OFFICIAL Alyeska Trails Feedback- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    OFFICIAL Alyeska Trails Feedback

    Hey AK DH bike riders!

    My name is jake and I am in charge of the Alyeska Bike Trail building program.

    I am starting this thread in order hear what YOU think of the trails in general.

    Comments, concerns and maintenance suggestions are all welcome. Tell me what you like and don't like.

    Jump Park? On the way... Huge berms in the high alpine? They will be ready next week!

    We are very excited to see our new trails put to use and abuse. If you see something on the trails that could be fixed we will do our darndest to get it done the next day. The trails are going to evolve and change with more traffic and sun and the occasional rain shower.

    This is your chance to take part in the evolution of dh riding in Alaska.

  2. #2
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    Jake amazing work in such a short amount of time. Really looking forward to getting up onto the upper mountain when conditions allow.

    Don't want to distract from bigger projects elsewhere but first section of trail off Chair 4 could be built up more/dug in deeper. Rolling into the features in the corner of the cat road on Sourdough is so loose/rough it is hard to carry in enough speed to enjoy the features.

    On a seperate note, the short sections in the deep woods on Denali? and Race Trail are a fun change of pace on some super fun single track.
    We can only hope the bear has moved on by the weekend.

    Thanks for your efforts.

  3. #3
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    Jake

    first off thanks for all of the work that you and the resort have done. it is so nice to have lift access in alaska finally and i am very excited to watch it develop and improve. also thanks for providing a place for people to offer suggestions and opinions. i probably don't need to say it, but please don't take offense to any comments or anything as a personal attack.

    the race trail seems pretty good overall (looking forward to riding the section that was closed) and i'm thinking it will only improve over time

    the biggest suggestions i could make would be to try to improve the flow on some of the trails. for example, the trail i believe called waterfall (the furthest south trail that's not the access road), was fun but the corners were too tight to maintain speed and momentum. obviously larger berms would help but i think they might also need a larger radius. there are sections on some of the other trails that have ok, to decent flow in sections but is lost at an abrupt corner. i'm thinking of the trails off of chair three for the most part. i for one, would love to see a full jump line in the future. table tops, gaps, step-ups, step-downs, etc with lots and lots of flow and smooth take offs/lips with plenty of transitions.

    my main concern would be the large and/or sharp rocks that are in the middle of the trails. if one was to crash on some of these it would be quite painful at best and cause some fairly serious injuries at worst. in no way am i suggesting removing all rocks from every trail (which i think would be impossible at alyeska anyway), rather looking at specific sections on some of the trails and remove/build around some of the more nastier ones that have the most potential to cause damage to man and machine. when done correctly, a rock feature can really add to the enjoyment of the trail rather than just causing a large pucker factor.

    overall i would say think flow, flow, flow. and i can't wait to see the trails develop and look forward to bigger, faster, smoother, friendlier jumps.

    keep up the good work. hopefully i will be back down this weekend.

    cory

  4. #4
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    Jumps, jumps and more jumps! I am aiming to have 100 jumps by end of summer.

    Started nice jump line over on lower Tanaka, 20-40' step downs, hips and tables. Should be ready by end of next week.

    I am all about jumps but we have been focusing on just punching these corridors through so we can ride top to bottom. As things slow down in expansion department we are gonna add features along existing trails and really analyze where corners can be rounded etc.

    That is half the fun, predicting where the trail needs to go then coming back and seeing where trajectories actually go. Applied particle physics...

  5. #5
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    Follow-Up

    Jake, damn so much progress already. It is great to be riding the lifts. Your and your crews efforts are amazing. You opening up this line of communication is a great idea, please don't let any critism be too much of an irritant.

    I agree with Pura Vida that larger radius turns with bigger berms would increase the flow on future trail work. I am sure Alyeska's answer to A-Line is in the works. If we want to grow the sport I think that we need to accept and embrace the lowest common denominator with regard to the jump trails and make most everything rollable by those new to sport and still fun for the more advanced/aggressive. On A-Line you can roll every dirt jump and on Dirt Merchant you can roll 95% and still everyone loves those trails. It seems like most people riding the mountain so far are just getting a feel for DH biking.

    I disagree with the criticism of the rock jumps and tight switchbacks on Tanaka's Grass Lands. That trail has its own strange flavor that should be savored and enjoyed. Those little rock jumps are super fun, the rock pile jump makes me smile. If anything add more jumps in the first couple of switchbacks and more lower down. The mini-road gap on that trail should be rethought. When it's muddy the mini road gap doesn't work (seems to be a crash point). Maybe replace the mini road gap with an up hill hip off the road or a small drop back into the trail. Some day more effort should be invested in a more continuous lead-in trail on Waterfall to bring everything together better.

    Sometime in the future, it would be nice to see the bit of trail right below Chair 4 get reworked down to Chair 6 and Race Trail finished (down to Chair 4).

    Looking forward to getting on Chair 6 as conditions allow.

    Please let us know what the plan is for the upcoming weekend. Hoping for another blue bird Friday...

  6. #6
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    We have pushed through a lot of trails in the last 7 weeks

    Hacking through the jungle to complete 'Rock Monster'





    The air is fresh up in the alpine



    We need to dig in a quad access road into Silvertip, it might as well be a bike trail to, eh?



    Stunning views to say the least



    The most beautiful sight ever... and the waterfalls look nice too.



    "Now I am going that way!"



    Quad friendly


  7. #7
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    Me and my domain



    Putting the machines to work



    The Kubota climbing 45 degree face



    A little back breaking labor never hurt anyone



    Getting her done



    Time to shred





    Field of green, trail to be



    Put those bike chairs on there asap!


  8. #8
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    Building a Big Mountain Bike Park (TM) is hard work. Building a community, stoking the flame...


    Making the most savage swamps ridable,


    Bridging the gap between the known and unknown,


    Deciphering the shades of grey


    And rendering color out of the matrix.


    All in all, shredding the high alpine terrain is fun!


    This trail is one of three off the top of the mountain


    Trail Crew hard at work


    I think this riding is unique... outside Europe at least.


    And you know, sometimes eating **** comes with the territory! This hurt!
    (loose Sourdough corner)

  9. #9
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    The mountain is being prepared for Opening Day!


    Look at these guys actually think they are getting on the tram!


    It is true! Come on up!




    Another great day above the fog.


    Time to shred!










    I deem thee trails ready for public consumption!


  10. #10
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    I'm glad you had fun out there! It was a big relief to see 200 people in line by noon. Evidence enough to give me free license to build for the next few years and yes, we will be hitting the lift hard next summer.



    You know I've smoked a lot of grass
    O' Lord, I've popped a lot of pills
    But I never touched nothin'
    That my spirit could kill
    You know, I've seen a lot of people walkin' 'round
    With tombstones in their eyes
    But the pusher don't care
    Ah, if you live or if you die



    God damn, The Pusher
    God damn, I say The Pusher
    I said God damn, God damn The Pusher man







    You know the dealer, the dealer is a man
    With the love grass in his hand
    Oh but the pusher is a monster
    Good God, he's not a natural man
    The dealer for a nickel
    Lord, will sell you lots of sweet dreams
    Ah, but the pusher ruin your body
    Lord, he'll leave your, he'll leave your mind to scream







    God damn, The Pusher
    God damn, God damn the Pusher
    I said God damn, God, God damn The Pusher man





    Well, now if I were the president of this land
    You know, I'd declare total war on The Pusher man
    I'd cut him if he stands, and I'd shoot him if he'd run
    Yes I'd kill him with my Bible and my razor and my gun





    God damn The Pusher
    Gad damn The Pusher
    I said God damn, God damn The Pusher man


    Guilty as charged...

  11. #11
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    This is the trail I was in charge of guinea pigging a few years back in Smithers, BC. 82 jumps and a lot of giant berms. trying to build something like this here...

    First off, here is a prerequisite Whistler video stoke from back in 07:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-iCz6cdCDc&feature=channel_page"]YouTube- CrankWorx 2007

    So needless to say that I have been deeply inspired by riding my bike in Whistler. For the last 6 weeks I have been trying to remember and feed off that energy as we are building a new trail here in Smithers.

    These ohotos cover the first 2km of trail. We finished the entire 5k length in October but it was too wet to really ride. In total there are about 100 jumps, a ton of wicked berms and an enormous wall ride at the bottom that has already munched a few bones. We did do one sweet ride after it all froze but then it was time to ski anyway. We had two excavators, a bunch of pulaskis, a few rakes and a shovel or two.

    Last weekend in September the Ride Guide came for a tour and I think they enjoyed our work!

    These guys look like U2





    Be safe out there, boys!



    Warm up series:




    Getting serious:





    Rolling into 'the Money' Sequence:






    CHAOS!

    They really liked this berm for some reason:


    Can you say 'railing' ?



    This guy got a little too excited:


    And his friend is like WHOA, BRAH!


    I love the skinny jeans and the tall tees and the sheer determination in his face as he jibs the downed bike!


    And then he is like "No friends with booters like this!"





