Western: Ionia

For posting trail-specific conditions and problems

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby underdog » July 18th, 2010, 9:51 am

I just logged on with all intentions of saying that the Ionia trail needs a big sign that says "CLOSED", but now I see a post just a couple days ago saying it's being
worked on. We never ride the Brown side, wish we would have this morning and I would like to say THANK YOU for mowing at least some of the trail. We stared on the yellow side which in our opinion is the fun one and it was beyond terrible. The weeds on 90% of the trail are 'at least' as high as your handle bars. It was just aweful. We just couldn't take it any long and after 1.5 miles into it we headed acroos to Riverside Drive and caught the trail heading back. When we got with 1/4 mile of the parking lot it appears some mowing may have happens a month ago or so. I am not sure why I continue to give this place a chance, it appear not much of anyone is using it and the lack of enough people to maintain is a big problem.
User avatar
underdog
 
Posts: 14
Joined: September 15th, 2004, 11:35 am
Location: Michigan

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » July 18th, 2010, 6:41 pm

underdog wrote:I just logged on with all intentions of saying that the Ionia trail needs a big sign that says "CLOSED", but now I see a post just a couple days ago saying it's being
worked on. We never ride the Brown side, wish we would have this morning and I would like to say THANK YOU for mowing at least some of the trail. We stared on the yellow side which in our opinion is the fun one and it was beyond terrible. The weeds on 90% of the trail are 'at least' as high as your handle bars. It was just aweful. We just couldn't take it any long and after 1.5 miles into it we headed acroos to Riverside Drive and caught the trail heading back. When we got with 1/4 mile of the parking lot it appears some mowing may have happens a month ago or so. I am not sure why I continue to give this place a chance, it appear not much of anyone is using it and the lack of enough people to maintain is a big problem.


Yeah now that I am almost fully involved with the maintenance I'm hoping that it will get better, and eventually I'll be totally in charge as the TC. Actually one of the biggest problems is this trail goes through so much vegetation that it requires big equipment to maintain it, or an Army. This year has kinda been somewhat experimental to try and see what we can get the big equipment into and how much it can do, plus what techniques work and what doesn't. A 8 horse walk behind weed whacker is not enough power to keep the trail maintained. I'm using a 25 horse John Deere garden tractor. Most MTB trails go through mainly woods which are easy to up keep. This trail seems to be unique that over 50% of it goes through basically meadows. We also found out that mowing only one side with the hopes that riders naturally "widen" the trail, does not work. Just not enough riders to get that to happen. We are still playing "catch up" because the trail has been with no maintenance for so many years. I have to believe that getting on top of it will make it easier in the future.

Thanks for coming back anyway. If you check here first before you go out there you can figure out the status before making a wasted trip next time. I post within a day of when it was mowed or any other maintenance was done.

Did you make this a destination or did you hit some other trails on your way to/from Ionia? Its good for me to know who my market is. :)
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » July 28th, 2010, 7:14 pm

Yellow/West loop is 95% mowed as of today. The most it has ever been.

Additionally the big tree that you had to get off to get under is now cut down (after the short cut)....so free sailing through there now.

Brown/East loop needs mowing on the second section past the two boulders. Other two sections prior to that and after the bridge were mowed in the last two weeks.

Enjoy!
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 6th, 2010, 7:10 pm

As of yesterday, Brown loop is totally mowed.
Yellow loop is still in good shape from previous mowings except on one small segment before the sandpits. (I hate those things and am going to do something about them soon before they end up as endless abyss's like at Yankee.)

All trails are hard packed and really fast. A high speed wipe out is totally possible on some of the long gravel down hills of the yellow trail...if one chose to actually go that fast. :D

The rock jump/obstacle just prior to the sheriff's bldg is totally visible now and will remain so. A bypass will be added to the left of it for those who choose not to do the rock obstacle. The bypass will not impede the flow of the ride as the current one does (if you can even see it in time to the right side of the rock).

-The TC
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby RickPlite » August 7th, 2010, 7:35 am

gtrowbridge wrote:As of yesterday, Brown loop is totally mowed.
Yellow loop is still in good shape from previous mowings except on one small segment before the sandpits. (I hate those things and am going to do something about them soon before they end up as endless abyss's like at Yankee.)

All trails are hard packed and really fast. A high speed wipe out is totally possible on some of the long gravel down hills of the yellow trail...if one chose to actually go that fast. :D

The rock jump/obstacle just prior to the sheriff's bldg is totally visible now and will remain so. A bypass will be added to the left of it for those who choose not to do the rock obstacle. The bypass will not impede the flow of the ride as the current one does (if you can even see it in time to the right side of the rock).

-The TC

I will have some boardwalks leftover from Luton soon, you could bury a few sections to get over the sand like we did at the ski area. let me know
rick
Luton Park Trail Coordinator, West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance
http://www.kisscross.com
http://www.lumberjack100.com
http://www.barry-roubaix.com
User avatar
RickPlite
 
Posts: 1064
Joined: July 16th, 2002, 11:23 pm
Location: Comstock Park

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 8th, 2010, 10:11 am

RickPlite wrote:
gtrowbridge wrote:As of yesterday, Brown loop is totally mowed.
Yellow loop is still in good shape from previous mowings except on one small segment before the sandpits. (I hate those things and am going to do something about them soon before they end up as endless abyss's like at Yankee.)

