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  1. #1
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    Middle Black

    Heard some chatter about flagging a reroute from TP down to Thrift. Anyone know wuzup?

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    http://www.fs.fed.us/sopa/components...11-2016-07.pdf

    Nothing on the SOPA about it...

    Wouldn't surprise me though.
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    Haven't heard anything

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    That would be one serious re-route. Unless there were plenty of switchbacks, it would have to be done well to the east to get off some serious fall lines. That's a lot of work I don't see happening due to cost alone.

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    Ok hopefully I'm wrong. I'll withhold my source for now...ha. we'll see. Hope it stays the chunky fun it is right now.

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    Tp?

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    Quote Originally Posted by profro View Post
    Tp?
    Turkey Pen

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    Ah.

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    It's true.

    That section of trail sucks, and needs a reroute. There is more opportunity for more fun with less gully by using more rocks, adding turns, jumps, sick stunts, etc. Straight line white-knuckle is so 1997.

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    Berms? Please more berms!

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    Quote Originally Posted by park baker View Post
    It's true.

    That section of trail sucks, and needs a reroute. There is more opportunity for more fun with less gully by using more rocks, adding turns, jumps, sick stunts, etc. Straight line white-knuckle is so 1997.
    Oh man, different strokes for different folks. Plenty of options around for jumps and berms. Once in a while it's nice to go to disgusting chundery fall line trails. Everything in moderation

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    Quote Originally Posted by profro View Post
    Berms? Please more berms!
    Lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by park baker View Post
    It's true.

    That section of trail sucks, and needs a reroute. There is more opportunity for more fun with less gully by using more rocks, adding turns, jumps, sick stunts, etc. Straight line white-knuckle is so 1997.
    I get why trails have to be re-worked for longevity but; Can we leave one of these fall line trails around? Lots of us loooong time riders cut our teeth on this stuff and they are still fun to ride. If it is to hairy for some, walk. I'll take a Spencer Branch style of re-work over a Ridgeline re-work any day. It's a multi-use forest, not a bike park.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pisgahrider View Post
    I get why trails have to be re-worked for longevity but; Can we leave one of these fall line trails around? Lots of us loooong time riders cut our teeth on this stuff and they are still fun to ride. If it is to hairy for some, walk. I'll take a Spencer Branch style of re-work over a Ridgeline re-work any day. It's a multi-use forest, not a bike park.
    I totally agree. One of the messages communicated to FODF was not to homogenize Dupont. And the bike park statement was used explicitly. I think trails should go into rotation: cut/re-work a trail, let it degrade/erode over time while moving on to another trail to do the same, come back to it years later, repeat. This way the trail and skills to ride it change continuously.

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    i have no words. leave things alone, people. there's a reason i got to wilson's 75% of the time. this kind of crap makes me want to make it 100%.

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    From TP to the fire ring most definitely needs some serious work. It used to be awesome, but it's just not like that anymore. I like riding ditched out eroded trails as much as anyone, but that particular section can go away imo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jstuhlman View Post
    i have no words. leave things alone, people. there's a reason i got to wilson's 75% of the time. this kind of crap makes me want to make it 100%.
    Surely you understand that the Forest Service can't, by law, just "leave things alone" when it's causing resource damage? I like middle black as much as anyone, but it's like that old leaky roof...at some point, tar and silicone just aren't going to keep you dry anymore.

    Before the Lower Black remodel was done, a group headed up with Woody Keen to the section of Black in question and basically did some investigation and "though exercises" about what was wrong and what, if anything, needed to be done. Even the staunchest "leave it alone" folks who were there that day, after looking closely and considering it from all angles, were able to concede that *something* had to be done, even if not a full re-route.

    That template is copied all over Pisgah and it just isn't sustainable. The trails need work; it's only a matter of time before *something* (rerouting, remodeling, or closure) is going to be done. Your best friend in the matter right now is lack of funding.

    Increasingly, I'm coming to understand that the eroded-out, "gnarly" fall line trails are really only appropriate for private lands where the risk profile is different. That's why I'm rooting for e.g. Bailey Mountain and Beech to take some pressure off that style of trail (and riding, frankly) from our public lands.

    Also, please don't ride non-designated trails in "Wilson's" if that's what you're suggesting. Poaching makes us all look bad, and it's long past time we grew up and got beyond that.

    (Apologies if you were referring only to the handful of MTB-designated trails over there...)

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    "Dear land managers, please leave it alone. We like eroded trails.

    Sincerely, Friends of Staire Creek".

