Tuesday, September 5

'17 West and Also Other Virginia Mancation: Part One

As soon as the yellow public school bus scoops my daughter, I hit the road.  Round up Bill Nye from his tall tower and we're headed northwards before 7:00AM.  On our way to West Virginia.

Since Jon and Andy won't be available to ride in Fayetteville until New River Bikes closes, we decide to hit some trails along the way.  Consulting the various trail apps and also John, we found Little Beaver State Park right off the side of I77 (generally speaking).  Enough trail for a quick schralp at the very least.

Since there are a few trails marked in black (meaning advanced), we choose a general route that will allow us to hit them all, starting with Bill Goat's Gruff.  It's a (g)rough start to the day.

Large amounts of debris and blow down.  We find ourselves walking around in the woods trying to get around the piles of nature garbage and then finding our way back to the vague trail, somewhat secure in the knowledge that the park is small enough and full of a spider web of trails that we are as likely to get lost as we are to fall off the edge of the flat earth.


What is rideable is full of typical West Virginia rocky chunk gnar with occasional moments of vague trail finding thrown in to keep things interesting.

Wiggle our way over to Nature Ridge in a way that is not planned but works, over to Deer Trail (assuredly named after the original trail builders here), and over to the Rhododendron Run loop.

And when there are no trail features, you make them.

We complete the loop, at least thoroughly enjoying the quarter of a mile that drops something like 150 feet with grades upwards of 30% (some people like numbers) and then head over to the other black trail we missed, Crooked Run.... and also end up on a trail that there was no way it was meant to be used but it gets us where we need to be, so whatever.  Creek Bed Trail is not a "creek bed" but an old road bed with trees lying across it every fifty feet.  Cross is coming tho so okay.  Crooked Run was well named, and we make our way back towards the car, having burnt as much time riding as we had looking at the map and walking around downed trees.  Something like twenty miles of trail in the park, and we only rode about ten of them in two hours.  Buenos?

We managed to eat up some time and enjoy ourselves along the way, so as planned, I guess.

Back around the lake and looking for something to entertain ourselves with so we can feel like we left with something "epic."

Ditch gap jumping, because not all ditches are for fighting.

On the way back to the car, we help an older couple not have to take a shitty selfie in front of the lake, the male person packing heat on his hip and a mustache on his lip.  Bill Nye and I wondering who or what he might need to shoot in Little Beaver State Park.

Back at the parking lot...

Welcome to West Virginia, gentlemen.  Buckle your seat belts and unholster your weapons.  We got a lotta days ahead of us.

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