Hardwood hills – not impressed- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Hardwood hills – not impressed

    personal oppinion follows ..

    So I decided to pay Hardwood Hills a visit today, at the opening day. I figured I’d catch the demo day, plus today’s rate was discounted to $8.50 (for students).

    I must admit that it’s great to have a facility with a small shop and facilities. I also appreciated all of the trails having very clear markings, so getting lost is impossible. The “4x course” also looked somewhat awesome, and every time I was coming back down to the parking lot, I made sure to ride a small section of it at the bottom (2-3 tables) However, there is one big drawback to this place which I noticed from my riding (I rode “Fun”, “Radical”, “Serious”, and “Sidewinder”):

    There is a real lack of “flow” on the majority of the trails. The most prime example is that steep, downward sloping wooden bridge on Radical. The bridge itself is well made, and the entrance and the immediate run out are awesome for staying off the brake and accelerating to hell. However, within about 20m, there is a sharp left, followed by an uphill climb. Currently, the turn itself is very sandy, and it’s very hard to carry speed through it. A berm with a good turning surface could be used here, so you can carry your 40km/hr momentum through to the uphill.

    I also dislike “wasted” downhill’s. What I mean by wasted is those wide (enough for an SUV to go through) leafy fireroads, a total waste of momentum. As soon as you got to the buttom of such a hill, it seemed like it was time to climb up one of the same momentum.

    So, yah, that’s about it. For the amount of climbing that was there, there didn’t seem to be enough “fun trail”. But maybe that’s just me.

    As for the demos themselves, unfortunately there were no hardtails to take out, which is what I was looking for.
    Last edited by Dmytro; 04-29-2006 at 05:47 PM.

  2. #2
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    what???

    trails were in awesome shape - lot of fun after the winter...

    dude, you are *****ing like a fat ***** that has difficulties climbing up the stairs.

    it was an awesome day and gorgeous atmosphere at hardwood and i'd be hard pressed ti find anything negative about this outing...

    now i want that scott mc10...



    Quote Originally Posted by Bloodfist
    So I decided to pay Hardwood Hills a visit today, at the opening day. I figured I’d catch the demo day, plus today’s rate was discounted to $8.50 (for students).

    I must admit that it’s great to have a facility with a small shop and facilities. I also appreciated all of the trails having very clear markings, so getting lost is impossible. The “4x course” also looked somewhat awesome, and every time I was coming back down to the parking lot, I made sure to ride a small section of it at the bottom (2-3 tables) However, there is one big drawback to this place which I noticed from my riding (I rode “Fun”, “Radical”, “Serious”, and “Sidewinder”):

    There is a real lack of “flow” on the majority of the trails. The most prime example is that steep, downward sloping wooden bridge on Radical. The bridge itself is well made, and the entrance and the immediate run out are awesome for staying off the brake and accelerating to hell. However, within about 20m, there is a sharp left, followed by an uphill climb. Currently, the turn itself is very sandy, and it’s very hard to carry speed through it. A berm with a good turning surface could be used here, so you can carry your 40km/hr momentum through to the uphill.

    I also dislike “wasted” downhill’s. What I mean by wasted is those wide (enough for an SUV to go through) leafy fireroads, a total waste of momentum. As soon as you got to the buttom of such a hill, it seemed like it was time to climb up one of the same momentum.

    So, yah, that’s about it. For the amount of climbing that was there, there didn’t seem to be enough “fun trail”. But maybe that’s just me.

    As for the demos themselves, unfortunately there were no hardtails to take out, which is what I was looking for.

  3. #3
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    No need to get into personal attacks. I was just voicing my opinion.

    I also consider myself to be a fairly good climber, thanks for asking. I'm about 5'10", 160 LBS, and 12% B.F. How about you? If I was lazy, I don't think I would have been up to doing nearly all of the trail system either..

    C'mmon dude, you ride the Don, you can't be serious when you say that the flow at Hardwood is better than Don Valley Ridge.

  4. #4
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    since you are a good climber, you should have extra enjoyed still soft and harder to pedal surface and other obstacles that made riding harder today... it was a season opener today (although some of us have been riding all winter) and there was nothing that could have spoiled the fun... i never said that the flow at HH was better than DT, but then the flow at Albion Hills is far better than Don, isnt it..

    today it was about saddle time on a gorgeous day... that is all..

    oh, i am 6', 205 pounds and about the same amount of body fat... at 43 it is hard to maintain my competitive days BF at 6%... you want my phone number? :-)

  5. #5
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    The last time I rode Albion was last September or so, but I think that Durham/Don/Ravenshoe are better than Albion, as well.

  6. #6
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    ok... i won't argue

    Quote Originally Posted by Bloodfist
    The last time I rode Albion was last September or so, but I think that Durham/Don/Ravenshoe are better than Albion, as well.
    what you like better... tastes are different...

    as you grow older, you will learn to live and appreciate every ride and every day of your life one at the time...

    and the fact that there is no flow on that trail will become so insignificant....

  7. #7

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    The trails are what they are. If you dont like it, volunteer to build it yourself or at least give some feedback to those that do.
    Personally I feel the same about Hardwood, I dont go there much anymore. Tires me out, damn Im old

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by prod
    The trails are what they are. If you dont like it, volunteer to build it yourself or at least give some feedback to those that do.
    Personally I feel the same about Hardwood, I dont go there much anymore. Tires me out, damn Im old
    Yeah, you and me both! I haven't been there since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. Maybe it's time to break out the electric bike for that one, huh?


    Bloodfist - I can certainly apprecite your comments. There's plenty of trail i've been on that I curse and swear at nearly every corner. Thanks for the warning!
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies. :D

  9. #9
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    A trail is a trail to me and fun almost all the time (sure beats the road!). As for hardwood hills...well I just dont like the sand in quite a few places. Like the shingles and asphalt they layed down in the back corner.