    This is the Fish Hook Berm. A full 270 deg...



    ...that rolls right into a sweet hip.



    These guys could really tweak their bikes:




    Nice Three Pack:







    This is the 'berm to step-down to berm to step-up' section:






    Oh! This guy liked this huge hip:



    Right around that corner is a sweet six pack... and then a huge 1,2... and then a...

    So, this is half way about here. The bottom is gonna be even sweeter I think. I am working on full video sequence for next time! Hope you enjoyed!
    Last edited by Trailzking; 06-30-2011 at 10:46 AM.

  12. #12
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    Love the historical posts about trail building at Alyeska. The Smither's trail looks amazing...

  13. #13
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    Looks awesome man. so from the pics it looks like you know exactly what to shoot for. that was exactly i was thinking. pictures do a much better job. as i said i look forward to watching the trail progression. and no, absolutely don't take out all of the rocks. rocky, techie trails are just as much fun as the jump trails. well, almost... now get back to work and get those trails built!!

  14. #14
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    I'm already hurt this season. You build all those jumps I'm gonna be broken. Or learn to fly.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    So needless to say that I have been deeply inspired by riding my bike in Whistler.
    Couldn't agree more with this statement. Thanks for posting, and for your efforts on the hill...

    I understand you are laying groundwork and we are only seeing the infancy of what is to come.

    That said, I would also echo other's comments... More jumps and more flow.

    The narrow, gnar, techie trails are awesome, but I would like to see wider, flowing, big ass berms, filled with XL booters, A-Line/Dirt Merchant/Blue Velvet/Freight Train style lines.

    Can't wait to shred your new jump line and the upper mountain... Got a new Turner DHR on the way

  16. #16
    DLd
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    Holy Freakin' STOKE OVERLOAD!!! I can just barely get myself to stay at work instead of rushing out to ride right now. I'm lucky the lifts are only open on the weekends, or I'd be fired. That looked like some mucho work going on in the first pic, cuttin' through the jungle. Is there a paypal address to send beer money too? Alyeska, F' YEAH!!

    You ARE da Pusher Man.
    Fall is here. Woo-hoo!

  17. #17
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    Great job Jake and crew

    I'm off to British Columbia today for two weeks with a 4 day stay at Whistler to ride the park. After seeing all of this, I wish I was hanging around. So far, is all of this stuff rideable on a big trail bike (and fun). 5.5 inch travel? I would LOVE to order a DHR, just need some justification. Thanks again Jake. So glad the suits at Alyeska opened up this opportunity for Alaska, and that you are so competent in what you're doing. Can't wait to ride there.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  18. #18
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    Here is some old school AK biking, back when we had to push for the goods.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NIVtxRZzvw


    Here is an edit I did for a video contest. They supplied the video and i supplied the music and editing:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/jvmovie#p/u/17/Ifpsxr9COWs


    This is a edit I came up with after filming Crankworx 2007

    http://www.youtube.com/user/jvmovie#p/u/22/y-iCz6cdCDc


    And here is and edit from the big bike weekend here at Alyeska last September:



    I can't figure out how to embed video...?

  19. #19
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    The AK Big Mountain Biking is a classic. Bird Ridge? Penguin Peak? Healy? Peru?

  20. #20
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    ANC Rider,

    Palmer Creek
    Rainbow Peak
    The Ramp
    South Suicide
    Homicide Peak
    The Wedge
    Alyeska
    Penguin Ridge
    Hope Point
    Lazy Mountain
    Max's
    Crow Pass
    Avalanche Peak
    Point Woronzof
    Bolivia
    Clam Gulch
    Healy
    Christochina
    Ptarmigan Peak

  21. #21
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    Can't wait to get there, any word on chair 6 being open by the weekend of the 8th - 10th?

  22. #22
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    I am pretty sure we are aiming for chair 6 on the 8th. Gonna be sweet to crank out some fast laps.

    Could be slimy tomorrow, work those trails in!

    Here is video of that jump trail:

    http://www.pinkbike.com/video/158370
    Last edited by Trailzking; 07-01-2011 at 10:12 PM.

  23. #23
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    Nice I'll be down on the 8th if chair 6 is running...

  24. #24
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    They bumped the chair 6 opening back a week to the 15th due to a lift maintenance issue.

    Trails are going to be good today...

  25. #25
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    No chiar 6! Ugg, I have one weekend this year to ride at Alyeska and it's not open... Bummer...

  26. #26
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    I think you'd be entertained by the trails accessed by 4. The lack of chair 6 is not as bad in the summer as in the winter.

    Speaking of trails, they were fast and tacky today.

  27. #27
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    Jake awsome work I had a blast riding those trails yesterday and talking with you. A lot of MTB's have been waiting for this for a long time. Can't wait to see what is next that you and the crew are building. Thanks Again

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    Nice Trail Conditions 7/3 & 7/4

    Riding was really nice over the weekend. Cool vibe with paragliders cruising overhead, lots of hikers out on the mountain, the trail crew moving dirt on the upper mountain in the sun and black bears cruising the hill.

    Pushing up that one berm early in Race Trail made the upper trail more fun. More berms on the flatter corners early in the trail would be appreciated too (especially where it meets the road). Seems like the last bit of single track heading into the big berms is itching to be a jump...

    Better every week...

    Hoping for more dry weather for Friday.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfbkr50 View Post
    I'm off to British Columbia today for two weeks with a 4 day stay at Whistler to ride the park. After seeing all of this, I wish I was hanging around.
    i wouldn't go that far. wait until you ride whistler, it doesn't really compare. whole other level. hopefully alyeska will continue to improve and will progress in that direction. at least we finally have lift access... i'm sure a good rider could ride all of the trails on a trail bike or even a hard tail, but that doesn't mean either would be fun. if you are taking your bike to whistler ride it for a day and then rent a full DH bike for a day. you'll be surprised how much more fun you have on the "right" bike.

    pv

  30. #30
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    Where shall be build trail today?



    We finally got to really test ride The Fridays.



    Left turns





    Right turns







    Slashing with all the room in the world!





    Jeramy build this entire trail turn for turn in three days with the mini excavator.
    Reaping the rewards



    Stamp of approval!



    I know, I know, for as stunning as the view may be the people want jumps, jumps, JUMPS!

    While Jeramy has been soaking the view up in the alpine I have been slaving on the other machine in the sweltering alder jungle of lower Tanaka to bring you jumps.

    Here is a soon to be landing for the 10th of ten jumps that will be ready for testing next week!


  31. #31
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    man those new pics are lookin good. it keeps getting better... keep up the good work.

    pv

  32. #32
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    Weekend Trail Update?

    Jake,

    How about a trail/conditions update for the coming weekend on Thursday?
    Last edited by ANC-Rider; 07-06-2011 at 04:19 PM. Reason: typo

  33. #33
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    This is looking very good!

  34. #34
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    Looks good!

  35. #35
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    pictures look great guys

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    THURSDAY UPDATE:

    It hasn't rained since sunday night. Trails should be in great condition.

    We brushed back upper race trail and chopped roots in the lower trees, it is riding super sweet right now.

    The winter trail crew did a bunch of glading along Bermuda corridor and the sight lines are getting better and better.

    Also cleaned out a bunch of loose rocks along all of Grasslands.

    Rock Monster opened on sunday. It is starting to ride better with more traffic (the trail along the creek that cuts under chair four near bottom)

    The crew is now taking fridays off so we can ride and assess what needs to be improved!
    See you out there!

    Don't worry, we will be in the alpine soon enough. I like this picture with the truck at the bottom for scale...



    We are going to start pushing through the eagle rock trail, aiming to be done for our 15th opening.

  37. #37
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    Jake -- Thanks for Thursday Update

    Conditions sound really sweet, now I am going to leave work early and ride Alyeska Friday.

    It would be great if you gave us a Thursday Update every week.

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    Sooo the bad news is that chair 6 is not going to open until the weekend of the 22nd now

    I guess lift maintenance encounter a glitch in their plans so we are bumped back another week. The good news is that it gives us another week to get the upper mtn good and ready for you guys. Thinking of pushing this machine up through Eagle and/or push it it all the way up Silvertip. Either way it is gonna be sweet.

    It is funny how with no rain for a week now we are seeing some of these berms start to blow out on the upper edge where they have not been packed in by bike tracks.

    Too wet, too dry...

    Since we will be on 4 for another week we are trying to get some other stuff going on the lower mtn in the meanwhile...

  39. #39
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    Tram it?

    Im sure the traffc jam on the tram would be minimal with chair 3/4 running at the same time........

  40. #40
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    I'm finally healed up enough and my replacement handlebar finally arrived. I'll be down today. Can't wait!