All trails are hard packed and really fast. A high speed wipe out is totally possible on some of the long gravel down hills of the yellow trail...if one chose to actually go that fast. :D

The rock jump/obstacle just prior to the sheriff's bldg is totally visible now and will remain so. A bypass will be added to the left of it for those who choose not to do the rock obstacle. The bypass will not impede the flow of the ride as the current one does (if you can even see it in time to the right side of the rock).

-The TC

I will have some boardwalks leftover from Luton soon, you could bury a few sections to get over the sand like we did at the ski area. let me know
rick


Awesome. This is exactly what I was thinking.
Thanks Rick. I'll get some measurements to see how many I need. Probably 2 or 3.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 8th, 2010, 10:17 am

Additionally I found a bike computer on the brown trail (small loop).
IM me and describe it and I will get it back to you.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby bleve » August 17th, 2010, 1:33 am

Just wanted to say a quick thanks to all the hard work at Ionia. I camp here occasionally and have ridden before (years past) when it is completely overgrown. I camped this past weekend and with the high humidity and temperature I almost passed on going remembering how bad this trail can get. The solid mowing job made the trail much more enjoyable, especially when followed by a dip in the lake when I was done.
bleve
 
Posts: 296
Joined: June 17th, 2007, 8:37 am

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 17th, 2010, 7:34 am

bleve wrote:Just wanted to say a quick thanks to all the hard work at Ionia. I camp here occasionally and have ridden before (years past) when it is completely overgrown. I camped this past weekend and with the high humidity and temperature I almost passed on going remembering how bad this trail can get. The solid mowing job made the trail much more enjoyable, especially when followed by a dip in the lake when I was done.


Stay tuned. More interesting changes coming to Ionia.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby bleve » August 18th, 2010, 1:11 am

gtrowbridge wrote:
bleve wrote:Just wanted to say a quick thanks to all the hard work at Ionia. I camp here occasionally and have ridden before (years past) when it is completely overgrown. I camped this past weekend and with the high humidity and temperature I almost passed on going remembering how bad this trail can get. The solid mowing job made the trail much more enjoyable, especially when followed by a dip in the lake when I was done.


Stay tuned. More interesting changes coming to Ionia.


Please tell me there is finally going to be some freeride stuff in those gravel pits :D Those hills are just begging for some bermed turns at the very least.
bleve
 
Posts: 296
Joined: June 17th, 2007, 8:37 am

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 18th, 2010, 7:54 am

bleve wrote:
gtrowbridge wrote:
bleve wrote:Just wanted to say a quick thanks to all the hard work at Ionia. I camp here occasionally and have ridden before (years past) when it is completely overgrown. I camped this past weekend and with the high humidity and temperature I almost passed on going remembering how bad this trail can get. The solid mowing job made the trail much more enjoyable, especially when followed by a dip in the lake when I was done.


Stay tuned. More interesting changes coming to Ionia.


Please tell me there is finally going to be some freeride stuff in those gravel pits :D Those hills are just begging for some bermed turns at the very least.


Its on the list. Most of the up and coming changes will be to the existing trails first.
Yeah the gravel pit has tons of possibility.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby underdog » August 29th, 2010, 7:39 am

Thank you so much for giving the trail it's much needed attention.
QUESTION: Does the trail close for the up coming hunting season? If so when does it close??
User avatar
underdog
 
Posts: 14
Joined: September 15th, 2004, 11:35 am
Location: Michigan

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » August 30th, 2010, 8:20 am

underdog wrote:Thank you so much for giving the trail it's much needed attention.
QUESTION: Does the trail close for the up coming hunting season? If so when does it close??


Trail is open year round.
It is a hunting area though (but the trail area isn't that popular I think) so after Oct 1st you should wear something bright.

Glad you like it.
There are many improvements on my list.
Small stuff at first, because we have to focus on getting what we have back into shape.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby gtrowbridge » September 8th, 2010, 11:42 am

Downed trees downed trees.

Two I found on the yellow loop last night.
First one is in the clearing section after the first big hill.
I cut it enough to get it to lay on the ground so you can get over it.

The other is after going through the gravel pit right on the washed out hill.
It is right in the middle of the downhill.
Black and yellow flagging tape for warning.
You can't get over it on your bike. It is at least waist high.

Hope to cut these out no later than this weekend.

I'm sure there are more.
I cleared many downed branches too last night.
Ionia State Recreation Area Trail Coordinator
"They say that the journey can be more important than the destination. In Mountain biking there is no destination. Just the bike. The rider. And a place to ride." - Roam
User avatar
gtrowbridge
 
Posts: 244
Joined: October 28th, 2008, 9:31 am
Location: Belding, MI

Re: Western: Ionia

Postby underdog » September 8th, 2010, 12:10 pm

Saw some other riders leaving the entrance last weekend, 1st I've seen anyone around on Sunday mornings.
My buddy and I plan on riding it very soon
User avatar
underdog
 
Posts: 14
Joined: September 15th, 2004, 11:35 am
Location: Michigan

PreviousNext

Return to Trail Conditions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests