Kincade single track- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Kincade single track

    Hello all,

    I have been meaning to do this for quite some time but I keep letting work get in the way. I just wanted to post something to gather the thoughts and opinions of fellow riders out there about the future of the Kincade trial systems and the proposed STA trails. I am not trying to bad mouth anyone, just want to start a discussion. I am sure you all have seen the info about the proposed trails on Akspokes (when it existed), here on mtbr or recently in ADN (http://www.adn.com/2011/05/23/187866...ike-trail.html ).

    Here is where I stand. I do most of my riding at Kincade because I enjoy the challenge of the narrower, twisty rooty trails and I like the fact that some trails are more hidden away. I will be one of the first to agree that it would be wonderful if the trails could be more interconnected to create a network that avoided the ski trails all together. I am always in favor of more trails but I have to say I am wary of the proposed Kincade STA trails for several reasons.

    1) The STA style of trails are like highways; wide, open and fast. For comparison, I liken the existing Kincade trials to dirt roads. Courtesy of STA we now have several miles of highway on the hillside which are very fun in their own way but, I like the fact that Kincade is different and that the trails are more natural and technically challenging. I don’t want to ride on a highway, I want dirt roads. Mechanized equipment works well for trail building in some instances; however, this method removes all the roots and many of challenging features.


    2) Trail layout. I have walked the flagged proposed trails and I am disappointed with the routing in several sections. The area below the sand dunes is a bad idea as the dune is continually moving forward at a pretty amazing pace and if the wind is blowing (as it frequently is) it is not a fun area to be in. The proposed trail bisects many of the existing trails and I do not want see “sustainable upgrades” destroy the few features that make these trails unique and fun for riders seek more challenging terrain.

    3) More Intermediate trails…… how about some advanced trails.


    Cheers

  2. #2
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    my understanding is as follows. the hillside sta trails are wide because they are so popular. the vegetation, in theory would grow back on the portions of the trail that are not being continuously ridden. i.e. once the natural line is established by being ridden the trail should get narrower as vegetation has a change to get ahold. the fact that they are so wide is a testament to how popular they are. i tend to agree a little on the smooth nature of the sta trails, it would be nice to see some more roots, however trail features and obstacles can always be added back latter. let me say that i think we have "twisty" covered. the trail builder's have gotten much better with their design. i think the kincaid trails are going to "flow" much nicer than the hillside trails. mechanized equipment does somewhat sanitize the trail but how else do you get 9 miles of new trail in one summer? it would be great if we could hand cut and tool the new trails, but frankly whenever there are scheduled work parties not that many people show up. today for national trails day only 30 volunteers showed. it's awesome that folks came out to help, but for an active city of over 300,000 thousand, that's not many people. it would take several years to build 17 miles of trail (8 last year and 9 this year).
    litespeed's break

  3. #3
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    kincaid

    i need say no more...outsider

  4. #4
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    Kinkayed

    That looks good too.

    I think that whatever the trail builders come up with will be awesome. Before the STA trails, there was A (make hard A sound) single track trail up the hillside. The Llama trail. Even that turned into a muddy jungly crap fest by the end of July. I like singletrack too, but I don't have the time, resources or energy to nitpick at what is being done to create more trails in the Anchorage bowl. STA trails are a little wide, are pretty simple, but are a riot to ride compared to what used to be there.

    What would be wicked cool, is if we get bikes allowed on the williwaw lakes trail, do some work to beef up the trail (by hand) and build a rideable and easier hikeable trail up over the pass to the north behind the lakes, and punch a nice trail through the north fork of campbell creek that hooks up with the dome trail. Anybody want to join my committee while we figure out what the hell to do next?
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  5. #5
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    Like I said, Hillside STA trails are a great addition to anchorage trails, that isnt the discussion. Trails already exist in Kincade and i look forward to more but, when new proposed trails that will be open highways cross existing trials I enjoy riding yes I choose to voice my opinion or "nitpick". Although some folks may not, I do put, time, energy and resources into the trails at Kincade to ensure they are maintained for all to use. Yes, getting volenteers, organizing, trail crews and completing built trail is not an easy task. However, that is how a majority of trails are built and I prefer to see a well built hand trail than a sanitized highway and I would prefer to not see existing challenging features be removed or altered.