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    Whatever IMBA/SORBA/PAS does to it just dont make it a flow trail. Make it tough, make it sketchy, make it f***ing scary as hell to ride. There are too many Ridgelines and not enough Farlows.

    Ya gotta work within the limits USFS sets but take it to the limit... Keep the spirit of Pisgah Gnar alive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    There are too many Ridgelines and not enough Farlows.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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    Now that's funny.
    Last edited by Mike Brown; 08-18-2016 at 04:03 PM.

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    Hahaha touche dudes!!!

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    So how does one build a Farlow on public land? Seriously.
    Should you do more trail work?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    So how does one build a Farlow on public land? Seriously.
    Drive dump trucks full of rocks to top of ridge. Spill said rocks down side of ridge. Ride bike on rocks. Trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    So how does one build a Farlow on public land? Seriously.
    You dont. There will never be legal trail built like that again in Pisgah. What you could do is make trail that drains well, has a mellow grade for sustainability but has alot of technical moves, tight corners, rock rolls, ledges, narrow/tight singletrack.... in other words challenging. Top speed and flow are not the only two things that riders want. I would rather ride 2mph over super tech moves than 40mph down a dirt sidewalk. We already have dirt sidewalk... time to try something new.

    USFS and IMBA have their standards for trail corridor though and it looks like this...

    Middle Black-41548497-scenic-small-forest-dirt-path-spring-fresh-green-trees-stock-photo.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    You dont. There will never be legal trail built like that again in Pisgah. What you could do is make trail that drains well, has a mellow grade for sustainability but has alot of technical moves, tight corners, rock rolls, ledges, narrow/tight singletrack.... in other words challenging. Top speed and flow are not the only two things that riders want. I would rather ride 2mph over super tech moves than 40mph down a dirt sidewalk. We already have dirt sidewalk... time to try something new.

    USFS and IMBA have their standards for trail corridor though and it looks like this...

    Click image for larger version. 

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    USFS has standards, and no they aren't what is pictured. I assume you were being sarcastic. IMBA has no trail design standards. That is one myth I hear over and over. Trail Building and Advocacy forum has info on this.


    I take that back. The USDA is the gubment organization that has specified trail design standards. The USFS adopted those standards.
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    So wear is all this flow you speak of in Pisgah?

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    Should you do more trail work?

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    From my limited experience, I'd say Spencer and Lower Blacks.

    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    So wear is all this flow you speak of in Pisgah?

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    Middle Black

    Spencer, definitely, and Fletcher in the same area, and actually new Lower Trace and Wash Creek. But I've always found Sycamore cove flowy, and Squirrel has always had that backwoods, big swoopy flow, even more so now at the eastern end heading down to Bradley; and, since it's less technical than it used to be, there's less to break flow for as many riders. Squirrel used to be that rare gem trail that allowed immense flow and tech to coexist in harmony.

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    So if this is actually happening does anyone know when?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    So wear is all this flow you speak of in Pisgah?

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    Horse Cove, almost all of Squirrel Gap depending on which way youre riding it, Laurel Cr., Mullinax, Laurel Descending, Long Branch, Cat, Bennet, Thrift, Cove Creek, Most of Daniels ridge, and almost all of Turkey Pen... Pretty much all the trails have it.

    Farlow, Black, and Pilot are the real chunknasty trails.
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    So you basically consider anything except "a Farlow" a flow trail. Lol. Most of the country would disagree with you whole heartedly.

    Without going down a rabbit hole, it seems like you might be mixing "countour" based trails and flow trails.

    We are so spoiled in Pisgah.

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    Should you do more trail work?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    So you basically consider anything except "a Farlow" a flow trail. Lol. Most of the country would disagree with you whole heartedly.

    Without going down a rabbit hole, it seems like you might be mixing "countour" based trails and flow trails.

    We are so spoiled in Pisgah.

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    You asked where the flow is in Pisgah?... not where are the "Flow trails".

    Flow and Flow Trails are two different things. Flow is not a trail based feature its a rider specific thing. I have ridden with guys who are super talented and they flatten upper black, Pilot, etc. They are so smooth descending that stuff that they are "flowing" like water down it. Easily jumping and flowing from one line to the next and not getting hung up in the gnar.

    A flow trail is a purpose built trail that has rollers/grade dips, its smooth, and is built in a flowing manner whereby riders dont have to pedal much to maintain speed. aka Ridgeline, Lower Black, etc.

    You ask where is the "flow" in Pisgah? Its literally everywhere. Its the rider who has flow, not the trail...

