Hillman State Park is a terrifyingly remote little dirt water backwoods area in Bavington today, deep in the center of Warshington county. While Washington PA isn’t typically known for its inbred psychopaths bent on sexual violence, ride around alone out here for a while and hearing a round of “Dueling Banjos” doesn’t seem completely out of the question. Take a friend. Or a weapon. Or a friend with a weapon. Luckily the day I was out there it had pretty good mountain bike traffic. Also, everyone I met had all their teeth intact, so I felt good it.
It’s a little unique to the area in that the place is primarily evergreen, ground cover is pine needles, which is great at absorbing and wicking away moisture. Also that surface is much better then, say concrete with protruding rebar, at cushioning your torso when you fly over the handlebars. In another stroke of luck on the day, this didn’t happen. Not to say my body wasn’t aching to take that short trip downward in a steep vertical arc…
There were no particularly difficult climbs, or particularly technical obstacles. The whole thing had a very nice flow. Up, down and around. Nice transition from deep woods single track to grassy glade open air riding. No turns particular sharp turns. It all made for a very enjoyable ride. My only regret is that I couldn’t get more distance, I’ll remedy that next time. Some days you have it, some days you don’t. Today, I didn’t.
Something about this place also had the effect on body of making me more tired and thirsty then normal. An hour in and I had finished my water bottle and was aching for more fluids. On the way home, I stopped at REI to pick up a second bottle cage so I’ll have a water reserve. Also, I was wearing a hydration day pack, with no bladder in it. You got a problem with that?
Also, if you’ve read this far, and take only 1 thing away from this post, let it be this: TAKE BUG SPRAY.
6.5 wimpy miles, 1600 wimpy calories, 0 OTB, 0 “Deliverance” experiences (thank god)
And finally for those interested, here is a trail map of Hillman State Park. I’ll slowly be converting these into GPS tracks.
Posted in Mountain Biking, Ride Reports, Riding and tagged Mountain Bike, Mountain Biking, Ride Report, Rides by Chris with no comments yet.
Safety culture ruins something good, again…
So can someone tell me why South Park would erect a guard rail along McConkey Road, that cuts off part of a trail? Not just part of a trail, but 1500 to 2000 feet of the funnest most technical trail in South Park? One that people have improved with wooden walking bridges? It’s impossible to say that it’s a section of trail that’s abandoned. It’s in heavy use. The decision making seems inconceivable to me. I’ve seen guard rails that leave space for crosswalks, and whatnot. I wonder why the decision was made to bisect the trail and cause hikers and bikers and horses to go around.
Also, in the interest of literature, I will repost the magnum opus to teenage emo pain that was left trail side. Clearly author is penning the emo Odyssey of our generation. So emo Blink 182 cried. It’s still out there if someone wants to claim it.
Stats: 7 miles, 1500 calories, 0 OTB, 20# of air in the tires (too low!)
“wow, what a great conversation
your [sic] silent
I’m bored & we’ve been here before.
What does it take to get thru [sic] to you.
What does it take
for me to listen
I can’t be okay
until you make it that way
So I want longer
It was expected.
I guess I should stop
But just when I do.
you prove me wrong
I HATE YOU.”
Posted in Mountain Biking, Ride Reports, Riding and tagged Mountain Bike, Mountain Biking, Ride Report, South Park by admin with 2 comments.
Seemed like a good idea at the time!
Trails are like riding on frozen glass. Catfish run is high and flowing. All of the mud bogs are wide and deep. So I put on my cold weather riding stuff and set out. Trails were slow. People looked at me funny. Oh, and the bike mangled my pant leg somehow.
Statistics: 7 miles, 1900 calories burned, 0 times over the bars (surprising!), 0 cases of pneumonia.