Thursday, July 16, 2015

Naugatuck State Forest

Date: 7/16/2015
Report Type: TA Report
Trail Name: Naugatuck State Forest
Town: Oxford/Beacon Falls
Trail Conditions: Naugy-good + some brambles

Observations/Information: I got an early start this morning and decided to do the Naugy (West Block) ride. Triple loop this time: my normal double loop (see video below the fold) followed by a trip down the piney mess (and now brambly, as well) trail west of Res 3, around Res 2 (counterclockwise), then back up and out.

From prior ride
The little warmup loop and the trip up the east side of #4 was uneventful. Coming down toward #2, the stream by the power lines was really the only wet spot during the entire ride. On making the (clockwise first) ride around #2 towards #1, I encountered the tree across trail (seen in earlier rides) east side of #2, right near the trail that heads out east through the mucky rock garden then up the hill towards the eastern edge of the state forest property. The tree is too big for my hand saw, so there it sits.

Nothing of note down to Res 1 (except the perennial caution about the sand at the corner at the bottom of the hill). Came back around and up to the southeast corner of #2, and found the first blowdown I could do something about.

"Like it never even happened"
Cleared it, then headed up towards #3. Met a couple walking a dog coming down the big hill up from the (former) double culvert as I was headed the other way. (My comment to them: "Down is much more fun than up.")

Crossed the dam, up to #4, then back down the trail headed to the west side of #3. Between the two brook crossings, for the third consecutive time, I managed to miss the fork to the right and ended up amongst the remains of the old truck, so went back and put up a small cairn atop a trailside flat rock before the fork.

After the second brook crossing (at the washed-out culvert), it appears nobody has been through in awhile. Overgrown, and pricker city. (Seriously, people?  Nobody could go through there with pair of loppers before me?)  It's tricky riding to begin with, given the pine litter from logging (including some logs big enough to hop over); with the brambles and other brush I walked it, lopping my way the entire time. It's still prickery, so proceed with caution (and even then be prepared to donate some blood to the forest).

Down the big hill towards the former double culvert (observation: that hill isn't even that much fun going downhill, as it's featureless - it's also gravelly and often used by joggers and dog-walkers, so speed control is important). Counter-clockwise around #2 (avoiding #1 this time), and up the east side of #3... where I came upon the second blowdown I could (sort of) do something about.

Not a piney, branchy thing like the first, this one was heavy, so I cut the branches off it and dragged the trunk off trail as best as I could solo.

"Handsawr Powwah!"
Up and out thereafter.

TM: the two blowdowns, the pricker lopping, and some assorted kicking branches off here and there.

Other users: the aforementioned couple and their dog.

Video of "double loop" (from prior ride).  Yes 3D.

Trail Ambassador Name: John Joy
Trail Ambassador E-mail: jmj [at] savagejoy [dot] com
How did you use the trail? MT Biking
Trails Ridden:
Time of day: Morning
Time/Duration (hours): 2 (including TM)
Approximate Distance (Miles): 6.8

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Update: the tree on the fire road on the east side of #2 has been removed. (Not by me.)