Saturday, March 26, 2016

MInaus River Park Quickie

After a late start (I was busy elsewhere in the morning), I warmed up on my local neighborhood trails then headed over to Minaus Park.  The weather was mostly sunny but a bit chilly still.

After a quick ride bombing on the Meander Trail and looping back on the Field Trail, I headed up the new Hill Trail and south on the Laurel Trail to do the Treetops Loop.

I stopped at the nasty washout climb and checked out Dave Francefort's flagging for a reroute to be done this summer. Much Better!

Looking Up...
 Looking Back Down...
nice slick rock!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Norwalk River Valley Trail (Part 2)

Although it was a bit overcast and gray, I drove over to Wilton to ride a second section of the Norwalk River Valley Trail  (Part 1  >). My mountain bike was in the shop so this was a road bike trek. The trail is between Merwins Park and the Wilton School Complex,

On my short ride toward the eastern parking lot along the river, I thought this tree in the water was interesting

Norwalk River Valley Trail

The trail starts north out of the parking lot in Merwins Park. It actually is quite scenic along the river - imagine it on a nice sumer day will all the trees and plant in full greenery!
Later historical research confirmed my suspicion that the dam had a mill on the east side.
Also, just north of the dam, an old foundation is visible next to the trail. As this older topo map shows, the trail was actually a road that went up to this building.
For a short section, the trail narrows and hugs the riverbank.
 Old ruins caught my eye..
Once you reach the High School, you can ride up the road to the school in the back and zoom back down on a different branch of the trail...
 Finally you can ride thru Merwins Park and even back out under the main road.
Not super exciting and awfully short, the ride was nevertheless fun - fresh air and riverside rides are always a pleasure..

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Ups and Downs at Huntington/Farringtons and then the lovely Deer encounter


It was a sunny and beautiful day and I headed up to Huntington for a change. I parked at Dodgingtown Lot and ran into a bunch of bikers I knew.  I was anxious to ride more with my new 29er and Mike Malwitz suggested I ride with with him. I am glad I did as he took me to some new places and/or places I haven't ridden in ages!

We first headed up to (1) Big Burn and then rode north to do (2) Lollipop counter clockwise. I was winded thru most of Lollipop but it was a needed reminder of my need to ride more and ride more hills. We then headed over to Stratocaster - which is ALWAYS fun and did the South Loop clockwise. South Loop seemed super easy after all the previous trails.
We next rode down the double track that loops around at a low elevation on the east side of the park and stopped at this mammoth rock for a photoshoot. I don't remember being here (perhaps only as a whiz by with my son ages ago) but it was beautiful heading back up as we paralleled a stream on the left.
The bummer was my dropper post started to mess up and drop erratically. I was bummed!

We cruised back to the lot and good ole Mick Ferraro was there with some cold brews! Both him and his friend Ryan tried tinkering with my drop post and said it was fine. I rode around the grassy area bouncing like a kangaroo and it miraculously seemed solid.

Feeling a little better about the bike, I headed over to Farringtons - stopping for a pick up lunch in Bethel.


The lot was packed and I snapped a shot of the map on the kiosk - strangely It only had a few barely used hiking trails and NONE of the mountain biking trails. (If I recall - I think this was a boy scout merit badge project - the maps should of AT LEAST been labeled hiking trails - oh well  the truth is so relative these days for just about everything...)

The Ride sucked as the dropper post was not fixed and slipped down randomly. I did the lower trails and realized it was time to head home and bring the bike to the shop !!

Deer Close Encounter

After dropping the bike of at the shop it was still warm and and sunny so I hiked Woodway and had a close encounter with 5 or 6 Deer - very cool!
After stare down of a few minutes - they took off and I was able to catch photos of their river crossing.
Well, I will have to ride the road bike tomorrow! But at least I have the wounds of a good day of mountain biking :-)

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Old Mine Ruins (a few)

A few more photos taken back on March 6th of the mine remnants in Old Mine Park. This place has a fascinating history. Stay tuned... there will be a tour on June 4h!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Remnants of Carriage Roads in Broadway Woods

Kinda cool (at least for me :-) ) - there's a bunch of old road remnants that criss cross thru Broadway Woods.

In the 1800s, ox carts used to traverse these roads. They are pretty grown over and washed out now but they're a poignant reminder of how life was back then..
 There is an Old Well (Thanks John Lauria for showing this to me)
And something relatively new! Old Foundation (burnt down in the 1950s - recent!)
There is often history everywhere (old stone walls, foundations, bridge abutments, remnants of carriages roads, etc.) if you just look!