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  1. #1
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    Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?

    Just a thought after riding Paradise today.

    Recently re-titled for better Flow
    Last edited by wipp; 05-14-2013 at 11:36 AM. Reason: spl chuk

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    Hehehe. I like the can o' WTF this will open.....

    (Some people consider PVCA "really technical"....)

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    Was PVCA some place trials riders used to go? Seen a few riders at the little trials section at Colonnade before, never seen guys doing trials stuff at PVCA though.
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    Not thinking so much of modified hopping trials but the old school rolling trials skills that you need to ride more primitive or rough trails, or Anti-Flow.

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    Gasp! People did such a thing once? On purpose?!?!?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Borneo View Post
    ...I like the can o' WTF this will open...
    I like the term "can o' WTF"

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wipp View Post
    Just a thought after riding Paradise today.
    I'm confused. Do you consider PVCA to be flow or trials? And who died?

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    PVCA was more techy and is trending flowy with the improvements. Not thinking about PVCA strictly, just about the trend towards flow in general and mourning the loss of some good tech

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    If it makes you feel better. I can get some good "flow" on out at Doofie on Cuss Hollow.... Others, not so much....

    Problem stems from the general consensus now that the much aspired to "flow" means no pedaling or hardly any at all and no obstacles in any way impairing such search of the elusive "flow". And, that you can't actually have any fun on your bike without it.

    As for PVCA, Woodway and I talk often about this subject and the tradeoff from sustainability to tech. Typically, the more heavily used a trail, the more dumbed down it will appear for sustainability. Otherwise, as many of us have seen, ride arounds grow and grow so you end up with a 12' wide trail like Preston of just a few years ago. The South end of Two Trees in the "Mirkwood" section is a good case in point. Some love it "as-is" and many avoid it like the plague...
    Ask Westra or anyone else who works with trying to incorporate some challenge with "flow=fun" mentalities. It's really tough.

  10. #10
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    Personally, I love XC, pseudo DH/AM and flowy stuff...... I kind of like stunts/bridges/woodwork. I dislike anything that gets me off the ground, ala jump lines. Mostly, it's because I rode the former as a beginner and adapted skillsets from it. To me, I can dig on watching all the jump lines and trials stuff, but that's I will ever do: watch it. Honestly, it's for a very strongly skilled (or young) few... mostly those that grew up on it, or don't mind the broken bones aspect of "getting better" at it. Either way, it's such a small percentage of what most people seem to do, that I could see it being more of a fad that's fallen away and back to the way that fits the other 80/90%.

    Granted, that's all coming from a wuss.
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

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    That's what jumps are for!

    In all seriousness, I think it's just different strokes for different folks. I never understood the appeal of obstacles for obstacles sake. Log piles and root sections are fun for about 2 seconds, then I just feel like they are getting in the way. I like biking because of the motion, and the feel of even moderate speed in the woods and natural terrain.

    I've always been attracted to that sort of motion though, even in other sports. I greatly prefer skating bowls or half pipe versus the technical stuff on street for instance. Likewise when boarding I'll take fast groomers over jibbing rails and stumps.

    Different feelings and challenges exite us all in different ways in any sport I guess. We should be lucky there's such a good mix of it all where we live. Every time I read people lamenting anything to do with trails out here (even just to promote a fun discussion), I can't help but think of what I was stuck riding in the Midwest and chuckling a little bit though.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by wipp View Post
    PVCA was more techy and is trending flowy with the improvements. Not thinking about PVCA strictly, just about the trend towards flow in general and mourning the loss of some good tech
    OK, understand. It was not our intention to make PVCA more flowy, but in the process of making the trails more sustainable we had to "smooth things out" a bit. My belief is that over time the tech will return. In fact you can see this happening on the Lloyd trail which we repaired over the 2011-2012 winter and is now starting to "tech up" a bit more. That's if we can keep the trail "helpers" from doing their thing and dumbing down the more tech spots (I'm now thinking signs). We don't want PVCA to turn into another Duthie for sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwestra2 View Post
    I like the term "can o' WTF"
    I don't like anything else Borneo says.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwestra2 View Post
    I don't like anything else Borneo says.
    Ha!
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

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    I'm not against peddle free Flow- the new Summit Trail at Tiger is world class stuff and should be the working definition of DAMN GOOD FLOW! The fact that it dumps into Preston which can be a high speed tech fest (although somewhat tamer now) makes it even sweeter. And I'm not sure if you'd call Crazy Ivan Flow, but that and OMDH are both smile makers for me two or three times a week. Not so much for Midtown for some reason.

    I just hope that the Flow gnomes steer clear of classic lowland tech trails like Two Trees. Save Two Trees!!!

    As for those silly log piles at BFH... campfire anyone?

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    I'll gladly bring the marshmallows
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    Rode PVCA with wipp today, and seeing the newly half-buried 4" diameter log hop (I mean, does that even count as a hop?!?) on Lloyd has me fearing for what may come. Yes, save Two Trees! Soon I hope we'll have authorization to do some new stuff (by which I mean trail segments) at BFH; going to be scope for both flow and old-skool tech so I hope y'all will help design/build.

  18. #18
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    Re: Has Flow Killed Trials In the Pacific North West?

    If you want barely improved trails they are out there especially tolt. I consider this the kind of rugged "golf course" you are calling trials. Local knowledge always adds flow to anything you slog over until its muscle memory. Even 2x up ranger creek in 2 days!

    I rode a go-kart course on a busy all- American Friday eve a couple of weeks ago and they have crappy slow to power up motors and encourage elegant flowy lines. Brakes are overrated on carts, single speeds and 20niners. Keeping brakelessly rolling and not adding energy to accelerate out of braking I think this is at least 80% of the real flow people get Emily Dickinson about.

    I think we all appreciate anyone's trail efforts so every one keep building / tuning what you love. More miles please!

    Now real mt. bike trials (danny mckaskill or Hans rey)? Not for us mortals...

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    flow = no peddling???

    Really!!!

    Building trail in areas with soft soils as well as little grade makes building sustainable tread pretty damn difficult. Smoothing out the tread helps get water out of the ride-line which helps sustain that tread. Routing trail to lessen the need for riders to rapidly changes speed (i.e. hit the brakes) also helps sustain that tread. Using rollers and berms to create grade in the absence of such also helps sustain that tread.

    Yes flow allows one to ride faster than one could in heavier tech (gnarl) but it has more to do about sustainability than "dumbing down" a trail. At least in my opinion.

    I am getting a little tired of hearing about how Duthie has become the standard for "flow" in PNW.

