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  1. #1
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    Blue Marsh Today

    Went for my first time. I made the mistake of parking at the top of the hill, above the boat launch. I didn't do the whole 30 miles so after I was done, I had to make the climb up that hill. I was really impressed with this place. A few questions I have...if you go to the bottom of the hill on the boat launch and go behind the bathroom there is a trail...it seems like a pretty technical trail..does anybody know how far that goes or if it connects to the main trail somewhere? I went on it a little bit but I was pretty tired by that time so it wasn't long before I turned around. Also, right around the 2 mile marker, almost exactly on it, they put this gravel/grey stone on the trail at the bottom of the hill. I was coming down and went to turn around the bend and couldn't turn so I hit the brakes. I kept going straight the whole time! I went into the trees until I finally stopped. It was like a car sliding on ice. Anyone know what I'm talking about? Okay and two more things...I suppose you don't have to leash your dogs there? I had about 5 or 6 chase after my legs. The last thing is, it is a shame people with horses are allowed to go there. I came up on 5 horses walking down the trail today, so I got off to the side. The bad part was, after I kept going, there was horse poop everywhere for the next few miles!! ughh...yesterday it was dog poop, today it was horse! I couldn't win this weekend great trail though! love the place. will be going back soon!
    cas im diggin a ditch where madness gives a bit.

  2. #2
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    I think the trail behind the bathroom is for hikers only ,are the stones on the single track or fire road section,also you will always find horses and people walking their dogs on the weekend ,if the dog owners see you coming most will hold their dog untill you pass that is what most do I have not had a dog chase me yet[knocks on wood].

  3. #3
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    thanks for the tip about the trail behind the bathroom...also, i cant say the dogs were actually chasing me but like coming over towards me and im not much of a dog person so it always freaks me out...the stones are on the singletrack part right on a turn...its not a big deal really.
    cas im diggin a ditch where madness gives a bit.

  4. #4
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    the trail behind the bathroom is part of the big loop.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by riderup24
    the trail behind the bathroom is part of the big loop.
    the one right behind the bathroom? part of the 30 mile loop? so i can ride that? i didnt see any 'no bicycle' signs.
    cas im diggin a ditch where madness gives a bit.

  6. #6
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    That little section behind the bathroom is not really part of the big loop. The real trail comes from the stilling basin, crosses the parking lot and re-enters the woods at the far end of the lot from the bathroom (closest to the road coming down the hill). The section behind the bathroom is only like a tenth of a mile and rejoins the main trail at the old road (Blue Marsh Rd) which would come out near the old Lower Heidelberg school.

    The stone was put in last year because it was becoming a small stream crossing and always very wet there.

    As far as the dogs and horses...it does get crowded (Sunday was particularly so). But remember it is federal Army Corp. land. If horseback riding goes I would imagine bikes would go with them!

  7. #7
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    The trail behind the bathroom has never been part of the big loop, but it's not off-limits.
    It's not even 1/4 mile long and intersects the main trail.

    Irresponsible, law-breaking dog owners are all over the Blue Marsh trails. They're required by law to keep their animals in control at all times, and leashed when near the parking areas. A care-less attitude and lack of enforcement has led to me being bitten twice. One of those times put me in the emergency room.

    Horses are pretty prevalent too, as you've seen. I've seen a group of guys all dressed up as marlboro men, just for the photo op, taking pictures of eachother, LOL! And then there's naked guy, and the rumored lesbian lovers (I haven't seen them yet, but I know others who have). Sometimes it's a real freak show.

    The important thing is to stay in control at all times, yield to everyone, and never enter a blind corner at speed. And if you get chased or bitten by a dog, report the owner at the park office off of Palisades Dr. Although they don't actively enforce, I believe they'll follow up on complaints. They did after both of my episodes.

  8. #8
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    well, call it what you like. i call it semantics. if you take the trail by the bathroom
    or at the other end of the parking lot, it will get you to the same place.

  9. #9
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    The trail behind the bathroom is actually somewhat technical and fun. Alot more fun than the actual trail itself. Just remember that when the trail forks, stay left,high side. (coming from the bathroom side of that trail) I havent been there for a month or so and cant wait to get back soooo much fun and what a hard ride. It def. takes some physical stamina. I have never been around the whole 31 miles in 1 trip. I have only done 24 miles.

  10. #10
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    Another great little singletrack section is as soon as you top the hill from the stilling basin (toward state hill). Take the immediate hard left to the water rd. parking lot. Single track along the Tulpehocken Creek. Some tight trees are growing in to clip the ends of bars but it is fast and really fun. Ride out water rd. a bit away from the creek but don't climb left to the water treatment plant, continue strait to the gate at the flood dike, climb left and reconnect with the main trail. This is really nice but VERY heavily traveled by hikers and dog walkers at popular times.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdrush
    Another great little singletrack section is as soon as you top the hill from the stilling basin (toward state hill). Take the immediate hard left to the water rd. parking lot. Single track along the Tulpehocken Creek. Some tight trees are growing in to clip the ends of bars but it is fast and really fun. Ride out water rd. a bit away from the creek but don't climb left to the water treatment plant, continue strait to the gate at the flood dike, climb left and reconnect with the main trail. This is really nice but VERY heavily traveled by hikers and dog walkers at popular times.
    Yeah, that's a fun but short section. I used to ride it at lunch time mid-week. It got too crowded for that time of day/week, with a lot of uncontrolled pets. Weekends are 10 times worse. It's OK if you ride it mid-week, on a rainy winter day. Otherwise, be prepared for trail conflicts.

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