Winter Trail Conditions: Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Winter Trail Conditions: Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016

    With our first few inches of snow under our belt and the potential for some more meaningful accumulation this weekend I felt it was time for this thread. Please let us know where you're riding, what the conditions are, what equipment is necessary, etc. One thing that may change this year is the increased number of fat bikes and some areas that will be groomed for riding.

    I'll start by saying that I rode Blue Hills yesterday. Had 2-3 inches of fresh snow. Two of us on fat bikes, one on a 29er. Riding was awesome. Ground is mostly frozen underneath the snow with very little slick spots.

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    Try FB, local trail conditions. Works for me.

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    EVERYWHERE right now is good fat or not.
    “People fear death even more than pain. It's strange that they fear death. Life hurts a lot more than death." JM

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    I've been out a few times with skinnies and no studs. Per se it's a bit slippery here or there, it's really no bother if you're on packed trails. Just follow the fatties!
    Riding bikes rules!

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    Does anyone know if Vietnam gets groomed?


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    Wompatuck
    Jan 23rd (pre snow storm)

    Conditions: Trails around HQ were nice and packed down from fatbikes and hikers. As we go further away some trails (PE1), we were the 1st ones riding it.

    We rode on 29x2.25 tires and it was passable on everything except for steep climbs.

    Video of part of the ride:

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    The Pioneer Valley is practically snow-free. Trails in the Notch are snow free, hard and almost no ice. Awesome conditions yesterday!

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    NEMBA had the new groomer out at Wompy on Sunday, reports were that it did an awesome job. I'll bet most of the stuff that's seen snowmobile traffic there is in good shape. Today's sun probably helped thaw out some spots, they'll refreeze up nice tonight. The early morning riding should be great.
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    The Fells were mostly ridable (if slow) on normal width tires without studs on the packed snow. I suspect that things are going to get pretty gross and muddy after tomorrow's "heat wave" though.

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    Group of riders from the Berkshires heading out to ride Bachelor St. on Sunday.
    Wanted to reach out to locals to make sure the warmer weather does not create soft trail conditions that were susceptible to rutting and damage.
    Please update the forum this week if possible....??
    Thanks in advance

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    Just looking at the weather history/forecast shows it's a bad idea; the area basically has muddy March weather conditions meaning warm enough to melt the recent snow but too cold to actually get proper water.

    https://weatherspark.com/#!dashboard;a=USA/MA/Amherst

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    The weather this week was a game changer in south eastern Mass. Snow is gone, now it's a matter of which trails drained and which ones held the water. Those will be turning to ice skating rinks once the weather drops this weekend. I haven't been out to Wompatuck, but I'll be headed to Blue Hills today to see what those trails look like. There is a lot of ground in Blue Hills that drains well. I'm assuming over at Ponkapoag will be swampy thought.

  13. #13
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    Fells in the snow

    Winter Trail Conditions:  Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016-image.jpg
    I was in the Fells for short rides the last 2 days. Rode on skinny tires and had to walk up the inclines. Yesterday was muddy around the Stoneham/Whip Hill side. Needs a good freeze.

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    Did anybody get to ride on the groomed stuff at wompy? I'm a little bi-curious as to how it worked out, and how much distance they had nicened up for y'all.

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    HP is in great shape right now. No snow, no mud very little ice (fire roads mainly). Not sure how much rain is expected later today, but HP drains pretty well so I wouldn't think it will have a huge impact.

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    Vietnam is in pretty good shape for riding on skinnies, though the warm weather may soften it up too much. There was a big ride on Wednesday night there that didn't claim any lives and was a lot of fun.
    Riding bikes rules!

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    anybody have some up to date info on wompy? I am looking to run the landmine loop and didn't know if it would be a disaster or not.

    fyi i am in plymouth, ma and all the snow is virtually gone. pinehills and myles standish should be smooth sailing.

    any updates on otis and tot?

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    Rode HP this afternoon. Rode the wicked ride sections in east side of the park - its in great shape - no snow or ice and only a couple of soft spots.

  19. #19
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    Wompy is riding well. Some muck for sure but the trails overall are nice. Slick in spots but if you ride Wompy you are ready for that. I was not on a fat bike and I did not have studs.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by opo 19 View Post
    Group of riders from the Berkshires heading out to ride Bachelor St. on Sunday.
    Wanted to reach out to locals to make sure the warmer weather does not create soft trail conditions that were susceptible to rutting and damage.
    Please update the forum this week if possible....??
    Thanks in advance
    B Street is riding like late October. Dry and fast. Had a killer ride Sunday. How'd your ride go?

