Damn, I love Wendell SF- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Damn, I love Wendell SF

    For most of the Summer, I've had to eek out rides right out my back door--not a bad place to ride, but it kept me away from my favorite ride in MA-Wendell State Forest.

    Yeah, I love it in large part because so much of my own blood sweat and tears went into making it a premium ride destination--but there's a lot more to it than that.

    I've done three long rides there over the last week, all of them different (using a lot of what I call Greater Wendell-which involves trailways both in and out of the forest proper)-and every ride was perfect.

    I love this place because it's hard-and let me clarify here, It's not full of death-defying free ride features (which I couldn't ride if it was!), or over the top technical lines. Far from it, actually, as most of the riding is solidly modern XC riding. But, it's the grittiest, toughest, "slug it out you *****" riding in the region. But for all of it's rocks, roots and protracted tough climbs, for the savvy rider it flows wonderfully as well.

    It's also downright beautiful-laced with cliffs and big rocks, but these are often hidden under a dense canopy of trees. Several picturesque ponds, a couple of vibrant brooks complete the riparian landscape.

    Over the years, new trails pop up and fill in gaps in the general riding experience while preserving that definitive Wendell feel.

    I know a fair amount of people who hate, yes hate Wendell (and they've made a point of telling me so)-however, they are typically the sort of riders whose disdain I take as an endorsement. You have to like to suffer a little bit, to approach challenging trail lines like a puzzle. You have to prefer a touch of ungroomed, proletarian, wilderness over the manicured bourgeois trail experience.

    We all have our favorites, and for different reasons. If folks tell me they love Petersham or B-Street above all else in the area, I get that as I find they offer a similar zeitgeist to Wendell. There are other big riding areas in the Valley, that are great as well-but decidedly lesser in my mind.

    Just some not so random Wendell stoke sharing to close out the summer--see you all on the trails!

  2. #2
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    Amen brother! But the real question is, do you love it more in with a 1/2 inch of snow on the ground?

  3. #3
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    riparian, proletarian, bourgeois, zeitgeist...............classic

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by olapiquena
    Amen brother! But the real question is, do you love it more in with a 1/2 inch of snow on the ground?
    Actually if there's a half inch of snow, there's probably 3" of leaves masking everything underneath. Makes for a particularly heinous combination.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stop Drop N Roll
    riparian, proletarian, bourgeois, zeitgeist...............classic

    Well, to be fair, the moderators bleeped out my use of the word P*ssy-if they had left it in, it would have balanced my high-brow missive with a little vulgarity so the regular folks would feel welcomed as well.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stop Drop N Roll
    riparian, proletarian, bourgeois, zeitgeist...............classic
    Jesus! Some of us are blue collar hacks, a little vocab discretion would be appreciated so the rest of us can participate please!

    Oh and Wendell is the *****, btw and I need to ride there more than I do!

  7. #7
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    Are there .GPX files floating around for this place?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evil Chocula
    Are there .GPX files floating around for this place?
    Here.

  9. #9
    Hassan's Ghost
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    Exactly!

    Wendell slime at it's best! Between that silly little bridge with the nails and the 'flume', full-conditions make for much more excitement.

  10. #10
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    I just re-read my initial post from a year ago after riding Wendell again today. My sentiments are still exactly the same. I regret that I can't come up and ride Wendell with the frequency I once did, but I am grateful it's always the same gritty excellent place of my memories.

    I came close to hitting B-street instead today (which I also lament that I have been unable to frequent with the regularity I once did) but with the glorious sunshine and Fall air abounding, Wendell seemed the better choice.

  11. #11
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    Don't they have some type of event the first weekend in Nov?
    All work and no play makes "and all no work play"

  12. #12
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    I rode wendell yesterday as well. The weather and conditions were perfect. 20 miles and nothing but smiles from myself and the other 2 guys with me.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by tic tac View Post
    Don't they have some type of event the first weekend in Nov?
    That would be the not to be missed Chili Ride, cold air, hot trails and hot food. A great combination. Details will be posted in the next couple weeks.
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  14. #14
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    Outside our normal drive to ride radius, but my wife and I hit Wendell for the 1st time a few weeks ago. That is one heck of a great spot and definitely need to go back.

    Chili + Wendell sure sounds like a winning combination.

