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  1. #1
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    Harborcreek, PA / Highmeyer Park

    Anyone live in / near Harborcreek? Just wondering cause I can bike to Highmeyer Park from my house for a nice 6 mile loop + a few more miles of trails thru the park. The trail has some potential, but needs cleaned up a little. Every time I go out there I seem to take a different path and get lost for a little until I check the GPS to get back or run into a creek and follow the ridge. There is LOTS of poison ivy all along the trail though! Some areas are mudpits, due to quad / dirt bikes (haven't actually seen any out there, but is a hefty fine for anyone caught riding them out there). Some nice log hops too. A few huge down trees have made mando detours thru the brush / poison ivy. Most of it is pretty flat, but when you get towards the creeks, there are some nice downhills and hill climbs. It's pretty dry now, but not a good place during the wet season. Also are tons of mosquitoes when it's wet!!

    For anyone interested, I could meet out there and show you around or maybe you could show me around more of the unexplored areas.

    Anyone else ever been out there?

  2. #2
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    Whoa...never heard of Highmeyer park...where is it? Sounds like it has potential. I live in North East and can't believe how few places there are to ride around here.

  3. #3
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    It's on Highmeyer Road, but actually called Erie County Park.

    I have been there before when I lived in the area, we used to ride our ATV's there from North East. Matter of fact there was someone killed on an ATV their not long ago. Unless it has changed, the ATV's had tore it up pretty bad.

  4. #4
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    I also live in Harborcreek (Villa sites road just west of Troupe)... I've been out to Highmeyer a few times but was always disappointed in the trail conditions (and have gotten "lost" a time or two). Haven't been there in the last couple years though...

    A couple years ago there was some talk that the township was going to clean it up but that obviously never happened!

    I just rode past there this past weekend on my roadie and was wondering if it was still as tore up as I remember...

    -Josh

  5. #5
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    Sept 15 @ 7PM

    I also noticed that there wasn't any trails in the area and started exploring by my house. I saw the park sign and noticed there wasn't any pavilions or anything there and wondered if there could be any trails. They cut a grass trail back in the clearing, but that's about as far as they go. The trails continue back in the woods past the thick brush and you more than likely will get lost back there due to the trees down and many mudpits from quads that could make you a muddy mess. I always take a GPS and have a route plotted, but even then I find myself in the woods off the trail and in the poison ivy undergrowth.

    I checked the Harborcreek website and see that it is listed. There was a sign on Highmeyer Road ~ 1/2 mile south of Rt 5 that said Highmeyer Park, but was gone last weekend when I went riding there.

    I inquired to the township about a possibility of me doing some clearing of the trail and some trail maintenance. I'd like to attend this meeting Sept 15 at 7PM, with a rough proposal and talk to the township to let them know I'd be willing to put in some work out there. Maybe they will even lend a hand or provide some workers? Would anyone else be interested in helping out? I could meet up with anyone for a ride and we could do some scouting before the meeting if anyone else wants. I can be out there any weeknight or weekend day, except this weekend.

    Here's the response:

    Good Morning Jason,

    Thank you for your inquiry about our parks. We do allow hunting in all the public township parks except for Shades Beach Park and only during hunting season. However, we do not allow for the public to go into the parks for just shooting purposes. If you do happen to see that you could either call us or the Game Commissioner to report this. I would like to welcome you to attend a Parks Board Meeting to discuss the project of trail maintenance. If you are interested the Parks Board meets every 3rd Monday of the month at 7pm, here at the Township Building. You may want to present a proposal for this project as well. Let me know if you are interested, the Parks Board and the Township would be happy to hear from you.

    If there is anything else that I can help you with, please let me know.

    Sincerely,
    Connie Cruz
    Parks Project Coordinator
    HARBORCREEK TOWNSHIP
    814-899-3171


    Yes it is still tore up, but a fun little trail ~2-3 mile loop + more if you want to explore. Not something to be doing time trials on, but somewhere close to have some fun biking. I've never seen anyone out there, but have seen and picked up many shell casings around and been advised that hunting is permitted!! So be careful!!

    By the way... Shades also has a couple short trails and many more could be made with some clearing.

  6. #6
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    wonder if it would lend more cred to have a bike shop kinda back this up? i'm talking about when you go to the twp meeting. if a local business supported the idea of specific mtb trails they might give it more consideration. not sure if there's a bike shop in harborcreek or not...but there's the one in north east (moslty roadies tho).

    i think it would be sweet if there was someplace local to ride and would be happy to help....but there has to be some commitment (from the twp) that they'd support keeping the 4 wheel yahoo's off it...they can ruin a trail fast.

