Monday, 25 March 2013

No Trail Building on Easter Sunday

The trail crew are off on our annual Easter holiday north of the border to ride the 7 Stanes..... Well, that's our intention but I'm not sure whether we'll even be able to find the trails with all the snow we've had! Now, where's my skiing gear?

Next trail building will be on Sunday 7th April.


Saturday, 23 March 2013

Birches Valley Forest Visitor Centre Remains Closed

From the FC webite:

Site Closed
Following the recent snow, Birches Valley Forest Centre car park, cafe, bike shop, play area and go ape will remain CLOSED until further notice. Due to the weight of the snow there is high risk of falling trees and branches. 
Keep on eye on our
facebook page for further updates over the next few days..

Trail building cancelled - Sunday 24th March

With more than 15cm (6" in old money) of lying snow and even more forecast, we have cancelling trail building this weekend.

The next trail building will be on Sunday 7th April as next weekend, we're off up north for our annual Scottish holiday.


Sunday, 17 March 2013

Slip / Slide - Midlands XC Race Report

This Sunday saw round 1 of the Midlands XC series race held at Tackeroo on Cannock Chase.

Dave, Petra, Martin, Andrew and myself (William) turned up around 10am at the campsite [Martin and I were there at 8:30am - Andrew] , and while waiting for the race to start, we put up a couple of Chase Trails flags, one of which was right behind the podium. We didn't take any photos, but TORQ Fitness has a shot of it on Twitter here.

As the race was about to start, we took up positions - Petra at the first crossing on the campsite, and myself and Dave at the second. Martin and Andrew headed down the Dog to take up position just before the Werewolf Drop. Bruce and Jez turned up shortly after the racing had started (Bruce had a valid reason for being late - more on that later), and joined Dave and myself - we had a great spot right next to a ditch and steep bank - this caught out a lot of riders and proved for entertaining viewing throughout the day!

Once the first race was over, Martin and Andrew joined us at the campsite for a spot of lunch, before heading back down to marshal point ‘E’ for the second race of the day - for a change of scenery, I decided to join them. We had a view of one of the descents on the race, and saw some interesting overtaking techniques employed, with quite a few near misses! Martin and Andrew were doing okay so I sneaked off to take a few photos and videos - which you can see on our new Facebook page or here for the videos …. be sure to give it a "Like"!

The racing finished up at around 4:30pm, so after a quick check on the radio to make sure we were okay to head back, we finished up for the day.

Thanks to all the riders who waited while the racers passed by, and of course, thanks to Midlands XC for holding a fun race! Also, apologies to the fellow who turned up from Nuneaton to help build - we did post the "no trail building" notice rather late, so it wasn't seen as much as we'd hoped.


PS: Bruce's reason for being late? He was sorting out the Chase Trails Membership Packs. Renewal notices should be going out shortly so keep an eye out, or if you're not a member you can join via our website here.

Saturday, 16 March 2013

No Trail Building - Sunday 17th March

Sorry, I forgot to mention in the previous post that as we will be assisting with marshaling the Midlands XC event, there won't be any trail building on tomorrow. Back to normal next week.


Friday, 15 March 2013

Warning: Marshals on our trails - Midlands XC race

This Sunday 17th March sees the first round of the Midlands XC series. Based in the Tackeroo Caravan Site and using the off piste trails in the trees, it’s a great start to the XC race season.

As it will be run in the same area as the end of ‘Follow The Dog’, there will be three crossing points on our trails so marshals will be posted at these points.

For the benefit of all, please obey the marshal’s requests to wait while the racers go passed – it shouldn't delay your ride for more than a few seconds – thanks in advance.

On line entry is now closed, but you can enter on the day – I reckon the ‘Go Race’ category for newcomers to MTB racing looking for a more leisurely / fun race could be popular with “weekend warriors.”


Thursday, 14 March 2013

Bad News - Another Diversion

The Forestry have informed us that the newly named “High Voltage” section will be closed for harvesting most likely starting next week. Diversions will be posted so you can continue on ‘Follow the Dog’ or drop down Kitbag Hill to the level crossing to start ‘The Monkey Trail’.

Following lessons learnt from the previously harvested sections of the Monkey Trail, plus the need to employ a trail building contractor to repair the damage done, this time around the FC have had meetings with all the harvesting contractors agreeing that they would minimise crossing points and install extraction racks along side the trail. If all goes to plan, once the harvesting is completed, we should be able to get the trail open with little or no delay.

All we can say is it’s a working forest and the price of timber must be high.


Monday, 4 March 2013

Sunday 10th March - No Trail Building

There will be no XC trail building this coming Sunday as we will be having a "committee" meeting to organise and plan our works for the coming year.


Sunday, 3 March 2013

More Maintenance - Trail building

Whilst the section of ‘The Monkey’ is closed waiting for the contractor to start the repairs, we took the opportunity for a spot of maintenance on the climb after ‘Klondike Bridge’. One corner was resurfaced and several other areas were given some TLC. 

What a gorgeous spring day made even better by a slice of Dave’s chocolate birthday cake!


Friday, 1 March 2013

Midnight Manoeuvres

February 28th at midnight is when the Mountain Mayhem 24 hour Endurance Event entry goes live. This year, Chase Trails are entering a team of four – “The Trolls” and Ian is entering as a soloist, “The Chase Trails Loner”.

As last year, Dave, Ian and I headed off in the direction of Pat Adams house to hand completed forms in personally to guarantee our entries and for a brew and slice or two of cake. Having set the precedence last year, we were the first to arrive by bike – OK  we’d only cycled a mile from our mobile office – but our mug shots are on the MM website.

After our fill of tea and cake, it was high time to head back home but less than 2 miles down the road, a Derbyshire Constabulary police car passed us ….. oh, no! Looking in the mirror, on goes his brake lights followed by reversing lights …… how long until we get pulled?

It didn't take long for the ‘boys in blue’ to catch us up, run Dave’s car reg. through their computer and hit the blue lights. Oh bother!

“Good morning gents, where are you going?” After checking names and listening to a rather far fetched sounding explanation of why we were driving down a narrow country road with 3 bikes on the car at 2 in the morning, the officer bid us farewell. Phew!