  15. #15
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    Was starting to think my riding was improving, after riding Kingdom Trails, Bear Brook etc. Then I went back to Wendell today. Yup I still suck!
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  16. #16
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    Ah, you should have called man-I rode closer to home but I would have schlepped up to Wendell if I knew you'd be there.

    btw.....Toby's Tour has seen some expansion...did it see any more today?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperbMan View Post
    Ah, you should have called man-I rode closer to home but I would have schlepped up to Wendell if I knew you'd be there.

    btw.....Toby's Tour has seen some expansion...did it see any more today?
    Nah, no trail work today... Toby and I took a nice easy puppy paced ride. Lots of stops for swims and drinks. You would have been bored... though the trails were riding mighty fine. Leaf blowing soon.
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  18. #18
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    Wendell is some tuff riding for sure. I think i'm gonna head down there on Friday. Any loop suggestions? I'm starting from the main parking lot by the beach and rec area. Last time there i rode the race loop backwards and climbed all the good downhills, so i promised myself i would go back and ride it the right direction this time!
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  19. #19
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    iMapMyRide: Oct 10, 2011 04:12 PM in Wendell, MA | Bike Map | MapMyRIDE

    This is the route I took yesterday, I started on Carlton Rd (sometimes called Marshes Rd), rather than at HQ cause it was parked full.

    I started with Toby's Tour at the intersection of Carlton and Brook Rd, bailed onto Carlton, took Wicket Pond trail, Wicket Pond Escape, Brook Rd, more Wicket Pond Trail, Nipmuck, Mormon Hollow, School House Rd, Sophie's Run,$13, Jerusalem Rd, the Lookout Trail and finished with the Pond Trail to Two Brothers.

    Nice loop, but you need to know the trails pretty well because things are getting pretty well masked by the fallen leaves. Hoping to get up there with the leaf-blower probably the end of next week.
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  20. #20
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    Any riding on the other side of Farley Rd?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plummit View Post
    Any riding on the other side of Farley Rd?
    We've discussed it, scouted a bit, but nothing has ever been flagged or built to my knowledge over there. There is quite a bit of riding on the Montague/Leverett side though.
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  22. #22
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    The Nemba description here:

    wendell_state_forest_2

    details a longer route that hits the best of the in the park trails.

    I will probably ride there on Sunday (possibly Saturday afternoon) if interested. There is a planned 3 hour wendell ride on Saturday with a guy named 'Muzzy' if you're interested.

    I've scouted a ton over on Bear Mountain....it's more promise than reality at the moment.

  23. #23
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    this thread is useless without photos...

  24. #24
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    I got out and cleared all the lower trails of leaves for the first time this fall yesterday. Hannah, Mormon, Nipmuck, Bob is Fat and the connecting part of Maple Leaf should be laid nearly bare for your enjoyment for a day or two.

    Wendell today, Robinson tomorrow. Experience the two extremes of valley riding.
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  25. #25
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    hmmm, i may make it down there this weekend too, thanks for leaf blowing!
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  26. #26
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    I had the opportuinity to guide a group at the Chilli ride two weekends ago and I also did a great loop with one of the lesser known Wendell Godfathers on Saturday. With the leaves off the trees and off the trails, Wendell is riding as great as ever. The completion of Toby's Tour and the resurrection of the Old Wickett Pond trail have added some much needed mellower cruising trails, and the clean-ups on the hannah, Mormon and 13$ trails (and Hidden valley Trails) just keep this place rolling wonderfully.

    And since it looks like winter wiill hold off for a bit longer, now is the time to really ride this place. Anyone uyp for a Sunday ride?

  27. #27
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    Dang I need to get to Wendell!
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pauldotcom View Post
    Dang I need to get to Wendell!
    Yes you do. When you go try to hook up with someone who knows the trails. It's not like B-Street or Earl's where one trail immediately connects to another, and if you don't know the layout you can waste an afternoon just spinning your wheels.

    Like I said, I'm planning a Sunday afternoon if folks are interested.

    Weather permitting of course.

  29. #29
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    i would be psyched to check out wendell on sunday? any time frame?

  30. #30
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    I am shooting for a 1:30 ride at this point.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperbMan View Post
    I am shooting for a 1:30 ride at this point.


    Looking like I'm doing Hawley instead...
    Last edited by hado_pv; 12-03-2011 at 07:08 PM.
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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by hado_pv View Post
    Looking like I'm doing Hawley instead...
    Ended up in Wendell after-all. Great ride with the boy and the dog. Thanks for being patient with Toby and me, Matt. 10 Miles -2 plus hours. Perfect temp, perfect pace, perfect trail system!
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  33. #33
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    I Friggen Love this park

    Is it wrong to love riding trails you built? If so I'm a BAD BAD Man. Wendell Rocks!
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by hado_pv View Post
    Is it wrong to love riding trails you built? If so I'm a BAD BAD Man. Wendell Rocks!
    Did you ride with the gang last night???

