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Thread: Go Spot, Go!

  1. #1
    Dain Bramaged
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    Go Spot, Go!

    Having arrived only two days before leaving for Chicago, I hadnít gotten to try the Spot on dirt, really. We stowed the bikes inside my Jeep for the drive, and there was so much rain on the way down through Madison and into Chicago that there was no chance to ride at all. Lots of fog and wet days while there, then Saturday bloomed bright and warm, so I at least got to ride the lakeshore, gawk at buildings, and wish my hometown had that many beautiful girls. Ride plans were to hit Kettle Moraine in WI on the way back out, but rain had effectively closed all trails and events in the area. Bummer.

    We drove up to Madison Saturday night and awoke to more gloom and misty rain, which developed into a downpour that lasted all the way up to the turnoff to the Levis-Trow Mounds trail system. Iíd heard about it for years but never had the chance, and I guess luck was with us. The clouds broke, the sun shone, and it got nice and warm. Wisconsin has a lot of great trails that can easily be ridden in the wet; lots of glacial till, sand, rocks, and incredible drainage really help.

    There were miles of sweet singletrack, one other rider, and all day to play in it. We started on the lower easy trail, which was very wet, lots of mud bogs and puddles, and got us good and proper messy. Following the map got us up out of the wet and onto some higher ground, where we enjoyed perfect short climbs just tailor made for SS. Despite this being the first real hardcore SS ride in nearly three years (and the first on a new bike), I managed to ride pretty much everything. Of course I stopped to rest a lot!

    Back to the Jeep for a rest, stretch, chain lube, Gu, and some nice dry socks (ahhhhh!), then back out for the challenging stuff. And boy did we find it. Lots of climbing, rolling swoopy singletrack through dense stands of pine, rock outcroppings, incredible exposed vistas, corduroy pine roots, eagles, sand, and more rocks. We enjoyed a strange downhill slalom that draped down a steep gully, building speed and finally a fun G-out at the bottom. The Cliffhanger trail lived up to its name, hugging the contour line of the huge glacial mound, weaving along over, under, and between huge boulders and stone chunks. We passed not three feet from two snow white baby eaglets under a large rock Ė they hissed at me and I hit the trail, not wanting mama to come back. A few yards down the trail I could hear her screeching her warning from several yards above the tops of the pines and my head.

    Dave had enough, and we had been there longer than I planned, so it was back to the Jeep to clean up, stow the gear, and make the final 7 hour push back home.

    The Spot kicked butt, and I canít wait to get back to those trails to see the rest and hammer some more.
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    Last edited by Dijridoo; 06-15-2004 at 09:26 AM. Reason: add a pic

  2. #2
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    You're right...

    Levis is a lot of fun on an SS. I'm glad you took the time to find what WI has to offer. The weather wround here has been getting everyone down. Lots of muddy races and a few events have been cancelled. I keep thinking that the rain has to stop sometime soon but it seems like every front that comes through here gets stalled over the Madison area and dumps rain for a couple of days before breaking up or moving on. Anyway, there is some great riding at the Levis trail system and I'm bummed that I'll be missing the 12 Hour race that's taking place there this weekend, but I have to go to a wedding. The couple getting married both ride though so there will be some pedaling happening this weekend for me too. Come on back sometime!

  3. #3
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    Levis question

    Where is this spot located within the trail system?



    We looked but couldn't find it (but we also didn't get to ride quite half of the upper trails either).

    I've been riding up in the Chequamegon system quite a few times. This was essentially the same trail type, with just more vertical variation and more rocks within a smaller area.

  4. #4
    Chumpstomper
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dijridoo
    Where is this spot located within the trail system?


    We looked but couldn't find it (but we also didn't get to ride quite half of the upper trails either).

    I've been riding up in the Chequamegon system quite a few times. This was essentially the same trail type, with just more vertical variation and more rocks within a smaller area.
    Randy

    I think that is on "Goat Trail" but am not quite sure. Been through it a few times, it's just below the top of the bluff.

    Glad to hear that you got a new SS already; an upgrade from the 1x1 to be sure.

