February 1st Ride Report – exploring with BP

Last Friday I put out some text messages to Brian, Travis, Chad, Kyle, and David to let them know it was time for a ride in the woods above Mt Laurel.  All but Brian had to decline, so the two of us found ourselves in the midst of a fun ride.

I was able to duck out before BP, so I did some hill repeats and general base mile riding along the ridge until such time that he could meet me up there….probably got in 9 or so miles before he arrived.  Once he got to the top of the ridge, we headed across the paved Double Oak Way ridgeline road and then onto the doubletrack that leads to the powerline crossings closest to Hwy 41 (as opposed to the crossings closer to Hwy 43).  By the time we reached the first powerline crossing I didn’t have a ton of time left before I needed to return home, so going all the way to Hwy 25 and then back to Mt Laurel via Hwy 41 was out of the question.  But, I recalled seeing a trail spur a few times in the past and had always wondered where it led.

Not being a solo rider this time, and therefore a little more willing to do some backwoods trail exploring, I was able to locate the trail in question and off we went.  The first section was pretty rocky, but certainly rideable.  In fact, if the leaf cover had been lighter (like in the Spring or Summer), the baby-head rocks would have been more visible and easier to navigate.  Then the trail somewhat leveled out and became some really sweet, smooth singletrack, eventually backtracking below the powerlines 140 feet below where we first crossed them.

After some good smooth riding, we started hitting a few sections that were quite steep and rocky, forcing us to hike-a-bike a few short distances.  Had there not been so much leaf cover making the trail too slippery for braking, most of those sections would have been rideable.  Eventually we hit a fork in the trail and opted to head left, hoping this would take us in the direction of Stonegate Farms (we had been tracking our progress on a gps map).  After some more riding, and another decision to make on which trail to take, we ended up at the very last cul de sac in Stonegate Farms.  I had been on a short section of that trail at least six months prior on my CX bike, but on that day I turned around early and had no idea that it could have taken me to the top of the mountain.

Ride stats from Strava can be found here.  Some pics are below.  Around 23 miles and 2200 feet of climbing.

on double oak way

on double oak way

on double oak way

on double oak way

double oak way

double oak way

view towards childersburg

view towards childersburg

view towards childersburg

view towards childersburg

waiting on brian

waiting on brian

brian riding on bob hood branch trail

brian riding on bob hood branch trail

view towards leeds from first powerline crossing

view towards leeds from first powerline crossing

another view from powerline crossing

another view from powerline crossing

sweet singletrack

sweet singletrack

more nice trail

more nice trail

taking a break to study our maps

taking a break to study our maps

more good trail, this time heading somewhere back up the mountain

more good trail, this time heading somewhere back up the mountain

on new trail

on new trail

on new trail

on new trail

view from vantage point on new trail

view from vantage point on new trail

some rather large boulders up there

some rather large boulders up there

on highway 41 heading back home - almost looked like big sky country

on highway 41 heading back home – almost looked like big sky country

enlarged map where we took new trail

enlarged map where we took new trail

overall ride map

overall ride map

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: