Last One

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845am

This mornings pic is not from the park but downtown beach. Just thought I would throw in the lighthouse this morn.

For the last post about the weekend I’ll quick share some thoughts about the North vs South trails in Marquette.

The north side was pretty much the go to when the south was closed. Last year it had just snowed a ton the nite before we got there so the groomers were scrambling to get the south side done. We did hit them on Sunday last year but was just not set up good enough for me to ride. I was breaking thru the groom.

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On Friday nite the snow was sliding off the hotels roof due to the warm temps. Woke me up several times. Very loud.

This year was way better even tho Fridays temps soared to almost 40. So again with the south closed we hit the north and was pretty much expecting the same as last year. A good ride but not the groomed trails of the south. And we were way wrong. First off the north has expanded. Farther out past the dam the trails were even machine groomed. There’s a lot more winter mileage than last year. We parked at the Tourist trailhead just out of town. At first the trails were like last year, a hiking\snowshoeing\dog walking trail but farther out they resembled a bike only trail. But well worked in. In fact the north side was firmer than the south last weekend.

Mostly due to the high traffic those trails get. And the fact that they have not gotten a huge snowfall for a few days. Maybe we got lucky but those north trails were unbelievable. Very tight single track along the river. Very cool. The off camber stuff is amazing in the winter. And a bit un nerving on snow but thats what makes it so fun. Running along cliffs and bluffs with a 30 foot drop to water is a blast in winter. There even is a new flow section all burmed up. Next to a road where you can ride up and do several times.

I’ll just come out and say I liked the north trails better than the south. That said…

The south is still a blast. You don’t get all the tight off camber stuff that the north has as they run a snowmobile and a groomer thru it. It does not get near the traffic the north has with a bunch more user groups over there so you rely on the machine to set the trails. But its a faster trail with faster flow. Corners are not as tight and that lets you carry speed constantly. There’s the famous flow section that you have seen a million videos of. And there is some shoe’d in trail you can ride if you want to.

Being a guy with more skill than fitness I faired way better on the north trails. Speed was limited to terrain. On the south side you speed is limited to your fitness, or how fast you can pedal. Let alone the damn climb to start things off. That thing could ruin my entire day if I let it and in the past it has.

Weather the south or north side is better Im sure has to do with conditions. With no big snow for a week or so the north was firmer than the south. But had some snow come thru that might not have been the case. Last year I remember on the north it took us almost an hour to get to the steel bridge. This year it took maybe 30 min. Trails were that much better.

Marquette is one of the top fat bike communities in the country. Those things are everywhere. Another reason to live there (I tell myself). While they spend a ton of volunteer time grooming the bike trails it seems that a lot of the trail happens naturally, just being there and getting so much use. We have a little of that here but not to the extent as they do up there. A lot of people get outside in the winter up there. Walkers\joggers\riders are everywhere.

Again, my kind of town. Thus ends my Marquette rant. Until next time.

DLD

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