Post Nirvana

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Sweet love shines down on us at the top of Mobius in the early morning.

I don’t know what nirvana looks or feels like. And I probably never will.

But what I do know, is trail nirvana. And you can find it, too, by riding a sweet little 3ish-hour ditty that hits all the greatest hits of lower Post Canyon with nary an overlap (ok, just one, little, teensy, tinsy, one). I call it – Post Nirvana. Basically, it’s nirvana that goes beyond nirvana because it’s POST nirvana (see how that works?).

A couple years ago I lie in bed wondering – how can I connect all my favorite trails in lower Post Canyon? Perhaps you’ve considered this yourself, or maybe it seems a strange thing to do while lying in bed. Regardless, this is what the Gorge does to some of us. We go adventure and then drift off to sleep dreaming of more.

So there I was wondering how to make it work. I’d start at the bottom of Seven Streams, of course, and work my way up. But then how to get in both Mobius and Cardiac Hill? (The Slog as I call it). I want to ride Kleeway and also Mitchell, not to mention all of 8-Track and, obviously, my beloved Charley’s. But I need efficiency. A clean route, not sloppy with overlaps and double backs. So I started to lay out the route and with the help of sweet honey’s suggestion to use the 140 road as a link I came up with the following:

1. Up Seven Streams
2. Up Mobius
3. Down Spaghetti
4. Up Charley’s (sweet, sweet Charley’s)
5. Down Toilet Bowl (from the toilet, mind you).
6. Cut over to Cardiac Hill (don’t you dare get on Kleeway yet, that’s for later)
7. Up Cardiac Hill
8. Through Family Man
9. Up Lower 8-Track
10. Up Upper 8-Track
11. Down Bad Motor Scooter
12. Down Upper GP (hello Moments of Silence)
13. Down Lower GP
14. Head left onto the 140 Rd. (I always take wrong turns on it)
15. When you get to Post Flats staging area, cut over to those trails that connect to Mitchell Ridge.
16. Down Mitchell Ridge
(*Now, at this point, some of you – myself included – are going to arrive in that upper parking lot and you’re really gonna wanna just be done, and it’d be so easy to just head down, but TRUST ME, YOU HAVE IT IN YOU! Turn that bike towards Cardiac Hill and hit it.)
17. Go all the way up Cardiac back to Family Man.
18. Get over to Middle School and take that to Float On
19. Down Float On (humming Modest Mouse)
20. Down Kleeway
21. Down 7 Streams and YOU’VE DONE IT! Go buy a beer with your buddies and celebrate the feeling of awesomeness.

I call this Post Nirvana 1.0 – I’ve yet to see if I can reconfigure it to add in some of the new stuff like Mix-Tape, Eldorado, Sister Wife etc. I’m open to suggestions if you have them. Until then, this makes me pretty happy and maybe it’ll make you happy, too. I’ll be riding it tomorrow morning at 7am – if you’re awake, come join us for any or all of it! Or lemme know when you wanna give it a go and I’ll pack some extra snacks and join you (Doug? Jimmy? Come on!)

And one last little hurrah, because Old Man Graka is back in the country and back on his bike! Thank goodness – cuz he can be a real grouch when he’s not riding.

Go get it y’all! The dirt’s real nice and vine maples are glowing!

 

Post Canyon

I’ve actually not ridden my bike in months, I know, horrible. We’ll deal with that later. For now, in case you’ve not worked on/donated to HRATS projects, here’s their latest newsletter with updates about new trails – and trails that are currently closed. It’s a drag to have trails closed, but respecting those closures is important for all of us. So go explore some new routes and do what you can to help rebuild damaged trails!

Fall Post Canyon Work Parties and other News

Hello Everyone,
The first HRATS Post Canyon work party is this Saturday Nov. 4th at 9:30.   Meet at Family Man.   The last work party is Saturday Nov. 18th.  As always there is a lot to be done our beloved trails.   Please come help make them better.   There is a job for everyone.

New Trails
There are two exciting new trails being started this fall.

Craig Spaeth is spear heading a trail called Eldorado.   It will be a beautiful trail that traverses from Middle 8 Track up to the trails above Bins Hill staging area.   It will be a fantastic way to climb to the upper sections of PC.   It will also be for those wanting a mellower way down.

Eldorado will also include a beginner section that traverses from Middle 8 Track down to the bottom of Upper GP.   This will give riders the opportunity to ride 8 Track as a fairly easy and short loop.  A well needed addition.

