My First Trip to Moraine- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    My First Trip to Moraine

    The last weekend I was at school I decided to finally make my way out to Moraine State Park. Boy I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I didn't have my iron horse, I had left it at home due to fears about theft and weather, so I was riding my crap bike, a full rigid Murray MTN Shadow. The rock gardens were simply too much for me, as were the drop offs, but the dirt singletrack was awesome. I wasn't quite able to follow the directions they gave me at the park office, so I got pretty lost, but overall I had fun. I think next time I'll try to take the Iron Horse, and I think I'll also skip the 8 miles of paved trail before and after the mtb trail. Sorry, no pics, I was focusing too much on just trying to survive.

  2. #2
    The White Jeff W
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    I rode there after work Friday morning (I work nights). I had ridden there once before & knew what to expect so it was a little easier this time. I made myself ride a couple sections over until I could get the line right & clean it. It was damp & slick which made it a little tougher but still fun. I left completely exhausted.
    No moss...

  3. #3

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    next sunday we are running a trail day from the davis hollow marina. If you can make it at 10am we will probably do a ride. If nothing else i can give you a good dirt map of the trails. I will be adding signs in June to help out.

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    I'd love to, but I'm home now. Getting there at 10am would mean leaving home at 8am. When the fall semester comes I'm going to try to get out there more, hopefully with my Iron Horse.

  5. #5
    The White Jeff W
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    Quote Originally Posted by defcon4
    next sunday we are running a trail day from the davis hollow marina. If you can make it at 10am we will probably do a ride. If nothing else i can give you a good dirt map of the trails. I will be adding signs in June to help out.

    I'm gonna try to make this. I'm new to the area & looking to meet local riders.
    No moss...

  6. #6
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    I've been thinking of making a trip out there soon. Where is a good place to park for a first timer? I've only been riding for about 3 months so starting with something fun/easy would be ideal.

  7. #7
    SP Singletrack rocks
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsk0703
    I've been thinking of making a trip out there soon. Where is a good place to park for a first timer? I've only been riding for about 3 months so starting with something fun/easy would be ideal.
    If you ve only been riding for 3 months I would suggest not going to moraine...

    but maybe you can ride it and aspire to it later.

    Its really technical as the Original poster is saying, and has alot of climbing. 30 miles of riding packed into 10 miles. The original loop is tough, the new stuff is straight up gnar.

    here is a TR from a couple weeks ago

    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=516095

  8. #8
    Just a lerker at heart
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA
    If you ve only been riding for 3 months I would suggest not going to moraine...

    but maybe you can ride it and aspire to it later.

    Its really technical as the Original poster is saying, and has alot of climbing. 30 miles of riding packed into 10 miles. The original loop is tough, the new stuff is straight up gnar.

    here is a TR from a couple weeks ago

    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=516095
    I agree.

    Also, if anyone is looking to ride out this direction, just shoot me a PM and I'll try to find some time somewhere.

  9. #9
    Hermit
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    Moraine maps

    I left about a dozen copies of my latest Moraine map in the box at the trailhead sign on Mt. Union Rd. when I was there on Saturday. I'll try to remember to bring a couple of copies to restock whenever I get back over there to ride.

    JSK: If you're still interested in heading to Moraine there are some areas that aren't too far advanced - but they are less than half of the distance available. If you start at the Mt. Union Rd. trailhead you can ride up the powerline trail to the top of the first ridge. Right before the trail drops down the other side of the ridge look for a connector trail on your right leading into the woods. If you follow the trail to the right you're on just about the easiest section there - but it's short. When the trail comes back near the powerline there is another (faint) connector so you can ride back out to the powerline and lap the ridgetop trail. Or continue on to a more difficult (intermediate, not advanced) out and back loop - more rocks n roots and some hills. If you ride this second section keep your eyes out for powerline trail - the connector is nearly invisible, but you probably don't want to continue on to the next loop - it is TOUGH. If you get to a triple switchback you're starting on the tough section. Or you can park down at the marina and ride the loop south of the old road/snowmobile trail accessible by riding around the end of the marina bay - not too tech but has some definite hills.

    And yeah, the paved bike trail is probably not gonna satisfy your singletrack jones.

