Weiser River Trail - June 2nd, 2018

Participated in the Weiser River Trail event again this year, on the Rover.
This year was more challenging. Did not get a head start on the MTBers and they were soon passing me up. Rover was not as fluid in comparison to last year's ride, felt at times like I either had a flat or something was slowing me down. Then too the trail had been rained on most of the previous weeks up until the day of the ride, so the trail was indeed softer. Some parts had that swamp mud in the lower sections that really killed traction on the power wheel.

Did find myself spinning out on the power wheel on the trail. The Marathon Plus are bullet-proof and not had a thorn issue since putting them on, however I do wish that Schwalbe would offer the same protection on a tire with hybrid traction - both road & hardpack tread traction.
Flats wise the Marathon Plus did well. Last year was spinning out in spots - this year was not the case. But I did take a detour at Fruitvale and hit the asphalt! Nothing was stopping or slowing me down then!! Was FLYING!! Okay, 18.8 MPH, but sure was nice to get in the upper gear range. After a few miles of that it was back onto the trail as there is no safe shoulder on the new highway above Council, ID.

This year I learned a lesson about paying attention to the body.
At first I did not care for the laid back at the start, so raised the seat up a notch for more power/leverage. Did have to take the left leg out of the clipless platforms to pedal mid-foot, since the left leg I think is a bit longer. Once I got down the trail a ways I laid the seat back again. The cushion that @Jrobiso2 recommended performed well this year. Had no issues with poking in the thighs.
However, the trail felt different. I was going slower than expected. Places where I should of been able to cruise through I wasn't. Pine needles do slow a person down, and those dern large pine cones were bad. Then too the WRT fold did not unlock all of the gates, which meant having to slow down and creep through in 1st gear, or lifting the front end over the horse-friendly barricades. The turf was soft. Balloon-tired MTBs were flying down the trail better than the normal tires, from observation.

So I was pressing harder this year and was in 4th gear most the time. Some spots I got into 6th where the trail was slightly steeper, but was in 4th for the most part. Once getting to the half-way snack spot I realized I was up a slight creek. I forgot my snacks, and what was on hand for those of us who were in the back was not good. Was water and birthday cake flavoured GU packets - YUK! That was it. The MTBers that got there first reaped the rewards. Did not know this was a race! Though was to be a relaxing venture.

Comments

  • edited June 4
    I should of probably taken the sag wagon back at the half-way point though, in hind sight, as both calf muscles were super tight. But I was determined to get to the last trestle, which was higher, to take photos over the edge. But, I forgot the digital camera so used the GoPro in hand to take blind shots down over the edge.

    However, 1.5 miles before getting to that trestle my right calf muscle was barking LOUDLY! Stopped to take a break, and the muscles started contracting and I was in serious pain! Could feel the muscle pulling my leg inward. so quickly clipped back in and purposely stretched the muscle back out - slowly. Once the spasms let up, I unclipped and relaxed. Got the portable first aid kit out, took a couple of Acetaminophen tablets, and then pressed onward. At this point I was primarily in 1st gear, very occasionally could hold 2nd do to the lack of motor power. REALLY was begging for e-assist at this point, or something to help propel me forward faster. Still had to get to work.

    Once I got to Fruitvale I hit the asphalt and rode to the highway. Got cellular reception at that point, went to facebook and asked for help on the WRT group. Was a long shot, no reply. Did a search for RV parks, asked the guy that gave me a ride to Strawberry Lane if he could give me a lift - but he'd not gotten a ride back to get his truck and would be an hour at least. So I had to press on. 4.33 miles to parking, if could maintain 4MPH I should be there, maybe?
    However with a semi-seized calf muscle I had to take a lot of breaks. Was out of water at this point. Was water sources, but not potable. No emergency filter on me. Despite Da Brim my face got fried! (Lobster faced!)

    Took an enormous effort to get back to the parking area. The guy I called found me that last half mile, but the trail at this point was paved so I thanked him and rode it out - needed to cool down.

