I went and checked out the "new" bit of trail scratched out in Geo. Wyth State Park yesterday, before I checked into work. You can check out the airial view on J.Y.'s October 27th post, here.
The purpose of this section is a way to make a long enough loop for a planned 6/12 hour race, next year. I am going to offer my opinion here based on the purpose of the trail.
1. "New" trail on a section where plenty of "old trail" exists, but was not utilized, is perhaps, a mistake. Many "old timers" around here might remember the fun, twisty singletrack that existed in this section 10 years ago. It got closed down because most of it was on private land, at that time. Now, the State has ownership, and trail in this area is "legal" again. I realize that special consideration for the race was given priority when this trail was put in recently, so any thoughts that the old fun was back were quickly dashed. This is pretty boring trail, people! There are a couple of interesting off-camber spots, but that's about it. About 100 yards of it is routed on the pea gravel access road.
2. The "new" trail is over alot of imbedded grass clumps, and routed through alot of nettles and other underbrush common to Iowa river bottoms. This is a very common problem that often plagues established trail here locally. This won't present itself until about late April, and then it will be nearly impossible to keep the growth at bay, unless there is a constant parade of riders grinding out the singletrack everyday. That is assuming that the area does not fall prey to flooding, which this trail is susceptable to. Then, depending on the severity of the flooding, will make a race in June or July next to impossible on any of this trail system. Even without a flood, this trail is certainly doomed unless it's constantly supervised from April through July to ward off encroachment of vegetation. It won't be easy! I have several years experience in battling this type of situation myself.
Allright, enough about that! Today is another cool, late fall day, and I plan on cruising around the Green Belt again. This will be a low key, fun ride. There won't be very many more chances to enjoy- actually enjoy- the outdoors on a bike. Pretty soon, it will be so cold, that enjoying the outdoors on a bike might be difficult at best. Hopefully, it stays warm enough for awhile to get several more rides in comfortably.
Get out and ride! Enjoy the chance you have, where ever that may be, to feel the joy of riding your bike.
5 hours ago