Cedar Bluff Ride
On Monday, my mom was off school and we headed out to Castlewood for some evening mountain biking. We headed to Sherman Beach and biked on the Stinging Nettle Trail. We didn't like all the sand, so we rode a connector to the Al Foster Trail. We followed the wide gravel trail to its end and the Cedar Bluff Junction. We walked our bikes under the railroad tracks and started the rugged 2.6 mile loop. We had to dismount and carry our bikes our large fallen trees and up several steep climbs. After curving up high on a hill, the rain started. This was just about the worst spot for it to rain. Not on were we 200 ft. above the river, but we had to bike 3 muddy and slick miles back to the Prius. We decided to turn around and return the way we had come. The dirt trail got worse by the minute. Soon we were walking thorught the tunnel. After the tunnel, we biked faster on the Al Foster Trail. Soon we were back at the Prius in the soaking, cold rain. We took almost an hour to go 4 miles and only 13 minutes to come back.
Lost Valley Rides
My mom and I finished the whole Lost Valley Loop on Sunday the 15th. The first three miles by Little Femme Osage Creek were easy and mostly level. We saw several remnants of old homesteads in the valley. The trail leaves the old two track and climbs up a new section of single track constructed by GORC. Then after winding through a small cedar grove the trail curved down some twisty and fast single track. At a sharp bend in the trail, I saw a sign in the woods. We got off our bikes and found an old cemetery. There were graves from 1825. The sign said this was the Dunlap Cemetery. After some more twisty trail we passed above a small spring that bubbled out of the hill down to our right. The became rockier for a while before entering some grassy meadows. We soon came to the cut-off trail, but continued on the long loop. The next 1.5 miles were along a Department of Conservation Gravel Road. The road dropped steeply to a large creek valley. We parrelled a powerline on a grassy trail with 1 creek crossing in the next mile. After dropping off a ledge, the trail made a large creek crossing and climbed up onto a ridge. This climb was smooth dirt singletrack recently constructed by GORC. The trail began to descnd and crossed a small creek above a waterfall. I walked this steep crossing. A short ride later we rejoined the spur trail.