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  1. #1
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    Pedro's Fest Big Disappointment...

    Anyone else go to Pedro's Fest?

    I just got back from my extended vacation beginning with Pedros. While I thought the festival was fun overall and I am glad I went, I thought the riding really sucked. Well, the "advertised" riding. There were rumors & whispers of good places to ride, but no one I spoke with could point you in the right direction other than "on the other side of the mountain" and "watch out for the construction of the windmill". The maps they provided were a joke and the Vicious Cycles loop was the worst trail building I have every witnessed.

    They got some things right -- the overall atmosphere, the music, the vendors, the displays, they cleaned the toilets every day -- but there were a lot of things that seemed like this was their first year doing this -- the lack of trail maps, the freshly raked trails that were constructed by dragging a McCloud through the woods, the fact that our "guides" got lost on the intermediate ride I went on Saturday -- after our 3+ mile road ride, we ended up going up a dirt road and down another dirt road the width of the Mass Turnpike then a 3+ mile downhill road ride. Wow -- that was fun NOT! The trails behind the fest were okay, but they were too short.

    Unless they change the location, I don't think I'll be going back to Pedros. On the plus side, the weather was great, the vendors were good and the trails made me really appreciate the great trails we have here in NJ. (Imagine a Pedro's Fest at Waterloo Village -- the choice of rides would be overwhelming!)

    On the opposite end of the spectrum, my vacation ended up with 3 fantastic days of riding at Kingdom Trails in Vermont -- now that is great riding! And the trails aren't kept secret.

  2. #2
    Three sheets to the wind
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    I guess I'm glad I decided not to go...

  3. #3
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    I hear ya

    Quote Originally Posted by Allamuchy Joe
    Anyone else go to Pedro's Fest?

    I just got back from my extended vacation beginning with Pedros. While I thought the festival was fun overall and I am glad I went, I thought the riding really sucked. Well, the "advertised" riding. There were rumors & whispers of good places to ride, but no one I spoke with could point you in the right direction other than "on the other side of the mountain" and "watch out for the construction of the windmill". The maps they provided were a joke and the Vicious Cycles loop was the worst trail building I have every witnessed.

    They got some things right -- the overall atmosphere, the music, the vendors, the displays, they cleaned the toilets every day -- but there were a lot of things that seemed like this was their first year doing this -- the lack of trail maps, the freshly raked trails that were constructed by dragging a McCloud through the woods, the fact that our "guides" got lost on the intermediate ride I went on Saturday -- after our 3+ mile road ride, we ended up going up a dirt road and down another dirt road the width of the Mass Turnpike then a 3+ mile downhill road ride. Wow -- that was fun NOT! The trails behind the fest were okay, but they were too short.

    Unless they change the location, I don't think I'll be going back to Pedros. On the plus side, the weather was great, the vendors were good and the trails made me really appreciate the great trails we have here in NJ. (Imagine a Pedro's Fest at Waterloo Village -- the choice of rides would be overwhelming!)

    On the opposite end of the spectrum, my vacation ended up with 3 fantastic days of riding at Kingdom Trails in Vermont -- now that is great riding! And the trails aren't kept secret.
    I agree this year was much better than the past 2 for sure. The trails sucked and the help they offered this year was pathetic...one lady was so nasty I almost lost my cool when she told me I had to wait for ride leaders and they were conserving paper and is the reason they did not distribute maps. Fortunatly I know the area from the previous 6 years and know where to find some good riding to make the weekend worth while. I would suggest if you enjoyed it go back next year and I would bet they get it right. I will say that the logistics and people who run this event are pathetic and generally every year there is one glaring area of the festival they can never seem to get right. If your up the night before you have to find the old forge restraunte which is about 3 miles away...great food 300+ beers and great atmosphere.

  4. #4
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    Whoa, whoa, whoa, wait a minute there mister... How about the layover in Wells Beach Maine ? A guess you want to keep you ROAD RIDING a secret from the mtb community.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by RyderX
    Whoa, whoa, whoa, wait a minute there mister... How about the layover in Wells Beach Maine ? A guess you want to keep you ROAD RIDING a secret from the mtb community.
    Well now the cat is out of the bag...

    Thanks for having us over, Kris. We definitely had fun with you & the family.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allamuchy Joe
    Anyone else go to Pedro's Fest?

    I just got back from my extended vacation beginning with Pedros. While I thought the festival was fun overall and I am glad I went, I thought the riding really sucked. Well, the "advertised" riding. There were rumors & whispers of good places to ride, but no one I spoke with could point you in the right direction other than "on the other side of the mountain" and "watch out for the construction of the windmill". The maps they provided were a joke and the Vicious Cycles loop was the worst trail building I have every witnessed.