    I'm planning a Saturday afternoon ride there if you are interested...there is a trail you need to see......

    And no, it is not wrong to the trails you carve into the landscape....Honestly, those trails are the best thing I've ever been a part of. Hey, I hear Big Mac is actually riding again...maybe it's time to resurrect the Wendell godfather Trail crew.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperbMan View Post
    Did you ride with the gang last night???

    I'm planning a Saturday afternoon ride there if you are interested...there is a trail you need to see......

    And no, it is not wrong to the trails you carve into the landscape....Honestly, those trails are the best thing I've ever been a part of. Hey, I hear Big Mac is actually riding again...maybe it's time to resurrect the Wendell godfather Trail crew.
    Great ride with the Bob crew (sort of) last night. Me, Jeff and two guys from the Holyoke/Westfield area, John and Neal. We did a real money loop. XC, Carlton Dirth, Hiatus, Toby's Tour, Roads, Nipmuck, Road, Mormon Hollow, Road, Sophie's Run, $13 to the cliffs, Hidden Valley, and roads back to HQ. Great Ride!
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  36. #36
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    Wendell has some of the best riding in New England in my opinion. Got in a nice 20 mile beat-down fest over there this weekend. I live in SE Mass so I don't get to Wendell too often.....when I do get over there it sure is a treat!

  37. #37
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    Is it wrong to get your ass handed to you on the trails you built??

    Man, I'm am out of shape and way off my game and yesterday I had a prolonged lesson in biking humility during a 3 hour ride...not to mention I learned that a 43 year old body can still walk away from some impressive crashes! Gads, I'm sore this morning.

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    Hoping to hit up Wendell next weekend. Looking forward to it after reading this thread.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuperbMan View Post
    Is it wrong to get your ass handed to you on the trails you built??

    Man, I'm am out of shape and way off my game and yesterday I had a prolonged lesson in biking humility during a 3 hour ride...not to mention I learned that a 43 year old body can still walk away from some impressive crashes! Gads, I'm sore this morning.
    I tried to give you some positive rep for this post but it said I need to spread some around first. Thanks for building those awesome trails!!!!!

  40. #40
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    This thread just reminded me that I have yet to hit Wendell!! Hopefully I can grab a couple guys and meet up with somone up there in the near future...
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  41. #41
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    Pauldot that's the problem living around here

    I try to never ride the same area back to back, ride 2-3 times a week when the weather cooperates, and still have a hard time getting to all the great riding in our area every year. I've never ridden Conway State Forest, hit Catamount for the first time last fall, didn't get to Northfield last year, never got to Shutesbury, missed the Petersham events for the last couple years...

    Ironic one of the sessions I led at the NEMBA summit was "How to get more trails"
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  42. #42
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    I rode wendell Tuesday and it kicked my butt...2 1/2 hours, 2200' climbing, every foot a battle with roots and rocks. I love it. worth the 20" drive for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by reynoldseight5three View Post
    I rode wendell Tuesday and it kicked my butt...2 1/2 hours, 2200' climbing, every foot a battle with roots and rocks. I love it. worth the 20" drive for me.

    It'll do that... Glad you came down from the great north!
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  44. #44
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    Did some trail work yesterday with HadoPV, things are looking great at Wendell SF..next time your there, be sure to ride the lesser known trail that Connects Wicked Pond Escape with lower Toby's Tour...we got it cleared off but it could use some 'wheel benching!"

  45. #45
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    hey guys, been riding wendell a ton this winter/spring.. absolutely love it and am starting to get to know it better and better.. however, i am going off a map on bikerag that is pretty limited. are there any other/better maps perhaps with the names you guys talk about?

  46. #46
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    I had a good ride down there today and i'm still finding new trails every trip. rode the new trail off wicket pond...nice wish i had a better map too
    <h2><a href="http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=1590022">Track (5-22-12 8-30-13AM)</a></h2> <object width="400" height="300" codebase="http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/get/flashplayer/current/swflash.cab"><param name="movie" value="http://www.everytrail.com/swf/widget.swf"/><param name="FlashVars" value="units=english&mode=0&key=ABQIAAAA_7wvFEi7gG ngCZrOfos63hSN1xyBy-BzBD--25ZLXpVi3GfbehTQlZCXdpUFII2A5CGeExVTCyX1ow&tripId= 1590022&startLat=42.537622&startLon=-72.437975&mapType=Terrain&"><embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="http://www.everytrail.com/swf/widget.swf" quality="high" width="400" height="300" FlashVars="units=english&mode=0&key=ABQIAAAA_7wvFE i7gGngCZrOfos63hSN1xyBy-BzBD--25ZLXpVi3GfbehTQlZCXdpUFII2A5CGeExVTCyX1ow&tripId= 1590022&startLat=42.537622&startLon=-72.437975&mapType=Terrain&" play="true" quality="high" pluginspage="http://www.adobe.com/go/getflashplayer"></embed></object><br/>EveryTrail - Find the <a href="http://www.everytrail.com/best/hiking-new-hampshire">best Hiking in New Hampshire</a><script type="***************" src="http://www.everytrail.com/trip/widgetimpression?trip_id=1590022"></script>
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    R853,

