Tuesday, June 28, 2016

WEDNESDAY RIDE AT RIVER HIGHLANDS 6/29

We'll ride at River Highlands in Cromwell on 6/29. Suitable for novice and beginner riders. Social pace no drop. Meet at 6PM in the park lot at 105 Field Rd Cromwell.

TM Report: West Rock Ridge SP

Date: June 20, 2016
Report Type: TM Report
Trail Name: West Rock Ridge SP
Town: Hamden
Trail Conditions: Good

Observations/Information: From January to June, I put in 27 hours worth of work at West Rock on the Red and Red-White Trails, mostly near Farm Brook Reservoir. I placed a heavy emphasis on cutting the autumn olive shrubs that line the open field, along with cutting and pulling other assorted invasives, including bittersweet vines and thorny multi-flora rose shrubs. The Red Trail that I created along Farm Brook Reservoir had parts that were quickly becoming overgrown, so I cut that back in June. The Red-White Trail from the top of the field to the gravel road portion of the Red Trail needs a good pruning back. That will be my next project. in particular, the bittersweet vines are growing along and across the trail.

Trail Ambassador Name: Tom Ebersold
Trail Ambassador E-mail: bikehikekayak123 [at
How did you use the trail? Hiking/Walking
Trails Ridden: Red and Red-White
Time of day: Morning
Time/Duration (hours): 27

Approximate Distance (Miles): 4

TM Report: Naugatuck State Forest

Date: June 27, 2016
Report Type: TM Report
Trail Name: Naugatuck State Forest
Town: Oxford
Trail Conditions: Beige Trail, blazed, but mostly not rideable

Observations/Information: I had a busy day in my final (yeah) trail project at the Naugatuck State Forest.  I blazed the trail along the west side of Reservoir 3 in Beige. Why beige? I had half a can of it from my neighbor from when he moved. On the trees, it looks like a pale yellow. You can see it in the photo of with the logs. I cleared a blowdown that was blocking the trail. I blocked off two of the three trails at the first stream crossing, and created my own approach to the second stream crossing.
I placed logs by junction with the Red-Green Trail, so people can follow the Beige trail. I did some light pruning along the sunny part of the trail. The photos of the trail are AFTER I did my light pruning. You can push through on foot, but there is lots of growth that will catch on bike handlebars. The sections that are in the woods, closer to Reservoir 4, are fine for bicycling.

I carried the pickup truck parts to the Chestnut Tree Hill Road gate for the state to remove. The state removed the truck several years ago. The parking lot at this location has been greatly enlarged, which is good news because this area needs a good sized lot. Twenty cars could probably park in this area now.

I found two wood ticks crawling around my car as I was driving home. I tossed them out onto the hot asphalt at the supermarket to cook and die. A very thorough tick check found no creepy crawlers on me.
I'll schedule a work party after the frost. While it would be tempting for someone to blast through there with a brush cutter, the reality is that there are many good native tree, shrubs, and other plants intermingled with the nasty invasives. My focus would be careful pruning of the natives and ripping out the invasives as much as possible.

Trail Ambassador Name: Tom Ebersold
Trail Ambassador E-mail: bikehikekayak123 [at] sbcglobal[dot]net 
How did you use the trail? Hiking/Walking 
Trails Ridden: Beige (West side of Reservoir 3) 
Time of day: Afternoon 
Time/Duration (hours): 4 
Approximate Distance (Miles): 1 
Image 1: Map-Naugatuck SF West w. colors.jpg 
Image 2: NSF, Beige Tr. after clearing, 6-16.JPG 
Image 3: NSF, Beige Tr. start at Red-Green Tr., 6-16.JPG 
Image 4: NSF, car parts at Chestnut Tree Hill Rd. parking, 6-16.JPG 
Image Description(s)/Instructions: The color-coded map of the Naugatuck State Forest, along with views along the Beige Trail and the car parts formerly along the trail.


