Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Fri 19/Feb/10 9:12am

Your Suggestions please:
Existing Tracks at Makara Peak, what maintenance would you like to see?


Perhaps there is part of a trail that gripes you, some wear and tear needing a clean up, the choice is yours. Please be quite specific, so we can focus on the details.

We can then get more of a sense of what the Park users are looking for, and make Makara Peak a better place.. Thanks for your input!
Robbie
Member for: 15 years 0 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Fri 19/Feb/10 9:14am

I shall kick this one off myself:

* Sally Alley: There is a bridge on a left hand corner with a large Punga on the exit. This bridge seems to be badly aligned and makes this area awkward to ride.

* Lazy Fern: There is a bridge on a left hand bend which is part of a very tight right/left sequence which is quite narrow with a log on the edge. This bridge could be wider and be more in keeping with the other small bridges on this trail and the "easy" standard.

*Lazy Fern: visibility around some of the left hand switchbacks is easily compromised by thick vegetation growth. Perhaps the bank can be cut back slightly to provide better sight lines.



Please add to this ;)
Robbie
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby iodi on Sat 20/Feb/10 9:00pm

Starfish has lots of braking bumps leading into several of the corners, which could do with a bit of attention.

Koru has tree roots poking through the track surface in several places. In particular, there's a large exposed tree root and step down immediately before the chicane near the top end, which is probably a bit awkward for what is supposed to be an easy track.
iodi
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Sat 20/Feb/10 9:21pm

Hmm I shall put them on the list :)
Robbie
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby fatwombat on Sun 21/Feb/10 2:20am

I reckon Sally Alley's perfect as is! :)

North Face is looking awesome, Stickbug and I had a look on Wednesday - go you good things!

LL, Possum & Nikau are all overgrown and need a serious trim and a dose of weedspray, Don and I are making plans for that. I think Lower leaping Lizard also needs a track resurface, quite a lot of it has become one deep narrow rut. I wouldn't want to see it dumbed down the way Ridgeline Ext has been recently, but the track should offer more than one line for riders to choose. Can I just get in with a grubber and sort it out?

Koru: just past the Skills area turnoff there is a growing soft hole just beside a punga tee, a couple of buckets of gravel would fix it.

AMP Connector needs a heavy trim and a dose of weedspray.

It looks like SWIGG and Starfish have been groomed recently with a lot of ordinary gravel (not the stuff with lime in it), so there are quite a few corners where I feel like I'm in mortal anger of sliding out - is it possible to get some lime-stabilised aggregate on there?
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Sun 21/Feb/10 8:16am

I am not sure about that gravel: all gravel needs a damp surface to bed in, and there have been very few wet days this summer, and quite often there are no volunteers about with gravel when the place is soaked.
The Council has some contractors trimming about 6.5kms of trail very shortly : there has been a delay in finding contractors, but it will be happening soon.

You are more than welcome to get stuck into LL with a grubber, however I would not advise working out there by yourself, so bring an accomplice!

I am not sure about the 'dumbing down' of Ridgeline Extension, remember that it is an intermediate track.

I think Sally Alley will need a little work before winter, there are signs that 1 or 2 wet weekends could result in ruts forming here and there..
Last edited by Robbie on Sun 21/Feb/10 1:52pm, edited 2 times in total.
Robbie
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby benw on Sun 21/Feb/10 8:54am

Trickle Falls is apparently over-grown...
benw
Member for: 13 years 10 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Simonk on Sun 21/Feb/10 12:39pm

The last time I went up Aratihi it was quite rocky about a quarter of the way up (and developing a bit of a rut). Perhaps some of the clay/gravel and or a bit of cango work?

Upper Leaping Lizard had a nasty braking rut developing about 1/2 way down.

All of the older bridges (over 10 years old) are due for an inspection and quite likely some upgrading (or rebuilding). Am particularly thinking of Trickle Falls and Missing Link. We seldom used MetalX back in the early days, so expect some timber to be rotting at the ends. Am also a bit concerned that any warratahs we put in early on may be rusting through soon.

I think that Ridgeline extension needed the attention it got to bring it back to intermediate level. Well done.

The intermediate riders I speak to usually find switchbacks to be the trickiest part of a track, so any work you do smoothing them out is likely to be appreciated.
Simonk
Member for: 16 years 2 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Sun 21/Feb/10 1:49pm

Trickle falls will soon have a volunteer attacking that growth. :)
Most riders will not trim trails, and almost always it is very late when they do, which is such a shame. This makes the trails narrower and encourages ruts, and limits sight lines etc.