    This is coming from one who personally "dumbed" down many of those trails at Duthie for over 2 years smoothing out the tread, rerouting to remove the need for heavy braking, and adding rollers and berms to create grade. I did it coz I just got tired of having to constantly repair the same portion of trail over and over again.

    The eastside of Duthie is a pretty bad building environment with high amounts of sand or clay and little grade to allow tread to naturally shed water (also the water table is pretty shallow in a couple of areas). The above mentioned techniques transformed trails from having to be repaired or completely rebuilt ever couple of months to something which could survive 1 or more seasons of riding given the level of activity Duthie experiences.

    Duthie should be regarded as a laboratory of lessons learned with the goal of sustainability in an environment with less than ideal building conditions, high trail usage, and a wide range of rider skill levels all concentrated on only 4.5 miles of trails.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by wipp View Post
    Just a thought after riding Paradise today.
    Don't get out much do you...
    Sometimes, you need to go fast enough that the trail is a blur to find clarity. -- Wild Bill

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    Quote Originally Posted by Len.Francies View Post
    I think we all appreciate anyone's trail efforts so every one keep building / tuning what you love. More miles please!
    Well said.
    We don''t need lass flow or trials, we need more flow, and trails!
    My favorite trails have both- like crazy Ivan, or cedar run at PV, or any of the peshastin trails.
    Steep tech to flowy woodwork & booters!

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    HAHAHA!!!!! Trials.... Trials is dead in the main stream places. It has been sacrificed in the name of sustainability. Logs, rocks, mud, have been demonized. It takes skill and muscle control to overcome an obstacle larger than a few inches. Broken frames and taco'ed wheels were the norm. That's why I had to learn wheel building and the wife welding. Trials bike now are bomb proof and fun!! It's the most fun you can have going slow!! It's out there but it's back to being underground, it has to to survive. When a trials trail is "discovered it gets destroyed by main stream trail builders. So trialers keep their trails kinda secret, I know I do...

  23. #23
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    Seriously this time... I don't know if flow killed trials. But I see way less trials riders then I used to. But flow definitely has not killed the quest for tech!

    I ask hundreds of riders: Why poach? What's missing from our legit trails? I hear one theme over and over again: flow *and* technical challenge while generally heading downhill. Think about hooking up these kinds of features and terrain so they ~seamlessly flow together (i.e. some coasting, some brake feathering, some pedaling, but no hard braking and hard accelerating).

    Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?-tech1.jpg

    Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?-tech2.jpg

    Click to make larger -- some great features in there.

    It's not jamming on the pedals to get over obstacles, but it's still a workout and requires bike handling skill.

    Of course it won't flow for beginners -- they'll have to stop before some, slow way down on some, ride around some, etc. But choose a technical skill level sweet spot that will be able to roll and flow everything and then design/build around that. More advanced riders will be able to take it faster, smoother, floating/flying over features, cornering better. It can be done. It IS and HAS been done all over the place...

    SST & GS at Galbraith. Flowy most of the way with lots of gnar, some berms, some pedaling, great use of elevation. But... I slow way down to roll the big rock chute while others make it a 6-7 ft drop and flow right through.

    I hear the old E Tiger Trail, Artifacts & Bootleg Poaches at Tiger , all have the steep gnarl to traverse to pedal up to next steep gnarly downhill that flows together. Gem, OR, SupNat, B-Line27, Schleyer, No Joke, Original Sin are all flowy and technical. OG DH, Crazy Ivan and MidTown have awesome natural features and trail segments that flow together well... and there's [gasp] pedaling, but once you're at a certain skill level, there's no hard braking and hard accelerating.

    Downieville Downhill, Kachess Ridge, Esmerelda DeRoux (DH ending), Wildcat at Green Mountain, UPS and LPS in Moab have great examples of awesome flow but still technical.

    Not to be confused with a style of trail referred to these days as "Flow Trails". All smooth, fast and dominated by banked turns and some kind of grade reversals (aka whoops, rollers, jumps). Examples: Whoops (Bend), CrankItUp (Whistler), Bootcamp (Duthie), Half Nelson (Squamish).

    IMHO, we could build some awesome tech with flow at Tiger. It comes with a lot of challenges, though...

    Work! It'll require a lot of hand building. Can't get a machine to do a lot of this. It's one of the reasons machine built trails tend to end up missing technical challenge.

    Sustainability! It's one thing to build a techy bootleg trail that gets limited use. But once the masses attack it, what's going to happen to it? Very well said JD! Thanks!

    Permission. What is the land manager going to allow us to build? That's actually the single biggest challenge these days.

    Gotta throw in some opinion... flow and tech are mutually exclusive. Many will never get that, but it's great to hear that many do. And it's great that many folks appreciate all of the different trail styles. Well said, Len! Non-flowy trails are still a blast, great work-out and great skill builders... I still hit Cuss Hollow when I do Movin'On, but calling it flowy is just silly. Finding flow in that is like looking at a bratwurst and calling it "art". It sure tastes good, but it's a stretch to say "art is where you find it".

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    I rode Cheech and Chong at Galbraith the other day. My first time after new recent work. Of course I am not allowed to complain, since I didn't help. But...

    What was chunky fun is now becoming a new "flowy" dirt jump line.

    They have their place, and fun, but everywhere?

    sigh...

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    Dangit Mike... What I meant about finding flow in Cuss is simply that. Riding the whole thing with uninterrupted flow as in seamlessly. Albeit very slowly. It's it "flowy"? Hell no... Goes back to the perception that you have to be moving at a good pace to "have flow"... Old school tech riders and even purist trials riders have "flow". No one can argue that. What I also think Mike is noting which I totally agree with is steep gnar "flow". Look up CBC on Utoob folks and you will see what HEAVY use plus world class building with available local materials will yield. Gnarb, and flow.... (There's your new trail name Mike.)

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    Only when I'm not out... much.

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    Is Ranger Creek clear to the top now? Definitely on my anti-flow favorites list. That and the bottom of Palisades. Much Plasma left on those rocks

  28. #28
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    i agree. technical features in trails are disappearing in the name of flow and 'sustainability'. its too bad. The question i have is what are we trying to sustain? I understand building trails to aid in drainage and prevent sediment build up.....but it seems people take sustainability to be trails so that dont change....ever..whats the fun in that?

  29. #29
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    All trails go through life cycles. Some get taken back by the forest. Some get logged. Some get re-routed and buffed.

