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  1. #1
    Ride to the ride.
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    News: Fruita's Horsethief Drop-In Now Paved

    News: Fruita's Horsethief Drop-In Now Paved-horsethief_paved.jpg

    For years the notorious Horsethief Drop-In has intimidated mountain bike riders visiting the popular trails near Fruita, Colorado. But no more, thanks to the foresight of government agencies, trail advocacy groups, and lots of riders with little skill and no vision. The "Drop In" was originally dynamited into the sandstone cliff to allow livestock access from the upper mesa to the lower "bench". But since becoming part of the popular Horsethief Bench mountain bike trail, the Drop-In had become steep, rutted, and boulder-strewn and had frightened many riders.

    To get to the smoother trails below, most cyclists found themselves walking their bikes down the rugged section. Prior to the recent improvements, one cyclist in tight, sweaty lycra said "Ride it? I can barely walk it!" He then picked up his bike, stepped forward and bashed his shin on a rock. Most riders welcome the change to smooth pavement. "I'd heard of this section of trail before I ever made it out here. I'm thrilled to see that it's not nearly as tough as I'd thought." said area rider Cynthia, who has been mountain biking for over three weeks.

    Local Bureau of Land Management (BLM) official Mr. Rogers said, "We're proud of the changes we're making to area trails. There's almost nothing we won't do to make these trails slower, safer, and less interesting, especially for experienced riders. The population of the US is getting older and, let's face it, fatter every year. This kind of change just makes sense for the largest body, er excuse me, biggest proportion of potential trail riders."

    Rogers continued, "The Horsethief Bench trail can see hundreds of riders on a busy weekend. I don't see why that couldn't be thousands. With a ticket booth, proper guardrails, slow zones, a medical staff, and traffic signals, there's practically no limit to the number of riders we can cram into a safe, yet thrilling, mountain bike experience. At $5, $10, or even $15 a pop, I might add."

    The International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) applauded the changes. "That trail was too steep, eroded, and rocky to be sustainable. It exceeded the 10% average grade rule, didn't have any grade reversals, and had gotten wide enough to drive a herd of cattle down." said an IMBA spokesperson. "We welcome the changes. Besides, now we can drive our Subaru Trail Crew station wagons on it."

    The local BLM and a contingency of riders who aren't very good at the sport have been been working diligently for years to remove annoying rocks, trees, fast turns, steep sections and other trail features in order to smooth area trails into a new level of rideability. A level that, frankly, isn't very difficult. "We gave you one Freeride trail. Now leave us alone."

    A faint cry of protest over the trail changes came from a small group of local riders and frequent visitors, some of whom are deeply involved in the bicycle industry as professional mountain bike racers, long-time enthusiasts, talented young athletes, or product designers who are helping produce equipment that could expand the envelope of what is possible on a mountain bike -- a group that could help define the future of the sport. Many of the protesting riders claim that they were able to ride the Drop-In before the recent changes. Or enjoyed the challenge of attempting it and were hoping that someday they'd be able to ride the section successfully.

    "Why do those in charge of the trails -- or those who act like they're in charge -- think that making a trail smoother and easier is a benefit to the sport of mountain biking?" asked a local rider who is races at the top level of the sport. "Many of us cut our teeth on the trail features that are now being dumbed down or obliterated by the powers that be. Or even just by guys or gals who are too are too ignorant to realize that, for many people, tough sections live at the heart of mountain biking -- and that with some practice they might very well begin riding and enjoying most of those features, too."

    The BLM responded: "Those hard core riders who are whimpering about us making the trails easier can just go out in the desert where no one can find them and make their own damn trails." said another BLM employee, who asked not to be identified. "Of course, if we do find them, we'll shut them down and issue citations. We can't have trails running across land that might be opened up for oil and gas exploration in the near future."

    Though the Drop-In is now paved, it is still an uncomfortably steep climb for many riders. Officials hope to have funding to complete next summer's project: an escalator to bring riders back up to the top of the mesa.


    News: Fruita's Horsethief Drop-In Now Paved-horsethief_before.jpg
    Steep, rutted, and strewn with boulders, the original trail was un-rideable by anyone who matters.

  2. #2
    removing nudity
    Reputation: emu26's Avatar
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    Damn bikeabout, I feel your loss.

