Polling the Electorate: Tell Me About Your Favourite Trail- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Evil Jr.
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    Polling the Electorate: Tell Me About Your Favourite Trail

    In honour of the imminent Federal election, I thought I'd do a little polling of my own. We start flagging in Christie very shortly and I would like to hear from local riders about what they like to ride.

    Think of it as turning that silly pedal thread on its head. Instead of telling me what's wrong, tell me what's right. Like the picture thread, keep the name calling to yourselves. I promise I won't call you a cupcake no matter what or how you like to ride.
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  2. #2
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    So much to choose from. I really enjoy riding all aspects and a diverse set of trails that lend to the natural terrain is a great way to spend the day, but if I had to personally pick one 'style' of trail...

    I like to go fast in tight spaces. Give me some hard packed clay that rockets through tight forests and I'm happier than a pig in ****. Nothing like playing jedi in a starfighter leaning through corners trying not to clip your shoulder going mach chicken.

    To classify that. My favorite trail is in Short Hills that runs (as the Bruce for part) from Decew Road/Cataract Rd, down to the bottom of 12 mile creek near the Boy Scout Road.

  3. #3
    humber river advocate
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    actually anywhere i can ride in the forest is my favorite trail...
    though the trails out my front door i enjoy the most (humber watershed), don't have to drive. just jump on the bike and go
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  4. #4
    livin' large
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    Top of Hilton Falls in the agreement forest, single track with enough rocks and obtacles to keep it spicy, but not so many to make it too burly (although that can be fun when your feeling strong and agile) and it does'nt hurt that it is a 15 min drive form my lair.
    it tied the room together man!

  5. #5
    Up, Up, and Away!
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    The hydrocut is the most fun I've had on two wheels in a long time, but there might be the novelty factor there.

    When it comes down to it, I think I really like riding anything with natural rocks, be it smooth like Buckwallow, or rough like Hilton Falls.

  6. #6
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    I don't think I can get it down to one trail. In no particular order, the nice bermed downhill in Copeland forest. It's got real nice flow, you can carry serious speed through it and it's just a blast to ride. Also in that area there's a trail that zig-zags up & down both sides of a downward sloping valley. Take a sheet of paper and fold it into a V and tilt one end up, you're going from one side to the other of the V as you make your way down the trail. Serious fun since you need to carry momentum to make it up past the tree roots and thread it through the trees before screaming down and back up again, and again, and again. For rocky technical trails it would probably be the Ridgetop trail at Kanata Lakes.

  7. #7
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    I'm not gonna be very original here: Catalyst-RJ-PA in the Don.

    A touch of tech, harsh little climbs, and hardtail-friendly, so it can be worked into my commute home in about 30 minutes or less. Plus quiet enough to be ridden at speed in peak season without much risk of head-on collisions around leafy blind corners.

    Bonus answer w/Scarborough Content: Bellamy Ravine in not really a MTB trail, but it's my favourite climb in the GTA. It's harsher than even Appleby.

    Of course, I've ridden some unbelievable trails outside the GTA, but I'm gonna stay local here.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser
    Bonus answer w/Scarborough Content: Bellamy Ravine in not really a MTB trail, but it's my favourite climb in the GTA. It's harsher than even Appleby.
    I ran into that one last year while exploring the bluffs. I started at Guildwood park, went down to the lake from there and made my way west to Bellamy Ravine. Boy did I have a fun time climbing that gravel & dirt path to the top, the darn thing turned out to be longer than I expected.

  9. #9
    sock puppet
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    though it is hard to pick one of many glorious places to have the most fun a person can have with their clothes on - I'd have to go with Buckwallow. A little bit of everything. Fast flowy singletrack, a bit of climbing, lots of rocks and the complete package is just too hard to beat...

    I spend the most time at Albion Hills - having fun with all the biatches that post around here and those that don't...

    Ganaraska is an epic. I dare ride it only when the course is marked.

    Of course - Haliburton is a jewel...

    We are blessed around here... Not in a North Shore type of blessing, but blessed nonetheless....