    I also think that people who are building trail these days have evolved their riding and building techniques - whether that be Galby, the Shore, Tokul or wherever. For instance, when I scout a line these days, the last thing I think is "wow, we can make this blowdown into a log ride/skinny!" and that used to come to my mind when I was out bushwhacking 5+ years ago. Part of that change is the required ongoing maintenance, part of that is keeping a trail more innocuous for land managers and part of that is the way I enjoy riding these days with more speed on increased tech. OTOH, I do look for contours, natural grade reversals and features for controlling riders speed and to better milk the terrain.

    Call it sustainability or whatever, but I prefer to get a line put in that requires minimum maintenance these days. The less maintenance means the more new trails I will be putting in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by flyxaos View Post
    I rode Cheech and Chong at Galbraith the other day. My first time after new recent work. Of course I am not allowed to complain, since I didn't help. But...

    What was chunky fun is now becoming a new "flowy" dirt jump line.

    They have their place, and fun, but everywhere?

    sigh...
    There are still plenty of tech-trails all around Galbraith. SST has a nice mix of tech and flow, Three-Pigs have all been re-done and are very nice technical routes either up or down, The SH*T needed some work after this winter but is another option. There are just so many trails up there and a great eclectic group of trail builders who build a little something for everyone.

    Because it is a working forest, the landscape is always changing up there and the trail-system is constantly evolving. I believe a good chunk of Cheech-and-Chongs was a victim of the "working forest" a couple years back which is the primary reason it has changed, not because the trail builders are turning everything into a dirt jump line.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wipp View Post
    ...the bottom of Palisades. Much Plasma left on those rocks
    Ditto that! Those SBs are one of my all-time anti-flow favs as well. Almost died there once. Now, would I ever seek out, fund, design and build a new mtb trail like that? Heck no. One reason is that very few riders enjoy that kind of thing.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by opiate82 View Post
    Because it is a working forest, the landscape is always changing up there and the trail-system is constantly evolving. I believe a good chunk of Cheech-and-Chongs was a victim of the "working forest" a couple years back which is the primary reason it has changed, not because the trail builders are turning everything into a dirt jump line.
    Yep, like a lot of the hill, CCWR zone was harvested last spring and rebuilt last summer - which did involve some extra buffing and removing some of the broken/rotting woodwork. It had a trailday last Sunday and, I believe, got some more buffing as well - which I'm guessing flyxaos is referring to. I've not seen the latest work, but similar to PT, The Sh!t and Eagle Scout, that trail has been needing another pass after the timber harvest.

    Trails like A Dog, SST or Oriental Express (even CCWR) can be ridden by anyone and certainly aren't gnarly, but get more techie as you begin to carry speed, double up sections, huck the rock rolls, etc. Even with added jumps or berms, I feel like those trails will retain a level of their rocky and rooty character. A Dog, as an example, has berms where its important to carry speed and a few jumps, but also intentionally has flat corners and rooty sections.

    Cheers,
    EB

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    I think Cuss Hollow has a nice flow. It's all about how you ride it.
    I ride Tapeworm a lot and know every inch of that trail and to me it has really nice flow, but isn't smooth and buff. Know how to set up for upcoming turns and the best line thru the techy stuff helps.

    The Silkworm trail next to the Tapeworm was built in part the kep people from trying to dumb down the tapeworm adn Parasite. There is a big trend for fast and smooth in the vein of Boot Camp, but flow doesnt need to = smooth and easy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlf.ski.bike.sail View Post
    ..technical features in trails are disappearing in the name of flow and 'sustainability'...
    True and a good point. I think sustainability (land manager requirements) has a much bigger impact than riders seeking flow. 2 other factors are having a big effect on this:

    1) Folks who believe they are doing all mt bikers a service -- especially new riders entering the sport. I see and hear about this all the time... throwing twigs and duff on the few little gnarl spots on NWT, emails asking if it's OK to "chop out those bothersome roots", etc. Not blaming... there are trails where we do want to do this (like Bootcamp because it's supposed to be an absolute beginner and small kid-friendly trail). We just need to keep educating folks that it's not OK to just do it whenever they think it's best. And I really thank those folks who ask first!!!

    2) Land Manager Requirements due to perception of risk. Removing log drops on FT, removing gnar and root features, armoring wet crossings, widening trails, fixing mud pits, etc. all can look like hazards to a land manager who doesn't understand the sport. Once again not blaming, a lot of this is appropriate and appreciated, but it is a huge challenge getting land managers to understand that we want some gnarl and it is not a hazard (nor an environmental issue). Once again, huge thanks to the land managers that are keeping an open mind when it comes to this!!!

  35. #35
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    There is a big trend for fast and smooth in the vein of Boot Camp, but flow doesnt need to = smooth and easy.[/QUOTE]

    Here here....

    Especially with better and better bikes out there. But, that's another thread. Not "flowy" enough for you on the 6 and 6? Try riding on a full rigid.

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    I don't really have anything to add except this coming from a kid who used to ride the rooty ACFL trails on a bmx bike... Screw Hans Rey and his blue square 'flow country' trails. They're ruining kids these days.

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    The current trend in mountain biking reminds me of the trend in snowboarding in the late 90s early 2ks.
    I remember going up snowboarding with guys who were fairly new to the sport but could kill it in the terrain park. Hit big gaps, 360 off tables and all that. I'd take them into the Crystal backcounty though and they couldn't make 2 turns without crashing.

    With biking I have rode with guys who can clear every jumpline at Duthie and rip up the "XC" trails with the best of them, but we take them to Black Diamond or Tapeworm and they crash every 2 minutes and hold up the group because they dont know how to deal with rocks and roots and natural obstacles.
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    Top existing Tech/trials trails in Seattle area...

    The order is how they came to in my head...but if I had to pick Golden Spike would win. Longest uninterrupted (by flow) technical trail with tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards. All these get harder in winter.