    So I persevered! Drew on inner resources, and kept the faith. So wished I had some sort of e-assist on the Rover, especially at times like this. Then had that 1.5 hours drive home, and had to merchandise chips after. Was a long day, 5Am to Midnight.
  • edited June 4
    Unsure if I'll take the trail again on the Rover. If I had balloon tires all the way around I may had been able to do better. E-assist would of been seriously welcomed!! However, I do not have the funds for e-assist.

    Once I hit the asphalt I was flying. Nothing was dragging me down or anything, so had to be environmental issues at play and having skinnier tires?

    It's a shame that the Weiser River Trail event has come down to being a race, unless you wave sweeper support and go at your own pace. Was a bit of a let down, support wise. Still, I did it. Knees & calf muscles on both legs been rather sore last two days/nights too.

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  • Events like these you have to pre-pay months in advance and ride with whatever Mother Nature gives you.

    Maybe I should look into a 2 wheeler again, a hybrid, with balloon-like tires? Doubtful that TerraTrike will make a RAT that can hold us heavier folks. If I ever hit the big bucks, might have to invest in a Greenspeed Magnum XL - it holds 500#.
  • Gotta do lots of electrolytes and water before, during and after. You finished, that's good.
  • Got videos uploaded. Sped them up x4 to shorten the length and cuts the audio out.

    12th Annual Weiser River Trail Bike Ride - 1 of 3


    12th Annual Weiser River Trail Bike Ride - 2 of 3


    12th Annual Weiser River Trail Bike Ride - 3 of 3
  • Weiser River Trail grouped asked me to write an article, to be published, about riding a recumbent on the trail. Man, talk about writers block. Haven't written a thing about anything since college.

    How does one explain the pleasures of riding a trike down a trail on our trikes?
  • Crowd source it. Go on facebook and ask everyone to write out their favorite sentence about triking. Then wrap them in a story about the trail.
  • Guess I'll put in points as to why I ride the Rover in general, and then expand on that for the trail, and add the benefits of knee/foot exercise, and throw in a bit about being a disabled veteran (foot).

    I know that American Trails on facebook liked some comments I made about this and they wanted to publish some of what I said about riding a recumbent on rails to trails.
  • What I posted on American Trails. They asked for permission to add my comments to their next publication.
    With the hustle & bustle of working 2 jobs, this Veteran enjoys getting out on the Weiser River Trail whenever I get the chance. Is one of the few natural re-synchronization things a person can do, riding 30 miles from New Meadows, Idaho to Council, Idaho, or continue onward the full 45 miles passing up old towns, hot springs, and enjoying the splendor of nature's bounty.

    Have already signed up for the June 2nd sponsored short ride again this year. Last year rode the Weiser River Trail on a TerraTrike Rover i8 model, all human powered. <3 this trike, as it gives your views you cannot see on a normal MTB. You look forward and up, seeing more, enjoying more, and one can absorb more of nature's beauty.

    And as a disabled veteran, events like these gives hope and something to look forward to each year! That one chance to GET AWAY!! :D

    Later in the year, for those wanting more experience, there is a 2 day over-night ride for the full length of the trail, stopping at Mundo Hot Springs. Some day, I hope. But I'd need e-assist for that one no doubt and I do not have the funds or means for that. But many 2-wheelers do enjoy this event.

    For those in the Idaho or nearby areas, can get more information of the Weiser River Trail events over here: http://www.kotaho.com/bike-rides/

    Am immensely glad for out Great American Trails!

  • My butt hurts just watching a minute of the first video. Wife and I have ridden the crushed limestone path in northern Michigan and that is not smooth. Snow-
    mobiles use it in winter so they don’t
    Pave it. Could they pave that one in Idaho? Would winters destroy it in a few years?
  • Tree roots destroy rural paved trails.
  • Finn59, crushed limestone is better for a snowmobile blade than blacktop? I would have thought it would be just as abrasive.
  • edited June 13
    TCEd wrote: »
    Tree roots destroy rural paved trails.