    You going to be back down Minneapolis way anytime soon?

    Can't wait for MDH NAG II! Word has is some very special guests from Colorado will be in attendance.

    Mark

  5. #5
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    Actually...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dijridoo
    Where is this spot located within the trail system?



    We looked but couldn't find it (but we also didn't get to ride quite half of the upper trails either).
    I think that's either on "Toad Road" or "Northface." It's on the other side of the mound from "Cliffhanger" I know that for sure. Whenever we go looking for that spot, we never find it but usually come across it without trying at some point during the ride. "Goat Dance" is a fun trail but I don't think the bridge is on it.

  6. #6
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    Upgrade fo sho, yo

    Quote Originally Posted by SuperClydesdale

    Glad to hear that you got a new SS already; an upgrade from the 1x1 to be sure.

    You going to be back down Minneapolis way anytime soon?

    Can't wait for MDH NAG II! Word has is some very special guests from Colorado will be in attendance.
    I completely consider this an upgrade. Totally happy to be back in the SS ranks again. I'm not sure when I'll be back down, but it'll be sometime this summer for sure.

    As far as the NAG goes I agree. I know the summer will fly by again and it will be time to hit the Badlands for more dust and heat. Special guests? Do tell.....

    [email protected]DELETETHISPARTarchitectsDOTcom

  7. #7
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    Spot on

    If you ride it on a Spot, it's all gooooood

  8. #8
    Brakes?
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    Levis-Rules

    The STL posse did the IMBA epic there in 2002(?). It was sweet.

    Those kids have built a fantastic network of trails. only a few hours from the Twin Cities for you Minne-Apple-Puss dwellers.

    Here's a pic:



    Good Times, Good Beer, Good Peoples
    Holla if ya hear me!

    JohnnyD
    Ace STL Trail-Pimp

  9. #9
    robust, yet smooth
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    what's a G-out

    Nice write up. You a geologist by any chance?

    -capt p

    Quote Originally Posted by Dijridoo
    then back out for the challenging stuff. And boy did we find it. Lots of climbing, rolling swoopy singletrack through dense stands of pine, rock outcroppings, incredible exposed vistas, corduroy pine roots, eagles, sand, and more rocks. We enjoyed a strange downhill slalom that draped down a steep gully, building speed and finally a fun G-out at the bottom. The Cliffhanger trail lived up to its name, hugging the contour line of the huge glacial mound, weaving along over, under, and between huge boulders and stone chunks.
    .

  10. #10
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    I can kinda explain

    Quote Originally Posted by capt pearl
    Nice write up. You a geologist by any chance?

    -capt p
    Thanks. Nope - architect. I wouldn't mind geology though.

    My understanding of a G-out is the "G" stands for gravity forces. When you hit the bottom of a hill at speed, then rocket up the other side, you are subjecting yourself to increased gravity forces. You know it when you feel it - that "sinking" feeling in your gut when you transfer from downward to upward motion. As you travel the curved path along the bottom of the dip, your motion and gravity combine to effectively act like a pendulum. The faster you go downhill and then sharply transition uphill, the more pronounced this effect is. I belive the term is derived from aerospace industry and also used by motorsports enthusiasts. Dunno what the "out" part means.

  11. #11
    robust, yet smooth
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    cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Dijridoo
    Thanks. Nope - architect. I wouldn't mind geology though.

    My understanding of a G-out is the "G" stands for gravity forces. When you hit the bottom of a hill at speed, then rocket up the other side, you are subjecting yourself to increased gravity forces. You know it when you feel it - that "sinking" feeling in your gut when you transfer from downward to upward motion. As you travel the curved path along the bottom of the dip, your motion and gravity combine to effectively act like a pendulum. The faster you go downhill and then sharply transition uphill, the more pronounced this effect is. I belive the term is derived from aerospace industry and also used by motorsports enthusiasts. Dunno what the "out" part means.
    sounds like good fun. makes me wanna ride in WI.

    gratzi,

    -capt p, pretends to be a geologist at work

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