    What is wrong with people having to walk sections of trail they don't have the skill to ride?

    Edit: OK so the pic is photoshopped and most of those quotes seem hard to believe, is this post a climpse into what some are pushing for or is it for real?

  3. #3
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Too Funny, especially the part about being able to drive the IMBA Subaru wagon in.

  4. #4
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    Nice! Is your day gig at The Onion?

  5. #5
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    Dude, that is so 1 April.

  6. #6
    bust a move
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    too funny!

    Escalator
    Falling down is part of LIFE…Getting back up is LIVING…

  7. #7
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    During the BLM comment period I wrote a letter in favor of option C, the chairlift. Dang it, I never get my way.

  8. #8
    High Desert MTBer
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    So very, very sad, I would probably slit my wrists if it wasn't so funny! I am watching similar things happening where I live, little by little, stuff gets dumbed down until all character is sucked out, and there's just freeways thru the hills. To me, the phrase 'flow trail' is often a euphemism for a trail that is dumbed down to the lowest common denominator of rider. They take away all the sweet challenges of achieving some little goal each time you really give it your all... The day that MTBing becomes little more than a test of brute strength and stamina, recorded by Strava for all to see, is the day I go find another pursuit that will tickle my fancy. I enjoy stuff that will demand much finesse and skill, with a healthy dose of danger sprinkled on top!
    It's all Here. Now.

  9. #9
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    The real pic looks like a very fun section. Hope top pic is photo shopped and has not actually been paved, that would be a shame.

    Funny post either way, well done.

  10. #10
    Trail Prospector
    Reputation: Flyin_W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeabout View Post
    The International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) applauded the changes. "That trail was too steep, eroded, and rocky to be sustainable. It exceeded the 10% average grade rule, didn't have any grade reversals, and had gotten wide enough to drive a herd of cattle down." said an IMBA spokesperson. "We welcome the changes. Besides, now we can drive our Subaru Trail Crew station wagons on it."
    Great post!
    Found ^ this part especially fun, yet at the same time scary-true.
    +1 for you
    The best is the one you want to ride most often..

  11. #11
    Digital Toast
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    I was worried for a brief second. Very good...very good.

  12. #12
    workin' it Administrator
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    lulz!
    Try this: HTFU

  13. #13
    beater
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    Well done. Much better than the Onion has been for most of the last decade (although they're showing improvement).
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

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

  14. #14
    Ridin' Furry
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    Good thing, only a person on a downhill bike with a redbull sponsorship could clear that. /SARCASM

  15. #15
    mtbr member
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    MTBR Onion?

    Nicely written
    If only Sikorsky made bikes...

  16. #16
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    Awesome, some guy's in Bend can ride it with their wives now! Who will maintain it? Well done PS man(photoshop).
    Master of Laundry...Lord of Cleaning!

  17. #17
    This place needs an enema
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    In similar news, I saw a Starbucks semi backing it's way up to the Widowmaker via Tampon Trails #6, 13, 18, and 27. Looked like they were setting up a tasting station in front of The Fang.

  18. #18
    removing nudity
    Reputation: emu26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    So very, very sad, I would probably slit my wrists if it wasn't so funny! I am watching similar things happening where I live, little by little, stuff gets dumbed down until all character is sucked out, and there's just freeways thru the hills.
    Same here which is why I initially bought it, but then when I read the quotes and had a good look at the shadows in the pic I realised it was a joke. The shadows always give it away, just as Neil A.

  19. #19
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    It sounds like they're only paving part of the trail. What's up with that. We need the whole trail paved.

  20. #20
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    man that looks like some sweet asphalt... would love to take my road bike up and down that a few times.

  21. #21
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    Porcupine Rim'd.

  22. #22
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    Perfect timing trail workers to get it in for the Fruit a fat tire fest is this weekend! Hope there's a beer tent at the top for a mid-ride refreshing beverage.

  23. #23
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    Wow...and we complain around here about people dumbing down the trails.

    Looks like Mary owns a paving company!

    SPP
    Rigid.

  24. #24
    inexperienced at large
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    Re: News: Fruita's Horsethief Drop-In Now Paved

    Gotta go to Fruita before this is real

    Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk 2

  25. #25
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    Really well done!

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