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    I'll be interests to hear everyone's experience after this snow. I road Blue Hills yesterday and attempted Wompatuck this AM. The downed trees and overhanging snow covered trees made riding very difficult. That should be gone after this weekend. I'm hearing good reports of Duxbury after some folks went and cleared trails there today. Over the course of this week Wompy will get some love as SEMass NEMBA is bosting an event (Snowpatuck) there next Sunday.

    I'll be out at the Wicked Nor'Eastah @ Borderland tomorrow. I hope the weather stays cold enough to keep the trails rideable.
    Last edited by SHowley2003; 02-07-2016 at 09:54 AM.

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    yea i am learning getting fresh tracks isnt the same when on a fatbike. makes for a long slow and wet slog through the woods. this particular storm made so many low hanging trees ton of single track was kind of unpassable. with more snow coming hopefully there is a good base and the trees spring back for next weekend

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    Wicked nor'easter. So good.

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    How's wompy running these days? I know some of those guys were super active on fb (which I no longer have) with updates and such. They sled it up after the last storm Monday?

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    Wompatuck
    2/15/2015

    Bike: 29 HT with 2.2 tires

    Conditions: Poor for an skinny bike. The horsetrails and roads were passable if you found the right groove. Most of these were packed down by snowmobiles. South Field was inpassable unless you had a fatbike. Most of the singletrack was not ridden.

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    Really?? They just had an event there yesterday.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chippertheripper View Post
    Really?? They just had an event there yesterday.
    Thought it was going to be better since they said the trails would be groomed for the event. What surprised me the most was the lack of usage on the single track. After today it made me realize I need a fatty in my life.

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    Everyone in New England needs a fatty in their life.
    9zero7 is blowing out their aluminum white outs. Really decent bang/buck.
    Cheers.

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    Wompy is riding well, but the conditions vary greatly based on who has used the trails. The groomer can't do the singletrack unless it is enough to cover the rocks significantly. Even then the problem is snowmobiles and hikers are finding the groomed trails enjoyable which changes the quality of the trail. I found all the roads to be passable and much of the trails towards the Whitney Woods area to be fun even on a regular MTB as their was a well packed trail from snowshoers. The trails that are all snowmobile have a layer of torn up ice on top that IMO requires a fatty. I did not make it out to South Field.

    I rode Blue Hills today. The lower trails that wrap the perimeter are well packed and were rideable with any MTB. Once you turned and headed towards elevation you needed a fatty with the exception of Buck Hill which had a great trail worn in from several bikes.

    All of that being said none of this information is likely to help anyone out given the rain and increase temperatures tomorrow. If the conditions are safe for me and the trails I'll be back at Blue Hills on Wednesday and I'll post another update. I personally won't be back to Wompy for probably another week.

  30. #30
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    Anybody ride Wompatuck today? I rode Adam's Farm in Walpole and it was variable conditions. Some ice, some slushy snow, some dirt. I'm going to give Wompy a go tomorrow and was curious what to expect.
    Vermonter - bikes, beers and skis.

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    I haven't been to Wompy recently. Heard it's pretty icy with lots of areas of standing water.

    I rode Blue Hills yesterday. Stayed to the higher ground stuff knowing it would by drier. Trails that were free of snow were dry for the most part. Though lower trails had running water on them. The overall conditions of the trails varied greatly. Some were dry, some were wet, some had packed ice/ slush and some still had several inches of snow. Riding was fun but slow. It will be a while before it will be dry on all of the trails, and I'm sure Ponkapoag is in much worst shape.

  32. #32
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    Anyone have any intel on Otis? Is it dirt & dry or covered in snow. I was thinking of making a road trip this Sunday if the conditions are OK. Thanks in advance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bighit2005 View Post
    Anyone have any intel on Otis? Is it dirt & dry or covered in snow. I was thinking of making a road trip this Sunday if the conditions are OK. Thanks in advance.
    If anything, just the north facing stuff might have a bit of white stuff left. The rest of the place SHOULDVE drained off pretty well, because of how sandy it is.
    There's a pretty good chance myself and my merry band of misfits will be out there Sunday afternoon.

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    Thanks for the info.

  35. #35
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    2/20 - Blue Hills

    Conditions: Rode the White Arrow trail (Buck Hill side) and the trails were pretty much dry expect for Forest Path (2190 to 2194) was mix of snow, ice, flowing river of water. Tons of down trees and branches everywhere. I did stop and clean up as much as I could off the trail.