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster
    In honour of the imminent Federal election, I thought I'd do a little polling of my own. We start flagging in Christie very shortly and I would like to hear from local riders about what they like to ride.
    The old original moto trails in Dufferin always brought a smile to my face. The corners seemed to be just the right radius with small berms that you could just rail.

    There is a section out along one of the back ridges that we always referred to as "Fun both ways" because well it was really really fun no matter what direction we rode it in. It went up and down the side of the ridge with sweeping turns that you could carry your momentum up the the small inclines then swoop back down the ridge. If you didn't work to keep your speed up it kinda sucked with short punchy climbs, but rail that lower berm and crank 5 or six pedal strokes up the ridge and you were rewarded with a roller coaster ride.

    Some of the "mountain bike" built trails in Dufferin we built the corners on too tight a radius so you would loose speed in them. The old moto trails just had better flow, if my memory is correct the trails evolved in the late 70's. The moto's didn't have the power and geo of todays bikes so they didn't make tight corners.

    Best singletrack in Ontario, but I might be biased with the amount I rode there.

  11. #11
    rad to the power of sick
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    Twin Ponds/Puslinch Tract.

    Some rocks, some logs, some fast flowy, some slow grindy.... and its free.
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  12. #12
    Muskoka
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    I love smooth, flowing single-track through the forest. But as per singlesprocket, I have also become very fond of riding out from home and the trails-less-travelled...
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  13. #13
    bi-winning
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    If you could build a replica of the Hardwood Hills Canada Cup course, I'd like that personally.

    As for general design notes, I still think this is a good idea...

    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster
    As a general philosophy (whether this should apply to the Olympic course or not is debatable), my personal trail design preference is one where the main line IS the "chicken line" and all the progressive stuff happens in parallel on alternate lines.

    Not only is this a safe and responsible approach but it makes for sustainable participation. Other than the inherent crappiness of Walmart bikes, there's no reason to exclude riders at that end of the scale from trail riding. Heck, there are days when I'm riding like a putz and I'm grateful for the chicken line.

    I started on a Supercycle and I bet of lot of other people here did too. Who are we to tell today's Supercycle riders they're not worthy? “Après moi le déluge”?
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  14. #14
    More than a little slow
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    Favourite trail is Porcupine ridge/ Santa's villlage. I've only been there twice. Favourite trails that are no more, Dagmar ( almost all of it) and the 'extreme trail' at Kelso, which died as soon as the parking lot was built right next to it.
    I also agree in general with GM's trail design preference, but in addition I like the idea of stacking trails so that the further one gets from an access point the rockier and steeper things get on the chicken line.
    Cheers, Dave

  15. #15
    Evil Jr.
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    Wow, so far, I'd say the most interesting thing about the responses is that no two are alike! I actually expected a little more consensus. We seem to be a lot more diverse a group than you might think at first blush.
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  16. #16
    sock puppet
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    wait until electrik lists his favourite progressive trails... maybe...

  17. #17
    No. Just No.
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    This might not mean anything to a lot of people since it's not in Ontario (although I'm sure there are some who have ridden it on trips) but I always have a good outing on a trail in Whistler called Comfortably Numb. Linky here;

    http://www.imba.com/epics/comfortably-numb

    Calling it the most physically demanding trail in Whistler as the link claims may be a stretch - maybe only because of the total trail length. Also, wouldn't be rated as "advanced" technical level for most of the locals.

    There's nothing "big" on the trail in terms of TTFs, but there are stunning amount of little moves required in terms of front and back wheel lifts, and small pedal kicks to navigate the natural rock and root surfaces of the entire trail from end to end. It's only 24km in length, about 2500' total cumulative elevation gain but feels like at least double that amount of climbing out on the trail. A very snappy pace from end to end across the entire trail would be about 3hrs or 8km/h average with some attention to the trail required for the majority of that time. I've had friends out from Ontario taking over 5 hrs including a couple of stops.

    There's no bailouts or shortcuts once you're about an hour in other than heading back where you came from.

  18. #18
    Team NFI
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    I was very spoiled by starting in BC.. nothing really compares or ever will.