    Just looked at your GPS...ok, so you are missing three pretty significant (in fact The three most significant) trails at Wendell. If you know these trails already, I apologize but I'd just give you a heads up:
    1: Off of the top of Baker Rd (the dirt rd near the feature 'Baker Brook' on your map-that runs into Damon camp road) are several trails-the longest that head down and back up from Davis rd are the hannah Swarton and the Mormon Hollow-very technical, very excellent. At the bottom of Baker rd is where the Nipmuck dumps out... it starts off of the maple leaf trail that runs parallel with Laurel Rd--this is many people's favorite trail (though, I'll always love the Hannah the most).

  48. #48
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    Yes thanks, I am familiar with those and they are my favorites. I was exploring around looking for stuff I have not ridden and I found a few gems that I missed in my previous forays to the south.
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  49. #49
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    I've ridden in Warwick State Forest, but never in Wendell. Are any of the trails beginer/old and out of shape friendly? I'm only 15 min from Deja Brew, wheres the trailhead/s?
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  50. #50
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    There is quite a bit that is low intermediate friendly---fitness is always a plus, but most trails can be negotiated at a pace that'd appeal to those whose finessed has lagged.


    Here are some trails to check out and the trailheads:

    Check out Toby's tour-which parallels Carlton RD between Brook Rd and Wickett pond (entrance just after brook rd on Carlton RD); Harold's Hiatus-connects the middle of Dirth Rd to Carlton RD near wicket pond; The Robert Frost-off of Dry Hill RD (on the other side of Montague rd), The Nipmuck-entrance off of the maple leaf trail near the top of saxon bridge rd; the list goes on...almost all the trails are on the state map of wendell...though some of the trailheads and trail shapes are inexact

    How's Warwick SF???? Does that include the Mount Grace Trails? Much single track?

    I like the quesadillas at the Deja Brew

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    Warwick is a mix. I havent been up there in a year or so and haven't explored to much. It does connect to Mt. Grace and Erving State Forrest. The Wagonwheel campground is right in the middle of it all to.

    https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&i...p&ved=0CAUQtgM
    Last edited by Dirtoyz; 06-04-2012 at 06:24 PM. Reason: Added map.
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  52. #52
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    Just got back from taking another Wendell Virgin for a 3 hour tour of our goods. All smiles and sweat!
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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by hado_pv View Post
    Just got back from taking another Wendell Virgin for a 3 hour tour of our goods. All smiles and sweat!
    nice , i'm on the list for a tour!
    Brattleboro/Keene NEMBA officer and trail hero! :thumbsup::)

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by hado_pv View Post
    Just got back from taking another Wendell Virgin for a 3 hour tour of our goods. All smiles and sweat!
    How do we get on the list for a tour?

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by gnar602 View Post
    How do we get on the list for a tour?
    PM me or Superbman. I'm almost always available to show off our stuff unless I'm out building new trail somewhere, and Liam is whenever he isn't coaching his kids...
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  56. #56
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    I finally got to hit Wendell. Well, let me re-word that. Wendell finally got to hit me.

    Great trails, some good technical stuff, and a couple of crazy, leg burning climbs. All in all, a great time, but definatly an attitude adjustment. A side note: it was VERY slick on most of the mountain.

    Thankfully, I had a good solider leading the way. Couldn't have done it without Whitefoot...
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  57. #57
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    Nice seeing you guys out there. Glad you got to "enjoy" Wendell's best. See you again...
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  58. #58
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    Riding today 9:00 AM Dirth Rd Lot

    Probably 2-3 hours on the trails. Moderate Pace - I'm bringing the dog.
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  59. #59
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    Thanks for all you do! I appreciate your hard work on the trails and I will be back. BTW-- The pond soak afterwards it a big bonus!
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  60. #60
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    had a great ride with Hado, superbman and matty at wendell s.f. this morning. 15 miles, 3400' at a blistering pace of 6.6 mph. thanks guys for the tour!
    Brattleboro/Keene NEMBA officer and trail hero! :thumbsup::)

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    Looking forward to learning Wendell, I think it probably won't be before the NEMBA adventure ride there Jul 22 though.

