Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Signal Knob/Elizabeth Furnace

Another new place to ride this past weekend.....Crankee, Volsfan and me set off to find some new-to-us mountain singletrack. We had attempted to catch up to the NoVA MORE group but alas our mid morning snack stop at Mc'Ds probably slowed us down.

Once we figured out which trail to take, we started the VERY gradual climb up some singletrack which then turned onto fireroad (FR1350?). Again the climbing seemed to go very gradual, even descending in some spots. We knew we only had about 1000' of climbing to do to get to Signal Knob, but didn't seem to hit the steep stuff until right at the end. The trail (going clockwise) mixed sweet rocky singletrack winding along a beautiful moutain stream (and multiple stream crossings) w/ several lengths of easy rolling FR. Once we finally grunted up the final steep rocky FR climb, we found the fabled Signal Knob lookout:

Continuing clockwise past the radio tower, we encountered the longest frickin rock garden. Some of it was ridable, much was not. At least not ridable by us mere mortals anyhow.....
We cut across Meneka pass to find the blue trail again.

This was actually the trail in one spot:

Thankfully we had enuf daylight to get to some ridable and very technical rocky singletrack which had us sporting perma-grins all the way to the bottom.

In the end, the experience may have been better had I packed a set of dry socks to swap out my creek-soaked pair, and would have preferred a more ridable route (less hike-a-bike), but it was a fun adventure nonetheless.

I did take a few falls attempting to ride stuff....one of which gave the El Mariachi a nice little battlescar:

there's a little dent under there...........................>

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