    They got some things right -- the overall atmosphere, the music, the vendors, the displays, they cleaned the toilets every day -- but there were a lot of things that seemed like this was their first year doing this -- the lack of trail maps, the freshly raked trails that were constructed by dragging a McCloud through the woods, the fact that our "guides" got lost on the intermediate ride I went on Saturday -- after our 3+ mile road ride, we ended up going up a dirt road and down another dirt road the width of the Mass Turnpike then a 3+ mile downhill road ride. Wow -- that was fun NOT! The trails behind the fest were okay, but they were too short.

    Unless they change the location, I don't think I'll be going back to Pedros. On the plus side, the weather was great, the vendors were good and the trails made me really appreciate the great trails we have here in NJ. (Imagine a Pedro's Fest at Waterloo Village -- the choice of rides would be overwhelming!)

    On the opposite end of the spectrum, my vacation ended up with 3 fantastic days of riding at Kingdom Trails in Vermont -- now that is great riding! And the trails aren't kept secret.


    I love the Kingdom Trails. I think its where I first realized that trails can be built really really well, and it does not happen by accident. Learning how to build trails with that much flow takes a lot of time in the woods with tape, pin flags and a macloed! But I find VT has a whole different flow... I think there's something in the water up there... they just build great trails, and... they network them beautifully (and through private property, with landowner permission!) We can learn much from VT!

    That said, we have some amazing trails in NJ, and they're getting better every year!

    Waterloo in '08? Hmmm... now there's an idea! I like the way you think!
    www.JORBA.org - You Dig?
    What would we do without trails? www.IMBA.com

  7. #7
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    I totally agree that this year was not up to par. Last years venue had better trails, an amazing jump park and bmx track, and seemed a lot more organized. Despite all this, it was still a good time. Hopefully they'll be changing locations next year.

  8. #8
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    Try Lenox

    Though I haven't been to Pedrosfest itself, I have ridden many of the parks in the area. There is some very sweet stuff in Lenox. Park at tha Acadia shop (on Rt 7), ride through Kennedy Park west-ward, and eventually you'll hook up with some amazingly snaky/technical singletrack). Just go Acadia's workshop and ask for Burbank trail and/or Pudgys....the guys who work there know who built the good stuff and can give you directions. As for Pedrosfest, I suspect they took you through some of the local State Forests, which in my experience have loads of woods roads/fire roads popular with ATV's. I'm sure local riders have the skinny, but for us visitors, it just pays to ask around.

  9. #9
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    YUp was there..

    I was at this yearís fest and i too found the new trails they cut, (the white, and blue) behind the dirt jump park to be very small and just not well thought out, but then again i heard they built them in two weeks. The amount of users on those three trails was insane! I had to stop and go all the time because you can cross paths with over 30 riders in less than 20 minutes.
    I noticed they didnít have the naked MTB race This year, thatís an event to see at least once!
    My buddies who went also did find the vicious trial and they said it was fun, I didnít go with them that day I rode the downhill at Jiminy peak that day. And we actually avoided jiminy because some yahoo told us it was $40.00 per day, it actually was $15.00 per day and $40.00 for all three days. We had a blast riding those trails tight fast and technical too boot. Ran across some riders whose bud broke his femur that day. I found a lack of communication between event goers and staff, no trial maps and to find a really good trail you had to hook up with a local, thatís if you found someone willing to show you around.
    The last fest i went to was in 1998 in Randolph VT, and did the x-country ride with Ned Overend, guy kicks A**.
    I will be back next year with the JORBA and CLIMB guys look for the Pirate flag waving High up in the air!.

    Oh and you cant miss Disco Cheetah!!. . http://www.pbase.com/kseebeck/image/82334333


    Later...
    NMBPmike
    NMBPMIke

  10. #10
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    Some good riding

    I heard of a fella who had some good riding on some secret type trails. I believe some locals took him there and it was the kind of stuff which you may have had to carry your bike thru the woods to get to the unmarked unconnected trail... That doesn't sound like it goes very will the the intent of the event.
    J.O.R.B.A. More than just tm. WWW.JORBA.ORG

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stratocaster
    I heard of a fella who had some good riding on some secret type trails. I believe some locals took him there and it was the kind of stuff which you may have had to carry your bike thru the woods to get to the unmarked unconnected trail... That doesn't sound like it goes very will the the intent of the event.

    ..yep yep.


    We had some very very good 4+ hour rides with 2 locals that we have ridden with for the last 4 years.

    One of the guys lives off silver street which borders the state Forrest.

    The reality of this trail system is that if the trail heads are not hidden than they will very quickly be overrun by ATV's. Imagine if 200 ATVs rode through Chimney rock everyday?

    My wife and I used some CC miles and stayed at the Hotel at Jiminey Peak so we missed out on the sleepless nights for once. We have been to every single Pedro's Fest except for the very 1st one.

    The real issue is that the Old spot off Route 7 is being turned into a golf course. Yuk!

    So.. Pedro's is still fun for sure but you need to know where to go.

