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Thread: Trail Building

  1. #1
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    Trail Building

    This is probably been asked a hundred times before but does anyone have any experience in building trails? Theres a fairly big forest area very near where I live and I'd love to make some decent routes to ride on it. The whole thing is on a pretty steep hill side so I could use it quite well.
    First problem is I have to climb throught a hole in a fence on an old military bridge (leads up to some deserted ww2 AAA bunkers - long gone dont worry ) or climb over a fallen a tree which crosses a river - not going to happen with a bike. I should be asking more about bridge building...

    Most of the ground is pretty grassy, rooty and wet so how can you make this into something rideable?

    Does it need dug over or can I just cut my way through and trample the ground down a bit? I plan to be a subtle as I can, don't want to make a mess of the place. As far as I know no one ever really goes in the place and you can clamber throught it into a public park. So I don't think I'll get any hassle from angry farmers.

    I'm proabably going to start it once the weather drys up at the begining of next year so a little project to look forward to. I don't really have to many questions at the mo just looking for anyones ideas who has experience in this.

  2. #2
    bike/raft DrGonzo's Avatar
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    do you have any other trails in the area? FInd out if you have an IMBA trail crew in the area. First of all find out who owns the land. Contact IMBA, they have many tips/tricks that will definately help minimize impact and make a great ride.
    practice, practice, practice...
    Last trail to kick my ass: Eagle's tail

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    i build trails all the time in the woods. you'll might want to dig up the ground, but it really isn't nessisary. Just make your trails wide enough and when doing the hill, make sure there isn't anything that will cause you to hurt yourself badly like a huge tree in case you wipeout for some reason. Most of all just have fun....if you need more info

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  4. #4
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Specialized,

    I don't have time to get into right now, but there is way more than that to worry about, especially if you live where it rains. You have to be sure to watch for water runoff and not hurt that runoff (either by building stunts or going around the natural runoff)...you are right though, digging up ground should be a last resort. Clear the trail and let the bikes pack the trail.

    www.nsmba.com is likely the best information source for environmentally friendly trails including when and where to put stunts (more or less required ina rain forest anyways)

  5. #5
    Senior Member ht001's Avatar
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    I do lots of trail building and maintenance, granted the work I do is more for hikers, not so much for MTBers. Anyhoo, my plea would be to be consciuos of how you cut into soil or remove vegetation while making the trail. You don't want to do anything that might accelerate or promote erosion. Think a little bit about, and maybe do some research into how you could do something to ensure that what ever you do to make it as sustainable as possible. I do agree with DrGonzo that it is probably smart to confirm who, if anyone, owns the land. It is one thing to ride on it, a whole other to alter the character of it. I do realize, however, that a lot of people could care less about stuff like this.

  6. #6
    Roadie, mt biker, etc. mtwmbw's Avatar
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    There is a lot more to it than anyone has posted. First off, who owns the land? You can't go building trail just cause the area looks cool. There are a lot of legal/liability issues. The new IMBA Trail Solutions book would be well worth your time and money. It has every thing from how to indentify the land owner to putting the finishing touches on a great trail, and everything in between. Everything involved would be too much for us to post here. Go to the IMBA website and check out the book, it is well worth the $$$. Good luck.

  7. #7
    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    I'm glad this thread has started.. I have been wondering the same thing. I own 23 acres of mostly forest right next to my house, and my parents own another 500+ and my uncles own a total of probably 1000 acres alltogether.

    And our farms are all touching each other. I've been wanting to get into this. I've started on my own land cutting trees (all very younggrowth) to make it wide enough for ATV use (thats what we use to get around the farm mostly).

    Most woods around us is fairly young growth, so I figure I am gonna be riding and connecting the natural trails that cows make themselves on their own on the farm.

    Now are you all jealous? I live in very rolling rugged area. One downside (bad pun) is there isn't a good long downhill on our farms. Just mostly rolling hills. Should make for awesome flowing trails if I plan it right.

    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

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  8. #8
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    No, not jealous in the least actually haha...

