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  1. #1
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    NW Arkansas

    How is the riding in NW Arkansas this time of year? Specifically, Bentonville (Slaughter Pen, Color Preserve, Back Forty, etc.). With North Texas trails perpetually closed due to rain and mud since last July, need to spread out some to get any decent ridding in on the weekends.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    How is the riding in NW Arkansas this time of year? Specifically, Bentonville (Slaughter Pen, Color Preserve, Back Forty, etc.). With North Texas trails perpetually closed due to rain and mud since last July, need to spread out some to get any decent ridding in on the weekends.
    I would normally say, "This is the BEST time of year to ride in NWA."

    We've had a rough January into February, though. Quite a few of our trails are remarkably resistant to rain. B40, the soon to be opened 11 Under, Hobbs, and Lake Wedington hold up well. Parts of Coler and Slaughter Pen (not the flowy parts and jump lines) do well, too when it rains.

    What they don't do well with, though, is freeze/thaw, and that's what we've been experiencing a lot of. We just had a a pretty major rain fall. That being said, if we don't get into freeze/thaw for the remainder of the week (temperatures don't look like they'll be that cold), the trails should be good to go by the weekend.

    TL;DR: trails are usually good this time of year, but freeze/thaw has made riding unpredictable.

  3. #3
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    Thanks! I guess I'll keep watching the weather.

    I kinda assumed the flow trails might be off line right now.

    Hobbs... I always seem to either forget, or just not get over to the state park for that ride when I'm up there.
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    Any updates on conditions from some locals? Im heading down there thursday-sunday. Thanks in advance
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    Any updates on conditions from some locals? Im heading down there thursday-sunday. Thanks in advance
    If you can postpone I would, raining on Tuesday with freeze thaw until Friday and then rain on Friday and Saturday.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tuckerjt07 View Post
    If you can postpone I would, raining on Tuesday with freeze thaw until Friday and then rain on Friday and Saturday.
    Feck.
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    Back 40 Loop

    This was a few weeks ago, and trail conditions were pretty good considering it had rained there for most of the week before. It was 60 degrees in Bella Vista that weekend too and I was stoked to get away from the snow in KC.
    Enjoy!


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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    Any updates on conditions from some locals? Im heading down there thursday-sunday. Thanks in advance
    All is not lost, if you didn't postpone. Reports are sounding good on Back40 wet weather and main routes, Blowing Springs, and Hobbs. We do have a weather event on Saturday morning, but... once again... freeze/thaw is the real enemy of the trails. Much of our stuff will shed normal rainfall in above freezing temperatures.

    You're likely not going to be hitting some of the jump lines and such at Coler and places like that, but you'll still have quite a bit to ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hogfly View Post
    All is not lost, if you didn't postpone. Reports are sounding good on Back40 wet weather and main routes, Blowing Springs, and Hobbs. We do have a weather event on Saturday morning, but... once again... freeze/thaw is the real enemy of the trails. Much of our stuff will shed normal rainfall in above freezing temperatures.

    You're likely not going to be hitting some of the jump lines and such at Coler and places like that, but you'll still have quite a bit to ride.
    Tomorrow may be good if we dodge the 40% chance tonight.

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    I had a trip planned the week of the 17th to check out ALL the trails. However, it looks like freeze/thaw will still be in full swing. Ugh. This will be the 2nd time I put off this trip. If any locals can confirm they think this will likely be the case, it'd be appreciated. Next time we plan to come will be summer or fall. Spring keeps screwing us. Grrr.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hollyanne99 View Post
    I had a trip planned the week of the 17th to check out ALL the trails. However, it looks like freeze/thaw will still be in full swing. Ugh. This will be the 2nd time I put off this trip. If any locals can confirm they think this will likely be the case, it'd be appreciated. Next time we plan to come will be summer or fall. Spring keeps screwing us. Grrr.
    I don't know that it's going to get cold enough, long enough for a freeze thaw here then. Usually when we see that here, it's actually pretty rare despite happening two years in a row, it invloves long sustained below freezing temps and either a rapid warm up or cycles of brutally cold at night to upper 30s during the day.

    I can't guarantee anything though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tuckerjt07 View Post
    I don't know that it's going to get cold enough, long enough for a freeze thaw here then.
    I'm going to agree with tucker, freeze-thaw in the middle of March would be really unusual. We've had a ton of it this winter, and the month began with some really cold temps, but by mid-March it's unlikely we're going to be cold enough at night to create those conditions. Come on down! (just check weather for sustained rain, or overnight temps below 20 degrees).

  13. #13
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    I ended up going a couple weeks ago. 2 days of great riding, one day of 40* temps and mist all day. You never know what you are going to get. Trails were overall in good shape. A few muddy sections but not bad. We rode Blowing Springs (excellent!), B40, Downtown to Slaughter Pen, and Coler.

    Anybody know what is up with the fire in Bella Vista? https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/...-stump-dump-f/
    I got to one point on B40 and could barely breathe (asthma problems). Once we rode away from it I was fine.

    Onyx coffee in Bentonville is soo good
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    I ended up going a couple weeks ago. 2 days of great riding, one day of 40* temps and mist all day. You never know what you are going to get. Trails were overall in good shape. A few muddy sections but not bad. We rode Blowing Springs (excellent!), B40, Downtown to Slaughter Pen, and Coler.

