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  1. #1
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    Coleman Boundary

    Big Ivy aka Coleman is the closest trail to my house beyond Alexander Park. Any one care to share some beta on these hidden gems? I know there's not much out there except for gravel road climbs and blistering descents. Last time I rode there we tried to ride everything but the only thing worth riding was the FS road, Staire Creek, and Bear Pen. Everything else was over grown or simply a dry creek bed. I think the only thing to do would be to park at the bottom, roll up to Bear Pen, do an out and back on that, and then hit Staire Creek back down - rinse and repeat if needed.

    No one talks about this area much but I know people are still riding it. I might explore it tomorrow.
    My one says BRAP!

  2. #2
    drunken pirate
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    I always enjoy riding Big Ivy when I make it up there. If you have already ridden everything and only found Staire Creek and Bear Pen worth riding you probably already have all the beta you need. It does get very overgrown and is very rocky but for me that is part of the allure. There is not a ton of mileage out there and it is all condensed into a small area so I usually start up FR74 to FR5548 then go down Bear Pen to Stair Creek then back up Walker Creek and Perkins (ouch!) to Laurel Gap (FR74) to Elk Pen. That makes a nice little loop and covers almost all that is there. Walker Creek is a fun downhill as well so switch directions as needed. It is a rather unique place to mountain bike in the area - not at all purpose built flow trails with a different character than the PRD.

    Closing the area to mountain bikes has been mentioned by the Forest Service as well as other user groups.
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  3. #3
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    I've been wanting to ride the other stuff out there besides Bear Pen and the Staire Creek but I haven't gotten around to it. Driftwood, I'll have to try that loop here sometime soon.

    I also heard talk of it being possibly closed to mtn bikers. I really hope that doesn't go through, as little as I get out there those two trails are some of my favorite to ride. With that said of all the times I've been out there I have only ever seen other trail users on the gravel road itself and the very bottom of Staire Creek. From my personal experience there doesn't seem to be enough traffic period to warrant closing the trails to mtn bikes.

  4. #4
    drunken pirate
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    Disclaimer: Walker Creek up is a climb. You might find yourself pushing your bike. If that isn't your thing hit it from the other direction. You can do all the downhills by taking FR74 to 5548.

    There isn't a lot of bike traffic out there but there is bike traffic. And some of those bikers have created some interesting alternate lines that are drawing some less than positive attention. We have discussed it several times on this forum. I personally think there is a real need for trails that fit that need. I've taken my dog (who hates mountain bikes) trail running out there and have had nothing but positive experiences with the mountain bikers we've encountered on the trails. But at the trail strategy meetings the sentiment was very much to close the trails to mountain bikes....
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  5. #5
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    So I have been wanting to ride Coleman Boundary for some time now and will probably give it a go this weekend. I have the National Geographic map 779 and I can't help to think that some of the trails are mislabeled specifically the upper sections (bottom on the map) of 173.

    Per this map is this route feasible?

    Picnic area up 74
    173>184>looks like 5548
    Down 176 and 183
    Back up the way before then down 175 and 165

    Coleman Boundary
    Sent via my heady vibes from the heart of Pisgahstan

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattnmtns View Post
    I can't help to think that some of the trails are mislabeled specifically the upper sections (bottom on the map) of 173..
    I believe it's actually correct. FS 5548 is co-signed as the "Laurel Gap Trail" (173). Last time I rode it it was like a long, wet, moss-sponge.

    Quote Originally Posted by mattnmtns View Post
    Per this map is this route feasible?
    Yep, it looks like it to me. Possible addition: on the 2nd lap, stay on 74 to the end and do the out-and-back (hiking only) to Douglas Falls if you've never been to it. Then take FS 5548/Laurel Gap Tr. (173) from its south junction with 74 up to 176 (Bear Pen) and on down 183 (Staire Creek).

  7. #7
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    Thanks

    I should have noted that 173 is listed as Upper Corner Rock trail, 184 as Laurel Gap. Either way that makes sense and isn't a big surprise.

    Also you suggestion is exactly what i will thinking as an alternate, except maybe go down to Perkins and take that and Walker down.

