The Ides of November: Gearing Up for Grooming, Hunting For Places To Ride

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What a treat to welcome us into life after Iceman! It’s crazy to think that over three inches of snow and one week separate us from the 29th edition of the Iceman Cometh; it feels like yesterday and a lifetime ago, at the very same time!

While we were riding in the snow this weekend, we’re already thankful for the work that’s already gone into the Winter Sports Singletrack this season. On Saturday, twenty five volunteers showed up to help us tackle six different problem areas on the WST that we really needed tackled before the flakes fell. To those volunteers, thank you so much! We got things done, including getting our marker flags installed at new re-routes, trail closures up, and a lot of solid work on the trail beds that will serve as the foundation of our grooming for the next seven months!

We’re hitting the ides of November, and while grooming efforts won’t hit high gear until December 1, we’re already keeping a careful eye on the five, ten, and fifteen day forecasts to see if we’ll have more snow to work with, or when we can expect to lose it. Temperatures in the low 40s and a chance of rain into the weekend might see our snow gone, but even if we’re back to dirt, we can’t expect that to last for long.

Also on our radar is Opening Day of Rifle Season. For two weeks of the year, hunters get a chance to enjoy the woods. While we do leave the ultimately leave the decision to ride state land up to trail users, we’ve always been advocates for letting hunters do their thing out of a concern for safety and respect. Let the hunters have the forests to themselves during daylight hours, and avoid riding within two hours of dawn or dusk so that you don’t affect deer habits.

It’s really a great time to hit the Commons, ride gravel roads, stay warm on the trainer, or stick to riding late and howling at the proverbial (or actual) moon. We’re extremely fortunate to ride these woods, including Cadillac Pathway and Glacial Hills, year-round; we can do a lot of good in the community by taking a step back for a few days during rifle season.

You can enjoy a personalized tour of the Commons on Friday, November 23 with out Urban Friday Night Lights from Brew. We’ll leave Brew at 5:30 for a 60-75 minute ride behind the State Hospital, with Short’s Brewing beer sales going directly to NMMBA upon our return. Ride bikes, drink beer, and have fun with us while burn off a little turkey and pumpkin pie!