...I put in about 5 hours of trail work at Banner Pits today. The "Shootout" XC race will be held on May 31st at Summerset State Park and I have always been busy at Simpson or out of town on trail work days. We finished on Monday at Simpson, so I had some time to do some work. I trimmed the upper canopy on Riverside trail and did some shovel work to fill in some washed out gully areas with sand and dirt. I'll probably put in some more time on the north side working on the upper canopy to get things out of the faces of riders. Things are growing like it's a jungle with this rain and heat.
I brought the Dos Niner and put in 3 full laps (13.5 miles) of the race course. Race day will be 4 laps for the Cat 2 racers, so I will give that a whirl next time out to get a feel for the pacing of 4 laps and how it pans out on all the power climbs. It's a very unique and diverse trail well worthy of trying out for those who have not yet had a chance to ride these new trails. Balance, power and a little bit of luck seem to be required on the north side trails. The crew did a marvelous job designing and building these trails. I don't think there is anything like it that I have ridden in the midwest. This is a totally unique layout since it is built on an old abandoned coal strip mine. I saw a lot of snakes out sunning themselves on the north side. The south side has a ton of mosquitoes. Sand, banked curves, jumps, logs, bridges, steep short climbs, steep descents, off camber galore, switchbacks, tight and twisty, never a dull moment... Wildlife everywhere and the challenge is worth it.
After clipping, shoveling and riding - I headed back to town and taught two voice lessons before calling it a day. Tomorrow will have me getting a dog fence put back in for our front yard. Max is getting bold and challenging anyone who walks in front of our house, so it is time to zap him with the electronic fence which I will bury underground tomorrow. This started with him about a month ago which is odd since he has always been so gentle with people. I guess that territorial instinct is taking hold....
Trail work update: Today, Friday, was the third day in a row of doing some work out at Banner Pits. I've just about made it all the way around the trail trimming the upper canopy to get things out of rider's faces. The mosquitoes are relentless and at about 3:45 pm today I walked out of the woods tired of being bitten. My face had huge welts on it and my neck looked like I had a disease. On the good side of things, I must be immune to poison ivy because I've been walking through it the past few days with no adverse reaction. My grandfather was the same way. I'll take the weekend off of doing any work and just ride, but next time I go I will lather up with repellent.