    Nice plot of land though

  9. #9
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    No of all people, YOU wouldnt be jealous. You're in a awesome location

    All this being said, I do live near cool bike trails, all within 20ish min drive, not too bad. What I want to do, however is a completly do it yourself project, so I can keep the trail all to my selfish self.... and the cows and the horses . hehehe
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

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  10. #10
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Building your own trail is fullfilling. It is something I definately don't have a chance to do. We have....too many trails (ducks on coming rocks and boulders)...seriously unless I start breaking laws or rebuilding old trails I don't have anything to play on (I don't drive so I can't leave town, which there is TONNES of space)...the chance you have would be more fun then riding imo. You can build 3 or 4 AMAZING trails...especially rolling and flowy. I will take a well built single track that rolls and flows (with some manmade...come on now...I love man made haha)...anyday over dh...

  11. #11
    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    Does anyone have links you guys can share with tips about building cool flowy mtb trails? The link you gave us, Maelstrom.. I dont think you meant to give us this site..

    :snip:
    The Network Security Management Benchmarking Association (NSMBA™) is currently a free association of network security professionals within companies. NSMBA™ conducts benchmarking studies to identify practices that improve the overall operations of the members.:/snip:

    Hehe.
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

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  12. #12
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Dang multi teired domain names. KEep forgetting the site is

    www.nsmba.bc.ca

    Which seems to be down right now

  13. #13
    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    yes it's down. I guess it got hit by swarms of trail building nerds like myself.
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

    Hacker's Emblem- What it's all about...

  14. #14
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Tis the season. Perfect time to layout the next best trail and no riding.

    Plus with fromme fighting for life I bet it is getting a lot of hits on how to make the perfect environmental trail

  15. #15
    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    Yay, its back up.... and it looks awesome! Thanks a bunch!
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

    Hacker's Emblem- What it's all about...

  16. #16
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    It will be easier to build trails in the soft, wet ground. If you wait too long, then you have to deal with frozen ground, which is no fun. Try to "bench" the trail into the sides of hills, but not too deep, making always sure water has a place to go, other than on your trail. BUT, do not make it so that the water runs down the trail, making a river. Armor low spots and wet spots(not neccesarily creek crossings, but more like mud holes). Most of all, use common sense.

  17. #17
    Senior Member nepaMTBer's Avatar
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    wouldnt it be great if it was as easy as a rooler coaster tycoon thing? just diseign it on the computer and its right there for you
    Im the king of scrabble
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  18. #18
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    You mean your game allows you to make a roller coaster and you can ride it right away...seriously? Wow can I have your copy cause mine only lets me virtually ride

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    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    That's not a bad idea. Start with a flat mesh with vectors all over it. You pluck the vectors to make it bumpy to match your land in question. Then design your trail around that computer model using trail design tools. I'll love that for this farm....

    Hmmm.
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

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  20. #20
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Cad...it wouldn't be hard. Create shapes for different features and stunts. Program in the land size, place the natural features plus something to signify elevation. The use another layer of pics to represent you digging / un-natural stunts...it would actually be a cool idea because in theory you could locate water run off spots and work with them (or around them)...

    Come on now, you are a unix guy, this should be easy money

  21. #21
    Senior Member drumbum's Avatar
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    I've seen software like this...surveying software.

    Try download.com

  22. #22
    Senior Member iamthetas's Avatar
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    contact nailhead455@yahoo.com. this man is the shiznit at trail building
    for the creation was subjected to futility,not willingly , but because of Him who subjected it in hope...that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Romans 8:20-29
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  23. #23
    Custom User Title: jallen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom
    Cad...it wouldn't be hard. Create shapes for different features and stunts. Program in the land size, place the natural features plus something to signify elevation. The use another layer of pics to represent you digging / un-natural stunts...it would actually be a cool idea because in theory you could locate water run off spots and work with them (or around them)...

    Come on now, you are a unix guy, this should be easy money

    Haha well not that kinda unix guy Networking, web stuff, firewalls is what I am all over. The water flow is an awesome addition to this thing.. all too often you don't realize how water will flow until it is too late.

    Could be a cool niche if one could be found to develop this sort of stuff....
    Learning the ropes of mechanics on my Specialized Hard Rock Sport 2004 that I ride a bit too hard.... and upgrading parts that give me trouble on an excellent frame.

    Hacker's Emblem- What it's all about...

  24. #24
    Wood Licker Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Ahh...I assumed as you have the hacker symbol. Most of the hackers I know used unix pretty exclusively.

  25. #25
    Toyota Racing Dev. PWRDbyTRD's Avatar
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    Unix=Good I have two sparcs running it I'm just too lazy to set em up.
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