    FWIW, I bet one could fit many miles of trails in there. one of the best places I have ridden ("Tech Trails" in Houghton MI) has a system of trails which weaves back and forth and you can ride for hours on what's probably only 2-300 acres.

  7. #7
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    If you know someone from a bike shop, then by all means I'd be all for it and lend a hand to them if they'd want to sponsor it / spearhead the effort. I don't know anybody in that business, nor do I think Erie is a big MTB city. That should be seen by the lack of volunteers to help do a little cleanup at the best (only?) MTB trails in the Erie area, Asbury Woods. (Thanks again to Poormtnbkr for doing that for everybody that 'wanted' to go, but didn't. I am one of those, but had vehicle troubles and couldn't bike the 20 miles there and 20 miles back in one night. I did go out and haul out a bag of trash on Monday night along the creek)

    You might have a different idea than what I'm thinking. I just want to clear some trees that fell over and do some work on the mud pits or reroute the trail around a few areas. I just want to be able to go out there and be able to bike without having to go off trail around obstacles and through the brush. Being able to follow a trail would be nice also without getting lost and having to bike thru jagger bushes / poison ivy just to try to find the trail again. If you've been there, yinz will see what I mean, n'at. It's in a small local township park that has nothing but a field and acres of woods, I'd guess about 300 acres, with 90% wooded and not used for anything now. There are signs at the entrance and wire fence with many signs posted that ATV's are not allowed and has the posted fine on them. The trails are mostly quad trails and believe neighboring propertys across the creeks have quad trails that they may "inadvertantly" enter into the township park when they cross the creek. If they want to add signs along the property border, that's up to them, but believe they will just get torn down anyways. The main reason to go to the meeting is to get their blessing and to let them know that I will be in the park doing some work. I don't want to be in there and have someone tell me I'm not allowed. They might tell me to leave it as it is and not to ride back there, which I doubt, but just want to let them know that the property has potential with minimal work. I'd even highly support a Disc Golf course back there, which Erie really needs, but don't know anybody in the area that would help me get it started, nor would I think the township would approve without my fellow disc golfers from pittsburgh... let me know if you play or would like to learn.

  8. #8
    poormtnbkr
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    More than interested.

    I totally agree that we need a disc golf gourse in Erie, and I know a good guy who might be interested in putting some effort into that as well. I would love to help maintain some more trails around town and i do happen to know some people in the bike biz. I have actually never ridden at the Highmeyer but it sounds like i want scout it out and try to offer some good feedback. If we come on strong and organized in the beginning it would be great to get official recognition. I think if we keep drumming up ideas on here and with some other sources we could be in preliminary stages of some kind of Fat tire political organization in Erie. Its not a mountain biking town in anyway like a Whistler or Moab is but there are people who ride here and I think the number is growing for the first time in a few years. It might just be the right time to organize and expand oppurtunities for riders.

    6-mile Creek???? Don't be scared.
    Keep Your Scene Tight!
    Grow your trails long not wide.

  9. #9
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    evening / weekend ride?

    Anybody up for an evening ride this week? Or maybe a group ride this weekend? I'd like to try to get some input from others or know if I'm all alone in cleaning up the trail and going to the township meeting to let them know what I plan to do. I have several GPS tracks of the trail if anyone is interested. I might even take out my disc golf basket and throw out in the field this weekend.

    I haven't made it out to the Overland trail yet. Might possibly head out there this weekend to check it out.

  10. #10
    poormtnbkr
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    Evening ride sounds good.

    Tomorrow or Wednesday would be great for me. Let me know what times or days you had in mind. I have my own tools and just enough skill in their use to be dangerous, so if these trails have potential i hope to be a good contributor. Maybe ill see you this week jra.
    Keep Your Scene Tight!
    Grow your trails long not wide.

  11. #11
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    I can be there around 6, maybe a little earlier?? Tues is not good for me. Wed to Sun should be good.

    No need to bring tools yet. You may hate the trail and never want to come back

    I might do a short ride out there tonight also.

  12. #12
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    6:00 Wednesday sounds great!

    Now, how the hell do I get there?
    Keep Your Scene Tight!
    Grow your trails long not wide.

