Sunday, September 27, 2009

Copper Harbor

MKeweenaw Pennisula, Da UP, Home of Da Yoopers, water all around, the 51st State?
MTB destination?

Great riding. An overview.
Rolled into Copper Harbor about 3pm...got a decent room after checking out a few places and picked the one with the best rate that had that internet thingy.
Didn't expect to have the advantage of being able to have a table for my laptop while....well, while working on other things! Kind of a small room but it was clean and neat.
Got back from an afternoon ride in time to hookup with the locals for the Thursday night group ride at 6 PM.
I showed up after "season" and during the week as well, so there were only 7 of us.
- Sam, who owns the local bike shop, Keweenaw Adventure Company:
Sam's rental stable.
For those who want to rock down, but not up the hills.
- Aaron, who is the local PAID trail builder, the face behind the recent trails. A stud rider, your typical 20 something guy very serious about riding, and trail building.
- Chip, a vegetable/fruit farmer about my age from Houghton (I recognized the name of his brother, Chris Ransom, who is/was a much above average xc skier and biker, Chip seems to have the same genes as Chris, a mountain goat)
- Mike, a MI State Park worker, again, about my age, who lives locally and works at Ft. Wilkins at the edge of town.
- a young guy that used to work at Neenah Paper in Neenah, WI who took an early out package (he can't be older than 35) and is moving to Houghton after he takes a trip around the world before he has to join the real world again.
- a young local gal....late 20's maybe. I was able to stay in front of her, but not by much. Actually, she just preferred to be last, I think, and was respectful of her elders....namely ME!

After the ride hung out with most of the crew at the local watering hole and got back to my room around 1AM, so you can make your own assumptions how that all went!! Realized I didn't go to the bathroom once from 8 till I left, guess I was a little more dehydrated than I thought from the last few days of riding.

They could have dropped me from the group ride at any time but they didn't and I appreciated that. I was sure had enough riding for the week, or at least I thought.
Got up in the morning and did another 1.5 hrs....doing Woopidy Woo, back to front and then front to back.....they just finished it in July.
Ledge across the top of Woo.
You can see the rocks that were removed to keep the trail buff for higher speeds. Also, as we all know, after a few years the soil gets compacted and accentuates the bumps. They feel that the rocks and some roots might just as well be removed at the time of trail building to maintain the design of the fast flowing trials they prefer.
Sweeping corner on Woopidy Woo.
Rock solid entry and exits to all the bridges.View of a virgin white pine on Woo, from the ground up.
Stairway to Heaven, went down it one more time before I had to leave "the Harbor" as they call it....oh, just had to stop in Calumet and do another 1-2 hrs on the Swedetown trails.

My helmet cam was not angled up as much as I'd have liked, but ......

From the start at the bottom. What you see is maybe 1/4 to 1/5 of the total continuous elevated boardwalk.
View of Lake Superior from the top of SWTH.
Heading down SWTH, with a little lead in before I drop down on the planks. So is going down SWTH the Escalator to HELL!! Guess it could be if you don't stay on the planks.

Woopidy Woo downhill sections on youtube Woo1 and Woo2... around 6 minutes each, cover 1.25 to 1.5 miles at 12 mph average twisting and turning down the gradual hill (which makes coming back up them hardy seem like you're climbing) hardly peddling and breaking lightly.. not only one, but 2 different hills. This is Woopidy Woo. Bring your DH bike, good tires and let 'er rip!

There is other stuff here, as well besides the Woo and SWTH.....
They take their mountain biking very seriously up here.

Following one of the guys and I crashed when I reached up to turn off the helmet cam...not spectacular, so don't get your hopes up too much!

video


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