This SERS ride took place at the IMBA EPIC Southern Traverse with Jason Hiser, Ted Gayle, David Stackhouse, Josh Wall leading a group of 10. It was truly an EPIC ride. There were multiple flats and a not so good mechanical that required a little work just to make it a single speed but we all worked together and made it happen. A great ride….even with all the stinging nettles, briars, locust tree thorns, occasional tricky rock gardens, and the rain shower that lasted for the last half of the ride (not in the forecast) everyone still (for the most part) had a nice smile at the finish. I liked the comment from Dave “Don’t scratch the nettle marks as they will stop itching in 8 minutes”. That would work except we hit nettle patches about every 7 minutes and 45 seconds! . I was reminded of each scratch when I hopped in the tub when I got home..YEEEEEOOOOUCH!!
Thanks David Wood for the pictures and recap.
One of our members, Jay Speidell, visited Bryce Resort for a little downhill riding. He came back with some great video. Here is his report:
I went to Byrce around 10am and met another member, Christopher Little, who was riding with his family and some friends. I split off and did about 18 runs. Trail conditions were dry despite recent rain and extremely fast.There are several trails, but after riding them all I did most of my runs on just two.
Brew Thru: The most popular trail, extremely fast and flowy. Lots of jumps and banked turns and plenty of opportunities to pump for speed. Plus an awesome little sidewinder slalom section. Not much pedaling here!
Copperhead: This is my second favorite after Brew Thru. A couple wooden features, but the highlight is after the first drop. A long rollout to build up speed and then a dirt ramp that sends you up the hill, with a couple tight banked turns right after your wheels touch the ground. The drops look intimidating, and the most can be rolled. After the second drop there’s an option to go through a tight, natural downhill trail in the woods.
All trails finish with doubles, a table top, a wall jump, and a wall ride, except Car Bomb, which finishes on a jump trail. The park is easily doable on a hard tail, the trails are smooth as butter. There aren’t any rocks except a 3 yard section of Copperhead.
Ride recap from Josh Wall:
On June 1st the third SERS ride of the season took place at Virginia’s other mountain bike Disneyland, Carvins Cove (the other one being Douthat). The ride was almost derailed by a trail running marathon but luckily we only ended up seeing one competitor at the back of the pack. We got in three big climbs and descents and everyone liked the Buck downhill so much we ended up doing it twice.
Two new surprises at the Cove were an extremely cool bike repair station at the trail head that had a rack, pump and tools. This would be a great addition to Walnut Creek or Preddy! The other surprise was a brand new section of trail that runs parallel to the Gauntlet trail. As awesome as the Gauntlet downhill is we couldn’t resist the huge berms and tabletops of the new section – it was freeride heaven.
Hopefully this won’t be the last pilgrimage to the Cove by the CAMBC crew this summer. On July 27th, the Virginia Endurance Series is doing an event there called “The Gamut” which involves riding every trail in Carvins Cove. Check out the details here: http://www.
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Jason Hiser set up a great ride from Sherando Lake, up White Rock Gap to the Blue Ridge Parkway, and descending through Torry Ridge and Slacks. This ride required some solid climbing legs, but allowed 4 miles of relaxed and scenic climbing on the Parkway to break up the the rocky climbs.
Descents were fast and rocky. Jay cleaned the big hike-a-bike section on Torrey. Everyone took the ride at their own pace, and there were plenty of exhausted smiles at the end of the day. It was a perfect day to be up in the mountains.
Hiser ended up missing the ride and went for a hike instead. A tire sidewall gave out as we began the White Gap Rock Trail. The tear was far too big to ride on, so he called it a day. (ProTip: sabotage a friend’s tire and send them back to the car. They will get bored and thirsty waiting around. There will be beer waiting for you at the end of the ride.)
Jason Hiser lead a group of ten up Narrowback. The ride began with a long gradual climb to the ridgeline. The return route off the ridge follows the same route, giving a preview of the series of drainage features (read: jumps) that need to be negotiated (read: launched) on the way back down. Once on the ridge, the trail continues through technical, rocky downhill sections down to a fireroad. The fire road continues along the western side of the ridge to a trail junction leading back to the top of the ridge. The ride included two good climbs, and tested downhill riding skills of the group. The only casualties of the ride were a couple flat tires from the sharp rocks on the ridge.
Total distance: 13.7 miles
Total time moving: 1hr 40min
Total elevation gain: 1882ft.
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(From Scott Paisley)
This coming Wednesday evening at 6pm the Virginia Festival of the Book presents Ralph Buehler, author of City Cycling and academic research papers such as “Making Cycling Irresistible.” Ruth Stornetta of Bike Charlottesville and myself will be on the panel.
