base of Homestake Pass, take the Pipestone exit. I think it's #241.Gregb
    OK buddy, who paid you off?!

    Those trails are darn near in my in-laws back yard, though I've never ridden them. The only trail around Butte I ride starts near the top of the pass on old Hwy 1 east of Butte. It's about a 3-mile single track semi-loop past a beaver pond that ends about 1 mile down the pass from where you start the ride. I just spin back up the road to close the loop. I can crank out two loops and be back at the in-laws in the morning before anybody even notices that I was gone!

    I've always thought that there must be a way to continue north from the old beaver pond, and end up near the Pipestone exit on the freeway, but never been able to find the link.

  23. #23
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    I don't know the trails that would link from the top of Pipestone Pass over to the Pipestone exit off the freeway. In March they likely would be quite snowy anyway. I bet some Butte guys know the way.

    I'm sure there is a number of ways to ride that connection. Plan about a 8 or 10 hour ride.

    GregB

  24. #24
    stone cold lampin'
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    The Beaver Ponds trail can be extended to the north for several more miles, but the trail will eventually dump you out on the same Hwy about 4 miles to the north. It's typically called the Archery Range. I've never heard of a trail that connects Beaver Ponds to Pipestone, but there's a trail on Toll Mtn Road that crosses I-90 at the rest area and continues north of I-90 to the Homestake/Pipestone area. We did a shuttle once that lasted about 25 miles. Round trip back to Toll Mtn would've been over 30.

    Pipestone should be nice that time of year, but the Beaver Ponds is usually snowy until almost June. So, you married into a Pipestone family, but you've never ridden there? I put together some maps of the area. If you're interested in a copy just drop a PM.

    JB

  25. #25
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    Jeebs,

    Hey, I'd like a map sometime. I've got 2 but they're pretty sketchy. There's just no substitute for going out exploring. Last year our funnest ride was from the trailhead at Homestake exit. We found our way through the funky uphill over the rebar mat, took a required break at the picnic table in the boulders, then another break above the rock quarry. Then out through the woods to Pipestone rock where we scrambled up for a quick view. Then back through the quarry to the tracks, and across the curved trestle. Then we hit all the singletrack down to the car shuttle and cold beers. But this was only 16 miles. Pipestone is a early season treasure.

    But it's ski time! Bridger got 32" today and it's still snowing! Guess I won't be going to Discovery just yet.

    Greg

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