    PSA - Be careful of down branches in the trail when riding. I manged to run over a branch that caught my front tire and impaled my shin pretty bad.

  36. #36
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    2/21 - Wompatuck

    Conditions: Pretty much dry except for a few spots. The NW area had some deep water and mud. My ghetto mudguards worked great keeping the mud of out of my face. Prospect Hill in great shape. E15 - C10 - C4 - C6 - C7 link ran dry and fast.

  37. #37
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    Rode Wompy last night with a group of 5. Normal, low lying spots were muddy or water filled, but overall the place is riding great.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

  38. #38
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    Kind of off topic, but not really:

    Don't be an a**hole and park in a muddy grass or dirt parking lot and leave 15inch ruts with your Subaru (because thats what we all drive- lol)so you can ride frozen trails! Park on the street or a paved lot if you can. I've seen this time and time again. Everyone is concerned about not damaging the trails, but could care less that they trash the place where they park. ESPECIALLY if its on DCR or Army Corp. property.....

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    We park in the paved lot. Nothing frozen out there.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    2/27 - Willowdale

    Conditions: Definitely rideable but on the side of caution its not 100% dry in many areas. Alot of the corners were muddy and slick which provided a few butt puckering moments. I went clockwise around the park and have to think counterclock would of been better since a few of the climbs lacked any grip. Didnt hit any PRs but had tons of fun sliding around in the mud.

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    Middlesex Fells closed for March?

    Did 17 miles in the Fells today, almost no mud or wet trails. Stayed away from the 3 reservoirs, orange and green trails- too many walkers and dogs on a Sunday.
    Rode in the Melrose, Stonehan and Medford areas and had a great time. Very dry, but according to the DCR regs- park is off limits to bikers for March, to allow ground to dry out.

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    I hear Ludlow is riding well and is mostly dry. Haven't been myself though.
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    Rode the Fells this morning; it was pretty dry except for the usual wet spots, very much "April" conditions. Hopefully the mud closure MTB ban is shortened.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmcs View Post
    Did 17 miles in the Fells today, almost no mud or wet trails. Stayed away from the 3 reservoirs, orange and green trails- too many walkers and dogs on a Sunday.
    Rode in the Melrose, Stonehan and Medford areas and had a great time. Very dry, but according to the DCR regs- park is off limits to bikers for March, to allow ground to dry out.
    If we know the Fells is closed to bikes until April (or whatever date), why are people riding there anyway and then babbling all about their riding exploits on the interwebs? We're giving ourselves bad press and giving the Fells nut jobs ammunition to ban bikes all together. Use your heads.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by pulsepro View Post
    If we know the Fells is closed to bikes until April (or whatever date), why are people riding there anyway and then babbling all about their riding exploits on the interwebs? We're giving ourselves bad press and giving the Fells nut jobs ammunition to ban bikes all together. Use your heads.
    Because the official Fells closure (except when changed by DCR) is the month of March.

  46. #46
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    Riding tonight in Wompy. Should be dry and fast. I'll post up tomorrow morning.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    Did about 15 miles last night in Wompy. Good shape overall with some muddy sections in the NN's. Low lying areas are wetter for sure. Lots of debris on the trails.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    Heading to the Pioneer Valley tonight. There all weekend. Any word on Earls? Bachelor Street?
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  49. #49
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    FYI-
    The ranger at Lynn Woods advised me the park is closed to mountain bikes till April 15.

  50. #50
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    3/6 - Wompatuck

    Much more drier than my last ride there. Dusting of snow on the shady areas made it very fun. Bike was eating branches like a woodchuck, there's a bunch of sections with big trees down. The scout trails E4-E5-E6 was just a mess between trees down, big sections of trail underwater. With the weather nice this week, expect the conditions to be great next weekend.

  51. #51
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    Hit up HP today. Mostly yellow diamond trails and some off shoots. Trails are in top notch condition. There is a barely a spot of mud on my bike and the traction is perfect.
    Get out and ride even when you don't want to because ten minutes into the ride you'll be glad you did.

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    Some water on fireroads at Batch but trails pretty dry.

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    Willowdale still snowy

    Winter Trail Conditions:  Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016-image.jpg

    Monday- all snow and packed ice trails. I found the single tracks very greasy.