    I guess there is one way to find out.
    Sent via my heady vibes from the heart of Pisgahstan

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattnmtns View Post
    Thanks

    I should have noted that 173 is listed as Upper Corner Rock trail, 184 as Laurel Gap. Either way that makes sense and isn't a big surprise.

    Also you suggestion is exactly what i will thinking as an alternate, except maybe go down to Perkins and take that and Walker down.

    I guess there is one way to find out.
    Laurel Gap would be nice in the winter, bring long socks if you don't like stinging nettles. Perkins isn't even a trail, I really would simply avoid it, might be worth trying once but I didn't enjoy even when I had a f/s bike, it's a dry creek bed. I wish there was a better way to make a loop out there but the route that I like for the my money is fs 74 to Bear Pen, out and back - Staire Creek to Walker Creek, Walker Creek extension back to the car. It's 10 miles. It's harder than any 10 miles in PRD and just really rewarding and different.

    As a side note I was contacted by another user asking to "not talk about Coleman" so I won't any more. I don't think that a post on MTBR is going to matter much. Sounds like to me our days of legal riding there are numbered - any comments on this from SORBA or equally informed mountain bikers? All this stuff is bike legal so I don't see how talking about an area people know about is going to hurt us?

    PPS, I took the time to pack out a BUNCH of (excuse my yankee mouth here) ****ING garbage. I want the FS and all the other nit picky trail users that we are the CLEANEST user group in the forest. I saw the ALT lines on Bear Pen, OK, I get it, it's wrong but where is the pissing and moaning about leaving a ****ing PILE of dirty diapers at the trail head, empty beer cans, shitty fire pits...? I don't get it...
    My one says BRAP!

  9. #9
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    So if there is a MOD reading this, and you deem it necessary to delete the thread, please do if it keeps Coleman open for a few more months!!!
    My one says BRAP!

  10. #10
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    It's all legal f the haters... What do they think its all of a sudden going to blow up with noobs. Lol
    If anything we are better off with more people riding it.
    Some Mountain bikers are so stupid

  11. #11
    drunken pirate
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    Quote Originally Posted by supercusty View Post
    It's all legal f the haters... What do they think its all of a sudden going to blow up with noobs. Lol
    If anything we are better off with more people riding it.
    Some Mountain bikers are so stupid
    Exactly.

    Talking about these trails is a better way to keep them open than not talking about them. It isn't like the FS and other users don't already know that there are mountain bikers using this trail system that is currently open to bikes. The more bikers that use these trails, the more bikers there are that might feel the need to urge the FS to keep the current designations.
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  12. #12
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    I was thinking about this topic a lot this eve. Does any one know what the process looks like for shutting down trails to a specific user group? I looked at the USDA FS website and searched for a schedule of proposed actions. I couldn't find anything in the Appalachian District that would indicate any change towards Big Ivy. I'm guessing that the FS won't simply shut down the trails without any warning. Does any one know if the FS has actually shut down any mtb legal trails in Pisgah with in recent history?
    My one says BRAP!

  13. #13
    zod
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    Yep it's red on the map, mtn bikers should talk it up and ride the hell out of it. It's legitimate mountain bike trail at the moment. Get users on it, get bikers to take personal ownership...peak interest. If it were bootleg or poached trails I'd get keeping it hush-hush. It's not.

  14. #14
    drunken pirate
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    Quote Originally Posted by plume View Post
    I was thinking about this topic a lot this eve. Does any one know what the process looks like for shutting down trails to a specific user group? I looked at the USDA FS website and searched for a schedule of proposed actions. I couldn't find anything in the Appalachian District that would indicate any change towards Big Ivy. I'm guessing that the FS won't simply shut down the trails without any warning. Does any one know if the FS has actually shut down any mtb legal trails in Pisgah with in recent history?
    Perry Cove.

    I do not know what the closure process is. I'm sure there is a legal process and I'm sure it will be followed. I'm not sure that process will save those trails - at the meetings I attended it really sounded like it had been discussed by the FS and will happen... I hope there will be a formal comment period....
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  15. #15
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    Are they just talking about Bear pen and Staire creek, or everything in Coleman Boundary other than the gravel road?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by plume View Post
    Laurel Gap would be nice in the winter, bring long socks if you don't like stinging nettles. Perkins isn't even a trail, I really would simply avoid it, might be worth trying once but I didn't enjoy even when I had a f/s bike, it's a dry creek bed. I wish there was a better way to make a loop out there but the route that I like for the my money is fs 74 to Bear Pen, out and back - Staire Creek to Walker Creek, Walker Creek extension back to the car. It's 10 miles. It's harder than any 10 miles in PRD and just really rewarding and different.

