Re: Jfk Is Rockin

Postby Robbie on Wed 15/Dec/10 9:10am

More Boulders than Colorado!!

Here is a copy of the epic blog for the epic North Face Project:
http://makarapeak.org/northface?mode=PostView&bmi=480191

Your humble press attaché stumbled up to JFK through fog and mist to discover wild dirty men heaving huge boulders about in a valley a few hundred metres down the track. There was some risk of all of Makara Peak collapsing in the resulting avalanche, and this catastrophe was only averted by skill, art, and a great deal of luck.

into the corner, looking uphill.jpg


Although the track doubles almost right back on itself, it will be doing so with great style and grace, with transonic riding velocity. The recently liberated rocks and boulders are the foundations of a huge solid swoop out of the bend, around a giant King fern. This corner should be all right.

into the corner looking downhill2.jpg


Heaps of grubbering by many, and only a few hours later they had begun to form the corner out of approximately nothing. I call it being brutally creative. And, the rocky soil is almost perfect for track building.

the corner appears.jpg


Ian’s suggestion of running the track through here was a truly excellent one.

the corner exit.jpg


I recall an immovable tree stump that was removed anyway, and having some trouble myself with a child-proof saw, dust flying through the air from rock chipping, and some of the (chain) gang slaving away further down the intended track chipping rock and clearing stumps.

chain gang at work.jpg


The run into the corner has been well benched and is quite ridable, with a few tasty grade reversals. (why stop at one), Things were happening.

Just before packing up we realized that the benching above the corner had liberated a great deal of dirt, which was doing not much, which could have been very usefully dumped onto the lower bench, where the wettish week ahead would help it pack down nicely.

A few people set to work dragging the soft dirt down the hill with fire rakes and tools, then Jono attacked it doggy style, which was far more effective. He was able to ride the result later on, so lesson learned.

So where did this leave us? Well this track is starting to look like it will be quite spectacular to ride. Faster, flatter and more open than North Face, with much longer runs between the corners compared to Smokin. And two of the corners will be epic and huge by Makara Peak standards.

People will trade their first born to ride it, and cry tears of joy at the prospect. Those who have toiled away building it (not me, I just talk about things) will be wearing those strange little Mona Lisa smiles hiding strange warm feelings as they hoon/ride carefully down this track when it is complete.

Will the gang be back on Tuesday evening next week? Of course!

Would they like to see you come along? Yes again. The more hands on deck, the sooner we can all ride this thing!

Building JFK can be funnier than Mr Bean, generate more sweat than scaling the Tip track, make more friends than Facebook and even provide you with a chunk or two of pizza. What can possibly go wrong?

With a wee way to go, and a few epic corners to make, the finishing date is probably late Feb 2011. And then, we will cast our gritty bloodshot eyes to the summit, and build something there!

p.s. if you have any time off over the Xmas/NY period, keep an eye out for some pixie work parties on JFK :)

Cheers,

Rob

MAKARA PEAK TRACKS !!
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: Jfk: A Sweeping U-turn Takes Shape...

Postby Robbie on Wed 22/Dec/10 2:54pm

SO here is the copy of the blog about this week's JFK work, from the site

http://www.makarapeak.org/northface where you can see the photos in a much larger format.

A sweeping u-turn takes shape...

The rain and fog cleared wonderfully in the afternoon, so the evening’s weather was nice and warm, without the oppressive humidity. The fog had even lifted to well above the track.

10 men and women did those things that track builders do: built corners, cleared stumps, created a line for the track and then benched it. :-)

Quite a few of the gang dug the u-turn down and down and down to even out the gradient. Huge amounts of relatively soft dirt were shifted from the corner onto the berm. Work progressed well, and it is about half done.

This is a much bigger corner than a switchback, and the berm will need to be built up and packed probably two or three times as it inevitably settles. And then it will be a terrific thing indeed.

The entry and exit are relatively straight by North Face standards, however they will roll and curve about enough to keep riders entertained and busy!

Here is a rough graphic of where we are at the moment. The pale blue is ridable, the dark blue is being worked on. The ridable zone did not extend a great deal this evening as there was so much excavating down on the corner. A lot of track was semi benched and heaps of gorse and barberry stumps were cleared to make way further ahead.