This is especially pertinent with the rapidly developing plans to re-design West Main Street and to design the new Belmont bridge, not to mention the city’s Strategic Investment Area of ‘south downtown’ and the city’s small area plans. The city has re-committed this year to the Complete Streets principles (you can find a link to this document on the city’s webpage or at www.cvilletomorrow.org), but how do we help insure that all of this community input and planning leads to real on the ground improvements for all members of the transportation mix?
I’m inviting people to the Festival of the Book to hear Ralph and moderator Suzanne Morse, and then to meet afterward to discuss how we can best work with the city to ensure the best results for these critical pieces of Charlottesville’s transportation mix. Amanda Poncy and Jim Tolbert have arranged that we can have use of the City Council Chamber (site of the Ralph Buehler book event) until 10pm. This is a great opportunity to hear/voice your concerns and hopes and to hear more about the ideas being presented and the timing of decisions/deadlines for input. I would like to focus on West Main as this is the project on the fastest development track. Hope to see you there!
Thanks! Scott Paisley
[cryout-button-light url=”http://www.vabook.org/site14/program/details.php?eventID=63″]Virginia Festival of the Book[/cryout-button-light]
[cryout-button-light url=”http://www.cvilletomorrow.org/news/article/17246-new-complete-streets-policy/”] Council adopts new ‘complete streets’ policy[/cryout-button-light]-Charlottesville Tomorrow
[cryout-button-light url=”https://cambc.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/County_Complete_Streets.pdf”]City of Charlottesville Agenda[/cryout-button-light]-Contains Complete Streets Plan
Plan passes 4-1; aims to improve quality, utility of Charlottesville streets
“[The new policy will] ensure that transportation infrastructure investments support the making of an attractive, healthy, and safe, walkable and bike-able Charlottesville,” according to Council’s agenda.
The street design policy was initially proposed by councilmember Kathy Galvin in September.
“Context Sensitive Streets simply means that the design, engineering and building of our streets should fit the context they’re in and accommodate the transportation modes that make sense in that context,” Galvin said.
Neighborhood Development Services Director Jim Tolbert said the increase in the number of pedestrians and cyclists make this plan necessary for the community.
“Over time the plan should lead to a system of streets that provide for all users,” Tolbert said.
Council approved the use of $50,000 from the Capital Improvement Program Contingency Account to pay outside consultants who will aid city staff with the project. Groups of staff members will work with advisers from the PLACE Design Task Force, Planning Commission, Tree Commission and the Bike/Pedestrian Committee.
Council proposed a similar policy in November 2010, however the policy was not successful.
Council’s vote was 4-1 in favor of the project. Council member Bob Fenwick, who began his term as councilor this January, voted against the project, and said there was no need to spend on outside consultants.
Tolbert said outside experts are needed to supplement current city staff members and offer specialized expertise.
The street design resolution falls under Charlottesville’s 2013 Comprehensive Plan. This extensive proposal includes plans to create streets better equipped for storm water management, cultivate Charlottesville’s “tree canopy,” create transit infrastructure that promotes a safe environment for pedestrians and cyclists, and continue to develop the Charlottesville business community.
The Context Sensitive Street Design is one of the policies included in a city-wide slated to begin in July and be completed by March 2015.
The first Saturday of each month is dedicated to expanding the trails at the Patricia Ann Byrom Forest Preserve. Albemarle County has invited us to participate in building singletrack in the 600 acre park. The park is currently open to the public, and has 5-6 miles of trail ready for use by hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians. The trails are extremely steep, and following the Little Flat Mountain Loop will take you to the Shenandoah National Park Boundary.
Nate Lopez, an employee of Albemarle Parks & Rec has been constructing beautiful rock switchbacks to wind the newest section of singletrack down through massive rock formations. Nate (working with Scud and others) was also responsible for the new switchbacks constructed at Walnut Creek Park last summer. 30+ volunteers from APO, a UVA service fraternity, have also been regular trail work volunteers over the past year at Byrom. In speaking with the students, many of them have a distinct love for the park, and love building trail.
The past few months have been focused on cutting singletrack off the main trail, and working up through a rocky ridge. The trail is steep, and proper bench cuts and grade reversals are required on nearly every trail surface. Because of the steep topography, mechanized trailwork is out of the question. That means the more volunteers that help at Byrom, the faster we have big mountain style riding in our backyards. If you’d like to volunteer, watch for the emails announcing regularly scheduled workdays. We as a club can step up and organize additional workdays. If you are interested, please send an email to email@example.com, and we’ll help you coordinate.
Once complete, Byrom is going to be an amazing place to ride. It is different than anything else in the Charlottesville area with long steep climbs, fast ridgeline decents, and mountain views. Much of the park is still a blank slate, so it is an excellent opportunity for us to help design the trails we want to ride.