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Thread: trail marking

  1. #1
    The Voice of Reason
    Reputation: Megashnauzer's Avatar
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    trail marking

    what's the better way to mark a trail, with paint hash marks or arrows and plastic blazes? thanks.

  2. #2
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    Reputation: ickyickyptngzutboing's Avatar
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    Paint hash marks I think would work really well -- if you could keep them from being destroyed on the course. I've always seen arrows & plastic blazes in the races that I've done, but often they don't work as well because they are placed poorly. When you place trail markers, you have to remember to keep in mind that these markers need to go where the racer will be looking. That's why arrows placed at chest level aren't always as effective--for example, placing arrows closer to the trail surface (i.e. if you have a tight left hand turn marked with both a log over the incorrect part of the trail and an arrow at eye level, I guarantee most people will be looking at crossing the obstacle, and not at the arrow... or well, that's what I did and got lost in a race...) during technical sections will make it easier on the racer in finding their way around. I tend to focus on the trail tread, and not as much on trees at eye level...

    Let us know more about the what race you're marking for... where at, and what weather conditions you'll be facing!
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  3. #3
    The Voice of Reason
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    it's not for a race, just for general trail marking. most of us know the trails really well but we get lots of newbs and out-of-towners. paint seems to be harder to vandalize but the reflective markings would be great for night rides.

  4. #4
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    We use a basically 3x5 plastic card with a different color arrow for each loop we mark out. Seems to work out ok. We have a trail description at the trail head showing the marker and noting if the trail is advanced, intermediate, beginner. As noted above, it can be hard to place them in the right locations. Sometimes supplimentary sign post are needed. We had a local sign shop do ours.

  5. #5
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    Reflective trail markers such as arrows for areas where night rides are often is a pretty good idea IMO. While most people who ride at night often wouldn't need them, those who frequent less can find them handy, as trails look different at night than during the day. And, reflective arrows aren't too much more, and they won't be anymore out of place than normal trail arrows.
    waaahoooooooooooooooooo

    Calvin : Ahhh, another bowl of Chocolate Frosted Sugar Bombs! The second bowl is always the best! The pleasure of my first bowl is diminished by the anticipation of future bowls and by the end of my third bowl, I usually feel sick.
    Hobbes : Maybe you shouldn't use chocolate milk.
    Calvin : I tried Cola, but the bubbles went up my nose.

  6. #6
    The Voice of Reason
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    i ordered a bunch of reflective arrows and blazes for the trail. it's definitely a good idea for night riding. thanks for the input.

  7. #7
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    Carsonite Posts

    You might also want to consider carsonite posts like the Forest Service uses on many of their trails. The posts can be placed anywhere you can sink a fence post, so they can be positioned perfectly rather than trying to find the closest/best tree. The posts are nearly indestructible, probably wouldn't be too bad to crash into (unlike a tree growing close to the trail) and there are many different types of stickers that can be purchased to give trail directions. The posts are a bit expensive at $20 a piece but they are very durable, look very professional and you might be able to get the land manager to pick up all/some of the cost. Particularly if you can make the argument that it will cut down on people getting lost and needing to be rescued.

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