Riders the Currie lot is undergoing a bit of hazard tree maintenance and is temporarily unavailable. Please respect the posted signage and tape so that the contractor can complete their work in a timely manner
Yesterday the HAFTA trail-crew was out removing the winter-loop signage and bucking-up the trees reported to us on TrailForks.
On our hike, we discovered many sections of our single-track are still very soft. Today’s rainstorm will be a further set-back for us giving the “thumbs up to ride” with a clear conscious. Speaking of riding, we ran into dozens of riders out enjoying the warm weather and soft trails. Some on high-end carbon bikes who’ve been riding the trails for 20 years and joeys on entry-level bikes who “couldn’t-even” due to mud at Kelso (hey, lets try the AF)
We mention these details, not to single out somebody, but to point out there isn’t really a ‘type’ of person who rides soft and muddy trail. Perhaps the only thing they shared in common is some sort of misunderstanding about the realities of riding trail that hasn’t dried enough.
Riding a trail in that state depicted below accelerates its transfiguration into a mud-pit and when a trail makes it to mud-pit status it’s major surgery. We wonder if there might be a misconception; that people think riding in the mud only means riding in a mud-pit – Truth is, it’s too late for the mud-pit (don’t ride around them and widen trail).
The damage really hurts trail when riders create ruts or excavate soil on what would have otherwise been a stable trail if it were given a chance to dry after the melt. During the spring-thaw water is everywhere and people can easily churn a trail’s tread into a slurry of soil or create a depression aka rut on the tread that allows water to pool on it.
When a trail loses its ability to shed water you will slowly get a mud-pit. Not good.
For an example, take a look at the ruts on Boundary Trail A in the photos below. Probably 10 meters of trail is slowly on it’s way to mud-pit. We like that trail, it’s got Gnome Rock on it. This isn’t a future state we’d pick for the trails in our network or elsewhere.
Thanks for reading, we hope you learned something about caring for the trails!
It won’t be long until the peepers emerge in the AF, but what about the mountain bikers and hikers?
Well, we know that you know what mud is and that you also know what dirt is. That means you can basically answer the question yourself! But… HAFTA will still remind people to respect trail conditions this weekend. It’s going to be warm, but there is also going to be large muddy-sections on trails. Earlier this week lots of trails were still soft and had ponding; the ponding is something we’re steadily trying to address. Come out to a build-day this year!
Anyhow, in times like these we occasionally receive some creative feedback. Lets look at some typical excuses for damaging a trail (in good humor of course).
Read a “science” article (or a maybe it was a random bikeforum post from two decades ago) that said there is an exact depth of mud that makes for good riding. Just so happens that is the precise depth of mud the very day they’re out.
“Only” damaged 50m of trail and then lily-padded across the rest.
rode off the trail and therefore avoided all the mud.
so what, there are stretches of mud allover this trail, the rest of it is perfectly fine. If i had to wait for that seasonal mud to dry it’d be like… Weeks!
Just manual through the mud because one tire on the ground = 1/2 the erosion.
I has a fat bike and everybody knows they float right over snow, sand and mud.
I hiked the mud sections that were too deep to ride; hiking is “Natural” therefore no impact.
Has ridden muddy trail for x number of years, nothing they’ve ever noticed has eroded, quit the clucking.
Yadda yadda and so forth. 🙂
Hope one of those wasn’t yours. When motivated people are very good at rationalizing actions, mostly as an excuse for ignoring the negative effects! We at HAFTA just want the single-track trails to remain single-track, not have baked-in ruts/footprints throughout May/June and growing mud-pits we have to drag rocks and stones into. Be thoughtful about when and where you ride. #pleaseandthankyou #filethecomplaintwithMotherNaturenotHAFTA #ridedirtnotmud #mudonheelsorwheelsturnaround