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  1. #26
    Reputation: GatorB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    I guess its where your trail is. Down here in Florida we actually bring more leaves into the trail. We layer the leaves with sand and compact to make soil. The leaves hold in moisture and keep the trail from turning into sugar sand. I lay awake in bed at night dreaming of clay based soil problems.
    14' Vassago VerHauen

  2. #27
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Quote Originally Posted by gmcttr View Post
    This post perfectly sums up my beliefs for the conditions stated.

    On our heavily used 25 mile + trail system built in a state park, most of the leaves get pushed aside by traffic and we unclog drains as required. A price is paid for continual freeze thaw cycles and the resulting "peanut butter" on the southern slopes throughout winter.

    At a nearby privately owned trail system where the traffic is low and the leaf cover stays all winter, the ground stays frozen and those in the know can ride more frequently without freeze/thaw problems.

    On my small personal trails, I intentionally re-cover any areas that lose their leaf cover and I rarely have a thaw unless it really warms up.
    I was thinkng the same thing..Im in Ohio...and Mohican is the only hilly ride gets alot of use...the state park that is...I dont think they blow the leaves but they do displace from use...and it gets thawed way more than the really fun one around the corner that only a handfull of folks even ride anymore...gotta remove alot of prickers..but never removed leaves.....and its the best riding around, year round....could be part of the reason....
    great debate though...for heavily used areas that will definately have begginers, i would think the safety and fun part would override the other reasons, especially since those folks wont know about the freeze/thaw cycles....the reast of us ride in it all, we just know where to go to ride when all the others are soft and stickey.

  3. #28
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Maday's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    In the Pacific Northwest we have plenty of organic and plenty of water. I've noticed that trails void of organic material, which are built on solid mineral soil tend to fair better when it is wet. The trails that aren't down to mineral soil are the "muckiest" and tend to stay wet longer. Wet trails covered in maple leaves are very difficult to navigate. The front tire slides/hydroplanes on the leaves, and makes cornering impossible under speed. When the trails are dry in the summer there isn't much of a difference.

    Since, one trail user says that leaves protect the trail and sheet water off the trail I'm leaving a trial section with leaves. However, from what I've seen so far "proper" trail maintenance is better. I may be wrong in the long term. So, I figure it is worth testing.
    - Be Someone

  4. #29
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Here is why not to: Fair Hill leaf blowing - YouTube
    The price for a few weeks of fast, leafless mountain bike riding in the fall is about 4 months of poor walking or riding conditions and significant trail degradation throughout the winter and early spring

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