  6. #6
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    You still don't know how to spell Kincaid thus you have no credibility. Really though you're complaining about crossing trails that are wider than you would like. BFD.

  7. #7
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    if you want challenging, expert trials, then go ride the bluff trail, but take note that a lot of the features on it are also eroding into giant scars in the earth that are unsustainable. sta is looking to build new sustainable trails as well as link up what's existing. there has been a lot of discussion about leaving existing trails as they are accept for a few problem areas that should be fixed. kincaid park is huge, there is lots of room for this new project and many more miles of trail in the future. shoot, every summer new hand cut single track pops up. who's building these trails? i don't know, but it would be great to find out and harness all this energy for future planed narrow hand tooled single track. the anchorage bowl in general is huge, with the opportunity to be a mt. biking destination. if you want to procure a particular type of trail than i suggest you round up your buddies, get organized, and start advocating for your needs, that's what single track advocates did and it's taking off.
    litespeed's break

  8. #8
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    forrestvt, it seams that maybe you've changed your mind recently? here is quote from you talking about the hillside sta trails.

    "Most of the berms and banked corners are barely big enough (most were too tight as well) to accomodate the high speeds a rider can easily reach on trails b/c the trails are so hardpacked and contain so few roots and rocks. I can only imagine how fast they will be after a year or two of use after they have become ridden in! It is sweet to finally have this style of ridding in AK!"

    from this thread http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.ph...37747#poststop
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  9. #9
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    not sure what spelling and credibility have to do with sharing ones opinion or anything that has thus far been posted.....thank you for adding some great value to the discussion. Apparently my impression of you from your other posts was all wrong....disappointing.

  10. #10
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    Never have changed my mind about the Hillside STA trials. I have never stated they arent fun I would just rather not see Kincade trails be fashioned in the same way. A little variety is nice, wouldnt you say?

    Have you walked and looked at nay of the proposed routes? I suspect not.

    I do appreciate the work STA has done but if we all followed their model of trail building then we would all have some nice highways and be broke at the cost of it all.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by forrestvt View Post
    Never have changed my mind about the Hillside STA trials. I have never stated they arent fun I would just rather not see Kincade trails be fashioned in the same way. A little variety is nice, wouldnt you say?

    Have you walked and looked at nay of the proposed routes? I suspect not.

    I do appreciate the work STA has done but if we all followed their model of trail building then we would all have some nice highways and be broke at the cost of it all.
    Yes, I have walked the proposed routes, I helped lay them out. The flagging you see is a loose interpretation of the routes to be fine tuned as needed.
    litespeed's break

  12. #12
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    check out this clip from fairbanks ester dome trails built by the same company who is going to build in kincaid. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AoYwpLlDEqw i guess i may be biased, but this looks like a hell of a good time. the berms have gotten deep with larger radii.
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  13. #13
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    Forrest, try and appreciate that these trails are being built by committee and compromise. Janice had had to deal with numerous user groups and endless state and municipal entities to get to where we are; the fact that we are getting single track trails in nordic skier heaven is pretty amazing.

  14. #14
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    I think several of the people who worked on the original STA Trails are a little unhappy with how wide they ended up in many places. I think a number of factors went into that such as amount of use and more specifically amount of downhill shuttle use. It's obvious in hindsight that that would happen but wasn't, at least to me, beforehand. The new trails should not have as much high speed riding since there are less sustained downhills.
    I suspect we will also leave logs and stuff along the sides longer to let vegetation establish better and keep people in line.
    I bet all involved have learned things from Phase I and will incorporate that knowledge into this phase.
    Forrestvt have you talked to Lee or Janice with specific suggestions about how to minimize conflicts between the trails you like and the trails STA has flagged? They are good people and might listen to constructive input.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockraptor5 View Post
    i need say no more...outsider
    Elitist...need I say more.

