Before all of the 4th of July festivities started, I rolled out from Casa De La Bill to hit up Lake Calavera to feel a bit better about the tasty beers and snacks I would be having later in the day. It was less than a 3 mile street ride to get to the dirt for some quality exercise. I have not been here in quite some time and while at first I was impressed to see that there was some trail signs out and about I was soon disappointed to see fences. I view fences as the land mangment equivalent saying the dog ate my homework. If land mangers would do the thier homework a bit better they would need a lot less of this stuff. It was fairly easy to see where the public was giving the fencing passing and failing grades by looking at where the fences were cut and where it was allowed to remain.
While I do enjoy “front 40” of Lake Calavera (northern part), the middle and back 40 are where some of the best trails are at.
A nice little corner.
A little creek crossing. Some of the trails called for a bit of elbow and knee tucking here and there to not brush against some of the prevelant Poison Oak.
At pretty much the apex of my ride I broke my chain, which gave a bit of a minor delay. One thing I like about the mountain biking culture is the idea of being self-sufficient while out and about. Not quite the same as being on a road bike where you could get by with a cell phone and a debit card.
With all of the competing interests pulling at my boys’ time such as friends, hockey practice, hockey games, etc…It was really cool that Jake wanted to join me on a ride at Lake Calvera this morning.
I took him on a different group of trails than what I have typically done in the past. Some of it was due to some of the trails being closed by the City of Carlsbad as they have started actively managing thier slice of the Calvera “Area”. Another reason for the trail change up is tha Jake has gotten strong and better on the bike so I thought it was time to take him on some of the more technical bits.
Jake did quite well on the technical bits. I was surprised that the squeeze type rock moves gave him more troubles than having to go up and over rocks.
Which he seemed to find easy to just pop up onto and roll off of. Makes me wish I had started riding a mountain bike when I was a little grommet.
This trail feature should have a sign “You can be no taller than this to got on this ride”. It would have been a face smasher if I would have tried it. All together we did about 12 miles or so.
On our pedal back to the house we started thinking about tasty brown cold beverages for post ride refreshments.
Ahh, Coke Slurpees!
I got back from Japan a couple of weeks ago and have been taking it easy for the most. Enjoying the “normal” things in my life like the kid’s hockey games, practice, honey-dos, etc…. Oh, and I managed to break my FN left big toe just strolling through the house. So not much in the way of blogging about mountain biking. But I been squeaking in some ride here here and there.
Before the toe breakage, I met up with one of the usual suspects at one of the usual suspect spots for some playtime on the rocks. After not riding here for over six months, the rocks and all the moves looked bigger. I’m going to have to repolish my game in this area.
Just a couple of days ago, I tested out the toe on ride through Calvera with my youngest son, Jake. While the toe was mildly a pain, it is okay to ride with.
What I was really stoked about was how well Jake was hanging. I rode at around 90% of my normal pass and he was right there the whole time. We did not do a whole lot of stopping either, just riding.
Kids never seem to amaze me at the rate at which they progress. We had a really good time out there and we got in around 12-14 miles all together. It was a good day to be a Dad and on a bike.
Yesterday, around 60 people showed up to work on a troubled section of trail that was in need of erosion control. More importantly in was a chance for SDMBA to work the Department of Fish and Game.
Gardner giving the safety brief prior to heading out to the work site.
Even though it has not rained in a couple of weeks there were still some wet areas due to poor drainage. Several crews built the neccessary drainage.
“Sparticus” in action. This is a really cool tool that is basically a spider web of chain that allows for really large rocks to be moved efficiently. SDMBA has built five of these so far and several were in use on this day.
In addition to some of the usual faces you see at these events there were also plenty of new faces including plenty youngsters and teenagers. These are the future stewards of these lands so it was great to see entire families involved.
This event included one of the largest water diversion projects I have seen at a trailwork event. The amount of rocks and dirt moved for this was truly impressive. I’m pretty sure everyone how had a hand in this section slept very well that night.