    As a side note I was contacted by another user asking to "not talk about Coleman" so I won't any more. I don't think that a post on MTBR is going to matter much. Sounds like to me our days of legal riding there are numbered - any comments on this from SORBA or equally informed mountain bikers? All this stuff is bike legal so I don't see how talking about an area people know about is going to hurt us?

    PPS, I took the time to pack out a BUNCH of (excuse my yankee mouth here) ****ING garbage. I want the FS and all the other nit picky trail users that we are the CLEANEST user group in the forest. I saw the ALT lines on Bear Pen, OK, I get it, it's wrong but where is the pissing and moaning about leaving a ****ing PILE of dirty diapers at the trail head, empty beer cans, shitty fire pits...? I don't get it...

    Thanks for the reply and the info. Nettles you say, those can be fun!


    As far as not talking about Coleman? That makes no sense. For one it is a legal trail system. Two if it is truly in jeopardy then the more people who know about it and the more mountain bikers who use will be more people who can try to protect it. People can't fight to protect what they don't know about. I see the same "protectionism" with people and trout streams. News flash there are no secret areas in the WNC mountains. A lot of the far and away scenic area you have to earn getting to them either by foot or pedal which weeds out a lot of people from the get go. I also couldn't agree with you more on the trash issue. It never ceases to amaze me the types of trash people will hike up and just leave. I'd have to agree that mountain bikers and fly fishermen as a whole are some of the best stewards of our lands.

    Thanks again for your info, was hoping for a bit more mileage but none the less its a place I need to go see for myself. I might still try and work Laurel gap in, I will just make sure to be prepared for the nettles.
    Sent via my heady vibes from the heart of Pisgahstan

  17. #17
    zod
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    On the trash subject...Hate to say it but latinos (like haven't been here long, don't speak English ones) seem to CONSISTANTLY not clean up their trash, chitty diapers, etc in the park systems. I see it all the time (local and state/fed parks). Must be a cultural thing.....drive me crazy, sometimes I think they really don't know any better. Not to call out or try to blame it all on one group. Go to Wilson Creek and you'll see plenty of white trash leaving a freaking mess behind. I just don't get going someplace pristine to enjoy it for that fact and then using it as your personal landfill.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by zod View Post
    On the trash subject...Hate to say it but latinos (like haven't been here long, don't speak English ones) seem to CONSISTANTLY not clean up their trash, chitty diapers, etc in the park systems. I see it all the time (local and state/fed parks). Must be a cultural thing.....drive me crazy, sometimes I think they really don't know any better. Not to call out or try to blame it all on one group. Go to Wilson Creek and you'll see plenty of white trash leaving a freaking mess behind. I just don't get going someplace pristine to enjoy it for that fact and then using it as your personal landfill.
    Que?
    walkPABA

  19. #19
    zod
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    I rest my case....

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by zod View Post
    I rest my case....
    walkPABA

  21. #21
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    Mexcellent. Are you suggesting border fences around Pisgah?

  22. #22
    zod
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    No just drones and trashcans with Spanish on them....

  23. #23
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  24. #24
    Fence guru
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    Omg what a bunch of d00shes

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by plume View Post
    As a side note I was contacted by another user asking to "not talk about Coleman" so I won't any more.
    That's ridiculous, the best thing we can do is talk about it, get people to try it out, maybe get interested in maintenance and have a stake in keeping it open.

    WRT Perkins trail, I lost my wallet there back in the late 90's and a horseback rider found it, and brought it back to their stables on Dillingham Road. On a whim I stopped by there the next day asking if anyone had found it thinking horseback riders were most likely to be out there...lo and behold, they had. Super grateful. Maybe for that reason I still like the trail. I admit that I haven't ridden it in a while though, so it could be a lot worse for wear these days

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