TRAILBLAZING, DOLORES TRIAL INITIAL SURVEY

Trailblazing-is-Lonely-Work

With all my gardening tasks completed, other than standard weekly maintenance its time to rethink the 2014 event up on Casey’s land. Much gung-ho talk from last year on trail cutting, even before the winter snows and then again more talk from April onwards, but as usual its only talk and no sign of forest bulldozers or people? Did I expect more ? Perhaps, but once again its down to the small team of ME, ably assisted by ME, and once in awhile joined by ME.

Posters for the event are ordered and are already out and about in the prominent places. Town Mayor comes round and tells me to see the new leader of the Chamber of Commerce so all the ad work and promotional stuff is in hand with the now usual write ups in the local rags to come.

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2014 Posters printed and out and about

Of course last year was the first attempt to use this land but it has its own problems in so much that its pretty steep and difficult up on the cliffs. Some fantastic sections are available for the upper classes but I would have severe reservations about getting Novices and Beginners to them. Last year being an ITSA National the sections were slightly harder but this year they will be more “user friendly” while still offering a safe challenge.

Paths and trails that I cut last year have not grown back so my task was a little easier getting into the maze. In the absence of Casey my task was to find a way down to the second tier of cliffs and see what that had to offer. Long term it would be nice to link up the cliff paths with something that will join the lower reaches down on Lost Canyon Creek but for this year its outside the “one man band” work schedule !

Overall plan will be 36 sections a day with Day 1 having 2 loops of 15 sections then riding the last 6 which are all spectator sections down by the river and the 4th St Bridge. Day 2 is 12 sections and 3 loops of a smaller course.

The outbound section from the cliffs that we used last year will now be 2 Way but I have cut a nice new wide trail down from the power line where we came out last year which runs us down to our first section called “See Forever” and for those that came last year you may remember being able to see that enormous black storm coming in from Utah.

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The WAY IN from the Mesa

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NEW wide trail from the top of Power Lines

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Wide and safe and NOT too steep!

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Section 1    “See Forever”

 

Current line up of Day 1 Sections is as follows:

Section 1          See Forever

Section 2          What does the Fox say

Section 3          4 in a Row

Section 4          Groovy Canyon

Section 5          Good Luck

Section 6           Staircase

Section 7           Rolling Stones

Section 8           Power Lines

Section 9           Cat Face

Section 10        Griswold 1

Section 11         Griswold 2

Section 12          Enchanted Garden

Section 13          4th St Bridge

Section 14           Alcatraz

Section 15           Logo Land

Day 2 sections I was hoping to expand if the trails had been cut, but of course that hasn’t happened so another voyage of discovery into more unknown mazes. Still a little water in Lost Canyon Creek and a lot of fallen trees that need clearing and sawing.

Current thinking will be a couple in LCC and then Croc’s Back before popping out of the creek in the Bottle House area. Last year’s graded hill will become a modified section and be a good lead in to this year’s NEW Graded Hill called “SADDAM” (The Mother of all Graded Hills)

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This year’s Graded Hill    “SADDAM”

Whether or not you achieve fame and fortune on this one,  its a gentle ride over to the Knoll and Tin Can Alley.

Last week I struggled my way along a lower ridge line, hacking and chopping a trail until some maybe sections came into view. Nice collection of rocks, a fir tree and 4 reasonable lines. However some serious pruning on the fir required and under the lower branches a bit dark so pop the safety glasses on the top of the head to see what needs to be removed and immediately walk into a dead branch which goes straight into my left eye!  Needless to say bloody painful and with eye watering profusely not much else achieved but after all that effort it WILL be in and be called “Poke in the Eye”.

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I’ll remember this one!

A couple of gentle sections called Fred’s Flinstones and Barney’s Rubble complete that side of the hill and then we return to the start area at  “Honey I’m Home” for the last two sections at “Spud’s” which are called “One Potato” and “Two Potato”.

 

More news as it breaks

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

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