    1. The Burn - Tolt - 15 minutes of up/down/left/right unrelenting pain. The original and signature Tolt trail.
    2. Bear Way - Soaring Eagle - underrated system for tech but this trail has a tech challenge every 10'
    3. Golden Spike - Tokul - above
    4. Outhouse - Tokul West - Roots, rocks, corners, switchbacks, steeps, angles
    5. Preston - Tiger - more off angle roots and misplaced rocks per mile than all others, nasty when wet
    6. Iverson - Tiger - steep climbs, trick root combos, used to be the king of tech, gotten more "flowy" in the last few years
    7. Tapeworm System - name says it all
    8. Movin On/Cuss/Braveheart - Duthie - ride this with your wife/kid and you'll see how challenging these are for tech
    9. PV?? - don't ride enough to know
    10. St. Eds?? - same
    11. Most of Henry's Ridge System - twisty/windy/rooty forever
    12. Most of East Lake Sawyer Trails - not sure all the twisty trails are still there but I remember some really tough tech on the East side of the highway.
    13. Upper/Lower Outback- Tokul West - runs fast but lots of roots and corners to fly over

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwestra2 View Post
    True and a good point. I think sustainability (land manager requirements) has a much bigger impact than riders seeking flow. 2 other factors are having a big effect on this:
    I'd add one other factor, at least from my POV as a trail builder: Time. The large amount of time we spent rebuilding trails at PVCA was in part so that we would not have to spend so much time rebuilding trails at PVCA in the future. To fix the trails so they won't need as much future maintenance meant that we had to buff them out a bit. I am sometimes asked if we plan to add more wood features at PVCA and the answer is no. The reason is not that the land manager won't let us, but rather because wood features have to be inspected and maintained and that takes a lot of time. We like riding too!

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Navigator View Post
    The order is how they came to in my head...but if I had to pick Golden Spike would win. Longest uninterrupted (by flow) technical trail with tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards.
    Glad to see your comment. I thought it was just me being lame every time I ride this trail.

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    I resemble that remark. Note to users: The GS will be "dumbed down" in the vein of sustainability in the next few months....

    The "flow" will likely still be interrupted though. Bwahahahahahaha!

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    "tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards". Hilarious! I used to love that schtuff. I saw no point whatsoever in a buff trail. Downhill was the price I had to pay to be able to climb. Tolt was one of my fav places to ride. How times and tastes change!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mwestra2 View Post
    ..."tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards...
    Add a few sketchy drops and a couple butt pucker descents and you've just described my perfect ride!

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Borneo View Post
    Not "flowy" enough for you on the 6 and 6? Try riding on a full rigid.
    Still not "flowy" enough on the full rigid? Try riding full rigid singlespeed. :P

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    Go ride MF Snoqualmie if you don't like flow.
    There's a big difference between ripping and skidding. Those who skid don't know how to ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave_schuldt View Post
    Go ride MF Snoqualmie if you don't like flow.
    All those stairs = flowus interruptus maximums.

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    Paradise Valley and St Edwards / Big Finn Hill

    Quote Originally Posted by Navigator View Post

    1. PV?? - don't ride enough to know
    2. St. Eds?? - same
    PV has a nice mix of flow (Mainline, Southern Traverse, Cedar) and tech (with Two Trees, Llyods Detour and Bike Park area). It's a great place to get muddy.

    St Ed's itself is tame, very little tech riding. Big Finn Hill is about the same. I'm hoping this changes now that there is agreement on officially building out trails. This combined area is simply closest place to Seattle to break a sweat, but nothing super challenging.
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    But ... the trials capable riders can flow up and down on the side logs used to reinforce those d*mn staircases.
    The quiver: 2010 Santa Cruz Nomad, 2011 Specialized Demo II, 2011 Canfield Brothers Yelli Screamy.

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    I didn't see Middle Fork on anyones list of good tech trails to ride but I've heard it mentioned a few times since I moved to the the great PNW from PA. Are these staircases ride killers?
    Last edited by wipp; 05-11-2013 at 09:54 PM.

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    To say the least. There's a great challenge there in bagging them during the ride. I can ride 'em all except one set. Too steep and unmanageable. Outside of that, MF is a helluva ride.... surprisingly challenging and taxing.
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

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    Every time I find myself excitedly to go check out MF Sno again (haven't been in three years), I remember all those damn stairs!
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    Re: Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?

    Middle fork of the snoqualmie river opens 6/1 to bikes. Expect blowdowns if you join us on opening day.

    The basic concept this year is to have 5 or 6 3-man sawyer/helper teams roll the trail from all entrances so each team clears small diameter blow downs in one day. Anything bigger than we can get will be there for another week or two but what's a couple of trees on a 30 mile ride? My vote for those that depend on someone else's labor come back a couple of weeks later.

    Then you can experience the hidden natural flow of this magical place.

    Oh yeah we are allowed on odd calendar-numbered days only...

    If you find yourself walking a few steps here or there look around and smile this has been taken off the proposed wilderness lists for now...

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    Does a real trials rider even need a trail? Can't they just bounce from tree to rock to tree to root to log to...

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    Right on, Slayer of downed trees. Ain't no flow like MF flow! Guess I'll have to drag my arse out there on opening day and help chuck some logs.
    Last edited by slop; 05-12-2013 at 08:55 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tarekith View Post
    Every time I find myself excitedly to go check out MF Sno again (haven't been in three years), I remember all those damn stairs!
    It's worth it, and you know it.
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

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    I know, I know.
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    Overheard on Preston Just below East Summit trail on Saturday: "Man I wish they'd open it up more so it flows and I can go faster."

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickn View Post
    Overheard on Preston Just below East Summit trail on Saturday: "Man I wish they'd open it up more so it flows and I can go faster."
    Next time you can tell them to wait and ride it after a few days of heavy rain. Preston really flows then.
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    Recommendation for saws? (hand saw/trail saw) I am always keen to upgrade. And mine is probably getting too rusty. I use the Corona.
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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Navigator View Post
    Longest uninterrupted (by flow) technical trail with tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards.
    Nice and concise description, I like it. A lot of trails out there that were not purpose built for bikes are still like this, thank goodness.


    Quote Originally Posted by mwestra2 View Post
    Ditto that! Those SBs are one of my all-time anti-flow favs as well. Almost died there once. Now, would I ever seek out, fund, design and build a new mtb trail like that? Heck no. One reason is that very few riders enjoy that kind of thing.
    I know a few people who claim to have experienced near-death tumble there I used to and still do love watching really great riders making these insanely tight SBs by gracefully making one-two hop. The bottom of Gold Creek, the same thing. Please don't forget that there are plenty of riders who aren't necessarily a part of group of riders who go to Duthie or post on MTBR (i.e. visible to you) that still do enjoy that kind of thing.


    Quote Originally Posted by jdusto View Post
    Smoothing out the tread helps get water out of the ride-line which helps sustain that tread. Routing trail to lessen the need for riders to rapidly changes speed (i.e. hit the brakes) also helps sustain that tread. Using rollers and berms to create grade in the absence of such also helps sustain that tread.

