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  1. #1
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    What's the consensus opinion on the new Sovereigh singletrack sections

    I tried out some of it about a month ago and it was still really unpacked down. It seemed to be tortuously routed, seemingly not as much flow as the original trail, but I'd already done the main trail out and back and was kind of tired. Any opinions from the locals?
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  2. #2
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    Maybe it's not fair for me to reply, but here's the trail-builder's perspective...

    Ride with Respect spent a couple thousand hours constructing the new sections. There are inherent trade-offs in making it safe, sustainable, and satisfying for the intermediate/advanced bicyclist or motorcyclist.

    Unpacked: The trail is hardening somewhat, so pray for a few gentle rains. On the south (Willow Spring) side, there's a sand hill we couldn't avoid. Our nonprofit had a quarter-mile corridor to build Saltwash Singletrack. So some sand and steep stuff was simply compulsory (says Sylvester the cat).

    Torturous: The trail is developing a little more flow through berms and such. But we routed it with lots of little ups and downs to keep things interesting and tight. With less slickrock than the original Sovereign Singletrack, Saltwash will always have more rolling resistance. But we honestly tried to make things pedal-compatible.

    Conclusion: Saltwash provides a more technical experience, while Sovereign allows riders to generate more speed. If you want to recommend the traditional route to people, just tell them Sovereign plus links 4 and 5. But if you like a bunch of obstacles packed into a short trail, I'll see you on Saltwash.

    Either way, our nonprofit can only conserve the trail system with your help. So please join our volunteer crew (http://www.ridewithrespect.org/field64.php) or consider a donation.

    Sufferin' succotash, could someone provide a less-biased review?

  3. #3
    Mojo0115
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    It grew on me as I rode it. Initially the sand had me thinking "why would I ever ride this again?" But further into the trail I started thinking "this is a really nice alternative to the crowds on Sovereign proper".

    At this stage I can easily see regularly joining it part way along (probably in the slick rock creek bed) and riding it all the way out and then coming back along Sovereign.

    From this riders perspective to the trail builders - nice job! and thanks for the efforts, I enjoyed the fruits of your sweat and tears. I am torn on whether to drive over from Denver to assist on 5/10 or just make a donation to the amount of the gas I would have used for the drive.

  4. #4
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    Sean- I appreciate the encouragement. Your blog link is very informative. I hope the volunteer crew is a good excuse to spend a weekend in Moab. If you happen to own a Hummer, then stay home and send a donation. I'm not so conscientious about the vehicle emissions. But based on the gasoline savings of leaving the rig parked, your donation would be nearly two hundred bucks! -Dirty Greedy Guy

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by land lover
    Maybe it's not fair for me to reply, but here's the trail-builder's perspective...

    Ride with Respect spent a couple thousand hours constructing the new sections. There are inherent trade-offs in making it safe, sustainable, and satisfying for the intermediate/advanced bicyclist or motorcyclist.

    Unpacked: The trail is hardening somewhat, so pray for a few gentle rains. On the south (Willow Spring) side, there's a sand hill we couldn't avoid. Our nonprofit had a quarter-mile corridor to build Saltwash Singletrack. So some sand and steep stuff was simply compulsory (says Sylvester the cat).

    Torturous: The trail is developing a little more flow through berms and such. But we routed it with lots of little ups and downs to keep things interesting and tight. With less slickrock than the original Sovereign Singletrack, Saltwash will always have more rolling resistance. But we honestly tried to make things pedal-compatible.

    Conclusion: Saltwash provides a more technical experience, while Sovereign allows riders to generate more speed. If you want to recommend the traditional route to people, just tell them Sovereign plus links 4 and 5. But if you like a bunch of obstacles packed into a short trail, I'll see you on Saltwash.

    Either way, our nonprofit can only conserve the trail system with your help. So please join our volunteer crew (http://www.ridewithrespect.org/field64.php) or consider a donation.

    Sufferin' succotash, could someone provide a less-biased review?
    Wow a couple thousand hours that is a lot of time to build a trail.

    How much money was spent actually building those new sections? Who actually moved the most dirt and rocks on the project? I want to buy that person a beer or two or three.

    One thing cool about a mountain biking trail is that if the trail is really great it won't take long for it to become popular. Mountain bikers know what they like and they will usually give a trail one chance to prove itself.

    If the routing is cool and the surface is too soft they may give it a second chance when they hear the surface has firmed up. It doesn't matter how many thousands of hours were invested in building it, Some trails can take 85 hours to build and thousands will ride it every year because the terrain, trail surface, routing and scenery are unique.

    Hazard County is a good example of a really well routed trail with great scenery and terrain, but the trail surface sucks right now so people aren't riding it. Many riders want to come to Moab to ride that trail and the rest that go with it, but they are going other places instead.

    Hopefully the time invested in the new Soverign sections will bring thousands of new and previous riders to Moab to test it out and continue riding it in the future, time will tell pretty quickly.

    Please keep us updated on how people are liking it, Has anyone done an online video of it for viewing purposes? If so, please post the links.

    Moab certainly needs a lot of new trails to keep people coming. With gas prices going through the roof, trails better be great, or else people are going to go to a place that is closer to where they live.
    .

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the replies

    I knew the trailbuilders had to pick from what was left over to route their new sections. The first trail took up most of the sweet flowy slickrock. It's like Saltwash and Sovereign are two completely different trail systems, each with a different purpose.

    I could appreciate the effort put into constructing a new trail, so congratulations on a job well done. Next time I go there I'll just ride Saltwash exclusively and not do any comparisons.
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  7. #7
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    There was a lot that was unridable (steep ups + very loose soils) Our group had planed to make a loop of if, but bailed via the connectors back to the main trail. Moisture and traffic will help, but until it beds in, I think the motos are making those soft steeps a mess.

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