    Tuesday- complete bare, dry trails in Stoneham, Melrose

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmcs View Post
    FYI-
    The ranger at Lynn Woods advised me the park is closed to mountain bikes till April 15.
    You can ride the powerlines and north of there. That's not park jurisdiction.
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  55. #55
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    Wompatuck was in great shape last night.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    Rode Russel Mill this evening. Pristine condition! You've gotta love springtime in Mass.

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    LDT is in great shape too.
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    Willowdale ran beautiful considering there was snow, ice there a week ago

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    Has anyone been riding in Landlocked Forest lately? I imagine it'll be pretty muddy with all of this recent rain but I may check it out Saturday if things clear up a bit. I'm a new rider from Melrose and I know riding is off limits in the Fells until April 1st so I believe Landlocked may be my best/only option at this point.

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    ^^^ Supposed to rain all week. Will be a wait and see. Spring conditions and all. Pavement is always open.

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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    ^^^ Supposed to rain all week. Will be a wait and see. Spring conditions and all. Pavement is always open.

    Its also a GREAT time of year to do trail work. Cut back face slappers, repair wall crossings, pick up sticks etc. If everyone did 1 hour PER YEAR it would make a huge difference...

  62. #62
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    Almost time to start the Spring Cleaning thread! Moved a bunch of debris in Wompatuck last night. Pretty wet out there.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

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    Almost time to get this thread started again? Conditions in my back yard were good on Saturday morning. Did a few laps on 5" tires. I don't think skinnies would have been doable.Winter Trail Conditions:  Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016-img_3935.jpg
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  64. #64
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    Heading to Blue Hills tomorrow. Anyone ride there in the last day or so? Rideable without studs?

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    12/17 Wompatuck
    Dried up nicely. Thanks to other riders not riding earlier this week, no ruts. Very fast frozen dirt.

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    Fells conditions since the rain/snow last weekend?

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    LLF in Burlington is a mixture of frozen slush (aka ice), some hardpack snow, and ~50% dir. Most trails had used with the snow, so previous tire tracks are largely down to leaves/dirt with ice/snow/foot prints on either side.

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    I had a thought of racing down to Otis this week from NH. Has any one been there since the storm? Is here snow? I'm looking to ride some dirt. Most of the snow up here is to fluffy and deep or icy.
    Once you go slack, you never go back!

  69. #69
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    Rode Blue Hills yesterday 99% clear with a tiny bit of ice. Hadn't been there in a few years and was really impressed with how nice the new mtb trails are. Nice fast hard pack/frozen dirt conditions.

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    I live 2 blocks from Camp Greenough Trails in Yarmouth Port. 3" of snow we got Sat. am was gone by 4PM with temp. in upper 50's. Would be riding but have broken ribs; walked the Greenough trails yesterday and was pissed I couldn't ride: damp, not frozen, probably would not leave a tire track. I suspect all of the Cape is that way, THE place to be. Should stay good this coming week looking at the forecast.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by basso4735 View Post
    Fells conditions since the rain/snow last weekend?
    Fells was a little icy in spots, but good frozen dirt all around.

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    Rode Fells yesterday, not much ice just a little damp in spots. Glad I got out there before the rain today.

  73. #73
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    Winter Trail Conditions:  Running List of Where to Ride Winter 2016-duke.jpg

    Pittsfield State Forest is riding pretty sweet right now

  74. #74
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    12/27 Blue Hills

    All the ice is gone but leaving muddy mess, especially on the backside of Buck Hill where the new trail was just cut. Stay off it till it freezes up. Other parts of the park were ok to ride.

  75. #75
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    If anyone rides in the Greater Boston area over the next few days please post conditions. Hoping everything isn't a soupy mess after the thaw...


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  76. #76
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    Lets see, 2 days of rain and 50 + degrees = soup. Maybe the ground will stay frozen, most snow gone already. Will be waiting for the Sat. freeze myself.

  77. #77
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    I think the drought has ended. Swampatuck will need some time to drain.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

  78. #78
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    Cape Cod has been pretty slushy this week with the thaw. I would avoid the trails here until they drain or we get another freeze. Rode my fat bike out on Sandy Neck last night though and it was riding great. No snow on the beach and just a few sections of snow on the horse trail.

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by WATERBOOY View Post
    Cape Cod has been pretty slushy this week with the thaw. I would avoid the trails here until they drain or we get another freeze. Rode my fat bike out on Sandy Neck last night though and it was riding great. No snow on the beach and just a few sections of snow on the horse trail.
    Waterbooy is correct. Stay off the trails. The beaches are in perfect condition.