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    Here is a quick edit I put together from last weekend


  42. #42
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    nice crotch angle.... Not that I dislike pov but come on, the seatpost angle looking back was ok, but looking forward was terrible, and looking back at your crotch WTF I'd like my almost 3 minutes back please.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by chugachjed View Post
    nice crotch angle.... Not that I dislike pov but come on, the seatpost angle looking back was ok, but looking forward was terrible, and looking back at your crotch WTF I'd like my almost 3 minutes back please.
    Have to agree, I had to click on it just to see what the fuss was about. The looking back angle works best when you can get the riders behind you to stay right on your tail. The POV for the looking forward was essentially like "This is what it would look like to ride down the trail with your head up my ass". I think we should name that shot the ass-hat POV, because it gives you the feeling that your wearing an ass on your head!. I just chuckled and clicked away to see if it changed at all when I got to the full-on crotch shots, so no comment on those. The trail conditions looked good from the rear-facing shots though. At least now you know where not to put the camera.
    Fall is here. Woo-hoo!

  44. #44
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    Beautiful Weekend - July 8-10

    Couldn't have asked for much better weather last weekend, It was nice to be out on almost completely dry trails. I am sure that won't be the norm, keeping my fingers crossed for more moderately dry weather this weekend.

    I keep looking at the upper mountain wishing Chair Six would run, tough to be patient for another couple weeks. I am guessing having mud covered riders with big bikes mixing with tourists on the tram isn't a palletable option...

    Nice additional jump on The Grasslands, seems like there is room for a lot more like it especially along the long flats after you cross the road on the upper part of the trail. The lower corners (before the lower road) on The Grasslands could really use some love and/or birming.

    The work in the woods on Lower Race Trail made it flow better without ruining the fun. Once you leave the woods and drop those lower ledges and are opening it up something on the road to spice it up would be cool. Rock Monster is coming along but a there is something magnetic about letting your bike run toward the lift base there.

    Looking forward to the Thursday Update...

    Might be time to split the thread soon, getting so long.

  45. #45
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    Not trying Rio to be a dick just constructive criticism. I can be abrasive unintentionally. Thanks for posting stoke.

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    How about a tuesday update?

    Perfect amount of rain last night to dampen the earth for easier trail molding.

    Blasted in 5 new berms out the bottom of race trail, so instead of juking into the woods you can keep ripping fast out the bottom. I agree on wanting to blow right by Rock Monster every time. Won't help when we plant a huge booter right as the trail crests over into Tanaka (:

    Also completed access into soon to be 'skills park'. So when you cross the Tanaka road second to last time, you keep going cross hill into alder thicket. Super roller coaster fun in there! 3 or 4 20-30 footers. Big and easy! Go slow the first time...

    There are about 5 spots along Grasslands traverse that badly need reshaping. need crew of 20 guys!

    What do you mean by 'split thread'? It won't automatically make new page?

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    Good to see you on Sunday V was pulling up when I was heading out. I'll try to get a lap or two in with you next time I make it down. I was no fun to ride with Sunday still nervous and trying to shake it out after exploding on industry day.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    How about a tuesday update?

    Perfect amount of rain last night to dampen the earth for easier trail molding.

    Blasted in 5 new berms out the bottom of race trail, so instead of juking into the woods you can keep ripping fast out the bottom. I agree on wanting to blow right by Rock Monster every time. Won't help when we plant a huge booter right as the trail crests over into Tanaka (:

    Also completed access into soon to be 'skills park'. So when you cross the Tanaka road second to last time, you keep going cross hill into alder thicket. Super roller coaster fun in there! 3 or 4 20-30 footers. Big and easy! Go slow the first time...

    What do you mean by 'split thread'? It won't automatically make new page?
    Thx 4 the update bud ... That is a bummer about chair 6. I will probably hike up and scope the new line

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    How about a tuesday update?

    Perfect amount of rain last night to dampen the earth for easier trail molding.

    Blasted in 5 new berms out the bottom of race trail, so instead of juking into the woods you can keep ripping fast out the bottom. I agree on wanting to blow right by Rock Monster every time. Won't help when we plant a huge booter right as the trail crests over into Tanaka (:

    Also completed access into soon to be 'skills park'. So when you cross the Tanaka road second to last time, you keep going cross hill into alder thicket. Super roller coaster fun in there! 3 or 4 20-30 footers. Big and easy! Go slow the first time...

    There are about 5 spots along Grasslands traverse that badly need reshaping. need crew of 20 guys!

    What do you mean by 'split thread'? It won't automatically make new page?
    Jake,

    What I meant was this thread is getting quite long and fat with cool media. It might be a good idea to open a new thread at the end of the month (maybe "Official Alyeska Trails Feedback -- Aug 2011"). Loading the thread on mobile devices is slow already, wonder how it is for Ipad and other tablet users.

    Thanks again for all your efforts developing trails and moving earth.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by chugachjed View Post
    Not trying Rio to be a dick just constructive criticism. I can be abrasive unintentionally. Thanks for posting stoke.
    I guess I should specify that my comments were meant as good-natured ribbing as well. It takes some trial and error to figure out what placements are going to look good with a go-pro, especially with no LCD screen.
    Fall is here. Woo-hoo!

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    hope ya' got yur grade dips ready for the typhoons of fall!

    Hey TzKing,

    Stoked that Aly has thrown so much into the DH scene, am looking forward to checking it out...as a traildesignerbuildergeekofalltrailstuff, was looking at all your way cool insloped banked turns and just thinking about those days in the past decades when Gwood gets like 5" of rain in a day, for a week straight, and the creek by the daylodge is running into the front door of the Jade Shop...guess you can replace all those nice organic and silty clay brown berms w/ gravel when that happens, altho it can get pretty pricey (the stuff from Gary McCarthy's or whoever owns it now, up near the Crow Pass TH is pretty great angular stuff that packs in real nice w/ plate compacters). Also wondering what sort of head cut will happen if/when the amount of water entrained per trail can be measured in units of CFS... So will be looking forward to seeing if you're doing any armoring and what you're doing for cross drainage...I've got lots of specs, drawings, pics, brought IMBA up here a couple of times, and would be happy to share, not meaning to belittle the hard work you all been doing, just interested in making it sustainable and good for all. (hey, I will be down there for a couple of weekday meetings next week so could look you up yadda yadda...anyway, keep up the great work! I'm jealous, but happy somebody's out working the dirt, while I'm movin' mts. of paper! kk
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails OFFICIAL Alyeska Trails Feedback-img_5273.jpg  


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    Thursday Update?

    Jake,

    Could you provide us with a pre-weekend update?

    Thanks...

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    Yep --> Thursday Update Please

    Jake,

    A Thursday Update would be cool with pics if possible...

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    Well you could think about it and come up with the rain then sun = awesome. Those trails really needed rain.

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    My first experience at Alyeska, and DH period was a blast. I rented a Kona Stinky which was great minus the brakes that hadnt broken in yet. There are trails for every skill group. I didnt take a map, so I cant tell you which trails are which, but the real thick wooded trail that is right under the lift was sick. Thank god for a good bike that is very forgiving. It was fun enough to end my shopping for another XC bike and move over to a six inch setup.

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    ...
    Last edited by fordolet; 07-22-2011 at 11:31 PM.

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    Sorry for missing the thursday update, ended up staying in Kasilof an extra day waiting for the reds to show up... ended up with 2 !? Maybe head back on monday.



    It rained off and on through the afternoon, everything is riding fast and tacky.

    99501,

    You gone an posted a wide ass shot of the desert so I have to scroll back and forth to read the words...

    Sounds like you need to get out on the trails and assess the drainage and berm shapes in person. Rest assured that we are all familiar with IMBA standards and follow those guidelines where applicable.


    Chair 6 is really going to be open next week! Come on out get your shred on! This Eagle Rock trail is going to be the coolest on the mountain.

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    Little bit of rain really tuned up the trails. Tanaka got greasy but race trail and the other stuff just got better.

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    Give it another season and all of Tanaka will be gravel too, thanks to the monsoons washing the greasy organics away! Last year Silvertip was on the greasy side and now she is perfect packed gravel.

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    Good ride today......thanks for the work again. Race trail was very nice to able to dump out all way down, even in the rain it maintains it tackiness. Tanaka is good on the upper half, got greasy quick, but what can you expect for a downpour.



    Suggestion, not sure if anyone has noticed it, or if its just me. .....when race trail starts to dump out and goes up over the small hill/crest and on the downside there looks to be a water table/birm of some sorts that has a dip right befor the raised area... its pretty abrupt...could that be smoothed out and something built over it? It resembled the dumpout that was on tanaka before the bigger board got installed.


    Jed: I think backshift has some more footage for you
    Last edited by nojoke; 07-16-2011 at 10:38 PM.

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    ^^^ Not sure I follow, are you talking about the woop de doo thing at the very bottom? That is a big water bar needed for spring run off.

    Or higher right where the roll crests over and you are kind of trending left across some bumps? I do recall a small water bar in there. That would be a good stretch to give a chopping.

    Soudough got a complete brush cut over the last couple of days. Also started moving back over Tanaka traverse dialing in flow. We finally got the upper mountain all linked together with the new Fridays trail. Working on Eagle all week, see what we get done...

    'Last Call' down on lower tanaka will be ready on friday along with CHAIR 6!