Thursday, June 23, 2016

RIDE ALERT

Rie this Saturday morning at Hurd Park. Social pace no drop ride. There's a new trail we'll check out. meet in the lot at 1 Hurd Park Rd East Hampton at 10 AM.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Airline Trail

Date: June 11, 2016
Report Type: TA Report
Trail Name: Airline Trail
Town: Colchester to Willimantic
Trail Conditions: Generally good

Observations/Information: I led a group ride on the Airline Trail with 8 people from the Route 2 parking lot east into Willimantic. We rode over the recently-decked bridge. The trail continues for another 1 mile past the bridge where it is paved (the rest of the trail is stone dust) and ends at a kiosk about 0.2 miles from Rt. 32. We also rode on the half-mile paved section of the Hop River Trail (its only paved section) out to Route 66. The trail is generally in good shape, although some of the gates are tight to get around and often have a sandy surface underneath. Two people joined me for a second loop west that included a loop through the Salmon River State Forest. The forest road is in good condition; last year it was a kidney buster. The section between Route 149 and River Road always seems to be a sandy mess. My GPX track, which includes a map:

https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/1219097004


Trail Ambassador Name: Tom Ebersold
Trail Ambassador E-mail: bikehikekayak123[at]sbcglobal[dot]net
How did you use the trail? MT Biking
Trails Ridden: Airline Trail
Time of day: Morning
Time/Duration (hours): 5
Approximate Distance (Miles): 35
Image 1: Airline Trail start, Willimantic, 6-16.jpg 
Image 2: Airline Trail bridge over Willimantic River from trail, 6-16.JPG 
Image 3: Airline Trail bridge, view to Lebanon, 6-16.jpg Image 
Description(s)/Instructions: The Airline Trail Bridge over the Willimantic River and a view from the bridge toward the Hop River Trail.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

TM Report: Naugatuck State Forest

Date: June 11, 2016
Report Type: TM Report
Trail Name: Naugatuck State Forest
Town: Naugatuck
Trail Conditions: Blazed and cleared

Observations/Information: With help from others, I spent the spring in the Naugatuck State Forest in Naugatuck, blazing and clearing the trails northeast of Spruce Brook Road. The state had partially marked these trails with metal disks, but never completed the project. I blazed to supplement and complement these disks on White, Orange, and Yellow. I did not blaze Red as the trail was well marked with disks, plus I consider the portion from Spruce Brook Road to the top of the slope to be somewhat unsafe with a 20 percent grade and poor footing over a series of steep rock faces. The Yellow Trail has been extended to connect to the powerlines and Old Highway. The Orange Trail blazes were extended to overlap the Red Trail out to the overlook. The White Trail has a switchback around a steep, rock face. Complete details with many photos and a color overlay map are available at http://westrocktrails.blogspot.com/p/naugatuck-state-forest-west-block.html. From the perspective of a mountain biker, the White Trail and the Red Trail from Spruce Brook Road up to the top of the hill are steep and not suitable for bikes, in part due to the damage they would do to these poorly designed trails. The better access for bikes would be to head up the steep, but freshly surfaced (and unblazed) woods road to the powerlines off Spruce Brook Road near the High Rock Shooting Range. Once up on the ridge, White, Orange, and Yellow are a mixture of woods road and challenging single track. Total time in this area was 30 hours from me and 50 hours from hiking friends from the New Haven Hiking Club.

Trail Ambassador Name: Tom Ebersold

Trail Ambassador E-mail: bikehikekayak123 [at] sbcglobal [dot]net 
How did you use the trail? Hiking/Walking 
Trails Ridden: White, Orange, Red, Yellow 
Time of day: Morning 
Time/Duration (hours): 30 
Approximate Distance (Miles): 4 
Image 1: Map-Naugatuck SF West w. colors.jpg 
Image 2: NSF, NSBR, Orange Tr. at Red Tr., 6-16.JPG 
Image 3: NSF, NSBR, Red Tr. Rock Face 2, 6-16.JPG 
Image 4: NSF, NSBR, powerlines, gravel road, 6-16.JPG 



Image Description(s)/Instructions: The Red Trail has a steep rock face unsuitable for bicycling. The Orange Trail is narrow single track. The powerlines are freshly graveled in some locations.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Chester "Combined Arms" Trail Day


Saturday, June 4, 2016
9:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Join members of BPC, CFPA, NEMBA and LCRVHC for our 10th annual “combined arms” trail maintenance event! Projects will include; brushing, blazing, and treadway improvement. A pot-luck cook out will follow with hot dogs provided by the LCRVHC. Bring a dessert or side and stay for the raffle. Bring a friend or make a new one! Participants should come dressed appropriately for a day of work in the woods (including work gloves - NEMBA TAs are asked to wear jerseys) and may bring loppers, pruners or bow saws-all other tools will be provided. Participants should also bring along water, snacks, their favorite bug repellent and a healthy appetite!

More information...