  13. #13
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    HAHAHA 560 Highmeyer Rd 16421 go to googlemaps and type it in.

    Just to the West is a U shaped gravel rd. The fields are surrounded by wire cable fence and at the end is a break where you will see the No ATV signs and a gap in the fence where the trail leads back into the woods.

    I will be there around 6 PM Wed.

    jay

  14. #14
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    6PM tonight

    For anyone looking to get out on a ride tonight, we'll be there at 6PM in the parking lot.

  15. #15
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    So how did it go? Did you guys do the ride? Unfortunately, I don't check in to MTBR every day so I missed it, but we were out of town for a few days last week anyway...

    -Josh

  16. #16
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    Meeting today

    Poormtnbkr and I rode out there last week. He is willing to help me out with the work. I am going to the Township Parks meeting tonight with a proposal and to talk to them about what we plan to do and get their blessing. If interested in going, it's at 7PM tonight. I'll update everyone of their response.

  17. #17
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    Ride On!

    The Township gave me the approval to do the trail maintenance. Only stipulation is NO CHAINSAWS, nor any motorized vehicles / equipment. Due to hunting being allowed in the park, I may be out there during the next couple weeks, but don't plan on being there from Oct thru end Dec. If you see other vehicles in the parking lot during these times, beware there may be hunters out there.

    Since this is looking to be a nice weekend, I may be out there doing some work and more exploring. Also looking to do some other trail riding.... Overland &/or 6 mile. If anybody is looking to go riding anywhere or help out with the trail, let me know.

  18. #18
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    Awesome! Although I won't be able to join you this weekend because my parents will be up to visit the grandkids and we're going to the cleveland zoo Saturday !

    Keep us posted on when you plan on being out there to do some work... I can't promise I'll be there, but I'd like to help out as much as I can!

    -Josh

  19. #19
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    Hey all I know I haven't voice anything in the fourm before or on this subject but I just found this thread. Poormtnbkr I believe that you may have been hinting to on to this idea? anyway I believe it truly is a great time to get a small MT bike club together even if its just a couple of guys that go out once a month to do some clean up on local trails. If we get a small club or an organization together and go to a township meeting with a proposal maybe some gps locations I think we would have a little more swing. once we have a project done as a group we could go to other townships as well. I'm just throwing this idea out we all have the same idea to get more MT bike trails in Erie and I truly believe there is a lot of potential as well. Erie is just a big hill going down to the lake there are lots of creeks to ride along with rough trails that fisherman use every day! I don't see how if we all work and think together why we couldn't get something done?

    oh and there are a lot of us Disc Golfer's in Erie too!
    frontier park would be a great place to have a Disc Golf course. jra146psu you said you had a basket and a good gps? my friend and I once made a dice golf course with a pen, paper, portable basket, a local park and a vision!! lol any way take your basket and a gps and just plot out a course. play it once or twice, over lap your gps points with a google map of the park and bam a nice and professional proposal and I would have no problem going to a town meeting and backing that!! nor would I think any one on here would..

  20. #20
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    The ball is rolling

    So let's see some support at Highmeyer! This is a great starting block for everyone to come out and get a group together to show the region that trails are needed. We (I) already have the approval to clean up the (existing) trails. They are quad trails, but the township doesn't want any ATV's in the park. So, with some work, we could convert it to singletrack, which would really make the township happy to discourage ATV riding there. There are only a couple areas that new trails need cut to avoid large downed trees and mudpits. The township has the parks meetings every 3rd monday of each month. They want me (hopefully "US") to report back to them on how things are going. It would be great to get an organized group of people together to show interest. Most people just want to ride and very few like to help do the work. (I've seen, first hand, the same go for designing / building / maintaining Disc Golf Courses in pittsburgh. Everyone has time to play, but very few have the time to do any of work.)

    If there are disc golfers in Erie, we should meet up at Duck Run (or Moraine if you're up for playing a great new course) and play a couple rounds out there to talk about the future of disc golf and mountain biking in Erie! As for Frontier, not sure there is enough land for a good course there. As a general guide, 1-2 acres minimum is needed per hole. We already have a small (putt putt) course at Duck Run and a new course would need to be a little more challenging. The places I see that would be perfect are the Erie Bluffs and 6 Mile Creek Park. Also, Behrend has a ton of land that probably would be the best place to get help from students that could help build, maintain and enjoy playing often.

