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Ridenfool

Rocky HIll Ranch Trail Conditions

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20 minutes ago, Ridenfool said:

Paul sent a pic of work being done. The Carpet Bridge is getting a makeover, courtesy of one of the High School MTB teams.

CarpetBridge.thumb.jpg.b42cc83477a57bc62ba4f54e15293215.jpg

Looks very stout. Can't wait to check it out on the next ride out there.

In the 2014 RHR24, 16 times I wondered if it was going to collapse that time.

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38 minutes ago, AntonioGG said:

In the 2014 RHR24, 16 times I wondered if it was going to collapse that time.

Yeah, I know the feeling. well.

That old bridge could be an exhibit in the RHR Museum of Unnatural History as an example of how long a rickety bridge can last. (it was actually fairly well built before the years took their toll on it.)

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In the interest of personal curiosity and the seeming inaccuracy of existing nearby online weather stations, I've installed a LaCrosse Rainfall and Temperature Monitor at the house.

This installation and expenditure of personal funds is driven by my high enthusiasm and a burning desire to witness the magic of this new device performing as soon and as often as possible so that I may share rain stats with others considering nearby Rocky Hill as a destination.

(in all honesty this is a ploy so Murphy will cease the inundation in order to thwart my desire and quell my enthusiasm to see this device in action)

Edited by Ridenfool
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Um, well, that strategy didn't work. :classic_unsure:

But the gauge does work just fine, 1.2 inches in the last 4 hours.

As the crow flies the gauge is about 5.5 miles East of RHR entrance on 153.

I'll post up area rainfall and accumulation when I remember to.

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The trail tread is ready for rubber. Pretty much perfect 'cept for encroaching flora in a few places.

Dint see no snekz, but the Rocky Hill Racing Lizards were out in force. Saw a lot of Hog digging off trail in several places.

Also noticed a plethora of new Pines sprouting up to replace those taken by the bark beetles, the cycle of life continues.

Come get some, and bring plenty of cold beverages, you'll want them when you're done.

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Long overdue RHR Update.

In case anyone hasn't heard, the portion of the ranch containing everything from Off The Lip back has been sold. This includes favorites like Omar's Howl, Tris Cross, Longhorn Loop, Frontal Lobotomy, Bottle in Front of Me, Leaping Lizards, Coyote Run, Pine Pin, Irish Country Mile, etc.

These trails will be but fond memories after Saturday's race, Fat Chuck's Final Revenge, on 12/18/21. After that, the plague of Yellow Caterpillars will have their wicked way with them, loading what is beneath them onto gravel trucks. 

 

TRAIL STATUS

The remaining trail will be reduced from 22+ to ~6 miles by the sale. On the bright side, many of the lost trails were difficult to maintain due to their limited access by vehicle. The remaining area should be quite a bit easier to wrangle the Yaupon into some semblance of submission.

In the past month or two I have built another mile of trail that extends one trail I've named Corkscrew by 0.3 mile. Three others will form a connector using part of Y-Knot so that they flow into a functional loop. This connector is named "Lemonade" cuz that is what you make when life gives you lemons, right? 😉

We are up to 7 miles now with more coming. Another half mile may be completed on Saturday by volunteers from the ranks of Austin trail runners who enjoy hosting annual events at RHR. We'll be working on that section and others over this weekend while the race is in progress.

On Sunday 12/19 the new loop will be established and the trails that led to and from those beloved points further North will be disappeared. Please come out and help ride the new sections. They will need some traffic to bed them in.

Based upon initial survey and planning it looks like the remaining land should eventually host between 10 and 15 total miles of trail. It may take a while to get there, we are working on it. Everything added will extend the loop, so, no intersections, just flow from one trail section to the next. Bail-outs will be signed at road crossings and fence line service roads to get riders back to their car or camp.

For now, the 7 available miles won't disappoint. Lot's of challenging trail and many favorite features remain. Just keep going round again and again until you have had enough.

Eventually, I'll post up in the Trail Work thread when big pushes are planned on trail expansion. There is a bunch of prep work to be done before that happens. I have a few ideas percolating for some fun stuff to add.

 

 

 

Edited by Ridenfool
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LL was probably my favorite if for no other reason than it is so different than anything else around here.  Sadly I am not able to ride right now, so I will not get to ride it one last time, but maybe I'll come spectate.  Will the metal artwork be recovered and redeployed or maybe sold for fundraising?

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41 minutes ago, AntonioGG said:

LL was probably my favorite if for no other reason than it is so different than anything else around here.  Sadly I am not able to ride right now, so I will not get to ride it one last time, but maybe I'll come spectate.  Will the metal artwork be recovered and redeployed or maybe sold for fundraising?

Hi Antonio!