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    Ha so that was him with the gopro on his seatpost. I keep getting faster but I'm still nervous after my wreck. Next week I'll be able to keep up.

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    Last edited by Trailzjester; 07-28-2011 at 03:01 PM.

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    Thursday Update This Week?

    Jake,

    Could you provide a Thursday update this week? It would be interesting to hear what the conditions are on the various upper mountain trails.

    Looking forward to riding some additional terrain and 2500ft of vertical

    Amazed at the progress in a year.

  65. #65
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    This is an awesome thread guys. Looks like amazing riding and one more reason to get myself over the border. Glad to see a local ski hill stepping up in a big way for mountain biking.

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    As of wednesday evening things are looking fantastic for the upcoming weekend of Big Mountain Biking!

    All of the upper mountain trails are buffed gravel and mineral soil that have held up great over the winter. We've widened and bermed everything, and have an easier go around for Sign Line.

    We had heavy rains a few days ago followed by 48 of sun now. Believe it or not, yesterday afternoon Tanaka had a more 'washed feel' like the greasiness was going the way of the dinosaurs!

    I'll take some pics tomorrow and post update in pm...

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    Finished 'Last Call', sunny and hot today. Tomorrow looks good!



    Last edited by Trailzking; 07-21-2011 at 11:54 PM.

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    Thom looks stoked...

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    Trails were awesome today. Everything continues to setup very well. The Race Trail in the tree section upper/lower is setting up better everytime I ride it.

    The jump line looks very promising, landings look soft, 1st hit is definitely a sak up or go home hit.Our group literally ran into the Black bear/cub over on the the new jump line. We rode it twice and was thinking about manning up but they closed it down for the rest of the day for the bears.

    Chair 6 down was nice also, the new berm section off "The Fridays" is awesome and flows very well, my favorite by far. It hooks up super hard when you get aggressive. Nice jumps/rollers in there also, good if you time them right and dont come up short. The Black diamond off the top of chair 6 is some sketchy stuff, but I like it. It hooks up super hard when you get aggressive. Nice jumps/rollers in there also.

    Thanks again for the kickass work guys!! Be back down in the a.m.....

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    So yeah, chair 6 is having some issues and will down for sunday too. Something about the bull wheel making funny noises...? We got in 4 solid hours yesterday, just a taste of the shredding to be had.

    Don't despair! We are continuing to dial in Last Call. look for the new exit out the bottom after the wood ramp.

    Raining now, see what tomorrow brings.

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    Trail Conditions This Week?

    Quote Originally Posted by nojoke View Post
    Trails were awesome today. Everything continues to setup very well. The Race Trail in the tree section upper/lower is setting up better everytime I ride it.

    The jump line looks very promising, landings look soft, 1st hit is definitely a sak up or go home hit.Our group literally ran into the Black bear/cub over on the the new jump line. We rode it twice and was thinking about manning up but they closed it down for the rest of the day for the bears.

    Chair 6 down was nice also, the new berm section off "The Fridays" is awesome and flows very well, my favorite by far. It hooks up super hard when you get aggressive. Nice jumps/rollers in there also, good if you time them right and dont come up short. The Black diamond off the top of chair 6 is some sketchy stuff, but I like it. It hooks up super hard when you get aggressive. Nice jumps/rollers in there also.

    Thanks again for the kickass work guys!! Be back down in the a.m.....
    Looks like winter in Ireland on Alyeska's Web Cams today, might be a soggy week. How's the maintenance coming on Chair 6?

    I agree with NJ's post above, the black diamond single tracks are exciting on Chair 6. Definitely one of a kind riding up there on the upper part of the terrain served by Chair Six. Just off-loading at the top of Chair Six has an ambience to it when you take in the terrain around you. Interesting experience riding techy traction limit stuff and then transitioning to flowier stuff down below on Chair 6.

    Might be cool to goal post the jumps on Last Call with flags indicating the intended direction of take off. I hit the second big jump and landed on a 24" tall dirt and mud ball, I assumed that I should have jumped aiming more right instead of left. At the last jump before the wood I ran into a black bear coming up the trail and detoured right. No shortage of excitement at the bike park.

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    Yesterday was soggy, today not so bad.

    We finally hacked though the crux of the new Eagle Rock trail. Gonna be sweet to finish that one. Maybe open for public by saturday or sunday...

    Last Call is verging on experimental trail building. Bottomless organics coupled with dynamic hydraulics have proven a tough match but I think she'll come around. The jumps are kind of techy. I think it is good to roll through the first time and check out the left/right trends with take offs and landings. Going to continue adding gravel, maybe some fabric, maybe some paving stones... It sure if fun when it is dry though!

    You like the new exit into the parking lot. Going to double up the wood ramp and add some gravel etc...

  73. #73
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    Yesterday was soggy, today not so bad.

    We finally hacked though the crux of the new Eagle Rock trail. Gonna be sweet to finish that one. Maybe open for public by saturday or sunday...

    Last Call is verging on experimental trail building. Bottomless organics coupled with dynamic hydraulics have proven a tough match but I think she'll come around. The jumps are kind of techy. I think it is good to roll through the first time and check out the left/right trends with take offs and landings. Going to continue adding gravel, maybe some fabric, maybe some paving stones... It sure if fun when it is dry though!

    You like the new exit into the parking lot? Going to double up the wood ramp and add some gravel etc...

  74. #74
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    Chair 6?

    Any word on how the maintenance on Chair 6 is going?

    Looks like it was pretty dry today in Girdwood today, tomorrow might be a good day at Alyeska.

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    might take a pass this weekend if 6 isn't open...

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    Everything is has dried out pretty good the last couple of days. Last Call is even starting to firm up finally.

    I kind of put my head in the sand concerning 6, but I am thinking it is a no go for tomorrow at least. Check the report in the morning. Could always go for a push in the afternoon if you get bored

  77. #77
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    Thank you Trailzking and your crew for all your hard work! Had a blast riding Aly!

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    No good Another Weekend W/O Chair 6?

    Bummer, management down there put-off maintenance so long. Looks like the 5th weekend in a row without Chair 6 running (except a few hours last Friday). Maybe the marketing crew will come up with a 1/2 price marketing scheme for riding half the mountain.

    Sad to see the trail crew working so hard on trails w/o lift service.

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    ^^ Yeah we could've done some sweet expansion on lower mtn by now. But since we have all waited for like 10 years to shred on 6 anyway, what is another couple of weeks?

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    had a great time today. the jump line is getting gooooood! it is a little wet on a couple of the LZs and corners but nothing that put me over the bars. almost, but not quite... the jumps are good, good take offs and nice transitions. first time at aly at the end of the day i had a little bit of the excitement i remember from whistler. absolutely no complaints but having a little of that stoke sure was nice. looking forward to riding chair six again. keep up the good work.

    pv

    oh, and fyi, i'm sure you know, a few of the corners on the race trail are starting to get blown out and could use some TLC when you get a chance.

  81. #81
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    Finally

    Got out there today to ride the lifts and the new lower trails. Made a hike to the top once, but decided the trails down low were plenty fun. Good stuff in there so far. Seemed real quiet there though. Does management think there is enough interest to keep this ball rolling? The terrain there is so unique and has huge potential. We were daydreaming lines on the chairlift. South face lines, high traverse, cliff drops with nice transitions, and the coolest daydream was an A-line in the Alpine. Whistler has real cool trails, but I think with all the alpine terrain we have at Alyeska, it could be cooler. Time will tell. You guys have put some back and sweat into that place and it is appreciated.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  82. #82
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    Rode again today with backshift and ak puravida.....


    Small Last Call video below.....sidenote -- I was drag racing my car lastnight @ Alaska Raceway park lastnight and forgot to switch the cam off 1080p R5 mode, r4 mode is way better for helmet cam action, lost alot of vertical angle on the video with the 1080 r5 mode, so I aplogize.

    Nice running into you today Mark!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EufsOIvQutM


    On another note as puravida mentions, race trail is getting blown out in the trees some, and could use some TLC, maybe a berm down low on the lower race trail where it intersects the line that comes outa the trees also, that section would rail with a small berm to point you away from the stumps and larger boulders adds a lil pucker factor hahah


    The mountain was not kind to my bike today, took a flat along with a a taco/dent on my brand new wheelset, needs replaced, them ripped the derailer out of the hanger on the last run. You can however ride Tanaka/Last Call chainless....its not to bad hahah

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    New berm/switchbacks

    New berms/switchbacks on lower tanaka! No more crummy tire skidding barely-making-it switchbacks!
    Mucho better!
    Perhaps ye-old Millennium Falcon ( chair 6 ) will be up and running? I've heard they got a new hyper drive in to replace the old one!
    Last edited by Trailzjester; 08-02-2011 at 09:57 AM.

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    ... and new jump line over on chair 3! Who needs 6?

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    Last call is nice. Had to roll everything once before sending!