    Steve Z
    Last edited by swampboy62; 05-11-2009 at 12:56 PM.
    Pedaling when it's dry
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    My insignificant blog:
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  10. #10

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    so the overwhelming theme is signs and mileage. I am going to get the signage taken care of beginning of june. Mileage is an issue but with the way the trails are built there it takes a ton of time to build. The current section of trail has over 200 hours into it over a year. Factor in that there is usually about 3 guys building there on 90% of the trail days and that is why there isnt more mileage. Not trying to rant, but just explain why there is only 8 miles. Speaking of that.....i dont believe that there is only 8 miles. If the trail is too short you can always make use of the powerline section to cut back and ride the trail in reverse. It is a completely different trail when you hit it in reverse. I have some plans to make a more intermediate section of trail that will add some faster trails that will gain mileage. That is a good ways off but i will probably try to get it planned this winter for a start of next spring. Hopefully the building will be easier if i make it less technical and the trail will go together faster.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA
    If you ve only been riding for 3 months I would suggest not going to moraine...

    but maybe you can ride it and aspire to it later.

    Its really technical as the Original poster is saying, and has alot of climbing. 30 miles of riding packed into 10 miles. The original loop is tough, the new stuff is straight up gnar.

    here is a TR from a couple weeks ago

    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=516095
    I totally understand that Moraine is geared more towards advanced riders. My thought was that I'd go with the expectation and understanding that I would not be able to ride most of it. However I also figured could ride what I could, walk what I couldn't, watch other riders, etc. Maybe learn some new things.

  12. #12
    Hermit
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    Defcon: Definitely not trying to give you and the other trail builders a hard time about the distance. Anyone who rides there can see the immense amount of work required to forge a trail out of that land o' rocks. For instance at the top of the new downhill, that rock feature where you ride the shoulder of the drop off then switchback to ride below - I shudder to think of how many tons of rock had to be moved to make that happen. We call it "the Masterpiece". And though miles aren't huge, the challenge is. That hill ride coming down from the first ridge on the powerline to the creek is the stretch I've ever ridden. And even attempting to hit it in the up hill direction is way more hard core than this old man.

    I'd also agree that it's a different trail in each direction. If you're smart about your route you can spend quite a while out there without hitting anything in the same direction twice.

    I'd like to point out that I started riding there in the fall, when West Branch (in OH - my local trails) got too mushy - and I'd been riding mtb for about three months. When I first got out there the rocky loop down by the Mt. Union parking lot kicked my ass every 50 ft. But riding there a couple of times a week all fall, winter & spring has brought my tech riding up 200%. I still can't clean the rocky loop, but I can get it with only a few dabs, and those on the uphill rock gardens. If you want to build some tech skills, Moraine & its rocks ROCK!

    Oh, and after riding Moraine all winter I headed back over to Quail Hollow once it had dried up a bit. All that Moraine rock hopping & hill climbing made QH seem incredibly easy (yeah, I know - it IS easy) and now I can go FAST!

    Steve Z
    Pedaling when it's dry
    And paddling when it's wet

    My insignificant blog:
    http://swampboy62.blogspot.com/

  13. #13

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    I know you werent disparaging the trails or our work. I dont think others do either. I just wanted to point out why there are fewer miles. It definitely is labor intensive to build there.

    As for hitting moraine as a beginner i would encourage it. As long as you arent frustrated by the terrain and you ride within your limits you will progress as a rider with a much higher rate. The first few months will be rough but after that you will be able to ride anywhere. I started about 2002 with a walmart bike there. I trashed that and moved on to more bikes. Cut your teeth there and you will become better and better as a rider. Most people that show up there think it is going to be a north park or normal bike trail and they turn around after the first half mile and leave. IF you want to become better and learn to ride rough trails that is the place to ride. Good luck.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by defcon4
    As for hitting moraine as a beginner i would encourage it. As long as you arent frustrated by the terrain and you ride within your limits you will progress as a rider with a much higher rate. The first few months will be rough but after that you will be able to ride anywhere. I started about 2002 with a walmart bike there. I trashed that and moved on to more bikes. Cut your teeth there and you will become better and better as a rider. Most people that show up there think it is going to be a north park or normal bike trail and they turn around after the first half mile and leave. IF you want to become better and learn to ride rough trails that is the place to ride. Good luck.
    Thanks. That is pretty much what I was thinking.

  15. #15

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    trail mileage

    Someone up above reflected that the trail was 8 miles. I knew that was off. the official mileage of the trail from a fellow riders gps was 11.01 miles. That includes riding the section from the main trailhead to the main loop out and back I count this in the overall mileage as you have to use this out and back to get to and from your car. This also includes the new section of trail we just completed and polished up sunday and today. when the next loops are completed it will hover somewhere around 12 to 13 miles.


    Swampboy....nice maps thanks for putting them at the trailhead.

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