    Anybody know what is up with the fire in Bella Vista? https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/...-stump-dump-f/
    I got to one point on B40 and could barely breathe (asthma problems). Once we rode away from it I was fine.

    Onyx coffee in Bentonville is soo good
    Glad you enjoyed. The Stump Dump fire is a total mess and boondoggle that is going to cost major money to extinguish, and they're having a problem figuring out who is going to pay for it.

    A "hazard" study was recently done, and it was found to not be a health concern (which, as you noted, is bogus).

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    Quote Originally Posted by hogfly View Post
    Glad you enjoyed. The Stump Dump fire is a total mess and boondoggle that is going to cost major money to extinguish, and they're having a problem figuring out who is going to pay for it.

    A "hazard" study was recently done, and it was found to not be a health concern (which, as you noted, is bogus).
    So it's an underground fire? Never heard of that. Is it garbage or yardwaste/brush or a combination of both?
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_joe View Post
    So it's an underground fire? Never heard of that. Is it garbage or yardwaste/brush or a combination of both?
    It's a combination of both.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hogfly View Post

    A "hazard" study was recently done, and it was found to not be a health concern (which, as you noted, is bogus).
    That's not what the study said. Any form of smoke or particulate matter can be a health concern. The study said that the concentrations of certain chemicals in the air are not high enough to exceed the threshold of dangerous.

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    Hey guys,

    I'm heading to Bentonville next week, and there's rain in the forecast. Are trails ride-able while it's actually raining? I was there last year and got caught in a storm on the back 40 and it was fine, but that was only 1 day of rain, not several days...

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    Quote Originally Posted by zeppman View Post
    Hey guys,

    I'm heading to Bentonville next week, and there's rain in the forecast. Are trails ride-able while it's actually raining? I was there last year and got caught in a storm on the back 40 and it was fine, but that was only 1 day of rain, not several days...
    It will depend on how much precipitation actually happens, current forecasts look like about fifty percent chance. Most of the back forty loop holds up well in a bit of rain, and there's a ten-mile "wet weather" loop that holds up well in more than a bit of rain. Also, Hobbs State Park to the east is good to go in almost anything short of a deluge. So you should be able to find something worth riding next week.

    Some of the softer trails such as Kessler and Fitzgerald, on the other hand, can become unrideable pretty quickly.

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    Hey man thanks for the reply. Is there a website or something that I can check before heading to a particular trail to know if it's open or not?

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    Quote Originally Posted by zeppman View Post
    Hey man thanks for the reply. Is there a website or something that I can check before heading to a particular trail to know if it's open or not?
    Yeah, almost all of the trail networks have their own Facebook pages for updates on conditions.

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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by tuckerjt07 View Post
    Yeah, almost all of the trail networks have their own Facebook pages for updates on conditions.

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    Right, specifically "Bella Vista Back 40 and Blowing Springs Trail Conditions", can also find for Coler Mtb Preserve trail conditions, Fitzgerald trail conditions and Kessler Mountain trail conditions. These pages should allow some discussion of conditions if it's rainy.

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    Just got back from a trip to Bentonville with my kids. Stayed at a little air b&b which the backyard dropped right into apple turnover(a black diamond tech/chunk trail). The quality and quantity of trails there absolutely blew my mind. I will be back!

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    Quote Originally Posted by eyeballs View Post
    Just got back from a trip to Bentonville with my kids. Stayed at a little air b&b which the backyard dropped right into apple turnover(a black diamond tech/chunk trail). The quality and quantity of trails there absolutely blew my mind. I will be back!
    Glad you enjoyed your visit! That's a great location, especially with kids, with its proximity to Leopard Loop, Ozone, and Red Barn, which are all a lot of fun flow for kids.

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    We didn't get a chance to hit Leopard and Red Barn, unfortunately. I think the kids liked Choo-Choo and All-american the best. They probably got about 10 choo-choo laps in over the 4 days we were there. I think blowing springs was my favorite, with all the extras going on down below the main loop that I could hit quickly then catch up with the family. We hit Hobbs on Thursday to get some riding in after the rain the prior night. Will have to make sure we check out Coler next time. The kids museum was a big hit.

  26. #26
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    We also just got back from a trip to Bentonville a few weeks ago and really enjoyed it. You guys are really lucky to have such a large network of trails. The new downhill trail they are building by medusa in slaughter pen looks amazing. Only bad thing was I woke up to my startled wife freaking out over a rather evil looking brown spider in our bedroom of the rental house. She insisted it was a brown recluse but I have no idea. Don't have spiders like that in Chicago!

    We are looking to head out again this summer for another trip. How's it riding there in the summer? Weather/humidity? Bugs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by zeppman View Post
    Weather/humidity? Bugs?
    Yes to all, hah.

    It can be hot in the summer and humid. Things tend to get dry as well, which is a mixed blessing.

    I ride throughout the summer, but I usually try to get out in the morning or late afternoon and avoid riding in the hottest parts of the day.

    We have lots of bugs. Mosquitoes are an annoyance, but they aren't usually awful on the trails. Ticks and chiggers can be really bad, but they're not nearly as bad on our newer trails because most of them are wide and see enough travel to keep the undergrowth beat down. Just be aware of where you stop and try to avoid brushing up against trees or tall grasses. The absolute worst place to stop and step off the trail is in a field with tall grasses. Can get into some serious seed tick or chigger action in that environment. A lot of people will also use Permethrin treatment on their riding socks and/or pads to keep the ticks and chiggers away.

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