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    More Trail Work on Lower Mt.?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    ... and new jump line over on chair 3! Who needs 6?
    What's in store for this week? More lower mountain trail work? Race Trail and Lower Grasslands could use some love...

    Nice weather last Friday & Saturday, beautiful days to be out riding. Last Call is getting better every day it is open.

    Bummer to see the cable on Chair 6 slacked out again, looks like another round of heavy duty wrench turning and machining is underway.

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    6 will be down this weekend but running again next week, hopefully.

    We have been putting a bit of work into the lower mtn stuff. I am glad everyone seems to really like Last Call. It has been a bit if a challenge wrangling the glop into submission. It has also been a challenge to convince the crew that it would be worth the effort. What's wrong with a little mud? It's mountain biking!

    That being said, the chair three jump line is going to be sweet. It will start at top of 7 and make way down bikers right side of Christmas where all the trees were removed. Nice gravel/dirt with southern exposure and big jumps should add up to fun riding!

    It rained hard the the last 2 days but this afternoon a fair breeze picked so things have started to dry out.

  88. #88
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    Thursday update:

    It has been raining off and on for the last three days. Occasional downpour mixed with off and on drizzle...

    I say we open tomorrow no matter what. I remember some days at Whistler where you don full rain gear and get after it in the slop, an inch of mud covering everything!

    Anyway, see what tomorrow brings. Maybe it will be bluebird

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    when do you expect the chair three jump line to be finished/rideable? another perfect spot for 3 or 4 tables would be between the first set of corners at the top of chair 4, in the grass, on the right hand side, along the access road going down to chair 6. also, the last right hander in that same first set of corners could use a bigger berm. or any berm actually. i always seem to blow that one...

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    ^^^ Good eye on jump location, I'll take a look and see what we can do.

    Yeah that last right hander in that section is no bueno. I had plowed through those turns with the machine about 12 hours before opening day way back when and they have been bugging me ever since.

    I figure I need about an hour on the machine to finish new line on 3 then another hour with the rake. Hopefully I can get through it in the AM and get er opened tomorrow!

    Late PM update:

    pissing rain.

    bring ski-gee.

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    Whodathunkit, but the weather went from real crappy to real nice this afternoon! Sunny right now. Tomorrow could be sweet...

    I made three laps in early afternoon. It was cool to see so much water moving around. I know it would seem unlikely 2 weeks ago but Tanaka was not so bad! My plan appears to be working, organics are washing away leaving a nice bedpan layer of packed gravel.

    We redid the switchbacks on the main face and those were soft, as no one has ever ridden them. And Last Call is one more solid gravel haul away from being 'done' !

    We are doing a heli drop in the AM on NF to build steps in the steep section. Then I am going to get on machine and finish chair three area and then start moving into position for a new corridor up to Waterfall and an eventual link up to new International trail.

    Stay tuned!

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    Anyone get wet this weekend?

    Like I said, bring rain gear! Here's how it went down: We finally got around to redoing the Tanaka switchbacks and then it started raining for a week straight. So that is why those corners are best described as hub deep 'brownie batter'. All the fresh dirt had never been packed etc etc.

    Anyway, 6 should be open next weekend and let me tell ya, the riding up there is awesome in more ways then one. Specifically the gravel up there is way more resilient to heavy rains. I just did a couple of laps this afternoon and it is like it never rained...

    Unless the sun comes out and bakes those brownies to perfection, Tanaka might be closed next week.

    Did anyone pile into that hole in Gummy Worm? A spring popped out of the dirt right there and it ate more then a few tires. We dug it out and redrained today.

    Gosh darn rainforest...

  93. #93
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    Didn't make it down... if 6 was open I would have broke out the rain gear! When are you thinking the new jump line will be done?

    Forecast looks bomber...

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    Had a blast this weekend. Went out on Saturday and the weather stayed perfect the whole Day. We rode chair three for the most part, chair 4 puts me to sleep. Tanaka definitely was a mess, but still a lot of fun to ride. Im still new, so most my time is spent trying to keep on the wheels. I probably did 6 or 7 passes on Rollover as it is so flowy and fun. Im shopping for brakes as we speak so I can have a little confidence for next time.

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    Wet Weekend

    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    Anyone get wet this weekend?

    Like I said, bring rain gear! Here's how it went down: We finally got around to redoing the Tanaka switchbacks and then it started raining for a week straight. So that is why those corners are best described as hub deep 'brownie batter'. All the fresh dirt had never been packed etc etc.

    Anyway, 6 should be open next weekend and let me tell ya, the riding up there is awesome in more ways then one. Specifically the gravel up there is way more resilient to heavy rains. I just did a couple of laps this afternoon and it is like it never rained...

    Unless the sun comes out and bakes those brownies to perfection, Tanaka might be closed next week.

    Did anyone pile into that hole in Gummy Worm? A spring popped out of the dirt right there and it ate more then a few tires. We dug it out and redrained today.

    Gosh darn rainforest...
    Definitely a mud fest last weekend. It was amazing to see how well most of the trails held up to the wet week. Only a few really ugly spots, the last 100 yards of Bermuda was a slop filled mess with lots of roots in just the wrong places but it was fun to plough through. The lower corners on The Grasslands definitely were filled up with library paste and a couple of jumps melted. The water draining down the upper section of Race Trail probably should be redirected across the trail. It was impressive to see how well everything held up in general and how well it rode wet.

    Had to smile on one of my first runs down Grasslands on Saturday when my mud packed tires turned green from picking up all the brush cuttings left over from trail work. More folks should have come down and ridden as the conditions were a lot like the opening weekend.

    The reworking of lower Grasslands is showing a lot of promise despite the set back with some of the trail work getting turned to muck. Even after plowing through the muck it was so nice to come out of the corners onto a berm. Maybe next Spring every corner on Grasslands will get a huge berm dug in with the track hoe and a coating of gravel..

    If the forecast holds Friday and Saturday should be great days for biking at Aly. Looking forward to riding Chair 6 again...

    Alyeska's Marketing Dept. should produce some Alyeska Bike Park T-Shirts and/or Jerseys.

  96. #96
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    Hoorah to riding on Saturday. I'm thinking it will be like the Tram open day last fall. It will be fun to watch rippers from the chair.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

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    We got 2 new jump lines over on chair 3 to 98% completion today. Just waiting for the sun to do a little drying and we will give final go ahead on friday morning.

    The as of yet unnamed line (thinking Bobcat) over on far right has 10 + airs and the revamped 'Xmas in July' has 3 nice airs. Looking forward to lapping 3!

    I am tired of battling all of the water this week, but things are looking good in general.


    Oh yeah, if anyone wants to go hike NF trail we built some new steps out there. 52 to be exact.









    and now back to your regular scheduled program...

  98. #98
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    nice weather today. Should dry out new trails well eh? Was super fun riding in the wet and muddy weather though! Adds to the experience. I do hope for dry for this weekend and for chair six, possible opening....

  99. #99
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    Chair 6 WILL be spinning Friday and all weekend! If you see any one of our lift maintenance crew, buy em a coffe or a beer, they have been kicking butt to get Chair 6 operational!
    Burntski

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    Smile

    YeaH for chair 6!!

  101. #101
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    I walked Tanaka this afternoon and it set up pretty good. Tomorrow is gonna be sweet!

  102. #102
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    today was the best day of the year yet! upper mountain trails were soo sweet!!!!

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    did it rain more then? b/c tanaka was decent but still damp except in the corners where they ended up pretty damn muddy. so bad that we walked a couple of them just to avoid douching the bikes and rutting it out even worse. honestly race trail probably should have been closed b/c is was so muddy. similar situ for last call which was a bummer b/c it was awesome last week. we rode them each once and decided all we were doing was tearing it up. btw, went over and checked out he new jump line off of chair three. didn't really ride it, just looked it over as it obviously wasn't finished yet. looks good. going to be fun. the bigger step down is going to be sickness if the tranny works out. any plans for a couple tables? those are great for people to learn on b/c flat landing the top is much less severe than not making a gap or casing a double... upper mountain was good. fridays was riding nice. hopefully it has a chance to dry out more this week but it is calling for nothing but rain...

    pv

  104. #104
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    The berms on Tanaka are finally coming around. The crew raked a bunch of the mud out and we are getting down to the gravel. Maybe one more rinse cycle...? Today the mud was 2-3" deep where last week it was pushing 1'.

    Last Call does need another solid effort with the rock and gravel. I try not to rush and do work that might not need done but I kinda knew we'd have to do another pass in there.

    We did another pass through in bermuda and I thought it was riding pretty good today. Then again I like the mud

    On another topic, Chair 6 is having major problems. As far as I have been told it will be down the rest of the summer. They need to order a new bull wheel and it coming from Quebec by Nov 11... Maybe the Tram?

    With that being said we are refocusing efforts into the lower mountain. Yes that includes mud but hopefully it will include more trails with mud. We will start armoring priority spots and expanding when possible.

  105. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trailzking View Post
    The berms on Tanaka are finally coming around. The crew raked a bunch of the mud out and we are getting down to the gravel. Maybe one more rinse cycle...? Today the mud was 2-3" deep where last week it was pushing 1'.