    Yes flow allows one to ride faster than one could in heavier tech (gnarl) but it has more to do about sustainability than "dumbing down" a trail. At least in my opinion.
    I think most people get that this was necessary in a location like Duthie. I also think, however, teaching new riders how to ride on that type of trails only (i.e. Bootcamp) could be problematic. There are trails out there that are not purpose built for bicycles, and these new riders should learn in these classes that Duthie is NOT the norm to be expected everywhere and how to negotiate obstacles on trails properly. Anticipating tight corners so they don't brake hard and create stutter bumps (like what's been happening on Dalles Ridge trail over the last several years), making smoother turn on tighter, off camber swtichbacks without relying on berms (like overshot corners on Grand Ridge), riding not just down but up roots and rocks so they are not viewed as something to be removed but to be overcome, etc...

    Setting the right expectation is half the battle, and I hope to see Evergreen do more of it. The reality of Seattle area is that if only trails you want to ride are flowy, purpose built trails for bikes, your choices are now and will continue to be in the future pretty limited. Evergreen has been doing great job creating more opportunities to build trails open to bikes, but if Evergreen sets the expectation and create self-feedback loop of flowy purpose built trails for bikes = best experience for mountain bikers, that will eventually become self destructive because not all trails can or should be like that.

    A younger rider I worked with briefly last fall during a work party on trails in Moran State Park excitedly told me how great the trails there were and said on the steep trail that drops off from the peak to Twin Lakes that we could "improve" the trail by widening the SBs and building berms. I hope I won't see that "improvement" made in my lifetime...

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickn View Post
    Overheard on Preston Just below East Summit trail on Saturday: "Man I wish they'd open it up more so it flows and I can go faster."
    Most of the time it's not the trail.....

    If anyone gets even close to Garett's TM Enduro time, they may have a right to complain. Maybe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Navigator View Post
    The order is how they came to in my head...but if I had to pick Golden Spike would win. Longest uninterrupted (by flow) technical trail with tight corners, off camber turns, angled root systems, quick elevation changes, and water hazards. All these get harder in winter.

    [*]The Burn - Tolt - 15 minutes of up/down/left/right unrelenting pain. The original and signature Tolt trail.
    YES. I haven't been there in 2 years, but I agree. I seek it out first. Awesome stuff.
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

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    I didn't read it all.

    Skimming through, what a couple people said resonated with me, and its been said before but "flow" isn't the trail, it's the rider.


    Some people need it bermy and smooth with nice transitions from one corner to the next to find their flow, others (like me) want it rough and bumpy, where you go from full compression to flicking the ass end around to hit the line for the off camber turn - manualing over a root network holding your breath your front tire comes down on the back side of it- slaloming trees so close your bar and shoulder graze it, going from a left to a right hand drift, and so on.

    THAT is flow in my book, the point at which your brain is processing a multitude of inputs simultaneously and you emerge unrattled and having hit that perfect line,
    There's a distinct difference between your median trail in 2013 and say, 2006.

    Just cause the general populous of riders can't handle it (or don't LIKE it) doesn't mean it ain't got flow,
    To use a well-known example - places like Tapeworm have flow, just gotta know where it is and how to find it. And that's probably why Tapeworm sees less traffic now than it did in 2006. FINE BY ME!

    That said, my shit does stink: I'll admit I'm slow as hell on the doubletracks and flats, but I also find that boring and unmotivating. Might as well ride a cross bike there.

    My opinion matters about as much as anyone else on here, its just the internet.

    To each their own. Just don't neuter everything for the sake of conformity.

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    Not sure I have anything edifying to add, but I've actually been quite concerned about this issue for the last few years. I see a hazy vision of the future where, yes, bikers will have more trail miles than ever, but those miles will be less and less multi-use true forest trail and more and more bike dedicated and newer, and because of this they will be machine built, maintainable, and smoother. And this makes me sad...although if I had to choose I would rather have the miles, I guess.

    Another thing that really scares me is that we may never have steep trails again, either for climbing or downhill. "Erosion, not maintanable, people can't ride that".....

    Another part of me says this can never happen overall, because the natural state of a trail is gnarly, and it takes work to make it less so. But will a natural trail remain open to bikes ? Will a NEW natural trail ever be opened to bikes ?

    I respect Bob's effort in creating Cussed Hollow, but can you think of any new trail opened to bikes (besides MF that is now 10 years) or any new trail that has been built for bikes in WA that is gnarly ? or steep ? I cannot.

    There are plenty of trails that are steep or gnarly that are still open to bikes: ACFL , Chuckanut, Preston, Portions of Palisades/Ranger/Noble Knob, Juniper Ridge, Lower Dungeness, moto sections of Capitol, Kachess, some sections of MF, Nason, Basalt, Garland, certain portions of Blanchard, Angel's, Pot peak, Pyramid, and yes many more.

    So we are not starving but the trend concerns me. Especially the part about "where bikes are allowed".

  65. #65
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    Re: Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?

    There is an example Preston of steep trail legitimized this year.

    Confirm with and thank our "southern" offshore hero brother who spanked us up and down the juniper ridge and goat mountain days on my last hurrah chain of epics rides that wonderful week those many years ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Preston View Post
    I respect Bob's effort in creating Cussed Hollow, but can you think of any new trail opened to bikes (besides MF that is now 10 years) or any new trail that has been built for bikes in WA that is gnarly ? or steep ? I cannot.
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    Steven's Pass?

    I think Evergreen has a tentative go in a current project area to create a new more technical trail after a current project milestone is complete.
    The quiver: 2010 Santa Cruz Nomad, 2011 Specialized Demo II, 2011 Canfield Brothers Yelli Screamy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tarekith View Post
    Midtown at Tokul.
    I think he means "legal" and approved...

    One could also add "other" trails along the I-90 corridor as well....

  69. #69
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    That's one thing I never understood, it's not like people HAVE to only ride trails listed on the Evergreen Wiki. There's so many other trails out here in this area, many of which really easy to find info on and solve a lot of the complaints people have about trails being "dumbed down".
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    This gets back to the OP a little. "Official" trails will get required maintenance or at least something. All the others depend usually on the original builder. Nothing is more sexy than building new trail. Conversely, nothing sucks worse than having to do maintenance on said trail. You can usually get a bunch of help to build but suddenly no one has any free time to help when it comes to maintenance. There's a formula where the more used legal trails get the more maintenance because of the use. This gets back to the land manager thing. IF said trail was to never get another shovel on it but use continued and the land manager "stumbled" on it when planning for logging next year, what would happen there?
    Yeah, there are lots of trails to choose from out there. We're blessed. But, the fact also remains that we're sadly lemmings when it comes to riding choices. Probably 95% of the MTB riding community never comes here and perhaps has never even heard of said trail. I often am caught assuming everyone knows everything I do as well. Then I am usually told that I've forgotten more than most know. So, people go to the wiki because its easy. People go to Tiger and Duthie 3 days a week because it's easy. Horrible creatures of habit we are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Len.Francies View Post
    There is an example Preston of steep trail legitimized this year.