    Pipeline
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    The Trail where I property caretaked for 3 years.

  19. #19
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    3 Stage would be my pick...

    Ridden many places and to me 3 Stage is the perfect mix of everything...

    Tight twisty technical sections, nice flowy speedy bits and of course challenging climbs...

    And the almost endless possibilities to mix it up to your liking.

    The only downside is the distance from our home....

  20. #20
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    I don't think I've found my favorite trail yet.
    I have yet to ride Buckwallow or hydrocut.
    I've been fortunate enough to ride in moab utah ,grand junction and fruita colorado, and phoeniz area in arizona.
    I really like the openess and epic views of the trails in the southwest US.

  21. #21
    snowbound
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    3 stage as well - love that place. Most of my riding is in Durham forest/Glen-Major/Walkers Woods - which really is a fine place to ride, a real jewel.

  22. #22
    namagomi
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    The one I cut my teeth on, spent time building and countless hours riding. It has no name, wasn't great as far as these other trails and has hopelessly naturalized now. All these other trails are extensions of that one.

  23. #23
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    Hmmm. Difficult to pick one, so maybe I can try to keep it to ten?

    In no particular order...

    1. Top of South Side Hills to Ft Amherst and White Hills (East Coast Trail), St. John's NL - I'm biased because this is home, but all the same pretty sweet exposed technical riding with lots of sweet bare rock and great scenery. This is two rides really, but you can easily hit both in an afternoon.
    2. The Whole Enchilada, Moab UT - again lots (and lots!) of bare rock, super super fun, and constantly changing landscape as you descend. Slickrock is cool, and The Portal is scary, but if I could only do one ride in Moab, this is the one.
    3. "The North Shore", North Van BC - sorry, that is a bit vague... I don't get there enough to know what all the trails are called, but it is every bit as good as you've been told.
    4. The, ahem, _____ Trail in _____ County ON - lovely lovely technical rock, + escarpment views. Most of my pics are from the ride park, which is (was?) good riding too.
    5. Barr Trail, Pikes Peak CO - Epic descent.
    6. Buckwallow & Porcupine, Gravenhurst ON - more bare rock here... Hmm seems to be a bit of a theme.
    7. Monarch Crest, Poncha Springs CO - I think this was something like 30 or 35 miles of goodness. Lots of sweet descending, but the climbing was enjoyable too even though my sea level lungs were hurting.
    8. Freight Train / Dirt Merchant / Lower A-Line, Whistler BC - I actually like some of the techier runs better, but this is what the bike park is all about!
    9. Hilton Falls/Agreement Forest - lots of good technical rock. I just can't help but think it would be better if you could tip the whole place on an angle to get some more elevation change.
    10. Puslinch / Twin Ponds - It took me a while to warm up to this place (if you haven't noticed I'm not a 'smooth and fast' kinda guy), but the faster you ride it the better it gets.

  24. #24
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    Log overs, and rock overs, and anything to ride my bike over with the potential to get tossed off it...
    I dont know why i love them so much, but the harder they get the more satisfying it is to conquer them...

    With that in mind, some of the nicest logs and rocks ive enjoyed are at hydrocut and puslinch...with the puslinch ones being much mroe technical..
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circlip
    Comfortably Numb.
    Really Uncomfortable Bum?

    Personally I'd put it on the list of Most Over Rated Trails.

    If we are throwing out trails anywhere I'll toss in my most recent favs.

    Cutthroat Pass and Angles Staircase near Mazama WA. We did a trip down there last fall for an article and barely scratched the surface of great riding in the Methow Valley.

    Snippets of Cutthroat.
    <iframe src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/21043595" width="400" height="225" frameborder="0"></iframe>

  26. #26
    No. Just No.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shirk
    Really Uncomfortable Bum?

    Personally I'd put it on the list of Most Over Rated Trails.
    The Uncomfortable Bum moniker is pretty catchy, no? Anyhow, if I didn't rate it as a favourite trail of mine, I wouldn't have said it. I'm not really concerned if it's not a crowd pleaser for the masses. In summary the answer is "Yes, really".