JFK as of dec 21.JPG


One more Tuesday night spent in that spot should see the corner done as a first cut, and most of the dark blue area ridable at that end :-)

Two or three weeks in the future lurks "The Keyhole".

Here are a few photos taken quickly as we were leaving:

The corner is I guess 6 or 7 m in diameter, large indeed by Makara Peak standards.

The entry (which is right by an impressively large rock face, as seen by that green stuff to the left) :

the start.jpg


The mid point, where the cut into the ground quickly becomes a built up berm:

mid cornera.jpg


The exit berm itself:

the bermage.jpg


And what an ordinary photo that is. Who took that one ???

The nice wide run out from the corner:

the run out.jpg


The ridable benched track continues along to here:

further along1.jpg


Then the track becomes a little less distinct:

further along 2.jpg


And where Ian happens to be loitering the first cut of the track stops, and the ground gives way to clearing of stumps. Such is how MTB tracks are made along the already marked and partially cleared pilot track!

further along 3.jpg


All this thanks to ten enthusiastic people who put in an hour or two, or three (or even four) of their time on a warm summer’s evening.

We are already thinking about planting natives alongside JFK next winter.



May this track bring many happy riders (and runners and walkers) for decades to come, and maybe even help Makara Peak win more awards!

Cheers,

Rob

Makara Peak Tracks !!
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: Jfk: A Sweeping U-turn Takes Shape...

Postby Robbie on Wed 29/Dec/10 8:57pm

SATURDAY JANUARY ONE 01012011

Today we will be working on North Face, from the BOTTOM end upwards, there are few bits that need pampering as they have packed down.

This track was only first ridable in late March this year, and a lot of work went in to keeping the track dry and solid over winter. Summer is here and it is generally rolling very well indeed, which makes the bits needing work more obvious.

Starting time is 10am, and as usual tools gloves, and lunchtime refreshments all provided :-)

Nothing like some (very) fresh air after the NYE celebrations!

Cheers,

Rob

MAKARA PEAK TRACKS !
Last edited by Robbie on Thu 30/Dec/10 9:45am, edited 1 time in total.
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: Jfk: A Sweeping U-turn Takes Shape...

Postby Colin on Wed 29/Dec/10 10:18pm

Robbie wrote:SUNDAY JANUARY ONE 01012011

Saturday or the 2nd ?

Pick one
Colin
User avatar
Member for: 18 years 5 months

Re: North Face, January One !!!

Postby Robbie on Thu 30/Dec/10 9:46am

It was set for Sunday, swapped to Saturday :thumbsup:
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: North Face, January One !!!

Postby fox on Thu 30/Dec/10 11:11am

G'day Mr Robbie, I was wondering where you would be meeting this saturday? Having been out of the trail building circuit for some time I forget :) . Also would it be wise to bring my mountain cycle or better to walk up?
fox
Member for: 16 years 7 months

Re: North Face, January One !!!

Postby Robbie on Thu 30/Dec/10 6:01pm

The best place to meet is at 10am and the bottom end of North Face.
If peoples have already headed up the hill, grab a grubber etc if they have been left at the bottom and wander up carefully!

Some people bring their bikes, however do not ride up the track please, it is downhill only, so you will need to wheel the beast up the track.

Cheers!

Rob
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: North Face, January One !!!

Postby Robbie on Sun 2/Jan/11 10:12pm

North Face just keeps getting better and better:

here is a copy of the blog on our own web site:
http://makarapeak.org/northface?mode=PostView&bmi=488067

On saturday a bunch of guys mostly worked on the second left-hand switchback in the valley, after successfully changing the first left hander from gnarly to nice recently.

The entry into the corner was controlled by a grade reversal, and the start of the corner smoothed out, and the exit helped with a small berm.

The result is now quite easy to ride, and may need only a little tinkering to be all done and dusted!

Our list of "must do" things on this track is gradually getting shorter :-)

Cheers,

Rob

MAKARA PEAK TRACKS
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby Robbie on Tue 4/Jan/11 10:46pm

Here is a copy of our blog from this evening's work on JFK:
http://makarapeak.org/northface?mode=PostView&bmi=489070

This evening work continued on the Epic Corner: a sweeping, bermed switchback in a valley.

This is almost complete, and the track now sweeps down the hill and rises again around a wide ridge.

