Saturday, November 28, 2015

11/27/15 Upper and Lower Wilson Ridge with some extra turns and plenty of hike-a-bike thrown in. What an Adventure!

I parked between the Wilson Creek bridge/gage and Brown Mountain Beach Resort. My route was dirt road from Brown Mountain Beach through Mortimer, onto Hwy 90, through Edgemont, onto FR 45 and finally to Trail 269, Upper Wilson Ridge where the fun starts. 

The down-hill single track fun kicked off with 21 Jumps. It was in good shape but seemed shorter than I remembered. I dropped out and took a left on FR 4068, took a right onto 90 and started looking for trail-head on the left. After one steep hike-a-bike up to a dead end I finally found a gated road/trail head that did have some yellow blazes - I never saw a marked trail-head. The yellow blaze trail took me to familiar dirt road with all the signage and cabins that I had seen on a past epic. 

Somewhere along the way I either missed my Wilson Ridge single track turn off or I took a wrong turn. I'm pretty sure I was on a trail around Jackson Knob that would have lead me down to Wilson Creek near Mortimer. I found an old single track that took off to the left and I followed it both on and off the bike for the long haul. The trail went from overgrown but very nice single track that wound down to and along a small creek with some amazing old forest views. For the first section of the trail, I expected to drop out onto Wilson Creek but it turned back up for a very long climb up a steep ridge which required a lot of hike-a-bike. The trail got harder and harder to follow the closer to the top that I got. Near the end it was all off the bike and was extremely steep with impossible footing especially while trying to push, pull and carry my bike. I knew there was no riding it back down due to the steepness of the route. I almost gave up hope that it would hit Wilson Ridge but it finally did and then I was rewarded with even more hike-a-bike and luckily more yellow blazed trail. What an adventure!
 Thanksgiving is past, it is safe to come out again!

 The long dirt road pedal to the trail-head. I passed a lot of trails before getting to Upper Wilson Ridge. I was tempted to an additional trail on the way up but I was lucky that I didn't, I got back to the car at about 5:15 with not much daylight left to spare.

 Finally on some single track. Upper Wilson Ridge was a blast and over way too fast.

 These pictures are from my "wrong turn" trail. It had some great forest views. At some point someone had come through with a chain saw.

Back on track to some views I had seen recently riding up from Wilson Creek.

11/21/15 Wesley and I got out early. First on and First Off. Put on at about 9 am and got 3 runs.

 The level felt like about 2" above 0. We never checked the gage but it was a good level to get in some laps and take some pictures.

 These people were having some kind of ceremony. They started early too.

 We took out below Screaming Right Turn after every run.