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  80. #80
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    Anyone have an update on central MA? Ground should have drained/frozen up a bit after the overnight 15f temps. Can't decide if it's fatty or XC bike though.

  81. #81
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    Studs or no studs at Russell Mill today? Could go either way I'm thinking.

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    Rode Wharton Plantation and a bit of Haystack today (Groton). 90% clear, frozen dirt. Low lying shaded areas still had some ice. Double track with poor drainage had developed a good ice pack which was still present. I rolled the dice and went with my XC bike. No regrets and glad to get some January dirt in.

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott O View Post
    Studs or no studs at Russell Mill today? Could go either way I'm thinking.

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    RM was outstanding yesterday. No snow or ice. Traction x 100.

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  84. #84
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    Will any MA trail networks be rideable on a normal trial bike this weekend (no studs)? Temps look to be above freezing so I am wondering if anything is dry. Looking to escape the iciness of VT. Thanks!

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    I haven't been out, but judging from what I see, any central MA trail would be a mudfest. AKA, please don't ride them unless it's already rutted out double track. I have no idea what the situation on the Cape is.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenMtnRider View Post
    Will any MA trail networks be rideable on a normal trial bike this weekend (no studs)? Temps look to be above freezing so I am wondering if anything is dry. Looking to escape the iciness of VT. Thanks!
    Everyone is going there with fatty studs, you are leaving VT?

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    Everyone is going there with fatty studs, you are leaving VT?
    How far up do we need to go to hit snow?


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  88. #88
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    Cape is Awesome right now.


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  89. #89
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    Anyone know if Uxbridge has snow?


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  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtyjack View Post
    Anyone know if Uxbridge has snow?


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    I rode Goat, Badlands and Ribbon today. Everything is pretty much covered with a 1-2 inch layer of snow that been ridden into a pretty decent surface. There were a few muddy spots, but nothing major.

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdc View Post
    I rode Goat, Badlands and Ribbon today. Everything is pretty much covered with a 1-2 inch layer of snow that been ridden into a pretty decent surface. There were a few muddy spots, but nothing major.
    yes, we made the trek and were rewarded with an awesome day of riding!
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  92. #92
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    A lot has changed in the past few weeks...will anything be rideable for the weekend or do we snowshoe/ski?

  93. #93
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    Wompy was awesome this morning, fat, skinny, didn't matter. Mostly snowmobile tracks on the roads, but some singletrack too. Should be the same tomorrow morning.
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  94. #94
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    Anyone been out this week? Updates?

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    I rode 14 miles in Wompatuck Tuesday night. It was a great fat bike ride. I'll bet almost all the snow is gone now, but it will be wet.
    My name is Chris and I ride a Ripmo now.

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfcandy View Post
    Anyone been out this week? Updates?
    I'm in central Mass and haven't bothered trying. I'd guess the snow is pretty loose for riding and the dirt is certainly muddy. I imagine by this weekend it'll be full on mud ban. Had a great ride on the Minuteman bike trail today though. 60's in February rocks!

  97. #97
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    Also figured it wasn't worth trying. Back to the roadie! Nice to finally be off the trainer.

  98. #98
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    Definitely not worth riding unless you live in The Unreal Miraculous Dry Forest of Might and Power. I took a brief stroll on the fattie and it was an absolute mess.

  99. #99
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    Cape for the win. Pics look great, trail of tears n Otis.

  100. #100
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    Duxbury is 99% clear and dry


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  101. #101
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    Fells near Bear Hill lot, a friggin mess!

  102. #102
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    Hiked in Stow, MA today and it is "no-go" mud in many spots, particularly on fire roads. Interestingly, some of the singletrack had sections that were in excellent shape, but the overall prognosis is still too wet.
    May be ridable this time next week though. Of course, at this rate it will 230 degrees in June...sweet.

  103. #103
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    Big River (yes, RI) was really nice and dry overall yesterday.

  104. #104
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    lots of riders at blue hills yesterday but honestly felt like, even from the road, it looked way too wet for this time of year. definitely a difference between june mud and february mud...

  105. #105
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    this is good to know. Was planning to try BH mtb tomorrow, but will bring a cross bike too, to just ride roads etc if it's too sloppy/bad for the trails in there.

  106. #106
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    Lincoln Woods RI was great today. Very few wet sections and the dirt was nice and tacky.

  107. #107
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    We need to update this to Spring 2016 riding conditions soon.

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