    So, anyone that wants to come help out at Highmeyer, needs help somewhere else, ride anywhere or play some disc golf, let me know. If not, I'll let everybody know when things are done and yinz can enjoy what others have done for you.

  21. #21
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    Jra146psu, when would you like to meet up? I have never been to the park you talk about but I'm all game lets set up a date for everyone to see. once we do set a date I believe it would be smart to put a sign up the day before letting hunters know when we will be doing work. first for are safety and second are safety!!!! you also said you had some gps tracks if so I would love to see them. Just to let you know I work 3rds, my weekends are normally open but I may work a Friday night here or there. with that said I really would like to see what you have in mind for these trails. in other words when would you like to ride maybe poormtb you can join in as well all three of us should come up with something?
    Last edited by jeeptree; 09-30-2008 at 06:19 AM.

  22. #22
    poormtnbkr
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    Good job! When do we get to work?

    I was actually out in the park this past saturday and sunday. I cleared alot of fallen debris and tried to get the beginings of singletrack implied on the trails. Basically opening up more obvious but narrower right of ways. I am trying to clutter any mudholes with off camber logs and lots of debris to discourage further trail destruction by ATVs.

    Starting at the high ridge along the creek in back I started to mark off what I think would be a good beginner trail in orange that could eventually loop around the entire property on the high ground. Tonight I am going to pick up some green marking ribbon to start marking a second loop stemming off of the orange loop. This could be considered an intermediate loop using more of the quick ups and downs along the creek. I actually got down into a beautiful fern grown area along the creek at what seems to be the extreme back of the property. I did not start clearing anything here just followed an old trail till it stopped and then trudged on to see where I could connect back to the "orange" trail.

    We all need to try and get together and brainstorm because the potential seems even better than I originaly thought. We could have a nice little gem here with some planning and hard labor.

    I think some NO ATV signs would be a good addition. Either from the township or from a little collection by interested riders.
    Keep Your Scene Tight!
    Grow your trails long not wide.

  23. #23
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    Cool!

    I was out there last week and cleared some debris from the 'short' crosscut loop. The short trail still needs some more defining. Also a new trail is needed to stay in the woods and off of the grapevine field property. I know there is a trail already to bypass, but need to explore a little to find it again (think you need to go thru the overgrown field and make a right before entering the woods). Maybe block off the ATV trails going into and coming from the field? Those are the 2 areas that think we should get done first to have a short trail completed soon to let the park board know (and see) that we are committed to doing this.

    I have a hockey game tonight and can't make it out there tonight, but any other night this week I could be out there. I will be out of town this weekend and next. Looks like rain all week and the trail will get a little muddy.

    If we talked to the township / game commision, they probably would provide us with more NO ATV signs to put up at the rear of the property. The only current signs are at the beginning of the parking lot with the wire fence to prevent them from entering. We could also construct some ATV barriers at the back, but they will just go around thru the brush as they have done already in the mud sections and downed trees. I haven't noticed any recent ATV tracks in the front of the park, but at the back, they are numerous... mostly the cliff and creek areas.

    I will get the tracks off my GPS and forward along to you.

    Let me know, or poormtnbkr, when you could be out there and we can show you around. We should schedule a day to all be out there to look at what's needed and the overall picture. The earliest I can be out there M-F is about 6PM, which leaves limited daylight.

    poormtnbkr... you know there is a trail that stays along the top of the cliffs? I know it is tempting to jump down into the downhills, but if you just stay on top and follow the ridge, the trail continues around.

  24. #24
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    Im diggin this!

    well like iv said before I work 3rd witch kinda mess with me get alot done.
    any way If I know some one will be there I have no problem getting there by 3 - 330 ish I would be happy to stay till 630 ish that is plenty enough time to get a feel for the tracks and maybe jump in on some of the work! during sat Im sure I can get some people to help out as well. I have talked to alot of people on the asbury trails that are asking for more places to ride! I think Im gona try to ride there some more as well and bring a pen and paper so I can get there emails. maybe just maybe we can get this really going. but for know Id like to start by riding it myself and get a feel for what we can do here.

    Scott

  25. #25
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    well I don't have to work this Friday night.. if any one wants to head out and do some riding this weekend Im all game I will probably head out Friday and sat to this new park and check it out please pm me or email me, emails go strait to my phone so I will reply faster to an email the pm. jeeptree@hotmail.com

    -Scott

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