    As an aside...Team Bums and I hit CTS (charlemont trail system) for the first time (for most of us) last weekend, great work Harold & crew! The new map is great too, very professional.

  62. #62
    vermonter
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    tour de wendell s.f.

    <h2><a href="http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=1648027">Track (6-28-12 8-48-46AM)</a></h2> <object width="400" height="300" codebase="http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/get/flashplayer/current/swflash.cab"><param name="movie" value="http://www.everytrail.com/swf/widget.swf"/><param name="FlashVars" value="units=english&mode=0&key=ABQIAAAA_7wvFEi7gG ngCZrOfos63hSN1xyBy-BzBD--25ZLXpVi3GfbehTQlZCXdpUFII2A5CGeExVTCyX1ow&tripId= 1648027&startLat=42.537543&startLon=-72.43804&mapType=Terrain&"><embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="http://www.everytrail.com/swf/widget.swf" quality="high" width="400" height="300" FlashVars="units=english&mode=0&key=ABQIAAAA_7wvFE i7gGngCZrOfos63hSN1xyBy-BzBD--25ZLXpVi3GfbehTQlZCXdpUFII2A5CGeExVTCyX1ow&tripId= 1648027&startLat=42.537543&startLon=-72.43804&mapType=Terrain&" play="true" quality="high" pluginspage="http://www.adobe.com/go/getflashplayer"></embed></object><br/>EveryTrail - Find the <a href="http://www.everytrail.com/best/hiking-new-hampshire">best Hiking in New Hampshire</a><script type="***************" src="http://www.everytrail.com/trip/widgetimpression?trip_id=1648027"></script>
    Brattleboro/Keene NEMBA officer and trail hero! :thumbsup::)

  63. #63
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    6.6mph is fast man! We rode some pretty slick stuff and defiantly didn't average 6.6mph! It was probably the slickest stuff I've ever ridden (rained pretty good the night before).

    It just made it more fun
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Damn, I love Wendell SF-wendell.jpg  

    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  64. #64
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    Pauldotcom, Do you ride everything on that map in the same ride? That is a beast loop!Lower M&M, backside of the lookouts, a full hannah mormon loop...good stuff!

  65. #65
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    Yes sir, that was one ride. On my GPS I got 16.8miles; it felt like much more. As I said previous, it was slick as hell as well. Afterwards, I was shot. We rode from around 10am-1:30pm or so
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pauldotcom View Post
    Yes sir, that was one ride. On my GPS I got 16.8miles; it felt like much more. As I said previous, it was slick as hell as well. Afterwards, I was shot. We rode from around 10am-1:30pm or so
    Probably is much more. GPS accuracy in the beech forest is pretty poor this time of year. Based on prior experience both your and Reynold's tracks would be closer to 20 with a wheel odometer.
    http://facebook.com/CharlemontTrails
    NEMBA Past President...

  67. #67
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    Noon today, Dirth Rd lot if anyone wants to join us.

    H
    http://facebook.com/CharlemontTrails
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    Here I am again musing over my favorite ride destination in MA. I hadn't been to wendell in a few weeks due to distractions coupled with the EEE scare (Wendell is ground Zero)...but today I said the hell with tropical diseases and spent a few hours in the rocky, hilly finery of Wendell.

    There is quite a bit of tree detritus on the trails from the wind storm earlier this week. But, on the whole the riding was good. I've been really enjoying the new intermediate trails on the Brook Rd/ Carlton Rd, Wickett pond escape parcels-they make for excellent mileage builders and a great way to link various sections of the park.

    Also, I noticed that the signs we paid for years ago have finally started showing up at the Trail Heads...The Wooden hannah Swarton Trail Sign now sits at the junction of Bob is Fat (which actually the lower Hannah Swarton) and the Maple Leaf Trail. Also, someone finally put in the last few planks on the bridge at the end of the Wickett pond trail.

    Weather was wonderful and Fall crisp and cool up on top of Wendell today. As I noted in another thread, I didn't see another soul today, nor did I see much signs of riding (the fluff on the trails from the mid-week storms looks pretty undisturbed). I always get the sense these days that people aren't riding there much anymore. I know that it doesn't meet the 'flowy' standards of trails folks seem to want today, and the trails are a little old-fashioned, rugged and wilderness like--but, for me, they are exactly the kind of trails I love to ride (and of course, that is not by accident, but by design).

    If you are looking for something different, check out Wendell SF over the next few weeks (Mid Fall is the best time to ride here, just before the leaves start really coming down).

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