    ...But thats just, like, my opinion man. We all ride trail differently and in different ways. Thats one of my favorite parts of this sport.



    and +1 we are VERY spoiled to be riding here.
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    I hear you. Every trail has a flow of some sort. I think Farlow flows great.

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    Should you do more trail work?

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    Quote Originally Posted by thomas_hudson View Post
    Make Pisgah Great Again. The logo should be a bulldozer with a mexican behind it.
    I build the best Farlow Gaps. I know everything there is to know about Farlow. You want a good Farlow Gap you come to me. Superb Farlows, Farlows other people wish they could build. This country needs more Farlows and I can do it better than anyone, believe me.

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    How in the hell is this supposed to turn into a raging ****$torm with y'all being all funny?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    How in the hell is this supposed to turn into a raging ****$torm with y'all being all funny?

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    I try but they keep screwing it up...

    haha
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    Just start every post about Pisgah with, "You people..."

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    Should you do more trail work?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    You asked where the flow is in Pisgah?... not where are the "Flow trails".

    Flow and Flow Trails are two different things. Flow is not a trail based feature its a rider specific thing. I have ridden with guys who are super talented and they flatten upper black, Pilot, etc. They are so smooth descending that stuff that they are "flowing" like water down it. Easily jumping and flowing from one line to the next and not getting hung up in the gnar.

    A flow trail is a purpose built trail that has rollers/grade dips, its smooth, and is built in a flowing manner whereby riders dont have to pedal much to maintain speed. aka Ridgeline, Lower Black, etc.

    You ask where is the "flow" in Pisgah? Its literally everywhere. Its the rider who has flow, not the trail...

    ...But thats just, like, my opinion man. We all ride trail differently and in different ways. Thats one of my favorite parts of this sport.



    and +1 we are VERY spoiled to be riding here.
    No! Not trail! In you, the flow is! Or is not.

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    I'm confused. Isn't "Upper Black" the part uphill of Presley Gap? From the top of Clawhammer, past all the hike a bike and then downhill from just above Turkey Pen Ridge Trail until you get to the intersection with Presley?

    I kind of always thought that the first part of the Big M, up and over Hickory Knob, then downhill again was "Middle Black" which extends down to Thrift Cove. Lower Black being the fast flowy section that was reworked about a year ago.

    All three of these sections are classic, epic, unique and are practically historic landmarks. This is EXACTLY what people around the WORLD think about when they think about Pisgah. Nobody on Pinkbike is expecting to ride Ridgeline when they come to Pisgah. Nobody is expecting Neko Mullally and Luca Shaw to win World Cup races by training at Greenslick and Kitsuma. These natural and difficult trails are what WE have that other places DON'T have. Leave it alone. If anything, fill some of the deepest ruts on Upper Black with rocks so that they can be rolled through. But pretty much just leave it the way it is.

    Thinking that Bailey Mtn is going to "build" a 100 year old logging road eroded away to perfection for natural mountain biking is just plain naive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jm2e View Post
    I'm confused. Isn't "Upper Black" the part uphill of Presley Gap? From the top of Clawhammer, past all the hike a bike and then downhill from just above Turkey Pen Ridge Trail until you get to the intersection with Presley?

    I kind of always thought that the first part of the Big M, up and over Hickory Knob, then downhill again was "Middle Black" which extends down to Thrift Cove. Lower Black being the fast flowy section that was reworked about a year ago.
    My understanding as well - typo in my title.

    And agreed - perfect training track and so much fun. Pisgah gem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jm2e View Post
    Thinking that Bailey Mtn is going to "build" a 100 year old logging road eroded away to perfection for natural mountain biking is just plain naive.
    Glad someone brought this up. You don't build the type of trails that mad Pisgah famous. I especially like the "how do you build a Farlow Gap on public land?" You don't, nature did.

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    Acme- Are you sure logging didn't built it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    Acme- Are you sure logging didn't built it?

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    Yeah, a logging company mostly likely built a road there 100 years ago that eroded away into a boulder field in that time. Even then there are parts of Farlow that I have a hard time seeing ever being a road, like some of the creek crossings. The point is that no one went out there and purpose built that trail, it would never fly. It is what it is because it has been relatively unmaintained over 100 years. Luckily there is so much rock out there it has weathered very well compared to some of the other similar trails that have become massive gullies.

  45. #45
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    I get it. Most of those fall line trails weren't roads but skidder lines. Basically big ass rake and rides.