    When my son was in middle and high school, he ran cross country. There is a path through a wooded area that they would take bicycles and ride to build their endurance. One weekend he asked me to go ride with him on that trail. I had a mountain bike so off we went. It was nothing but large roots sticking up. Plus, the Florida humidity was tripled in that wooded area. I told him never again! There are too many nice, shaded, paved trails to ever ride on a natural trail again. Sorry, I'm just too old for that!
  • Been like 40+ years since I was on a sled. I think the tracks might damage a paved trail, but what do I know.
  • edited June 13
    Do not think I've seen a tree root cross or open up in the trail. This used to be a railroad, and then was a Rails to Trails.

    In the various towns there are paved areas about a hundred feet or so on either end, but the trail members do not want the whole thing paved as the trail is used by hikers, bikes, joggers, equestrians (horse folk), wagon trains (horses pulling wagons), cross country skiers, dog/horse sledders, sheep herders, wildlife, and now trikes. :) People use the trail to get to public lands to hunt and fish, and the northern townships are backwoods style.

    Unsure if I am the first recumbent triker or not, as there have been other recumbents and other types of bikes using 20 inch wheels. I may be more noticed cause of being in parades and riding the area for the past 2 years. Think I get out more than @Lilypad does. ;)

    As a multipurpose trail it won't ever get paved. This is like getting back to nature in a modernized society. This Weiser River Trail is 85 miles long.
  • Many of the previously asphalt paved trails in Michigan are damaged from tree roots and there is little funding to repair them. Some areas are better off being pea gravel which can be regraded.
  • Vanderbilt to Wolverine is 11 miles and took me almost 3 hours on that dolomite. Wife couldn’t understand til she pedaled a mile or two on that surface.
  • A few years before we rode from Indian River to Topinabee and back on comfort bikes. That didn’t seem so bad.
    We won’t ride that surface with our trikes again however.
  • Pea gravel, yuck. Upper part of the trail, from New Meadows half way to Tamarack Mill has that retched stuff on the trail.

    First time out on an MTB that miserable stuff wore me out. Of course being slowed down by other uprights that wanted to go five abreast killed any speed I had coming down off the initial elevation.
    Then the stretch before getting to the next downhill was filled with that pea gravel. A trike would come to a dead stop hitting that stuff.

    Photo does not show that this pea sized gravel was several inches deep in most areas... :(
    uyh7kc1nx26l.jpg
  • Would like to take the trail again, at my leisure, later in the year.
  • I hate gravel!
  • edited June 15
    That northern trail Michigan has finely crushed limestone. Here is a larger foto from 2017 Michigan Trails book that shows that surface better than a smaller foto. On a down grade there is no coasting to this surface. On a trike anyways. :/
  • The crushed limestone is better than pea gravel, but still a lot harder than paved or asphalt. I'll stick with asphalt, thank you.
  • I was in error when I said pea gravel, I should have said crushed limestone which compacts well. Sadly most trail systems don't budget for maintenance work and trails degrade. Here in Traverse City a trail around Boardman lake is being completed. In the grants there is $800,000 set aside for trail maintenance due to extensive boardwalks built over wetlands and water, sounds steep but trails don't come free.
  • I rode the path on the south side of Muskegon Lake and north along the Causeway between North Muskegon and us poor folks in the city. Some of it is boardwalk and has been there for 10 years or so. Boards are loose enough that it is causing vibration in the wire fencing along the edges. Didn’t hear it last year. It almost sings. Vicki is not a fan of riding on wood. She will stick to the pavement thru the north woods.
  • This was the first time I rode this section this year. Rode it a lot til we discovered the Berry Juction Trail 8 miles north. That is now our favorite.
  • Has anyone taken their trike down the Hiawatha Trail?
    Would like to try it one of these years.
  • Has anyone taken their trike down the Hiawatha Trail?
    Would like to try it one of these years.

    We know a bunch of people that did that trail and we have talked about doing it but possibly on rental MTB's.
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