CRAMBA: Pontiac Lake

For posting trail-specific conditions and problems

Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby onlycrimson » August 15th, 2010, 3:00 pm

I rode two laps today and the trail seemed in ok shape except for the extreme braking ruts that jolt your teeth out!
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby BigfootDenny » August 17th, 2010, 8:35 pm

Oh how I have missed Pontiac Lake. Drove out from Brighton with my son to hit Pontiac for the first time this year... and was rewarded with two laps of extreme fun. As with all the other trails I've been frequenting more regularly (Poto/Brighton/Island), Pontiac is getting much more aggressive (rocky / rooty) than I remembered. Still, a great mix of riding with some technical challenges mixed in with great flowing areas too. Good fun. Conditions today totally dry, no trail blockages, minor sand issues.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby plaindave » August 22nd, 2010, 10:26 am

Who's putting in the shortcuts on the trail? There were two well worn in on the switchbacks alone and we could see the start of some others. And the number of rocks that have been pulled out of the turn on the switchback and tossed on the side is appalling.

If you can't ride it, get off and walk. Or shift gears. I walked it many times when I first started riding there. There is no shame in walking - *beep* you are out riding - thats better than 95% of the people.

And if you are a racer trying for a personal best time, don't dumb down the trail because you aren't getting faster. Your "record" time only counts if the trail is the same, not easier.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby craig » August 22nd, 2010, 11:19 am

You're preaching to the choir.

It is not racers modifying the trail. It is casual riders - families camping, local kids on BMX bikes, etc...or simple erosion. Anyone who cares enough about biking to come to this site is not doing anything to this trail.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby blacksword » August 22nd, 2010, 6:25 pm

daffunda wrote:
LCW wrote:Rode PLRA on 7/30.... Very rough/eroded and loose.... Dry throughout


second that.... I don't think last year this time it was this bad.... any reroutes to let the normal parts recover for a couple of years?



We've been pushing our luck with the two we already put in this year. There are a lot of items on our list for repairs, just have to see how far the park lets us go.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby oldkhs » August 23rd, 2010, 8:55 pm

I am just getting (hopefully) back into trail riding after about 13 years off... I live 5 min from the trail, so I wanted to ask if there are any newbie things I should know, as I don't enter thru the front gate. I've ridden 2 times now, and like it a lot, defintely fun and a good workout. Similar to the stuff I rode in college in SE Ohio (don't give me crap, I'm not a buckeye fan, those people are crazy...). Are there ever events I need to watch out for? (if so, how can I keep in the loop), what is a good indicator if it is too wet to go? Any other tips? Thanks in advance.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby pharus » August 26th, 2010, 9:33 pm

I rode the trail for the first time today. There are 3 hills that I didn't make it up, at the 2 mile mark, the 7 mile mark (right after the switchbacks) and around 9 mile at the end. I liked the mix of technical stuff with the stretches of flowing curves. Other than not having the right line/gearing/speed/energy to make it up all the hills, I thought the trail was very ride-able, and a nice length at 10 miles.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby pharus » August 27th, 2010, 8:17 am

So I am curious, can you good riders out there make all the hills out there? Are there any that you routinely have to walk up (so I won't feel so bad)...
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby 1fst4drm6 » August 27th, 2010, 1:36 pm

The last hill always gives me trouble.... mainly because I can't get a good gear for it. you approach it just flying from the previous down so i'm usually in 3f 7r and to climb the hill I need to get to 2f 1r. It would probably be easier to dump the whole cassette if I had grip shifters instead of triggers but i'm not a fan.

The hill after the slalom is the only time I've ever felt I needed to drop into granny gear up front. I can usually clean it in 1f 4/5r. However, if I don't get into teh right gear smoothly and before the climb, I always end up stalling and walking it.

The first major climb gave me issues at the begininng of this season but now I've got it pretty much down. If I just stick to 2front 1 rear and spin 'em I can make it pretty easily. There are a couple rocky parts that for me require me to stand up and power through .

Ride Pontiac a couple more times and I'm sure you'll get up the hills. Alot of it is just knowing when they're coming so you can shift and be ready for them.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby amadkins » August 28th, 2010, 4:56 pm

pharus wrote:So I am curious, can you good riders out there make all the hills out there? Are there any that you routinely have to walk up (so I won't feel so bad)...


By no means am I a good rider, but I can usually make all the climbs. Granted, at 265 lbs I have to stop at the top of the two mile hill to avoid throwing up. The off-camber climb after the chute is 60/40 whether I make it - I can never seem to carry enough momentum to get over those rocks right at the beginning of the climb before I have to dump gears and start spinning like a lunatic. The days I hit the good line I make it, the days I don't, I bail out hoping I don't go careening off to the left.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby CWPspeed3 » August 28th, 2010, 9:06 pm

after a couple times at the trail ive learned the lines to make it up all the hills, my problem now is i keep having nasty wipe outs. I taco'd a wheel 4.5 miles into my second lap last week, was able to ride out somehow. i seem to get too close to some of those trees sticking out, by the looks of those trees im not the only one either.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby daffunda » August 29th, 2010, 8:19 am

CWPspeed3 wrote:, my problem now is i keep having nasty wipe outs. .


You do realize that trail is nowhere near the condition it was earlier this season. It is pretty badly eroded right now.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby bh357 » August 29th, 2010, 11:12 am

amadkins wrote:
pharus wrote:So I am curious, can you good riders out there make all the hills out there? Are there any that you routinely have to walk up (so I won't feel so bad)...


By no means am I a good rider, but I can usually make all the climbs. Granted, at 265 lbs I have to stop at the top of the two mile hill to avoid throwing up. The off-camber climb after the chute is 60/40 whether I make it - I can never seem to carry enough momentum to get over those rocks right at the beginning of the climb before I have to dump gears and start spinning like a lunatic. The days I hit the good line I make it, the days I don't, I bail out hoping I don't go careening off to the left.


The key to that climb is to carry as much speed as humanly possible into it. That, and make sure you don't stray too far to the left :wink:
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby b_b » August 29th, 2010, 3:17 pm

daffunda wrote:
CWPspeed3 wrote:, my problem now is i keep having nasty wipe outs. .


You do realize that trail is nowhere near the condition it was earlier this season. It is pretty badly eroded right now.

You might also try lower pressure and/or new tires for these dry loose conditions. I am sliding all over the place too and I'm running dangerously low pressure. I'm going to try new tires, but don't know if will help.
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Re: Metro North: Pontiac Lake

Postby bergsteiger » August 30th, 2010, 9:13 am

bh357 wrote:
amadkins wrote:
pharus wrote:So I am curious, can you good riders out there make all the hills out there? Are there any that you routinely have to walk up (so I won't feel so bad)...


By no means am I a good rider, but I can usually make all the climbs. Granted, at 265 lbs I have to stop at the top of the two mile hill to avoid throwing up. The off-camber climb after the chute is 60/40 whether I make it - I can never seem to carry enough momentum to get over those rocks right at the beginning of the climb before I have to dump gears and start spinning like a lunatic. The days I hit the good line I make it, the days I don't, I bail out hoping I don't go careening off to the left.


The key to that climb is to carry as much speed as humanly possible into it. That, and make sure you don't stray too far to the left :wink:


Yep another key is the mental "I can make this hill" mentality. That was the last hill that I could not make there and it was all mental for me. Unsure why really, I did end up part way down the slope one a few years back but for whatever reason I would get to about the same place and have to put a foot down. Now after making that first time I now just tell myself that I am making the hill and so far so good.
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