    Confirm with and thank our "southern" offshore hero brother who spanked us up and down the juniper ridge and goat mountain days on my last hurrah chain of epics rides that wonderful week those many years ago.

    If it has been legitimized then why the hush hush ? I had heard rumors of this but I certainly haven't heard anything official. Does legitimize mean something other than official ? If not then let us shout it out, shout it out loud. Otherwise tell me what weeknight we are going out there together.

    "Midtown at Tokul".

    That's good and I like to hear it. Haven't ridden it.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruiser View Post
    Please don't forget that there are plenty of riders who aren't necessarily a part of group of riders who go to Duthie or post on MTBR (i.e. visible to you) that still do enjoy that kind of thing.
    Valid point, as well as people who would prefer both.
    The other point is that gnarl tech is what many of us who started riding over a decade or more were used to. It's what we cut our teeth with, or knocked a few out on. There is a sentimental attachment and appreciation of developing the skills, overcoming the challenges. So these trails hold a sentimentality, but there is a fire-tested quality about it, and i think this is the intangible that is hard to describe. Wanting others that come to mt. biking to share and appreciate why shocks on bikes were created in the first place...

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruiser View Post
    the expectation and create self-feedback loop of flowy purpose built trails for bikes = best experience for mountain bikers, that will eventually become self destructive because not all trails can or should be like that.
    Absolutely valid. There is a difference between multi-user and mt. bike specific trail builds. Safety and sustainability are key factors to think about when mulling over any trail design. Wisdom knowing where the trail is, what you are trying to accomplish is always or rather should be well established before shovel hits dirt.
    That being said i still do resent the underlying resistance towards the mt. bike specific trail designs that myself and others worked extremely hard for, during the build (as if it wasn't difficult enough), and even after. Speaking only for myself there was and is no intention of providing a "concrete" template, or rather by saying, by building a theme within a trail that this is what all trails should look like forever after.
    i mean how boring would that be, not only for rider experience, but also for the builder...
    And finally on this point, bringing up Moran and Gold Creek. Just seems to me that it would be so impossible for there ever to be a time where you will see trails buffed out especially in the backcountry. Even if it were a goal of our community, it's pretty much impossible. Try buffing out the W. Fork Teanaway for starters...

    *******************************************

    i would also like to note that prior to Duthie, i spent hundreds of hours shoring up Tribulation at Summit Ridge. That section of trail was relatively new in comparison to others in the area. The original builder i spoke with and it was understood that many of the trails were mostly rake and ride built, primarily because at the time they were being built, 1) Nobody knew how long the land would not be developed and/or altered and 2) Let's get as much trail blazed in while the gettin's good was the motto.
    This left the similar history of what you see at Paradise. The original complaint target of the thread, if you will.
    My goal was to preserve the original "non" flowy nature of the trail, keeping it tight and technical as best i could. In doing so you get many fixes that are very subtle, but in many instances take alot of work. Probably the most noticeable areas were the 3 stretches of trail that rode thru a literal sloppy bog. With help from other riders we were able to remedy those, so as now you ride through there in the winter/spring and only in the one section that we reinforced with pavers do your tires even get wet.
    But the ultimate point here is this is just three examples of hundreds of trouble spots i worked on in that particular trail. but for all my efforts i only completed about 30% or so of that trail working clockwise, which is about a mile at the most. That just goes to show the amount of work and time it takes to make it happen.

    So as a person who has worked on both styles of trail, my advice would be if you want to make an impact. Do more trail work, get involved, learn how to put what you would like to see into practice.
    .~...|\
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    .~...|...\
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  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tarekith View Post
    There's so many other trails out here in this area, many of which really easy to find info on...
    Resource please!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruiser View Post
    Please don't forget that there are plenty of riders who aren't necessarily a part of group of riders who go to Duthie or post on MTBR (i.e. visible to you) that still do enjoy that kind of thing.
    Hmmmmm... a little judgment creeping in there? Most of the people I ride/hang out with don't prefer to ride Duthie and don't do MTBR. I talk to almost every volunteer I dig with and every rider I ride with from Kettle Crest to Tacoma. I ask about what kind of trails they like, don't like, what's missing and what we need more of. I've been doing that since the 'Nade days. I consider it part of my job. I also listen on forums like this, FB, Pinkbike, out of state and out of country forums. I hear from riders from every walk of life and every riding style. I know there are a lot of riders who enjoy the Palisades SB kinda thing -- I'm one of them -- but sorry... we are definitely in a small minority there! In fact I'd guess that the MTBR regulars tend to be the kind of rider who, even if they don't particularly enjoy those SBS, does at least appreciate them and want to keep them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruiser View Post
    A younger rider...told me ...we could "improve" the trail by widening the SBs and building berms.
    Yep, I hear that kind of thing all the time. I also hear the opposite all the time: "the berms at Duthie require no skill they are boring", "the E Tiger Summit trail is like a dirt sidewalk". On several occasions I've been chastised for bucking logs out of the trail after a storm. While I was pulling out the chainsaw on StepItUp, I watched a rider do a Cyclocross style dismount and hop over a blowdown as he yelled back at me to just leave it alone -- it's challenging and fun.

    Whether they're asking for roots or berms, logovers or rollers, I try to educate them about creating and maintaining diverse riding opportunities in WA... there are riders who like one or the other and riders who like both. *And* there are riding experiences we don't even have on legit trails here but could... Technical/DH/AM style trails like I mentioned above without having to poach or commute for hours. I can already hear all of the complaints and pressure to make another trail just like something we already have. But all my data says they'd be in the minority. Time for another broad survey, maybe?

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skookum View Post
    There is a sentimental attachment and appreciation of developing the skills, overcoming the challenges. So these trails hold a sentimentality, but there is a fire-tested quality about it, and i think this is the intangible that is hard to describe. Wanting others that come to mt. biking to share and appreciate why shocks on bikes were created in the first place...
    YES! Well said. And to get back to my OP, this is what I want to help preserve and what I enjoy most about trails like Two Trees at PVCA- that nice squishy feeling of success when you've ridden all of PVCA dab free on a freezing cold, wet, slimy day.

