Poto: Hewen's Creek

For posting trail-specific conditions and problems

Postby bodomaniac » June 20th, 2007, 2:51 pm

Rode Hewens Creek last Thursay (6/14) and was amazed at the overgrowth on the original loop and had trouble locating the trail in quite a few spots. I took a thorn covered overhanging vine across my face in the first wooded section and found the trail barely rideable overall. The newest wooded section cleared is very nice and finally there's an actual hill to climb. :P Problem is if this trail doesn't receive more activity and soon all the hard work done by the MMBA will be for nought and this will have been one big mistake.

I won't ride the trail again until the original loop is mowed and beat back, but that's a short term fix. What's really needed is consistent activity on the trail and if riders in the area aren't going to support it then I see no reason why the MMBA should continue to spend more $$$ and resources maintaining it because it's a lost cause.

The sad thing is that unlike Poto, Island Lake, Highland, Brighton, etc. the trail costs absolutely nothing to ride and is progressively getting better. Granted it's flat, techically not very challenging (unless you like practicing switchback turns :D ) and parking sucks, but it's a great trail to introduce kids and beginners to the sport and have them develop skills need for the more advance trails. For more experienced riders looking a good workout you simply ride the trail faster and repeat the current loops two or three times. It's not that big a deal and can be a lot of fun to boot!

I hope to see more people come out and really break the trail in the right way, because its a great resource that's still in its infancy and will only improve with time. If the two or three parking spots at the trailhead are occupied don't feel as though you have to go to the high school to park and then pedal your bike 1.5 mi to get to the trail. Simply park your vehicle on the shoulder or as close to the shoulder on the north side of Bemis as possible and have at it. Even with cars parked on the side of the road there's plenty of room for 2-way traffic. Perhaps if residents in the area saw cars frequently parked alongside of Bemis they would be intrigued enough to check the trail out themselves?

Thanks for your help and support and hope to see you on the trail sometime!

Mike :P
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Postby Elno Lewis » June 20th, 2007, 2:55 pm

You forgot to mention the mosquitos.
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Postby bodomaniac » June 20th, 2007, 3:27 pm

Elno Lewis wrote:You forgot to mention the mosquitos.

I didn't have a problem with them when I was out there. That said, I can't see them being any better or worse than Brighton.
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Postby freezen1979 » June 22nd, 2007, 8:19 am

I rode this trail a few weeks ago. big mistake.

The entrance of the trail smelled like garbage and there was broken glass all over the ground.

The trails were overgrown and not fun (read above).

Also I noticed a few "bum huts" just off the trail.

I would avoid this trail.
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Postby cbur1650 » June 26th, 2007, 2:54 pm

I went to the trail today and mowed for over three hours. From the trail head to all of the the eastern loop, all should be rideable. Thanks to those who worked the last mile or so. The central loop still needs more mowing. If the weather gets a little cooler, I will try again next week. I ran out of gas mower and water for the operator today.

Get out there and ride. It may not have a lot of hills, but is still fun to try and keep up the speed and stay on the trail. Bring bug spray!!!!!

The new trail sections are fun.
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Postby bill_m » July 6th, 2007, 7:35 pm

I dropped off the big mower at the park today. There is a lock on it, so if anyone would like to do some mowing this weekend shoot me an e-mail and I'll tell you where I hid the key.

Our next workday will be on Monday 7/9 at Hewen's Creek. Norm and I will be there at 5:00 PM to start mowing, so feel free to arrive then or any time after to lend a hand. We should have multiple mowers available but also bring loppers and work gloves. Bring a mower if you have one!

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Current State of HCP Trail

Postby bhollen666 » July 15th, 2007, 9:12 pm

Thanks to all those who helped out with the latest trail days. The central loop has been completely mowed following the work of cbur1650 on the eastern loop. The wooded sections have been cleaned of thorns close to the riders, raked clean, and trash picked up. I rode through the central loop today including the new wooded sections and I could really pick up the pace knowing that I wasn't going to come away with shredded arms and legs!

Thanks again to everyone who helped to clean it up and add the new sections. I'm sure that everyone will enjoy them. :twisted:
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Postby bhollen666 » September 2nd, 2007, 7:01 pm

Cleared the path that was blocked by the down tree in the long wooded section. I wasn't able to get all of the tree with a box saw, but I got enough so you can get around it without having to go under it, which seemed a little dangerous where it was. More work to clear it will follow, when I get some industrial strength mosquito repellent. I raked the wooded sections, including the new section that was covered with apples.
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Trail State

Postby bhollen666 » September 15th, 2007, 8:12 pm

Went through most all of the central loop and weed-whacked the overhanging weeds. This should cut down on the number of thorns on the trail, making it nicer to ride.
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signs could be improved

Postby AaronS » September 20th, 2007, 4:47 pm

I just rode this trail for the first time. It wasn't the most exotic ride in the world, but I found it interesting enough. As a beginner, the rock/log obstacles and constant turns on the trail provided enough of a challenge to keep it interesting.

One problem though, was that the signs could be improved, or perhaps some have been moved. At one point I took what I thought was an indicated fork and the path rapidly narrowed until it almost completely overgrown. Perhaps because of this, but I found myself father on doubting if I was on the right trail, seeing as there are other paths out there.

If anyone familiar with the intended lay out could get out there to correct/improve the signs, I think it would help. In the meantime, I'll try to do my part to make it out there again and break it in.
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Postby bhollen666 » September 22nd, 2007, 8:22 pm

Completed trimming the central loop today. Fixed the sign that the last AaronS wrote about -- it was directing him to the unmowed eastern loop. We started to mow and trim the eastern loop today also, but the work is not complete, so I changed the sign to send you back to the central loop as you exit the new wooded section that brings you out at the eastern-central loop juncture. :twisted:
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bhollen, thanks for keeping the trail conditions updated for

Postby victors » September 22nd, 2007, 9:36 pm

Hewen Creek. I haven't rode the trail yet, but did drive by and checked it out. I will certainly ride it soon, thanks to your updates. The worst thing is going to ride a trail and then get there and it is overgrown. Please keep the updates coming.
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Postby bill_m » November 1st, 2007, 7:54 pm

A new map has been uploaded to the trail guide that shows the most current layout of the trail. So much work is being done all the time - it is great. The new mower is ready to go, we just need a vehicle that can transport it from Ann Arbor out to the park. Anyone have a truck? I have ramps.
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Trail Conditions

Postby bhollen666 » November 26th, 2007, 9:07 pm

Rode through the central loop and found the trail to be really soft and muddy in some spots. I started to ride the eastern loop but it was really muddy at the beginning so I backed out. The wooded sections seem to be holding up better than the field sections, even if they are somewhat covered with leaves. :twisted:
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Trail Condition

Postby bhollen666 » December 30th, 2007, 7:36 pm

Walked through the trail today to find that most of the in-woods trail sections were icy. Most of the open sections of the trail were clear of snow. In the last wooded section there is a new deadfall that I wasn't able to clear by hand. It's going to need a chainsaw and some quality time. I was able to clear some other smaller deadfalls, so most of the trail is passable except for that last section.
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