  16. #16
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    More Trail Development

    Seems hard to go wrong with more single track trail development in Anchorage. The STA Trails above Hill Top are popular and well used, I am sure that the Kincaid Trails will be equally well received.

    Elfbkr's idea of expandind the trail system into the Chugach and linking up existing trails is really inspiring. There is so much potential above town. Maybe it is time to form a seperate trail advocacy group for the development of a trails reaching into the Chugach State Park.

    Quote Originally Posted by Elfbkr50 View Post
    That looks good too.

    I think that whatever the trail builders come up with will be awesome. Before the STA trails, there was A (make hard A sound) single track trail up the hillside. The Llama trail. Even that turned into a muddy jungly crap fest by the end of July. I like singletrack too, but I don't have the time, resources or energy to nitpick at what is being done to create more trails in the Anchorage bowl. STA trails are a little wide, are pretty simple, but are a riot to ride compared to what used to be there.

    What would be wicked cool, is if we get bikes allowed on the williwaw lakes trail, do some work to beef up the trail (by hand) and build a rideable and easier hikeable trail up over the pass to the north behind the lakes, and punch a nice trail through the north fork of campbell creek that hooks up with the dome trail. Anybody want to join my committee while we figure out what the hell to do next?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ANC-Rider View Post
    Seems hard to go wrong with more single track trail development in Anchorage. The STA Trails above Hill Top are popular and well used, I am sure that the Kincaid Trails will be equally well received.

    Elfbkr's idea of expandind the trail system into the Chugach and linking up existing trails is really inspiring. There is so much potential above town. Maybe it is time to form a seperate trail advocacy group for the development of a trails reaching into the Chugach State Park.
    more advocacy is great. if you have ideas and the motivation to back them up, then contact STA. Im sure they are open to suggestion and already know the ins and outs of getting things done. what we really need is for mountain bikers to unite and stand up for our needs. i believe there is a new draft of the park service master plan in the works. we need to get mountain biking written into that plan!
    litespeed's break

  18. #18
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    Well, you can please some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time (or something like that). Those of us who were around during the Hillside Trail Wars of 2004 remember that things weren't always rosey between mountain bikers and other trails users (nordic skiers mostly). Since then we've built trust and forged a partnership that has led to the planning and construction of the Kincaid Singletrack Project. Unless you have cultivated good relations with other trail users, no added resource will ever happen in this town. The outcomes of that trust building process are three new trails: Brown Bear, Hillside Singletrack (STA Trails) and now the Kincaid Singletrack. Brown Bear was built completely by hand, with a small corp of volunteers who spent 3 back breaking months digging through 1 to 2 feet of organic layer by hand to result in 3/4 mile of technical (but sustainable) trail. It doesn't take a math major to calculate that building 9 miles BY HAND would be impossible. (Well, okay, I did the math--it would take 14.5 years if you consider that trail building by hand could only occur 2 1/2 months from July 15 through the end of September because of the Migratory Bird Act. In 14 1/2 years I hope to be retired and lying in a hammock on a beach on Maui). In fact, by the end of the Brown Bear project, there were a scant 3 or 4 people who dedicated every Wednesday night and an assorted weekend day to finish that project. It didn't take much discussion to establish that we would never build a meaningful singletrack system by hand in this town given the vegetative mat that we have and limited supply of young backs.