A special thanks is owed to Erik Trogden (The SDMBA’s Coastal North County Liason) for leading the effort to put this event together. Thanks to Bicycle Warehouse for supporting the event with the copious amounts of schwag. More importantly, thanks to Warren Wong from the Department of Fish and Game for allowing SDMBA to work with his agency to improve this trail. Hopefully this will be the start of a good working relationship to improve both the habitat and trail resources of Lake Calvera.
Here are some additional pictures.
After the trailwork a few of us went for a bike ride at Calvera. While out in the “Back 40”, we got to see some “game” on the Fish and Game managed land.
Put this on your calender folks. If you not being riding/following Calvera lately, there is lots of activity going on, both good and not-so-good, with this area. The CA Dept of Fish and Game has not exactly be a “welcoming with open arms” kind of group towards mountain bikers so our community showing up in good numbers will go a long way towards establishing a good relationship with them here. Come on out, do a little trailwork and then do a little riding.
The below information is from Erik Trogden, the North County Coastal Liaison with the San Diego Mountain Biking Association.
February 28th at Calavera
This is an important opportunity for mountain bikers, hikers, and others to come together for the common cause of taking care of our precious open spaces. Let’s demonstrate that we are responsible stewards of Calavera by pitching in to make it a better place for everyone who enjoys it.
SDMBA is collaborating with the CA Dept. of Fish and Game to do habitat restoration and erosion control on a heavily used trail falling southwest away from the quarry; sometimes referred to as The Spine or Mordor. The 200 yard long stretch of trail has widened significantly over time and needs some work to repair damage from rain and overuse.
9:00 to Noon. Staging area TBD. Same format as La Costa with food, schwag and lot’ s of education about how YOU can make a difference.
North County Coastal Liaison
After a couple of weeks being off the bike due to my face injury at Goat Camp, I finally got back on the trail. I had tried doing a bit of stuff in the outdoors late last week but the “brand new” skin on my lips was quite sensitive and the slightest of breeze and direct sunlight was unpleasant to say the least. Today I gave it another shot and decided hit up one of my local trails, Lake Calvera, which I ride to right from my front door. Will has a two hour hockey practice tonight so I decided to take Jake out for some one-on-one Dad time on the trails.
We had a great time out on the trails today. I am always amazed at how easy kids put up new skills. Most of the time I show them something once, they do it once and then it is locked in. Man I wish I could still learn at that rate. I have made a point of gradually progressing the length and difficulty of the rides I take them on each outing and today was no different. I took him on a lot more twisty and rocky singletrack that he has done in the past. I also made a point to get him to the “Back 40” of Lake Calvera which meant he had to do a good deal more climbing than usual out there.
For me I can tell it will take a few rides to get my MoJo back. I still have some numb spots on my face which makes for a really weird sensation (or lack thereof) to feel the sun and breeze only on a portion of your face. The good news is that the spots are getting smaller everyday. In what little technical bits I did encounter today, I caught myself glancing at where I don’t want to go. Not good. I’m sure after a few rides I’ll get “it” back but it was an odd mental riding state today. What I lacked today in riding prowess was more than offset by the high quality time I got with my youngest son who put in a solid 14.4 miles today.
Being Sick Sucks. At little over a week ago I started fighting off a cold/crud and well I lost the fight. By Tuesday I was good and jacked up with a cold/flu. This is such an awesome time of year to being ridng and being sidelined just sucks. I missed out on a really cool sounding 50+ mile epic ride this weekend around Otay Mountain that includes a good chunk of my ride out there a couple of weeks ago. I woke up feeling “okay” this morning so I tried to get in a bit of riding at Lake Calvera which is ride I can do right from my house. I quickly rediscovered that feeling “okay” on the couch does not equate to being okay to exercise. I was a hacking, coughing, phlem hurling mess as soon as I hit the first climb. I cut my normal loop out here short and retreated to home for more cough syrup, comfort food and couch time.
I did take one picture on the ride today. The rider is Steve, a local rider who I met for the first time today. Ironically he was suffering from “The Plague” just like I was. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one suffering. For all my fellow knobby tired brothers and sisters suffering from the crud, best wishes for a speedy recovery.
I have some out-of-town plans for next weekend so I better finally kick this crud this week.