Thursday, August 25, 2011

West Rock Ridge SP

Date: 8/25/11
Report Type: TA Report:
Trail Name: West Rock Ridge SP
Town: Hamden
Trail Conditions: A bit damp
Observations/Information: Rock the Ridge, a mountain bike race, will be taking place on Sept. 18 at West Rock. I offered to help lay out the route, so I rode with Sean Drew, a racer who is heading up the effort to lay out the race course. At the start of the ride, we spoke with a mountain biker who said he came to the area only two days ago and this was his first time at West Rock. I gave him a trail map and Sean and I offered him some suggestions. For scheduling reasons, the newcomer was unable to join us. Sean and I rode the Red Trail between Lake Wintergreen and Farm Brook Reservoir, the Red-White Dot Trail off the gravel road north of Mountain Road, and all of the White Trail. We also did some road riding to get back before the rains fell heavily. The trails were damp with the occasional muddy spot. Interestingly the seasonal watercourses are all dry. All that could change this weekend, depending on Irene's plans to visit Connecticut, as a tropical storm, a hurricane, or nothing at all. There are a few small downed trees out there, which I will deal with at a later time. The sharp-thorned multi-flora rose that I cut way back in the spring along the Red Trail is starting to hang over the trail. On the White Trail near its northern end with the Red Trail, a 12-inch thick hemlock fell and Sean said has been there for months. Unfortunately, riders have already cut a path around it. I reported it to the DEP, so it can get someone in there to cut up the tree, and I can block off the reroute. The White Trail continues to nag at me to reroute it, but I was appointed trail manager of the Regicides Trail, so my efforts have been focused on that. I wear my CFPA hat, so to speak, when I work on the Regicides Trail, as this is a hiking-only trail. In case you happen to hike the Regicides, I have reblazed and pruned back the section starting with the crossing of Baldwin Drive near the cell phone tower, and have almost reached the Yellow Trail. Every time I am out there, I pick up two 5-gallon buckets full of old beer bottles and cans, tossed to the side of the road when it was open to traffic back in the 1970s.

Information on the race is available at this website:
Trail Ambassador Name: Tom Ebersold

Trail Ambassador E-mail: bikehikekayak {at} sbcglobal {dot} net
How did you use the trail? MT Biking
Trails Ridden: Red, White, Red-White Dot
Time of day: Morning
Time/Duration (hours): 2
Approximate Distance (Miles): 11
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