    All this said I gave in this year and built up a bike just for big flow, steep downhill tech and slow grinding logging road climbs and I'm way happier for having done it.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by wipp View Post
    YES! Well said. And to get back to my OP, this is what I want to help preserve and what I enjoy most about trails like Two Trees at PVCA- that nice squishy feeling of success when you've ridden all of PVCA dab free on a freezing cold, wet, slimy day.
    FWIW, there are no plans to touch Two Trees. We intend to leave it's muddy, slimy rooty goodness alone!

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    I would not consider Preston to be anywhere near gnarly, my wife took our 10 month old at the time down it in a baby trailer, my son is now 13yrs old. It has only has become more and more smoother as the years go on..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sven Trials View Post
    I would not consider Preston to be anywhere near gnarly, my wife took our 10 month old at the time down it in a baby trailer, my son is now 13yrs old. It has only has become more and more smoother as the years go on..
    Preston at Tiger??? Must be a different Preston unless the baby trailer was a 29er and he had a baby full face. Good to hear your son made it to 13!

    The 3rd and 4th sections/switchbacks have actually gotten worse over the years with erosion creating a hybrid trail/creekbed...random rocks everywhere...no true route in many spots. The last section, to me, has become one of the most tech with new rock work creating some really interesting lines and some serious pucker at times.

  79. #79
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    The thing with Preston is the speed. It might be smoother in places, but that just makes it faster. Trying to choose lines thru the rocks/roots while doing 30mph+ gets pretty scary sometimes.

    People always talk about how great trails were in the past, but i remember riding Preston 15 years ago and even in mid August there were major mud holes, horrible erosion and lots of blown out area. The trail is much better now and holds up quite well considering the amount of rain Tiger gets.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Lynch View Post
    The thing with Preston is the speed. It might be smoother in places, but that just makes it faster. Trying to choose lines thru the rocks/roots while doing 30mph+ gets pretty scary sometimes.

    People always talk about how great trails were in the past, but i remember riding Preston 15 years ago and even in mid August there were major mud holes, horrible erosion and lots of blown out area. The trail is much better now and holds up quite well considering the amount of rain Tiger gets.
    True...speed makes all the difference...and suspension. If I had to estimate, I'd say a 40% of Preston is exactly the same as 10/15 years ago, 50% vastly improved, and 10% degraded/eroded.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Lynch View Post
    ...Trying to choose lines thru the rocks/roots while doing 30mph+ gets pretty scary sometimes...
    Yeah, I was thinking the same thing when I almost hit the back end of a group of XC racers training in white lycra team kits (white... really?).

    Another benefit of well designed tech is that it functions as choke points.

    Paid some bad karma points for that one because I also dropped Pickles the Dog who got confused and ran back up to the logging road. So I had to ride Preston all the way back up eating humble pie to get her afterwards.

  82. #82
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    Hehehe. this is another one of those sliding scale things. Anyone whose ridden the 'shore or Whistler and environs along the way to there has a little different perspective. If you're next ride after Boot Camp at Duthie is the PRT, things may appear a little different...
    Yeah, I rode PRT back in the day on a full rigid wishing I had a kidney belt to keep my guts in place. On my schweet V2 Transition Covert with plush travel, it's waaay "smoother" and less tech now. Even if the trail it self hasn't changed much. (And, really, overall, it hasn't changed much in "average" which I agree with above though less blown out but the re-build has taken the tech into consideration.) Travel itself allows you to go faster which puts, "the boat on a plane" and smooths out the roots and rocks. That's evident when you ride up it going slowly and really see how bumpy and ledgy it is. Adding the new smooth upper Summit trail has changed perspectives as well. PRT definitely does not have that "new trail smell" which is more apparent in the transition from one to the other. At least we have the "newer' pre-RR bed section for that move from new to old...

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sven Trials View Post
    I would not consider Preston to be anywhere near gnarly, my wife took our 10 month old at the time down it in a baby trailer, my son is now 13yrs old.
    Is that in dog years? You are nuts.
    Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than "I told you so."

  84. #84
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    Re: Has Flow Killed Trials/Tech In the Pacific North West?



    Granddaughter at 5 years of age blasting in go-kart.

  85. #85
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    Biggest reason that regular trials riding is dead is due to people wussing out and needing shocks. Hell, that alone has done more damage to learning basic trail skills than any other modern invention for mtn biking out there.

    Take for example last summer when I was riding one of the North Shore trails on my '89 Stumpy Team. A whole group of about fifteen riders on dualies were on the trail as I was trackstanding and waiting/deciding how to do a section. Every one of these riders either got off the bike or hit the damn thing at full speed and used the shocks for maximum effect. No, not one single attempt any serious trail trials move, that was unthinkable to them.

    Hell, this group had thirty to forty thousand in bikes, yet not one attempt.

    I know shocks have helped the Pros, but lets face it, it has also helped a lot of people who otherwise may not be on the trail, and belong on a road instead. Kind of like all these novices who come out to the woods with cell phones and think they are safe, but in reality area danger to us all.


    Quote Originally Posted by Sven Trials View Post
    HAHAHA!!!!! Trials.... Trials is dead in the main stream places. It has been sacrificed in the name of sustainability. Logs, rocks, mud, have been demonized. It takes skill and muscle control to overcome an obstacle larger than a few inches. Broken frames and taco'ed wheels were the norm. That's why I had to learn wheel building and the wife welding. Trials bike now are bomb proof and fun!! It's the most fun you can have going slow!! It's out there but it's back to being underground, it has to to survive. When a trials trail is "discovered it gets destroyed by main stream trail builders. So trialers keep their trails kinda secret, I know I do...
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

  86. #86
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    So what exactly do you mean by "trials"? Are you talking about trails with logs and rocks and lots of slow features to clear?

    If that's the case, the Tapeworm and Parasite are the only real places like that. We constantly add new logs to the parasite.
    14 Aurum, 16 Fuse, 17 T130

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by unicrown junkie View Post
    I know shocks have helped the Pros, but lets face it, it has also helped a lot of people who otherwise may not be on the trail, and belong on a road instead. Kind of like all these novices who come out to the woods with cell phones and think they are safe, but in reality area danger to us all.
    With attitudes and condescension like this, it is no wonder there are conflicts on the trail.

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Lynch View Post
    So what exactly do you mean by "trials"? Are you talking about trails with logs and rocks and lots of slow features to clear?

    If that's the case, the Tapeworm and Parasite are the only real places like that. We constantly add new logs to the parasite.
    I think I probably need to adjust my vocabulary to fit the PNW!