The metal artwork, many wood structures, metal grates, and other materials used on trails, as well as the giant gingerbread man (the "bunny") on Omar's Howl), the tables at water stations, and any other treasures found will be moved to the remaining property and appropriately relocated on the trail for all to enjoy.

I took what may have been my final lap of the back trails yesterday, let's consider it as having been ridden for all of those who remember RHR and weren't able to get a lap in themselves.

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RHR Lives!

After getting my van stuck in the mud in the main RHR parking lot at yesterday's event, I had canceled the crew who had planned to meet for work out there this morning.

Came out at noon to retrieve the van after the water had subsided, and someone camping there after the race wandered up asking how to help with trail work. Talk about serendipity, With plenty of tools at the ready three big people and four of their small people followed me out to where the trail needed final touches done. With the help of these TMBRA Paydirt volunteers the Lemonade connector and Y-Knot edit were finished today. Yay!!

The new loop is now ready for riders.  Once the Corkscrew and Devil's Triangle sections are added over the next week or two the remaining loop will be ~7.5 miles. Close to 8.5 if you include "Other Way" that goes out by Freeride 512 and connects back into Karaway at the road crossing.

Expect to see new sections appear as they are completed. Some long, some short, and all adding to the overall distance we have to play with.

If you see freshly raked trail, it is open. Please dive in and enjoy.

 

Edited by Ridenfool
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Paul and I rolled the latest >0.5 mile section into the loop yesterday.

Still some fine tuning to be done on the new sections, as expected. They are open and can be ridden now.

A 0.3 mile section will get some final work and existing trail will be routed into that soon. It will include three short punchy turning climbs in switchbacks on hillside trail.

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Finally got to ride the trail instead of work on it. ha ha

Rode the new loop and got 7.54 miles from the wheel. Felt good. Went and did a quick second lap just for fun.

Still a few soft/wet spots from last Saturday's rain, but 99% good to go. Come get some Christmas Cheer in the pines.

More new trail coming soon to a Rocky Hill near you!

MTBProject should be updated soon with a new .gpx file I've provided.

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Paul has rebuilt two bridges on Black Trak and flagged some future trail East of Karaway.

I've been busy too, and flagged two short, new sections of trail and will begin cutting once this heat wave is past and the AC is back on outside for working comfortably. I hope to have one of these completed in time for the Excruciation Exam coming up soon. I know how much those folks want to suffer. 😏

 

Edit: MTBProject is being updated and now has the new loop. Some remnants showing lost or changed trail still remain and updates to that site will continue.

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Posted (edited)

Spent a few hours yesterday playing with a new tool, Fiskar's Pick Mattock. Available in 5lb and 1.5lb versions. I got the 5. (probably need to add this to the Trail Building Tools thread)

resource_fiskarsamericas_751210-1002.ash

The design of this tool isolates the usual transfer of shock that tends to reverberate in the user's hands with pick use. They call the tech IsoCore, and it is available on several of their hand tools. Reviews by trail builders indicated how this design allows them to work longer on a trail without the fatigue usually associated with using a Pick/Mattock. After several hours of use, I concur!

Anywho, I carved deep bench cuts into two of the more difficult climbing turns on Corkscrew and improved a couple of other off-camber sections.

There was a couple riding out there, EE preriders, who made multiple passes while I was working, so I got to see the effect of my efforts first hand and garner feedback from them. I think these will help the section flow better and I spotted other improvements to add in the future.

 

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Have just about finished another 0.2 mile extension of Hard Boil that adds to the overall loop. This section will come off of Switchback a couple of hundred feet before the road crossing leading to Water 1. It will follow parts of the retired original Hard Boil trail downhill and back up to come out at the road crossing. Hopefully, it will be fun to ride. Another new 0.3 mile section of Hard Boil will be added next and will complete the transition of a few hundred feet of existing trail into a half mile of new trail.

If all goes well tomorrow this new section will be open for traffic this weekend, and with the outdoor AC set to the 50s and sunny weather on Saturday and Sunday maybe it will get some wheels on it besides just mine.

A few days ago I did a slow ride around the loop with 15" Fiskars Power Gear loppers hanging from the pack's waist belt and trimmed back some face-slappers and other offensive flora.

Lastly, Paul has put in two short trails, Holden's Way (Part 1) is a bypass trail to avoid a technical climb out of the Primitive Campground that gets you to the Y for Fat Chuck's and Grey's Way. Holden's Way (Part 2) bypasses Corkscrew's climbs. These trails allow "10 and Under" racers, and anyone else, an easier route as a tradeoff for losing some distance and challenge on a Loop ride.

The new Rocky Hill Ranch loop is getting better and better. Come get ya some sweet miles in the Pines.

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