    I did share a really fun section with some guys who would have never found it. That was my good deed of the weekend.


    j-
    ..I'd rather be a headlight on a northbound train..

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdog
    ..yep yep.


    We had some very very good 4+ hour rides with 2 locals that we have ridden with for the last 4 years.

    One of the guys lives off silver street which borders the state Forrest.

    The reality of this trail system is that if the trail heads are not hidden than they will very quickly be overrun by ATV's. Imagine if 200 ATVs rode through Chimney rock everyday?

    My wife and I used some CC miles and stayed at the Hotel at Jiminey Peak so we missed out on the sleepless nights for once. We have been to every single Pedro's Fest except for the very 1st one.

    The real issue is that the Old spot off Route 7 is being turned into a golf course. Yuk!

    So.. Pedro's is still fun for sure but you need to know where to go.

    I did share a really fun section with some guys who would have never found it. That was my good deed of the weekend.


    j-
    I think folks are missing my point. This was my first Pedro's Fest -- I built it up in my mind of how cool it would be to be with a bunch of mountain bikers at a festival and how great the riding would be in the Berkshire Mountains. While the first part of that build up was realized (the group of people), the second part was not a good experience for me or a bunch of other first timers that I spoke with.

    Pedro's can't expect first-timers to return if it is run like a little insider's club. I shouldn't have had to know a local to expect good riding at a mountain bike festival that has been on-going for 13 years. They could have picked one good loop to point out to festival goers -- or don't have the festival there and find another place. Perhaps the organizers could have marked out a 10-12 mile loop that was not a snow mobile double/triple track. And add to that the fact the riding tent was not that helpful. The intermediate ride I went on Saturday got lost on the aforementioned snowmobile trails. That was my beef.

    I was actually quite amused by the inconsistency of the festival -- in some regards they did things very well -- provided for cleaning the porta-potties out frequently, had cool vendors, the shower set up, the community grills, things for kids to do -- other things, not so great -- lack of communication about riding, lack of tables/chairs at the beer/food/music tent, lack of decent non-grease food (except the kettlecorn mmmmmm).

    Overall, I had a good time, just not as good a time as I could have had because I didn't know locals to take me out on the hidden good stuff. Now I know better, but the festival still lost some luster in my eyes.

    So, if any organizer asks any of you insiders for input, you now have some outsider constructive criticism to provide to them.

  13. #13
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    Pedros Sucked this year

    I went to this festival and it sucked. The rides were a joke. Sat. night we got pretty hammered though but thats not why I went to this. I thought the riding would be better but it wasent. Was tempted to actually leave Sat. afternoon but after a case of Sam Adams was opened we stuck around to take in the vibe.

    I totally agree with the NJ riding thing. We should definately try to put together some kind of mountain bike weekend (remember Jim Thorpe few years ago-the best!) here in NJ. Waterloo would be SICK! Camping, riding Allamuchy area. SICK! Me and a buddy were BOMBING through the Deer Park section of Allamuchy the other day. So freakin fast back in there now. Who the heck did all the trimming and cutting by the way?! NICE!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by skibum1
    IMe and a buddy were BOMBING through the Deer Park section of Allamuchy the other day. So freakin fast back in there now. Who the heck did all the trimming and cutting by the way?! NICE!

    Glad you noticed and liked!!! The trimming was done during Julys TM date. The TM group is a JORBA affiliate and headed up by The Chain Gang Mtn Bike Club. The Clubs TM activities are approved by the Park. Also, this is not to say that you have to be a member of the club to come out and do TM, everyone is welcome! For more info go to www.jorba.org!

    We have a TM date this coming Sunday Aug 5th inthe north section of the park. If you are intrested in helping out send me a PM with your contact info and you will be added to the e-mail list for TM.

    Bob W.

  15. #15
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    Allamuchy

    I would definately get involved in that maintenence thing. We've ridden back in there many times, always came out covered with scratches, thorns stuck to our shirts, arms and shorts, not to mention a few ticks. Bleeding half the time from the pricker bushes. Now, super fast, super fun back in there. My buddy wants to pull a night ride through some of that sweet singletrack that just bombs and bombs. That could be interesting. That bathroom in the parking lot smells like dead ass though. Man someone's got to come in and clean that thing. I almost puked in there just trying to take a leak after the ride.

    I would really be all about some kind of mountain bike weekend thing here in NJ. Theres gotta be somewhere to do this. SO many great riding especially out in that Allamuchy area with places to camp out. That freakin boy scout camp gotta be available one weekend. Forget that 24 hrs of Allamuchy crap, REDUNDANT! Been there, done that so many times already, SOLO! Old school now. Pay over $100 bucks to ride around in a circle for 24 hours. I can do that anywhere. Fun when Sara Frost organized it years ago. Nice small micro brew event. Good time. Now, you bring in a six pack and people look at you like you have 3 eyes on your head. Stupid. Nice job with the trails and I'll check out that website.

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