    Around here people mostly seem to call it gnar and it points downhill which is fine by me. I would call the rough sections of Two Trees "trialsy" and trails like a River Runs Through It and Comfortably Numb in BC "Very Trialsy". There is a nice move on Skookum through a little rock crag and down some steps that I ride that nicely fits into the category as well. Another one is the hop up the boulder climbing Timberline on Tiger, which is a real pass fail for me for some reason.

    Personally I'm not a huge fan of log overs and skinny's just because they are often not maintained and get too janky on high use trails. I am definitely against and in fact have a slightly unhealthy view of log piles (BFH)- LOVE a 30" log across the trail, HATE a 30" log that's ramped up with little sticks and debris from the trail side.

    All these things are just personal preferences and I don't expect most people to like what I like, but I think there is a place for it in trail planning. I think there should be stuff that's just too hard to ride (until the day you do) on any trail that's designated a multi-use intermediate trail. Tech/Gnar/Trials builds skill, controls speed and sells lots of big chainrings or better yet bash gards.

    All that said, I haven't been out to Tapeworm in a couple of years. I should get over there this week. Tour?

  89. #89
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    Phooey. Have you ever met me on the trail, or when I was a wrench in one of the local LBS shops?

    The simple fact is that many aspects of technology has helped place many people in precarious positions, and the overall public pays the price for it by having to save their ass.

    As for shocks, I will say it again, they have made it way to easy for a lot of people. They end up trying things they shouldn't and get seriously hurt doing it. People going down sections WAY BEYOND their ability, period.

    So, the only condescending behavior comes from your ludicrous statement. I can only infer from your POV that you support novices going out into the woods and getting into harms way? Or do you have another bright idea about how someone can hurt themselves on the trail? Or is that you just don't trackstand?

    I'm curious, because personally I don't want to haul anyone out AGAIN. Better safe than sorry, oh wait, you don't beleive that apparently.

    Quote Originally Posted by freakybro View Post
    With attitudes and condescension like this, it is no wonder there are conflicts on the trail.
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

  90. #90
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    I love seeing rock piles and logs and all that to ride. It's the only saving grace to Tolt for me.
    14 Aurum, 16 Fuse, 17 T130

  91. #91
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    There is a lot of phooey on this thread, but the most dangerous phooey I've heard so far is that technology is somehow responsible for riders getting hurt. Yeah there are many things that impact the risks involved with mt biking. Technology is surely one of at least a thousand. But the bottom line is: Riders are responsible for their own safety on the trail. And without the inherent risks, the sport is dead. That's the message we all need to be on board with and preaching on the public interwebs, public meetings, to land managers, to other riders. Seriously, am I missing something here?

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by unicrown junkie View Post
    Biggest reason that regular trials riding is dead is due to people wussing out and needing shocks. Hell, that alone has done more damage to learning basic trail skills than any other modern invention for mtn biking out there.

    Take for example last summer when I was riding one of the North Shore trails on my '89 Stumpy Team. A whole group of about fifteen riders on dualies were on the trail as I was trackstanding and waiting/deciding how to do a section. Every one of these riders either got off the bike or hit the damn thing at full speed and used the shocks for maximum effect. No, not one single attempt any serious trail trials move, that was unthinkable to them.

    Hell, this group had thirty to forty thousand in bikes, yet not one attempt.

    I know shocks have helped the Pros, but lets face it, it has also helped a lot of people who otherwise may not be on the trail, and belong on a road instead. Kind of like all these novices who come out to the woods with cell phones and think they are safe, but in reality area danger to us all.
    I think there is a huge segment of us that started on full rigid, but prefer full suspension for the increased overall enjoyment it brings. I don't see it as a measure of who is the better or worse rider. It is simply a preference, and fun can be had on all types of bikes.

    Folks should not be criticized for walking around a sketch section. People will ride what they are comfortable with, and we all learn as we go. Just because you skip it one day, doesn't mean you won't come back and clean it another.

    As for those that hit it full speed...well, that's just fun.

  93. #93
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    Riding there tonight @ 4:30 ;-)

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    One trail feature I dearly miss is steep climbs - the closest place to do any climbing is Kachess ridge or 410. Kind of tough to enjoy the most rewarding skill in mountain biking without any terrain to do it on. Can I get a hell yeah from all the hundreds of other cyclists who are clamoring for this trail feature as well ?



    *there is one good climb on Tiger but its closed to bikes.

  95. #95
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    Isn't the climb from the Tiger parking lot to the top a good climb? It wipes me out.

  96. #96
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    I'm referring to skill climbing - barely rideable uphill slopes. There is no greater thrill than this heady mix of skill, fitness, and willpower.

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    (Preston's climbing post above.)

    okay, I can't help myself...

    I think the people on 7x7s flowing down Bootcamp would beg to differ.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Preston View Post
    I'm referring to skill climbing - barely rideable uphill slopes. There is no greater thrill than this heady mix of skill, fitness, and willpower.
    Sounds like Tiger to me. I can even get that at St. Eds!

  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Preston View Post
    I'm referring to skill climbing - barely rideable uphill slopes. There is no greater thrill than this heady mix of skill, fitness, and willpower.
    I know where your coming from, but being built more like a old lethargic linebacker than an over caffinated cyclist, I'll take my technical climbs in small 150' gain dosages

  100. #100
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    Those are excellent points you list. That is fair to say that one day a rider will tackle a section, but maybe not the next.

    I wasn't trying to make a blanket judgment whether rigid is better than shocks, just observing how technology has allowed people to go beyond their means of riding, amongst many things now that we can push further than before.

    I guess what one of the things that irked me about some of that particular dualie crowd is that they won't tackle a section that I would because it's tad to technical for them, but once they get up to speed then they act like I am in their way!

    Kind of like when I used to go to Stevens and are for riding and train watching. I hit a comfortable 65 or so all the way to Scenic, but hell the amount of drivers who like to speed up in the straights say near Boring, then slow waaay down at the nearest curve is astounding. So, we get a game of stringlining and then bunching, over and over.

    Whereas the regular everyday crowd driving that section knows how fast they can take the curves and has a much better overall pace.

    As for the speed, well to each their own!

    Quote Originally Posted by Big B View Post
    I think there is a huge segment of us that started on full rigid, but prefer full suspension for the increased overall enjoyment it brings. I don't see it as a measure of who is the better or worse rider. It is simply a preference, and fun can be had on all types of bikes.

    Folks should not be criticized for walking around a sketch section. People will ride what they are comfortable with, and we all learn as we go. Just because you skip it one day, doesn't mean you won't come back and clean it another.

    As for those that hit it full speed...well, that's just fun.
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

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