    Although the STA Trails are wide by singletrack standards, they are well loved and heavily used. The popular Kingdom Trails in East Burke, Vermont, are testament to what can be done with volunteer labor, a pulaski, a mcleod, sandy soil and a very thin vegetative layer. I rode these trails last fall and they are a blast! BUT, I spent time with the movers and shakers of this trail system and with short discussion they agreed that hand building trails in East Burke is practicably done, but in our neck of the woods it's nigh impossible. Many of the Kingdom Trails are built on sand ridges--the soil drains readily and the need for outsloping isn't as critical as it is in Anchorage with our loamy, sometimes clay soil. Some of the Kingdom Trails were literally ridden in--all it took were a few bikes to ride the same line and voila--the veg layer was so thin that they got down to a well-draining mineral layer something quick! In Kincaid there is a garden variety of soil with sand being predominant on the far southern edge, but more durable mineral soil exists little bit north. We intend to stay away from the unconsolidated sand as much as possible, leaving the Bluff Trail entirely intact. Sand can be an erosion nightmare.

    STA never intended to obliterate existing singletrack in Kincaid Park, rather to create linkages between some of the more sustainable disconnected segments. Whereas now we have to use ski trails to link the segments, machine made singletrack will provide the connections with some high fun-factor, swoopy trails with incredible flow . But at least the trail system will be wholly "singletrack" (depending on definition) and not a mish-mash of wide ski trails and narrow social trails. All this makes it possible for four-season access to Kincaid Park. You won't have to be a skier to have fun in Kincaid during the winter. With the new singletrack trail system, winter bikers, back-country skiers, snowshoers, runners, dog walkers, etc. will be able to enjoy the park. As it is now, the only multiuse winter trail is the bike path adjacent the Kincaid access road.

    There are other areas around Anchorage to build trails. Both of these locations are in the master planning process and Singletrack Advocates has been at the table all along: Section 36 in the vicinity of Bear Valley; Chugach State Park. The Section 36 Master Plan Draft is held up at the Planning and Zoning Commission level awaiting a hearing. Thanks to advocacy efforts by many mountain bikers, singletrack trails are a predominant feature in the Section 36 Draft. The Chugach State Park Trails Plan is awaiting a compilation of public comments and administrative decision (a report is due out in the next month). Again, mountain bikers presented several projects, many of which are included in the draft. The overall CSP Management Plan draft is now out for public comment which is going on now. There are many trail projects included in the Trails Plan and biking factors in in the overall Management Plan: URL="http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/chugach/planning.htm."][/URL]

    What STA would appreciate is for mountain bikers to take an active role in the planning for this and future trail projects by contributing to discussions that will ultimately lead to improved access to public land for mountain bikers.
    Last edited by Queen Bee; 06-11-2011 at 01:32 AM.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Queen Bee View Post
    Well, you can please some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time (or something like that). Those of us who were around during the Hillside Trail Wars of 2004 remember that things weren't always rosey between mountain bikers and other trails users (nordic skiers mostly). Since then we've built trust and forged a partnership that has led to the planning and construction of the Kincaid Singletrack Project. Unless you have cultivated good relations with other trail users, no added resource will ever happen in this town. The outcomes of that trust building process are three new trails: Brown Bear, Hillside Singletrack (STA Trails) and now the Kincaid Singletrack. Brown Bear was built completely by hand, with a small corp of volunteers who spent 3 back breaking months digging through 1 to 2 feet of organic layer by hand to result in 3/4 mile of technical (but sustainable) trail. It doesn't take a math major to calculate that building 9 miles BY HAND would be impossible. (Well, okay, I did the math--it would take 14.5 years if you consider that trail building by hand could only occur 2 1/2 months from July 15 through the end of September because of the Migratory Bird Act. In 14 1/2 years I hope to be retired and lying in a hammock on a beach on Maui). In fact, by the end of the Brown Bear project, there were a scant 3 or 4 people who dedicated every Wednesday night and an assorted weekend day to finish that project. It didn't take much discussion to establish that we would never build a meaningful singletrack system by hand in this town given the vegetative mat that we have and limited supply of young backs.