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    Middle Black-nantahala_pisgah_cutover1-e1331749713783.jpgName:  fig40.jpg
Views: 433
Size:  19.7 KBMiddle Black-im522z2700.jpg

    Yay, nature!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snototter View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	nantahala_pisgah_cutover1-e1331749713783.jpg 
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ID:	1095315Name:  fig40.jpg
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    Yay, nature!
    While that log flume looks like a hella fun ride, those images of deforestation hurt my eyes. :'(

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    It's amazing what those old boys did back in the day. One of the craziest parts to me is that a lot of the gravel roads out there were railbeds. It must have been a wild ride climbing clawhammer rd to buckhorn and down the other side in a steam engine!

    The deforestation though, it's amazing how the forest has recovered after that.

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    Super cool photos Snototter

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    Quote Originally Posted by Acme54321 View Post
    Yeah, a logging company mostly likely built a road there 100 years ago that eroded away into a boulder field in that time. Even then there are parts of Farlow that I have a hard time seeing ever being a road, like some of the creek crossings. The point is that no one went out there and purpose built that trail, it would never fly. It is what it is because it has been relatively unmaintained over 100 years. Luckily there is so much rock out there it has weathered very well compared to some of the other similar trails that have become massive gullies.
    You kind of nailed it with your mention of the type of trail Farlow is. Whether it was an old skidder road or settler/native american foot path the soil type is totally different than that of Black mountain. Yes nature did help shape those trails and continues to do so along with other factors but you can not deny the biggest difference is usage. Farlow only sees a fraction of the use that Black mountain does but roughly the same amount of rain fall. Black mountain being a clay based trail(in most sections) is eroding faster than ever now. It will be a sad day indeed if Farlow ever becomes the same as Black mountain.

    I just rode upper black last week. I was blown away by how deep and eroded sections have become. The wildest thing is the worst wash outs were right below the water bars which ironically were placed there years ago to prevent trail degradation. Below are a few pictures that were passed along to me of a trail somewhere in Pisgah(personally never seen it)
    This is without a doubt how Black Mountain will look in another 5-10years.

    Middle Black-12094752_10153059797505493_7586507974142454759_o.jpg
    Middle Black-12141768_10153059797375493_8072720546037578571_n.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snototter View Post
    This is without a doubt how Black Mountain will look in another 5-10years.
    There are parts of Black going down to Avery Creek that already look like that first picture. This kind of stuff I personally have no problem with rerouting and closing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Acme54321 View Post
    There are parts of Black going down to Avery Creek that already look like that first picture. This kind of stuff I personally have no problem with rerouting and closing.
    I just took a ride on Middle Black on Saturday. First time in about a year, and now there are several holes, literally holes, you can't avoid. I think there were 3 that were not rideable and with more weathering, will just get worse.

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    Those pictures look a lot like Schoolhouse Ridge in Wilson Creek. It has been like that as long as I have been riding it (over 10 years) but now there are a few sections that have become unrideable. I was loving how technical it had become but there will be a point where it loses its appeal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    I just took a ride on Middle Black on Saturday. First time in about a year, and now there are several holes, literally holes, you can't avoid. I think there were 3 that were not rideable and with more weathering, will just get worse.

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    So, any updates on this ? Has any work been done on any of black since this post?

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    Quote Originally Posted by swoodbrn View Post
    So, any updates on this ? Has any work been done on any of black since this post?
    I just rode middle black last week and still the same chunky fall-line gnar. 2 small sections I said "no thanks" but the rest was ride-able ok.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swoodbrn View Post
    So, any updates on this ? Has any work been done on any of black since this post?
    Nope. There is a re-route planned for Middle Black. A preliminary route has been mapped, but no date yet set. Until then enjoy the holes. Probably years away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy G. Parrish View Post
    Nope. There is a re-route planned for Middle Black. A preliminary route has been mapped, but no date yet set. Until then enjoy the holes. Probably years away.

    Sent from my MotoG3 using Tapatalk
    Y, seemed about the same as always today, very fun. Very dry, so pretty forgiving.

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    There has been work done on Middle and Lower Black. Some of the worst holes were somewhat repaired, and a few grade reversals installed. It was finished 2 or 3 months back. It wasn't a reroute at all. The fact that people think it hasn't been worked is a good thing. Most of the work was on middle black below TP down to Pressley, and then some on lower from there to the intersection with Thrift Cove.

    We had a ride planned there today, but with the forest closed for the manhunt, I guess we will be riding somewhere else :-(
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