Thrillseekers will soon be pinning this track, while the tired or more sensible, having just ridden down North Face, will be cruising along enjoying the dense forest.

The next week or two will see the gang arrive at a left hand switchback, which has been designed as a keyhole shape, swinging the track back to the left, and then to Grassy Knoll very shortly afterwards.

Huge thankyou to the twelve people who volunteered their evening tonight, and helped take JFK from a dream to a reality.

This track (the third of the 4 North Face Project tracks) will be quite special!

No photos this evening as I forgot the Box Brownie, however here is a map:

The pale blue parts are built track, the dark blue is being worked on, and the yellow is scrub/pilot track.

JFK as of Jan4th.JPG


Depending on the weather, we are on schedule to having this completely done and dusted in mid/late Feb.

Not a bad effort for such a wide, hard-packed track with heaps of berms and deeply cut corners :-)

Next Tuesday evening, again from 5 until almost dark, will see interested people gather again to build more track!

Come along and lend a hand if you would like..we are an easy going and friendly mob..

Cheers,

Rob

Makara Peak Tracks
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: North Face, January One !!!

Postby Simonk on Tue 4/Jan/11 11:40pm

Robbie wrote:North Face just keeps getting better and better:

here is a copy of the blog on our own web site:
http://makarapeak.org/northface?mode=PostView&bmi=488067

On saturday a bunch of guys mostly worked on the second left-hand switchback in the valley, after successfully changing the first left hander from gnarly to nice recently.

The entry into the corner was controlled by a grade reversal, and the start of the corner smoothed out, and the exit helped with a small berm.

The result is now quite easy to ride, and may need only a little tinkering to be all done and dusted!

Our list of "must do" things on this track is gradually getting shorter :-)

Cheers,

Rob

MAKARA PEAK TRACKS


It's very impressive to see you guys are so determined to make all the switchbacks as top-class as the rest of the track. Bravo!
Simonk
Member for: 18 years 4 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby redman on Fri 7/Jan/11 9:04am

Went down to wellington/makara for a sift around and Northface is mint!! We went twice to the tops and being the out-of-towners that we were we, rode ridgeline in the gail winds - not a good idea. Why do we only meet the locals with the advice " I never ride ridgeline in the wind. ' only when we had made it to the bottom after muppeting our way down.

Back to the top a second time and rode Northface. Primo!! what a nice flowing track. Big ups to the track builders, a credit to be proud of! :)
redman
User avatar
Member for: 11 years 7 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby its that guy on Fri 7/Jan/11 6:43pm

redman wrote:Went down to wellington/makara for a sift around and Northface is mint!! We went twice to the tops and being the out-of-towners that we were we, rode ridgeline in the gail winds - not a good idea. Why do we only meet the locals with the advice " I never ride ridgeline in the wind. ' only when we had made it to the bottom after muppeting our way down.

Back to the top a second time and rode Northface. Primo!! what a nice flowing track. Big ups to the track builders, a credit to be proud of! :)

You just made my day :)
its that guy
User avatar
"Lurkin"
Member for: 12 years 5 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby wachtourak on Fri 7/Jan/11 7:09pm

Clearly the track needs more rollers though
wachtourak
User avatar
"IMDABES"
Member for: 18 years 11 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby Robbie on Fri 7/Jan/11 9:03pm

Thanks for the nice comments, SimonK and redman

It does mean a lot to the track builders (and its that guy is one of them) when people take the time to say nice things about their work :)

In 6 to 8 weeks JFK will be done, and at that point there will be an intermediate way down consisting of North Face--> JFK --> Smokin.. then on to Ridgeline Extention and beyond.
About 2650m worth.

JFK will be quite different in character to North Face, as is Smokin.

Trail pixies have been working hard on JFK over the break, ( which is about 2/3rds built so far) putting in 70-80 hours work to make the lower 240m as good as it can be. Time will tell.

And once JFK is done? Well we start work on the track from the summit to North Face.. about 400m more of.. intermediate single track :D

North Face still has a few places needing tinkering, however we will not rest until they are done...

Cheers

Rob

Makara Peak Tracks
Robbie
Member for: 17 years 2 months

Re: Jfk Below North Face: Epic Corners!

Postby fox on Tue 11/Jan/11 9:46am

Is there a build tonight Robbie?
fox
Member for: 16 years 7 months

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