    Although the STA Trails are wide by singletrack standards, they are well loved and heavily used. The popular Kingdom Trails in East Burke, Vermont, are testament to what can be done with volunteer labor, a pulaski, a mcleod, sandy soil and a very thin vegetative layer. I rode these trails last fall and they are a blast! BUT, I spent time with the movers and shakers of this trail system and with short discussion they agreed that hand building trails in East Burke is practicably done, but in our neck of the woods it's nigh impossible. Many of the Kingdom Trails are built on sand ridges--the soil drains readily and the need for outsloping isn't as critical as it is in Anchorage with our loamy, sometimes clay soil. Some of the Kingdom Trails were literally ridden in--all it took were a few bikes to ride the same line and voila--the veg layer was so thin that they got down to a well-draining mineral layer something quick! In Kincaid there is a garden variety of soil with sand being predominant on the far southern edge, but more durable mineral soil exists little bit north. We intend to stay away from the unconsolidated sand as much as possible, leaving the Bluff Trail entirely intact. Sand can be an erosion nightmare.

    STA never intended to obliterate existing singletrack in Kincaid Park, rather to create linkages between some of the more sustainable disconnected segments. Whereas now we have to use ski trails to link the segments, machine made singletrack will provide the connections with some high fun-factor, swoopy trails with incredible flow . But at least the trail system will be wholly "singletrack" (depending on definition) and not a mish-mash of wide ski trails and narrow social trails. All this makes it possible for four-season access to Kincaid Park. You won't have to be a skier to have fun in Kincaid during the winter. With the new singletrack trail system, winter bikers, back-country skiers, snowshoers, runners, dog walkers, etc. will be able to enjoy the park. As it is now, the only multiuse winter trail is the bike path adjacent the Kincaid access road.

    There are other areas around Anchorage to build trails. Both of these locations are in the master planning process and Singletrack Advocates has been at the table all along: Section 36 in the vicinity of Bear Valley; Chugach State Park. The Section 36 Master Plan Draft is held up at the Planning and Zoning Commission level awaiting a hearing. Thanks to advocacy efforts by many mountain bikers, singletrack trails are a predominant feature in the Section 36 Draft. The Chugach State Park Trails Plan is awaiting a compilation of public comments and administrative decision (a report is due out in the next month). Again, mountain bikers presented several projects, many of which are included in the draft. The overall CSP Management Plan draft is now out for public comment which is going on now. There are many trail projects included in the Trails Plan and biking factors in in the overall Management Plan: URL="http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/units/chugach/planning.htm."][/URL]

    What STA would appreciate is for mountain bikers to take an active role in the planning for this and future trail projects by contributing to discussions that will ultimately lead to improved access to public land for mountain bikers.
    thanks for chiming in Janice. i hope our fellow mountain bikers are taking notes, someone will have to take over when you retire in hawaii. you've done a great service for our mountain bike community. i am looking forward to working with you on the kincaid trails. thanks for all your hard work ,you deserve a balloon or something.
    litespeed's break

  20. #20
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    I for one think that more new singletrack is super exciting, I would also like to chime in that building new trail costs money. If you plan on riding, pitch in. I was at REI yesterday and they will take donations at check out. I have no idea how close they are to their goal, but a few dollars now for a lifetime of singletrack seems like a win win to me.


    I am in no way associated with STA, so if this is considered too solicitous I apologize, I just want to ensure a future of biking bliss.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Queen Bee View Post
    The popular Kingdom Trails in East Burke, Vermont, are testament to what can be done with volunteer labor, a pulaski, a mcleod, sandy soil and a very thin vegetative layer. I rode these trails last fall and they are a blast! BUT, I spent time with the movers and shakers of this trail system and with short discussion they agreed that hand building trails in East Burke is practicably done, but in our neck of the woods it's nigh impossible.
    I rode the Kingdom Trails last summer (very cool) but they also charge a $10 fee (now $15) to ride to help defray the costs of maintenance. Our trails may not be everything to everyone...but they certainly have added a new level to what was available just a few short years ago. From what I gather all the Hillside STA trails were built with some grass root fundraising, donations, grants, and as already pointed out volunteers. All free to us bikers, hikers, and even some equestrians (though that is probably a discussion for a different forum. )

    Thanks for making riding more accessible (and free) and I look forward to tackling those new trails that surface!!

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