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  1. #1
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    Santos next weekend?

    I'm considering my first trip up to Santos this weekend, I'm going to bring my wife and 7yo son with me. They are both very comfortable riding off road, we ride carter rd. and Alafia together quite a bit. They are good to go on the yellow/green trails, and they ride a lot of the easier blue trails at both parks. I did have them in a little over their heads on a new section of north creek at Alafia last weekend...oops, don't want to do that again. So what say you guys can they handle Santos? Any surprise blues that are extra difficult or scary we should avoid? Also I know it's a holiday weekend is it going to be crazy busy. Alafia gets busy but it's big enough that everybody's pretty spread out. We are hoping to stay in the national forest area, I've heard there are some cabins that are pretty cool to stay at, any suggestions? We won't ride all day, and we like to fish or it would be cool to have some low key trails near the cabin to ride, or hike. Any suggestions appreciated Thanks!!!

  2. #2
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    +1 on all this. I'm thinking of taking the GF out there next weekend. I've gone out there years ago and from what I remember, tons of easy riding and as far as the "technical" stuff, it's well marked. AKA Vortex. It's awesome! I know when I was out there years ago, we camped for the night at the park. Worked out beautifully!

  3. #3
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    Blues will be fine. Only the reds have the surprises that make you piss your pants.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the info guys, good to know. Now if I can find a bike friendly hotel/motel/cabin I'll be all set. I don't want to leave them chained to my bike rack on the car overnight. We like to camp, but it is going to be a little chilly this weekend. If it was a guy trip we'd man up, but with the wife and kiddo no can do. Any suggestions?

    I see there is a trail in the national forest too "paisley woods trail" is that worth doing. We like to do scenic rides with some wildlife viewing in addition to fun flowy stuff, as a change of pace.

  5. #5
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    Santos next weekend?

    Scott, I'm heading there this weekend. Gf and I are driving up Saturday morning and riding both days. We are staying at the Hampton inn just south of the trails at i75. They quoted $104 per night or if you're a pilot, $88. As for bikes, we are not sure how they'll handle that. I think we will just request first floor and bring our bikes inside. Or maybe there will be other riders there and "power in numbers" lock them up in the lobby.


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  6. #6
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    Silver River Campground supposedly has some nice cabins for rent. It's probably 30 min from the Santos TH but there is quite a bit to do around there. Sounds like your wife and son should be fine on all the yellow and blue trails. We (OMBA) have added a lot of new wooden features around the vortex. Hopefully you can check some of that out while your there. You can see some pics and vids of the new stuff here:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/OcalaMtBikeAssn/

  7. #7
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    Sleep inn on 484, exit 341. Grab a roomsaver coupon book or print this. Clean, good grub within walking distance, free breakfast. I've stayed there many times.

    Sleep Inn Ocala Discount Rooms and Rates | HotelCoupons.com

  8. #8
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    Santos next weekend?

    Awesome! So that's walking distance to the trails? Are they bike friendly?


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  9. #9
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    No. It's about 15 min from the main trailhead. I've always made sure my bike was fairly clean and they have never had a issue. I also use the side door when possible just to avoid the lobby. Sonnys BBQ and Cracker Barrel are right there.

  10. #10
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    Perfect I think that is where we'll stay then, looked into a few cabins but silver river was booked (looks like a beautiful place though, on my radar for next time.) Talked to the guys over at Santos Bike shop, and they said the quality inn on sr200 does discounts if you mention their shop, so it will be one or the other. Thanks a bunch to all who posted with info, definitely feel better having some forehand knowledge, can't wait to try out some different trails!! Syco we'll be in a blue Camry, I ride a matte black Marin XC7 29FS with the wife and kiddo in tow,if you see us out there say hey.
    Last edited by XCScott; 01-15-2014 at 08:38 AM. Reason: spelling

  11. #11
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    Santos next weekend?

    Sweet. I'll be in a red Acura. White trek fuel and her bike is white. Hope to see ya!


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  12. #12
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    buddy and I are thinking about making the trip this wkend also. We're from the Myrtle Beach SC area. I really wish I had started riding when I was attending UF, such a shame that I was so close and never rode it

  13. #13
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    When were you at UF choeman? I graduated in 99 exercise and sports science. Funny I was thinking the same thing, but I think santos was just called the barge canal back then. Although there were some great trails in GVille back then, I still have memories of the power lines trail system, would love to ride there again but from what I here it is long gone...loved the trail we called the kudzu trail, but there were no maps or trail markers you just had to explore and find stuff. I remember a particularly wet winter we had to ride thru waist deep water in places to get to a lot of the trails...good times!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by XCScott View Post
    When were you at UF choeman? I graduated in 99 exercise and sports science. Funny I was thinking the same thing, but I think santos was just called the barge canal back then. Although there were some great trails in GVille back then, I still have memories of the power lines trail system, would love to ride there again but from what I here it is long gone...loved the trail we called the kudzu trail, but there were no maps or trail markers you just had to explore and find stuff. I remember a particularly wet winter we had to ride thru waist deep water in places to get to a lot of the trails...good times!
    I hear powerlines is still there if you're willing to risk running into the owner and his shotgun.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by XCScott View Post
    When were you at UF choeman? I graduated in 99 exercise and sports science. Funny I was thinking the same thing, but I think santos was just called the barge canal back then. Although there were some great trails in GVille back then, I still have memories of the power lines trail system, would love to ride there again but from what I here it is long gone...loved the trail we called the kudzu trail, but there were no maps or trail markers you just had to explore and find stuff. I remember a particularly wet winter we had to ride thru waist deep water in places to get to a lot of the trails...good times!
    from 98-02. Haven't decided definite as we're still debating. These are the choices as of right now, A. Santos B. Warrior Creek and Rocky Knob C. Tsali D. Dupont State Forest. Might be a little warmer in FL this wkend compared to NC, just not looking forward to the drive. we'll decide tonight.

  16. #16
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    well we're planning on leaving tonight but the sleep inn will not honor the coupon listed above unless we actually use it as a walk in. Hopefully we'll be alright as far as room availability. Either way, we'll be riding tomorrow so that's all that really matters. Look for the SC plates

  17. #17
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    Santos next weekend?

    Yeah I called too. She said (as of yesterday) that they have 60+ rooms Saturday night. We are just walking in tomorrow. If that fails, Hampton inn. But use the coupon, $105 otherwise!


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  18. #18
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    Santos next weekend?

    Just checked into the hotel. They'll try to charge you more because of the holiday. Just say no. We paid $74


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  19. #19
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    Cool we are on the way up right now. stopped by the office to print the coupon!

  20. #20
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    Santos next weekend?

    I didn't even bother. I had it on my phone but she didn't even ask.


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  21. #21
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    got in no problems. 3rd floor party, j/k. we're beat after 50 miles, hoping to have something left for tomorrow before we head back. take care everyone

  22. #22
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    Santos next weekend?

    Nice! First floor so we could bring our bikes in! The wx tomorrow is looking showery in the afternoon. :-(


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  23. #23
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    We're on the third floor too, lady told us to put our bikes in the elevator no problem. Had to turn on the charm a little to get the discount :-) 50 miles...yikes we did like 13, and I'm beat. Didn't get up here till like 2:30 though. Rain tomorrow = not cool!!!

  24. #24
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    Got a riding weekend planned to hit Santos for a weekend 2/8. Last time we did Santos > Landbridge and back put in 30ish miles on the first day. This time we'll ride everything on the other side. Hoping it will be just a touch warmer a weekend then!

  25. #25
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    Santos next weekend?

    Yeah we did the land ridge section yesterday. Today is vortex. :-)


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