    Coffee run used to be good too then they changed it somewhat and now its just ok.
    Riding F/S since oct 94'

  10. #10

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    Before today I have heard nothing but good things about Hardwood and now I am not sure if I want to make the trip there.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by SingleTrackDemon
    Before today I have heard nothing but good things about Hardwood and now I am not sure if I want to make the trip there.
    Well, you should definately check it out. Trails are personal preference, and you never know if you'll like the trails or not until you actually ride them.

  12. #12
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    you have to keep in mind that Hardwood is primarily a winter-use facility. It was designed for XC skiiers, the bikes came later. I find that what works in winter, doesn't always work in summer (people on skis have to able to climb up those hills, and not kill themselves going down)...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo
    trails were in awesome shape - lot of fun after the winter...

    dude, you are *****ing like a fat ***** that has difficulties climbing up the stairs.

    it was an awesome day and gorgeous atmosphere at hardwood and i'd be hard pressed ti find anything negative about this outing...
    He does not hafta like the trails there.

    Myself, I enjoy HH, and would go more if i could.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bloodfist
    The last time I rode Albion was last September or so, but I think that Durham/Don/Ravenshoe are better than Albion, as well.
    I agree with you about Hardwood Hills I hate the wood chips the most but the lack of flow can also be a problem. But Ravenshoe Has to be the worst trail I have ever ridden between all the stupid bridges and obstacles there is no flow at all. That said any trails is better than being a roadie so ride on.

  15. #15
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    I look at each trail as having it's own challenges or personality. I like all of them (HH, Durham/Glen Major, Don, Ravenshoe, Albion, Ganaraska, Kelso) and I make the best of each when I can or have to (race).

  16. #16
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    I have always thought of HH to be a XC type of trails. Lots of up and down, twisty tight stuff.

    The other end of the spectrum for me would be Ravenshoe (though I've only been there once) as there were lots of rocks, log overs etc.

    Actually, come to think of it, Hilton Falls would be the othere end of the spectrum, especially that trail that looked like it was for trials.

    They're all fun if you bring the right equipment.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJ541
    I look at each trail as having it's own challenges or personality. I like all of them (HH, Durham/Glen Major, Don, Ravenshoe, Albion, Ganaraska, Kelso) and I make the best of each when I can or have to (race).
    Hear, Hear !!

    It's all good. It's spring, get out and ride in the dirt! Jeeze... we are starting to sound alot like a bunch of whiners, perhaps a paved rec trail would be both woodchip/root free and "flowy" enough to satisfy a few of you? Singletrack is suppose to have turns and twists and the last time I checked mountain biking was meant to incorporate a few hills, when mountains are not available, you can't always coast up the other side...

    I say peel off the spandex for a day, put on some baggies and take your 26lbs. rigs out to get a bit dirty and work up a sweat.

    HeHeHe , sorry if I am out of line, but what a bunch of spoiled brats we have become in Southern Ontario, do you have any idea how many mtb bikers in the world would give their eye-teeth (and gladly $12) for a day on our sandy, flow lacking, overly hilly, woodchipped, rooty, tight, twisty, obstacle infested assortment of local trails? we are in a very lucky position to be able to turn our noses up at such facilities.

    that is just how I feel.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Payer
    Hear, Hear !!

    It's all good. It's spring, get out and ride in the dirt! Jeeze... we are starting to sound alot like a bunch of whiners, perhaps a paved rec trail would be both woodchip/root free and "flowy" enough to satisfy a few of you? Singletrack is suppose to have turns and twists and the last time I checked mountain biking was meant to incorporate a few hills, when mountains are not available, you can't always coast up the other side...

    I say peel off the spandex for a day, put on some baggies and take your 26lbs. rigs out to get a bit dirty and work up a sweat.

    HeHeHe , sorry if I am out of line, but what a bunch of spoiled brats we have become in Southern Ontario, do you have any idea how many mtb bikers in the world would give their eye-teeth (and gladly $12) for a day on our sandy, flow lacking, overly hilly, woodchipped, rooty, tight, twisty, obstacle infested assortment of local trails? we are in a very lucky position to be able to turn our noses up at such facilities.

    that is just how I feel.
    I love the hills thats the one thing I like about Hard Wood. But I stand firm on my disgust for wood chips there is no need for them. I like most of the trails in Ontario but I find Hard Wood to be like an over rated heavy wieght champ, All hype no fight if you know what I mean. Anyway everyone has their own preferences and should just ride what they like weather its fire road , DH or singletrake with or without flow. Me I will be riding hilly fast single track with lots climbs and tight twisty turns that flow like a raging river. But not today I have to go to work now.

  19. #19
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    very true...keep in mind, however, that wood chips are the easiest way to prevent erosion, not great for riding but they minimize the damage in heavy use areas, especially if they're sandy trails

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by JM01
    wood chips are the easiest way to prevent erosion, not great for riding but they minimize the damage in heavy use areas
    to the best of my knowledge they are only used for the first few hundred feet from the chalet in the heavy use areas you mention. Unless you are simply doing loops of the chalet and parking lot they should only affect the first and last 5 minutes of riding.

    oh well, probably enough said on that topic... (at least from me)

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Payer
    to the best of my knowledge they are only used for the first few hundred feet from the chalet in the heavy use areas you mention. Unless you are simply doing loops of the chalet and parking lot they should only affect the first and last 5 minutes of riding.

    oh well, probably enough said on that topic... (at least from me)
    Just a final thought...

    On some of the trails that i ride that are maintained by MNR, they recently repaired some winter erosion using beach sand

    given a choice, wood chips would have been preferable (you don't sink 6" into wood chips)

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