Also, Gary Pasch is putting in a 3rd line at Extended Play.   It will be a trail that starts well above the other Extended Play lines and creates a playful way to do Extended Play without mandatory air.   We expect it to be very popular.

Both trails will require community support with work parties and donations to pay for machine time.   So please be ready to give both in the spring……..Donations can start anytime though!

If you see Craig, Gary or any other trail builder around, please thank them for their hard work.   Buy them a beer if given the chance.

Lastly:
Thanks to everyone who stayed out of closed areas during and after the fire.   Unfortunately, many did not and our community took a credibility hit with the county.   Please remember that the county controls the trails and we should respect that.

Mitchell Ridge is now open.   The top half is basically a road, but ridable.   It will be improved in the spring.

Kingsley is closed for upgrades to the reservoir and the camp ground.   Please stay away from Kingsley.   The County is making it a better place for everyone.

Also please stay off closed fire line areas.   The riding is not good and the county is often working in those areas with huge machines.

I hope everyone had a great riding season and is ready to help our trails.

Take Care,
Tim Mixon
HRATS President
hrats.org

Logging in Upper Post Canyon

Logging has begun in the Post Canyon neighborhood of Dirt Surfer. I don’t know the upper trails that well, but you can see in the photos/video where we finally ran out of trail and met the clearcut (which was in progress this morning, Sept. 24, 2016).

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I’ve not had a chance to do much research or thinking on the topic of clearcuts and our mountain bike trails, which is what I’d want to do before I say much more. But I will point you to an older post (2012) by Temira (an excellent source of all things outdoor/play/weather in the Gorge) that takes a deeper look at logging and trails. I’d be interested to hear thoughts/facts/experiences from others who follow this more closely.

And, it’s a great reminder for all of us riders/hikers/runners who use these trails to give some time or money to HRATS (Hood River Area Trail Stewards) – who do so so so much to build, maintain, and advocate for our amazing trail system. Just consider the number of hours you spend on our trails, multiply that by the health benefits, whoops of joy, and good clean fun that these trails provide us all and it’s worth every darn penny.

 

Ouch!

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Love hurts.

A friend once told me that if you don’t fall when you’re riding then you’re not pushing yourself enough. I get what she’s saying, but come on. This humdinger kept me off the trails for 10 days, and I don’t even have a good story for it. I was riding down sweet, sweet Kleeway here in Post Canyon. A trail I’ve grown to love. It was named after Matt Klee – a force for good in the Gorge riding scene, who unfortunately died in an accident before I ever got the chance to know him or give him kudos for all his hard work.

Kleeway is a swooping, hillside ride that moves from clearcut into forest. An alternate downhill route to the ever-popular Seven Streams. I’ve heard some grumblings from folks who don’t feel it’s accessible enough to all skill levels – ie. that it’s more advanced than they’d thought it was going to be – but I beg to differ. I have a blast riding it, even if I roll a lot of kickers and can’t even imagine gapping the gaps. Plus, since it’s a bit wider than your usual singletrack, you have a bigger landing pad when trying some of the smaller jumps.

I’d like to tell you that when I had my crash it was because I was shredding the trail like a pro – but, I wasn’t. I can’t even remember the exact spot where I fell. I didn’t black out, but I hit quick and hard. My bike and body were pile-driving my head into the dirt before I  had a chance to try and catch myself. Ouch. I lay there and groaned long enough to assess the situation. My riding group was long gone and fortunately, no one was zipping down the hill behind me.

I crawled back onto my bike and rolled the rest of the way down Kleeway. Once I hit the upper parking area I stuck to the road until I met my group waiting for me at the bottom. I didn’t feel like being tough and frankly, my knee had a big flap of skin hanging off that was really grossing me out. I got my group’s advice on preferred knee-pads (more on that in the future) and bid them adieu.

At home, my hubby tried to use our hose with a spray nozzle to clean out the wound, but the combination of pain, a messy gash, and 2 curious kiddos crawling on my achy bod, made me realize the job was not going to get done and the flap might just need some professional help. Off we went to the Emergency Room for some family bonding on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

The nurse told me my knee looked “gross” and the doctor told me it looked like it had just “exploded” on impact. Thanks to some magic injections, a fancy cleaning syringe, and a tetanus shot, my knee was cleaned and stitched up in no time. And, of course, the best time to take your bike in for a tune-up is when you won’t be needing it for awhile. So off it went for a tune-up to get ready to ride another day.