Very good point about those bridges Simon, I have been wondering about them!

Aratihi seems to have become a vicitim of compacted surface, leading to a high edge- which along with few reversals creates a very nice waterfall & this washes the top soil off.
Not good on a trail of 9 to 7% gradient.
(What it needs is some of the great natural gravel+dirt we have on parts of North Face!)
I think Aratihi should have a work party before winter, and certainly we should be looking at the areas that can become rutted. Many people like the rocky parts, but we do have to keep in mind that this is an intermediate climb to the summit :eh:
Robbie
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby wachtourak on Sun 21/Feb/10 6:38pm

Braking bumps on Starfish are all good, barely noticeable even on a hardtail. Just pin it til you bin it
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby fatwombat on Mon 22/Feb/10 1:42am

Can you please tell me how you define "intermediate"? I wouldn't have thought that Jon and I were even mid-range intermediate riders, especially on descents where we are awfully timid. Despite our timidity and limited co-ordination we have no problems with RL Ext, SWIGG and Starfish. So if Aratihi and RL Ext are made easier won't that bring them more toward "beginner".

I'm not having a go here, just trying to understand. Obviously no 2 people have exactly the same skillset, and everyone probably has ONE track that is exactly what they like, everything else is either too easy or too hard. Cheers
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Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Mon 22/Feb/10 7:58am

The IMBA has guidelines for intermediate, but there is no substitute for riding at lots of different places to get that feel also.

RLE had some work done on it to take it back to how it was. The problem is, riders learn tracks and they become progressively easier for them, (after all it is a Human trait in particular to adapt) often while the track itself actually becomes more difficult due to wear and erosion.

It is not an easy thing to define, I know many people who see Ridgeline as intermediate by their own personal standards, yet by others (and the IMBA classifications) it is not.

When Varleys was built, the intermediate standard was for gradient 15% , and so it was built at that angle, shortly after the standard changed (from what might have been farming track use) to 10%.

A huge proportion of the riders @ Makara are on sensibly priced hardtail bikes, without much in the way of flash forks or tires etc, and that makes the tracks more tricky as well.

I can send you plenty of references to all the standards if you like :-)

Personally I think tracks should be graded according to weather and also fun!
Robbie
Member for: 15 years 0 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Simonk on Mon 22/Feb/10 10:21am

Here's a rough guide to the MTB standards often used in NZ (adapted by DOC/MTBNZ/Kennett Bros from the IMBA standards) - http://www.doc.govt.nz/upload/documents/parks-and-recreation/activity-finder/mtn-biking/mountain-bike-code-and-grades.pdf

I'd say Makara Peak has no 'Beginner' tracks and probably never will (due to the terrain). The Rimutaka Incline is a good beginners track.
Note that the obstacles on an intermediate track should be avoidable.

A workmate came in today with a bunch of grazes and bruises - another Makara peak skills area victim. I wonder if the skills area features could be identified as being for beginner vs intermediate vs experienced riders (and then the beginner stuff be really well maintained).
Simonk
Member for: 16 years 2 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby damselfly on Mon 22/Feb/10 10:48am

In the Skills Area, the "jump" after the steep section with the three drops:

I know this fella has been brought up before. A friend relatively new to mtb'ing came to grief after getting a bit excited and wrote off her helmet on a concrete block poking out after her face plant. It looks like the block was used as in-fill and a corner has now become exposed with wear and tear, so will need to be either dug out or smashed up a bit.

Simonk wrote:A workmate came in today with a bunch of grazes and bruises - another Makara peak skills area victim. I wonder if the skills area features could be identified as being for beginner vs intermediate vs experienced riders (and then the beginner stuff be really well maintained).


I think this is a great idea. It could save possible face plants from over-excitement.
damselfly
Member for: 9 years 10 months

Re: Makara Peak, Track Maintenance Suggestions Please..

Postby Robbie on Mon 22/Feb/10 11:19am

I think most people under estimate the difficulty of those jumps, and the likely result of any errors. Even a small jump can cause many injuries if any mistakes are made, this pattern is quite common everywhere.
Signs were planned at the inception but they have not happenend yet :(

That block must go, I shall fix it this evening with a sledgehammer. :crazy:
Robbie
Member for: 15 years 0 months

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