    Last Call does need another solid effort with the rock and gravel. I try not to rush and do work that might not need done but I kinda knew we'd have to do another pass in there.

    We did another pass through in bermuda and I thought it was riding pretty good today. Then again I like the mud

    On another topic, Chair 6 is having major problems. As far as I have been told it will be down the rest of the summer. They need to order a new bull wheel and it coming from Quebec by Nov 11... Maybe the Tram?

    With that being said we are refocusing efforts into the lower mountain. Yes that includes mud but hopefully it will include more trails with mud. We will start armoring priority spots and expanding when possible.
    Wow, dissapointing, I bought a groupon deal before the season started so I could go this summer/fall and try it out. I haven't gotten to go yet and was planning to go sometime next month with a friend. So how many trails will I miss out on compared to the lower mountain?

  106. #106
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    Yo

    If you haven't been, you won't know the difference. There is plenty of good stuff on the lower mountain to make a fun day.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

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    The word is that we will be running on the Tram from sept 9 until oct 9.

    Thursday update: steady drizzle. Plenty of gnar to go around.

  108. #108
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    Got mud?

    Is chair three jump line finished?

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    Yeah the new jump line is open, aka Bobcat.

    and the rerouted Xmas in July open too.

  110. #110
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    Preparing to do battle tomorrow. What you guys see out there today?

    We are working on new trail on Tanaka side called XtraTuff. You know when you are hauling across the knoll on top of Waterfall and you bank and dive left off the knoll at 40mph...?

    Right there the new trail jumps straight into the woods and will run above the road all the way to International corner where you can run back down the road back onto Tanaka Grasslands or continue into the alder thicket and make way down to top of Tanaka lift with a short hop back across quad trail to Grasslands again. Eventually looking for high line that will go way left towards TV corner with hook up to ancient Alderbahn.

    Stay tuned.

  111. #111
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    Did I post these here yet?

    Where shall be build trail today?



    We finally got to really test ride The Fridays.



    Left turns





    Right turns







    Slashing with all the room in the world!





    Jeramy build this entire trail turn for turn in three days with the mini excavator.
    Reaping the rewards



    Stamp of approval!



    If you get tired of Chair 4 in the meanwhile go for a quick side country hike and slay some big mountain turns!

  112. #112
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    How are the trails looking today?

  113. #113
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    There were quite a few people out hooting and hollering around on the hill today. The trails are still quite wet. It was sunny most the day then around 4pm it started raining very, very hard. Probably 2 inches in the hour. The riding quickly became epic, to use the term lightly.

    I seriously think the that Alyeska could now be the muddiest mountain bike park in the world right now. I think marketing should embrace the concept and we all need to embrace that we are smack in the middle of a rain forest and sometimes riding in full raingear and Xtratufs is not so bad!

    So yes, the trails are doing great!

  114. #114
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    Tanaka actually hauled ass very well in the downpour and soon after, see vid below. This was on the tail end of the "very hard" rain Trailzking described. If you stayed in the trail where the water was rushing down it hooked up pretty damn good. Love the new roller coming off the knoll before you drop into Tanaka. Covered head to toe, had a blast today!!

    Aly Slopfest - YouTube view in 720

  115. #115
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    ^^ That vid was super sweet.

    I rode from the top today and the trails were unaffected by the heavy rains. Tanaka went from pure muck yesterday, to pretty sweet today. All the gravel that is emerging is super grippy indeed!

    Oh yeah, we finished XtraTuf today. It is fast and technical.

  116. #116
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    Mud is fun!


  117. #117
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    We have about 12.25 miles of dh trails at Alyeska now with about 9.5 built this year.

    Berms etc




    This guys wants to hit it
















  118. #118
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    I got to ride Alyeska last Friday with my wife and some friends.

    We live in Bellingham, Washington now but my wife and I grew up in AK and we head up to visit family several times each year. We’re avid All Mountain / Downhillers and we’ve been getting to Whistler pretty regularly this summer. I’d call myself a 5 and my wife a 4 on the Whistler Ability Level guide (out of 6).

    My thoughts in no particular order:
    The rental guys were great.

    It was really sloppy in the morning – and I’m used to riding during the winters in the PNW. I had a hard time deciding how good the trails were because of how muddy it was. Even when Whistler is really wet, it doesn’t develop the same mud. I think it must be partly soil composition and drainage differences.
    I got advice from some guys (the guy on the Giant in the above post?) that the stuff under Chair 3 was good and to avoid the jump line (Last Call?) because it was so muddy. By the afternoon it was starting to dry out some and we did a few more laps on Tanaka. The character of the trail was totally different. It was a lot of fun.

    I’d echo what some others have said here too – I’d like the berms on Tanaka/Grasslands to be higher. They’re really tight for the speed you carry into them but I could like the tightness if they were higher. Tanaka/Grasslands needs jumps – more like Crank It Up than A-Line.

    Bermuda Triangle was unpleasant because of the conditions – I can see the potential if it were dry. Race Trail was dry and great. Not fun enough to put up with Bermuda for a second lap though. Race Trail needs some jumps.

    The stuff under Chair 3 was surprisingly dry in the afternoon and was a lot of fun. A pretty good mix there – I had fun and the girl in our group who hadn’t been on a bike in 15 years wasn’t terrified.

    We didn’t push up to the top and we didn’t hit everything on the lower mountain.

    My wishlist: better drainage, more jumps, better berms – probably in that order.
    I wouldn’t even bother building any new trails until those things are in order.

    Anyway, I really had fun and I appreciate all of the hard work you guys have put in. I’ll be back every summer to ride it again.

    To Jake and Jeramy and the rest of the court, I’d be happy to show you around our mountains if you’re ever in Bellingham.

  119. #119
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    ^^ Yeah, the mud has been off the hook the last few weeks in general. You did notice the difference between the gravel trails and the organic ooze. It does becomes a case of the trail emerging out of the primordial soup. You should have seen Bermuda two months ago, totally different as we try to keep up with those changes. When I think of our tree gnar trails I think of "In Deep" or "No Joke". Look how wide and gnarly those trails are after 5-10 years of riding. They have eroded to a stable state where as we are still a way off from that in some areas.


    I agree, we need about 50 new jumps and have been planning a bunch of Tanaka work soon. Crank it up, hells yeah!

  120. #120
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    Any updates on the trails this week?

  121. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwaltman View Post
    My wishlist: better drainage, more jumps, better berms – probably in that order.
    I wouldn’t even bother building any new trails until those things are in order.
    AMEN BROTHER! although i say forget shooting for crank it up, rather shoot for freight train, dirt merchent, a-line, etc, and hope you end up with something that is a small sample that resembles crank it up. water mitigation is your number one issue. if it can be done the turns on tanaka need to be completely reworked to introduce some flow. if not, then one or more of the switchbacks could be removed in order to add BIG banked corners. it may make it shorter but it sure would make it a lot more fun. or a big banked corner to a nice step down... and i still say the section between chair four and six is a perfect place for 3+ LARGE tables...

  122. #122
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    We ended up with 6.5 inches of rain from the last 5 days.

    Spent a couple of busy days ditching every foot of trail.

    Hauled some gravel into beginning of Bermuda to help eat up some of the gnar in the beginning.

    Pushed machine down the first stretch of International to get rid of roots etc.
    That along with Xtra Tuff are pretty fun.

    95% finish on the Slots. Half way down Don's look for the exit and go left. We are going to keep working the first 100 yards the next few mornings.

    Aiming to finally finish Eagle Rock by Sat or Sun.

    Keep big picture in mind. Using this season to fill in the blanks with skeleton of trail system. Over next couple summers everything is going to get fleshed out.

  123. #123
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    Whistler wasn't built in a day

    I've heard people talk about the beginning days of Whistler, and it didn't sound as cool as the beginning days of Alyeska biking. Riding the tram yesterday to access the upper mountain stuff was cool. We were even mentioning how the big mountain feel you get at Alyeska surpassed the experience at Whistler just from an alpine riding point of view. Way out of the trees next to a glacier and you can see the ocean. What's the word on the owners putting their chips in to keep this project rolling? Success this summer, despite the chair 6 problem? So cool to ride there, although the smell of snow has me thinking skiing.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  124. #124
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    no doubt whistler wasn't built perfect the first try out. but they pretty much have it perfected now. might as well steal what they learned and build the aly trails correctly the first time. don't get me wrong, it is great to finally have lift access up here, and i understand that it is very easy to complain when you're not the one doing the work, but, it is know what works and what doesn't, lets build them the right way the first time.

    so have they said how long aly will be open to bikes?

    pv

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    Copy that --

    I thought today could have been the best day of the summer! We finished Eagle right at 11am after a YEAR of plucking away in there.

    It was like a key to the puzzle that lifted a weight and let me finally think of refocusing attention from 'expansion' to 'maintenance and upgrades.' It has been a solid 4 and half month push up there and I see like 100 things that need to be done all over the place!

