rough trail bed, solution?

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rough trail bed, solution?

Postby glr » January 20th, 2014, 9:48 am

So some of you know that I'm helping build some new trails where I live. And this past year we have made some great progress, but to me the trail bed seems a little to rough. Lots of little chatter bumps, I mean lots! We almost had the single track done then were derailed by the new dirt we had ordered for our pump track. So this spring my intent is to get the trail done first and then get the pump track completed. I have heard that a rototiller is a great option, but is that really the best option? Looking for some suggestions if you would. Also just found out this week that the twp is buying some adjacent land, and trails got first dibs. Guess I better ask for more vacation time to build some more trails! I get to scout the new area Feb 1st.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby c0nsumer » January 20th, 2014, 10:59 am

It'll self-level quite a bit after the muddy thaw of spring, so long as you're able to keep people off of it when it is soft. Beyond that, you could also try raking it when soft.

If you till the trail it'll become really soft then self-level, but in the mean time it'll be super squishy.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby G.Cook » January 20th, 2014, 11:42 am

How did the "chatter bumps" come about ?
Any new trail needs to be ridden in to get to that baby butt smooth surface . If you roto till you will still have the same issues depending on how well you get the tilled material off your trail tread . Once you get the loose material off you could use a compacter which would help in the smoothing process .
We used the till and compact method at Sharon Mill but it wasn't all that successful because we didn't get enough of that loose material off the tread . We just ended up compacting a lot of it back into the trail tread . It was a manpower issue at the time . Four guys and 4+/- miles of trail in one day . The math does not work . :lol:
Sounds like exciting stuff your way . Hope I can come down and put some hours in with you guys . Depending on time at Waterloo, the Poto, Brighton blah blah....... :wink:
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby glr » January 20th, 2014, 2:04 pm

Thanks for the suggestions. The rough spots are because of it being old agriculture land and some places are where dirt was pushed years ago and they just settled rough. It is pretty neat out this way. The TWP might be purchasing another piece of land in the very near future that would give us townies a dirt trail from behind the village office to access the park. It would double the mileage that we currently have, not to mention the wooded land will have more "new loops" that I will get to add. Very cool, but long ways to go before its complete. Its just great to see where it was a year ago to where its headed now. I hear you with the volunteer time, hopefully I can develop a few new volunteers out my way to help out. We've had some calls already about our pump track so it looks like were gaining some ground anyway.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby Roy » January 20th, 2014, 7:36 pm

The trail just needs a lot of riders,and lots of wheels.
Give it a year and build more trail while the opportunity is there.
Consider using a rototiller for cutting new trail, use a Troy Built if you can barrow one.
Be sure to take Steve's advise as to when to open he trail next spring.


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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby PK » January 29th, 2014, 5:43 am

If possible, have a couple of dirt bikes ride back and forth without spinning their tires. You'll get the work done without much effort and they will enjoy an afternoon of fun. Walk around with your favorite dirt shaping tool and knock down high spots at the same time.

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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby bgerlach » January 29th, 2014, 9:26 am

We use a small hand held tiller (Stihl Yard Boss) for those situations - we have two sets of tines, one being more aggressive. One person can lightly till enough to keep several people with McLeods (for tamping) busy.



glr wrote:So some of you know that I'm helping build some new trails where I live. And this past year we have made some great progress, but to me the trail bed seems a little to rough. Lots of little chatter bumps, I mean lots! We almost had the single track done then were derailed by the new dirt we had ordered for our pump track. So this spring my intent is to get the trail done first and then get the pump track completed. I have heard that a rototiller is a great option, but is that really the best option? Looking for some suggestions if you would. Also just found out this week that the twp is buying some adjacent land, and trails got first dibs. Guess I better ask for more vacation time to build some more trails! I get to scout the new area Feb 1st.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby Jim O » January 29th, 2014, 12:58 pm

Where is "out my way"?

glr wrote:Thanks for the suggestions. The rough spots are because of it being old agriculture land and some places are where dirt was pushed years ago and they just settled rough. It is pretty neat out this way. The TWP might be purchasing another piece of land in the very near future that would give us townies a dirt trail from behind the village office to access the park. It would double the mileage that we currently have, not to mention the wooded land will have more "new loops" that I will get to add. Very cool, but long ways to go before its complete. Its just great to see where it was a year ago to where its headed now. I hear you with the volunteer time, hopefully I can develop a few new volunteers out my way to help out. We've had some calls already about our pump track so it looks like were gaining some ground anyway.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby glr » February 3rd, 2014, 4:17 pm

No where near Clarkston! The trails are a 1/2 mile west of the Village of Grass Lake. Its a small farm town between Ann Arbor and Jackson just off I-94. Also for reference it is about 4 miles south of Waterloo Recreation Area.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby glr » February 3rd, 2014, 4:19 pm

Trying my fat bike groomer out tonight, that should be interesting..... I'll keep you posted.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby Jim O » February 4th, 2014, 7:59 am

Ahhh thanks, I know the roads in the area. Have ridden my road bike there many times.


glr wrote:No where near Clarkston! The trails are a 1/2 mile west of the Village of Grass Lake. Its a small farm town between Ann Arbor and Jackson just off I-94. Also for reference it is about 4 miles south of Waterloo Recreation Area.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby LuckyCharm4x4 » February 4th, 2014, 8:34 am

Merrell wasn't all that smooth when it was first opend but with a lot of riding and some time its smoother now. In the fall, keep the leaves on the trail, it will help the smoothing process.
Last edited by LuckyCharm4x4 on February 4th, 2014, 4:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby c0nsumer » February 4th, 2014, 10:13 am

Spring thaw / frost heaving churns a trail surface sufficient to smooth and compact it, provided people don't rut it up.
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby Critter7r » March 11th, 2014, 9:38 am

I know a guy with a narrow-gauge ashphalt paver you could borrow ... :twisted:
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Re: rough trail bed, solution?

Postby Mack » March 11th, 2014, 11:46 am

Critter7r wrote:I know a guy with a narrow-gauge ashphalt paver you could borrow ... :twisted:


LMAO :lol: :lol:.
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