  27. #27
    9 lives
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    My favorite trail is the one I haven't found

    I 'm always excited to ride in new regions and I love to explore "off the beaten path",

    I consider each ride like its my last

  28. #28
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    Surprised nobody has mentioned Waterdown trails. They have some great ups and downs and off camber with roots and logs mostly in twisty singletrack.

  29. #29
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    I haven't been on many apart from the usual Albion, Mansfield and HH buri have to say on the non race rides I have been on it is the Ganaraka and Durham. I just wish the trails were closer to home.

  30. #30
    Looking for Adventure
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    1. Dagmar, if you remember how the trails were designed
    2. Glenn Major (lumped in with Durham Forest area)
    3. Original Mansfield trails
    4. 3 Stages, especially the trail that follows down the river valley, and the ridge trail.
    5. Hardwood.
    6. Buckwallow, especially the rugged double track (if you are going to have double track)
    7. Albion (before sanitation era)


    Hmmm, maybe too much here, but you get the drift.
    Just don't end up with something like Waterdown has become, or Dundas Valley with its pleasant but not too interesting trails.
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  31. #31
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    Love this thread.
    truth, any new trail is my favourite trail.
    3 stage probably gets the highest points,
    but most fun I had on the bike last summer although it was short was the valley downhill in woodnewton.
    Christie will be the top of my list the first time I ride it I am sure
    Last edited by Scott Holmes; 03-24-2011 at 05:01 PM.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by s-worksalot
    Surprised nobody has mentioned Waterdown trails. They have some great ups and downs and off camber with roots and logs mostly in twisty singletrack.
    Sshhhhh
    nothing to see there, boring stuff, don't bother, waste of time...
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  33. #33
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirbikealot
    Sshhhhh
    nothing to see there, boring stuff, don't bother, waste of time...
    This reminds me of working the Committee booth at the Bike Show. Guys would come up and ask "So where can I ride in Hamilton?".

    Official me: "Well, there are lots of nice rail trails and the Valley is really pretty..."

    Un-official me: "Grab a map and let me get my pen. Park here and you'll see a trail start right around here..."
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  34. #34
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    Ganaraska is definitely a favourite of mine.

    The central forest has a bit of everything (ok no "hucking" or trail features) but lots of climbing, tight twisties, rocks, sketchy sandy descents. The western is full of fun and pain and if you ever get a chance to ride the moto stuff in the eastern forest do it! If you hit up the right trails it has GREAT flow, not very sandy at all and has little Honda signs to guide you back to the parking lot.

    Just a reminder to anyone worried about getting lost in there, the central forest is completely and permanently signed for Paul's 15km 30km and 60km loops so just keep your eyes open for the bright pink signs.

    Also, I rode the Shabomeka Lake trails near Bon Echo a few years back and that was some great riding too. Slow going and technical for the most part but lots of fun, chunky, rocky stuff. I think it's in the Rider Mel's book actually. There's 60km worth of riding in there and camping all around.

    May 1st can't come soon enough.
    Last edited by akura; 03-25-2011 at 11:31 AM.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by akura
    Also, I rode the Shabomeka Lake trails near Bon Echo a few years back and that was some great riding too.
    Did not know these existed. On my to-ride list.
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  36. #36
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    I'm surprised no one's answered with reference to the actual conservation area. What do you have to work with? How much area and how much vertical topography?

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser
    Did not know these existed. On my to-ride list.
    If you look up Shabomeka LegPower you'll find trail reviews and what not. It's a very unique place to ride.

  38. #38
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay.
    I'm surprised no one's answered with reference to the actual conservation area. What do you have to work with? How much area and how much vertical topography?
    The area we have isn't limitless but it's plenty big. On top of the 10km of existing double track, the plan we submitted calls for another 15km (or so) of new single track.

    Topography, flora and earth types are quite varied so we have the opportunity to do a little bit of everything, hence the topic!
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  39. #39
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    I like the grit of puslinch, it never gets boring for me. The hydrocut is nice but a little too perfect these days, could use some more rocks and logs, and technicalness.

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