    I am thinking 'jump and drop detail' for a couple of weeks and we can roll into the dark of winter killing it!

    I kind of like having no 6 running so it makes the top trails seem worth the 10 minute push...

    Oh yeah OCT 9 is last weekend.



    Last edited by Trailzking; 09-11-2011 at 11:25 PM.

  126. #126
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    Hauled in rocks and gravel for lower trees of Bermuda. Cut out bad roots, built up corner. Abouuut 3 x faster now!

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    cool. if i can find the time to put my bike back together from the trip i', thinking of trying to come down.

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    The gravel at the start of Bermuda made a big difference. I know that The Slotts are getting a lot of attention but it would be cool to see the last 50' of Don's Run get repaired or graveled too.

    Amazing progress for a single season, looking forward to a few more good weekends.

  129. #129
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    We filled in the big hole at the end of Dons on Tuesday. In the AM I am going to fill the hole on lower Slots and then think about chopping out some more vegetation on upper Slots.

    It hasn't really rained since Tuesday, should be pretty decent tomorrow!

  130. #130
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    I've been excited all summer to get a chance to try out Alyeska. I bought a groupon a while back to get a two for one special and now my friend I ride with is backing out. It's because a friend of ours that rides said it was scary steep and that my friends bike probably won't handle it. I was surprised to hear this coming from a guy who rides single track and dirt every day and get in thousands of miles every summer.

    What am I getting myself into if I head up there? I have a cannondale prophet 5 all mountain full suspension. I ride mostly xc trails and have done all the STA trails on the hill side along with gas line trail etc... My buddy does't seen confident we wont break something and get hurt. He's got a hard tail diamond back 29er. Are we equipt enough to make it down? Are the trails up there really that extreme?
    I need to figure out if I'm going or if I should sell my groupon deal.
    Feedback and opinions welcome and appreciated!

  131. #131
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    Nah, the trails are not that steep. Yes there is some mud and tech gnar in the trees but the vast majority is fast a flowy. You won't regret coming down to giver it a try!

  132. #132
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    Do think a cheaper hard tail front suspension mtn bike would handle it? Are we going to run through a set of brake pads in one day?

  133. #133
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    Stoke

    http://10.20.0.56:81/cgi/block.cgi?U...R=IPGROUP&CE=0

    I don't know how to embed.

    I wouldn't take a hard tail 29r up there. I would lie to my friend and tell him it would be fine so we could go though. Your Prophet will do great.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

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    I have to agree, a hardtail would be rough on the lower section. I did see a couple of fella's last weekend running the upper mountian on some Specialized Hardrock's. Also, a young lady was running her old hardtail with rim brakes as well.

    I would suggest renting a bike though...

  135. #135
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    okay okay

    I have seen fully rigid bikes up there, with cargo racks, and the dudes were riding. Fun, I don't know, but they were doing it. Anyone can ride 1000 miles of singletrack a summer, you really need to know how to ride to handle some technical stuff though. Like, xcountry racer dudes generally (very generally) get their arses handed to them on downhill courses or technical stuff on xcountry rides.

    Get down there man. You'll have all winter to regret not going. Send a pm, we'll hook up with you to go.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  136. #136
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    There was a guy out there today on a Walmart special with Vbrakes and he was stoked.
    I was riding with another guy on a hard tail with a solid fork and he was hauling ass.

    Eagle Rock is pretty fun, a little slippy there in the middle but is ridable nonetheless.

    Keep an eye out for more and more gravel around the mountain.

  137. #137
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    How much did it rain at Alyeska today?

  138. #138
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    I think I may have found another buddy that may go with me! I can't wait! I think we'll rent him a bike though as his probably isn't up to the task.

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    It didn't really rain today, believe it or not!

    We hauled gravel into lower Slots, lower Don's and beginning of XtraTuff. More tomorrow...

  140. #140
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    Just got back from Whistler last week, and was interesting to approach the mountain in a different way after riding @ Whistler for 4 days. Had a blast today, obvious work on Don's and Bermuda is setting up good in your battle against the wet. Saw the crew out puttin in work today on Don's. Thanks again! Upper mountain was on point, fridays was good. Interesting to ride soil that has frozen some and thawed, Tanaka was hauling ass as always, and the jump trail was some fun too

    Ride video from today.....
    Alyeska Ride Report Sept 18th - YouTube

  141. #141
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    Check out this video from up north... Looks like a sick run! Flowy & decent tabletops:


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    Gravity Logic did some nice work at Birch Hill. Looks like those trails are going to be very popular.

  143. #143
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    Can we please have one trail like that please?

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    Besides the difference in overall pitch, general geology, soil composition and precipitation (or lack thereof) Birch Hill is real similar to Alyeska... heh heh

    That is the plan with Tanaka, to take the machine and run back down it to really build up a bunch of features. Last Call was getting there and then --- you know what happened. Multiple tons of rock armouring should get that trail shape for next year at least.

    Other potential locations:

    -Water shed line down to Silvertip Nose. Basically tuck the trail in between Back Silver and the Fridays...

    -Glacier Bowl has a lot of room for bad ass jumps. Drawback, late season, need chair 6.

    -Chair 7 area is actually real nice pitch. Need to haul in tons of material to get out of swamp. Maybe use half pipe?

    -Autobahn on lower N face. Super nice dirt and pitch out there. Need to access via north face/Spoonline. N face is general no go for bikes.


    Things to keep in mind for trail like that:

    -Need dirt

    -In a lot of places where there is good dirt there are groomers in winter, so that is restrictive. We could do as Whis and just haul in a couple hundred dumps truck to Chair 7 and then haul out at end of year...?

    -can't be too steep for sake of jumps and need to get machine in there

    So in conclusion, yes I'd like to build a trail like that more then anything!

    Patience, patience my friends we're getting there.

    It only rained about a foot over monday/tuesday but we rock armoured most of Bobcat, you can jump the heck out that in the meanwhile!

  145. #145
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    Wait, I take that back! It only rained 7 inches over monday/tuesday. Lots of material moving around nonetheless. Less organics, more gravel...

  146. #146
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    Jake, what do you think it would take to get gravity logic to put in work at Aly?

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    sounds like you have a plan. keep it coming. that first drop and last jump on the jump line are pretty decent. if you rocked it then the rest of it could be pretty good. i bet after a year of snowpack all the trails are improved. the groomers would definitely be the easiest place for a good flow trail, bummer you can't tear those up... look forward to it improving each year. although i don't expect i'll cancel my yearly whistler trip any time soon...

    pv

  148. #148
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    of course having gravity logic come up and pitch in would be cool too...

    word is they are coming up next summer to do some work at hatchers. 2+ mile DH trail at mile 16. anyone know any more details? when, how much work, how big of a crew, looking for volunteers, etc?

  149. #149
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    Gravity Logic did come through last summer looking to offer their services. As I recall, and I could be wrong, they suggested focusing most effort in the Chair 3/Chair 7 areas as they were the most conducive to building low angle flow type trails. The rest of mountain is generally consider too steep for effective trail building. That coupled with a rate triple our existing budget and it kind of went out the window.

    I am a fan of their trail building standard and am aiming simulate the 'feel' where possible.
    i.e. jumps and berms and flow...

    Speaking of which, we are in the middle of a major regrading of the upper race trail section. Deeper turns, a few jumps, widening, reroute etc. And also hauling in about 20 tons of gravel on lower Sourdough. I really like that trail except for the swamp out the bottom. Should be mitigated by tomorrow.

    In the meanwhile you could try hooking up with a canadian chica while in Whistler next time and maybe move there... oh wait that is what I did! And it is so funny because I remember how the real core riders there don't even ride the Bike Park anymore because of the boredom induced by endless jumps and berms and flow created for newbie tourists...

    A vicious cycle indeed! Don't worry, here in Alaska were are at the very beginning of the cycle so we have a good decade of shedding ahead of us until... until... I'm getting another beer.

  150. #150
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    yeah, i'm sure they are not cheap. their name precedes them. since i'm not the one busting my ass building the trails up there, of course it is easy for me to criticize. but when it comes down to it, i'm just happy to finally have lift access in ak. hence, my comments are intended as suggestions/ideas/observations, not as simply criticism. and like i said before, i looking forward to seeing how it improves every year. i'll definitely be buying a season pass next year. oh, yeah, i'm also definitely one of the newbs in whistler that still fully enjoys the bike park. with how little i get down there i'm guessing it will be a while before i get bored with it although there are decidedly some other places i'm really wanted to check out if i can get down there for more than just a few days...

    pv

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    More gravel to Sourdough, gravel into top of Rock Monster, build best jump on mountain thus far aka the Sitz Jump. Right there at the Twin Towers in front of the Sitz deck. I hit it about 10 times in a row this afternoon and wanted more.

    Speaking of the Sitz we should grab a couple of beers here before the end of the season and maybe high five or something? That goes for any of you here offering appreciated constructive criticism

  152. #152
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    Trailzking many thanks for your efforts. It has been amazing to see the trails continue to appear during the season. Looking forward to next summer already.

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    sounds good to me. i think i am going to try to blow off work tomorrow and head down there. right now it looks like the best chance for good weather this weekend. although we all know how fast that can change... yeah, i've seen you up there a few times riding. i'm easy to spot b/c i ride the only (as far as i know) canfield in the state. it's a gray diggle with a 40 on it. usually riding with a new DHR and/or a sunday. i/we are always up for beer...

    pv

  154. #154
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    Quote Originally Posted by ak pura vida View Post
    sounds good to me. i think i am going to try to blow off work tomorrow and head down there. right now it looks like the best chance for good weather this weekend. although we all know how fast that can change... yeah, i've seen you up there a few times riding. i'm easy to spot b/c i ride the only (as far as i know) canfield in the state. it's a gray diggle with a 40 on it. usually riding with a new DHR and/or a sunday. i/we are always up for beer...

    pv
    Sorry to say that if you are referring to the state of Alaska then you have some Canfield company, 2011 Jedi in Fairbanks.

    We should hook up for some shredding and beer, where about are you?

  155. #155
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    NIce! absolutely, i'll definitely take you up on your beer offer! didn't know there was another canfield around. bought the diggle b/c it was the lightest frame that i could put a dual chainring on. now with lift access in state and the yearly whistler/bc trip it is a single ring. it is sitting right at 36 lbs right now. there is more weight that could come off but i'm pretty happy with it, for now. i would really like to upgrade to a jedi but can't justify buying a new frame. what's in your build? what's it weight? when i bought the diggle in 09 chris said he didn't know of any others in the state and i hadn't seen any. but i live in palmer and don't get up to fairbanks much. although i really want to come ride your new trails i've been watching vids of...

    pv

  156. #156
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    Would be great to hook up in Palmer, how much longer is the riding season? Just moved to Fairbanks from BC, so far the riding is pretty good. Ester Dome and Birch Hill are fun, just need a little more DH in the area.

    The Jedi is around 39lbs.
    2011 - Medium Jedi
    Elka stage 5 rear shock
    Boxxer Team
    DT Swiss 440 hubs - FT/RR
    DT Swiss FR600 rims - FT/RR
    Maxxis DHF and Highroller
    Cane Creek Double XC Flush II - headset
    Sunline Vone bar
    XO - brakes/RR shifter/derailleur
    Saint Cranks and BB
    Thompson seat post and clamp
    Straightline pedals and stem
    WTB Devo Ti Saddle
    Custom MRP chain guide

  157. #157
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    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails OFFICIAL Alyeska Trails Feedback-2011_jedi.jpg  

    Last edited by Gurney; 09-29-2011 at 04:08 PM.

  158. #158
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    pretty. i really like those frames, just can't justify buying a new frame with what i already have. nice build too. depending on where you moved from, coming from BC to fairbanks would be tough. but DH seems to be becoming more popular up here, hopefully it will continue to grow with the available lift access now. no real DH in palmer, have to drive to alyeska and i believe next weekend is the last weekend they are open? sure trailzking would know for sure. although gravity logic is suppose to come up to hatcher pass next year and built a 2+ mile trail. i'm really excited about that b/c it would basically be in my back year (20 min). also trying to track down the details and see if i can volunteer or help in any way. DH season is just about over, but sled season is just around the corner!!

    pv

  159. #159
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    Yeah next weekend is the last of the season. About half inch of snow on upper trails today, should be fun! I am just waiting for the sun to reach full effect before heading up.

  160. #160
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    Whew, we are almost there guys!

    Riding Friday-Monday this weekend, get it while the getting is good.

    Snow up high, leaves on the ground down low, feeling like winter is on the way...

  161. #161
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    Props to the trail crew! You guys busted your ass this summer and it was well worth it. Now we just need to see how they fair through the winter and the spring melt. Thanks for the hard work!

  162. #162
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    We did it! An amazing closing weekend for our inaugural season of dh biking here at Alyeska Resort!

    The Jammers shut down the Sitz



    and Foz shut down the season on the Twin Towers hit







    Thanks everyone for your support and see you next year. Oh wait, see you next month on Chair 6!

  163. #163
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    A fan of your work

    Just want to say: Wow! You and your team have really made Alyeska a summer playground. And this year I'll be bringing a new toy to play with (Norco Aurum 2), just gotta learn to jump so I can enjoy all the trails Keep it up you guys (and gals, if there are any)
    Cheers!
    Canondale 2010 Rz-120-3
    Norco 2012 Aurum 2

  164. #164
    We want... a shrubbery!
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    You sir, have got to be the dumbest spammer I know.
    waaahoooooooooooooooooo

    Calvin : Ahhh, another bowl of Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs! The second bowl is always the best! The pleasure of my first bowl is diminished by the anticipation of future bowls and by the end of my third bowl, I usually feel sick.
    Hobbes : Maybe you shouldn't use chocolate milk.
    Calvin : I tried Cola, but the bubbles went up my nose.

  165. #165
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    Quote Originally Posted by ickyickyptngzutboing View Post
    You sir, have got to be the dumbest spammer I know.
    It's because MTBR has a rule that if you have under 10 posts, your URL's will only show up as txt and not work. Good rule, bad spammer!

  166. #166
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    Just got on board with the MTBR Forums and saw this thread. Just wanted to say thanks so much for all the hard work you guys have put in the last few summers and youve totally changed my riding. I never thought i would get into serious DH, jumps and all that goes with it, but even though i am too old to be getting into it, im hooked!
    Ive got no real complaints, other than that i ate it hard TWICE on the middle tabletop at the bottom. I was doing fine all summer until the very end. Fortunately it was the second to last weekend so i had plenty of time for a couple cracked ribs to heal up, but WTF?!? Did the lip change or am i just getting sloppy?
    Anyway, thanks again for all the hard work and the great trails crew and to Alyeska for supporting it!!

  167. #167
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    Hey guys I'm new here at MTBR, I recognize a few of the names here from Nasioc. Anyway just wanted to give a little input. 2012 was my first full year going to Aly, almost every weekend. All of the trails are awesome, they just need to get ridden on more. I personally would like some more bigger jumps, especially the jumps at the bottom, I think they would be all around safer if the faces were a little longer, as well as the distance. Think snowboard jump. The short faces might be tricky for beginners. Upper mountains is good, jumps are OK but the trails could use a little more rhythm. All in all it was a lot of fun. My brother initially got me out there. I was on a Kona Stinky he was on a Lapierre DH720 after 1 ride on his bike i was sold on getting a full on DH sled so I will have new ride this year. Also my brother and I were wondering if any help is needed on the trails.

  168. #168
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    Hi Coldfire, (and all the other DH riders in AK) glad to hear the feedback, and that you are liking the trails for the most part. Jake and Tony have been hard at it since the 1st of June and have made some good improvements on the trails off of chair 3. They have also added some jumps and flow lines that I think/hope folks will really have fun on. Lift maint is putting the bike carriers on chair 4 as I write this and I'm anticipating riders will be able to log a lot of vertical using the high speed quad from the base. Jake and Tony have added some sections to connect the top of Ch 4 to the lower mtn trails (Gear Jammer, Extra Tuff, Bermuda, and Race Trail). Not sure if you heard but we're building a new chair 6 this summer and as a result some of the upper mountain trails will be harder to access (ya might have to push a bit till the tram opens for biking on Labor Day). We won't be running chair 1 this summer. I know that might be a sore spot for some but I think once they burn up some rotors and pads lapping chair 4 it will help to ease the pain. We simply can't run chairs 1,3,4 until the ridership grows. So please tell your friends to come out and shred some trails so we can keep the wheels rolling and expanding the trails at Aly. We have a fleet of new and year old Kona's prepped and ready for rent. Max's will also be stocking a wider selection of DH specific gear from brands like POC, Giro, Dakine etc. As far as volunteering to do trail building/maintenance, the offer is greatly appreciated. The free labor would be nice but the logistics and liability make it a bit of a deal breaker. It's difficult to keep a posse of trail builders on the same track vision-wise, erosion-wise, all while still ensuring that the trails meet the various guidelines of our DNR operational agreement and insurers. Hopefully this good weather holds for the summer and we can leave the mud tires on the hook and enjoy some dry riding for a change. I personally wouldn't mind having to wet down a few sections with the hose now and then. Myself or Burntski are all ears for any other suggestions or feedback from all the riders out there. Hope to see everyone on the 4th of July kitted up and ready to get rad.
    To prepare for a race there is nothing better than a good pheasant, some champagne and a woman.

  169. #169
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    Just got back from Whistler and cant wait to ride.


    Does the crew have any plans for any larger jumps on the mountain? Kind of like A-Line or Freight Train size comparable to Whistler or are you bound by terrain and fundage at this point?

    I have always thought the area between the top of Chair 4 and the Chair 6 lifthouse was a prime area for a larger hit area/line with alot of options for some feature to be built in.

    Thanks for the work, and making DH riding progress each year here in AK!!!

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