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Messages - PKemppainen

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Buy, Sell, Trade / Re: Norco Dealers
« on: January 11, 2016, 11:05:27 AM »
On Your Left Cycles in Louisville sells Norco.

Derek has been a big part of our efforts at O'Bannon, helping to build trail and fine-tuning a number of the Breeden Ridge features.

Rants and Raves / Re: New mtb fee
« on: December 29, 2015, 05:22:26 PM »
Yep. For an estimated $50,000 in annual revenue, it's a pretty narrow-minded decision, not taking into consideration potential tourism dollars from out of state visitors.

But with politicians cutting over $110,000,000 out of the DNR budget since 2008, they have to find revenue somewhere.

While we've all been told cutting taxes is going to have a huge benefit for everyone, we're all seeing the actual effect it has.

Advocacy / Re: Western NC trails being evaluated as Wilderness
« on: December 11, 2015, 04:59:06 PM »
This is extremely important to fight if you guys want to continue riding the awesome Pisgah trails. We've lost a handful of amazing trails out here in Idaho for this very reason. very sad. I still want to visit Pisgah & ride there in the future.

Go to the bottom of this page to send an e-mail (very easy, 1 minute).

I sent an email out earlier today.

This has the potential to be a serious loss of mountain biking trails in North Carolina, on trails many of us have come to know and love!!! Read though the list of areas or trails that are being threatened!!!

Don't sit back and wait for others to speak out. If you wait too long, it could be too late.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Adventure Hiking Trail Trail Maps
« on: December 10, 2015, 11:15:19 AM »
Our trail team at O'Bannon has "adopted" the Adventure Hiking Trail, and will be holding trail maintenance events throughout the cooler months.

We recently covered the section from the Pioneer Cabin to the Ohio River Overlook Shelter. Future plans include work on the section from Cold Friday Road to the Ohio River Overlook Shelter, and from Cold Friday Road to the Old Homestead Shelter.

We're always looking for volunteers to come out and join the fun. Keep watch on this site, and also on the O'Bannon Woods Mountain Biking Facebook page for future trail dates.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Adventure Hiking Trail Trail Maps
« on: December 09, 2015, 03:26:54 PM »
Updated trail maps for the Adventure Hiking Trail are now available from the DNR website. A PDF is available at this link:


As well, the MTBProject website has trail information available at:


Fantastic 4 / Re: HNF South Unit
« on: December 07, 2015, 01:51:37 PM »
If I recall, the rider code-named "YellowRocketBike", may know a little more about Tipsaw Lake and maybe the Oriole trails near Tell City. If he still checks into the HMBA site, he may be able to provide some enlightenment about them. He's from that area.

It's been many years since I was on the Oriole Trails, so I cannot comment on current conditions. I recall them as being a fun ride, but with many sections shared by horses, it created some deep, muddy bogs.

If you happen to get out on them, please let the rest of us know!

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Fire Tower Trail Logging Operations
« on: December 03, 2015, 07:54:54 PM »

The Fire Tower Trail is closed for logging operations until March 31, 2016 or until further notice. Riding is prohibited.

Riders parking at the Fire Tower can use the Group Camp Trail. Parking to access the other trails is available near the campground gatehouse, in the parking lot behind the wood shed.

Access to Rocky Ridge is still available through the campground.

Fort Harrison State Park / Re: Fort Harrison Trail Building Updates
« on: October 14, 2015, 02:18:00 PM »
Send him down to O'Bannon.

He can repair damage from the horses on the bike trails.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Horses on O'Bannon Bike Trails
« on: October 07, 2015, 01:05:27 PM »

There are a number of horseback riders who continue to ignore the trail signage.

The way we have been advised to handle it is to avoid any conflict, and contact the park office as soon as possible.

The phone number is (812) 738-8232. Unfortunately, the office may be closed, depending on when you are riding.

Provide them with a location and a direction the riders may be traveling, and a description of the riders. If at all possible without promoting further conflict, take a picture so the park management can possibly identify them. They seem to know many of the horseback riders, and if they see a picture, it may help identify them. Anything like a GoPro video would be great.

Riders will be issued a warning, and in the event they continue to ride the trails and are caught again, they will be ejected from the park and refused future entry for a one year period. If conservation officers catch riders, a ticket could be issued.

Of course, the same applies to any mountain bikers caught on horse trails.

There is a short section of trail from the back of the campground which provides access to the Adventure Trail. The park considers it a "multi-use trail", and with their approval, is being used to create a loop to access the top of the Breeden Ridge Trail. It is the ONLY "shared trail" in the park. All other horse trails are off-limits to mountain bikes.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Horses on O'Bannon Bike Trails
« on: October 05, 2015, 09:51:17 AM »
I was wondering, if the aim is to keep riders off the bike trails, why the ranch gates(or whatever you call them) are constructed much taller than necessary for bikes and hikers, and clearly made tall enough to accommodate a horse and rider.  I suspect the answer is 'lawyers'?  Making the rider dismount to poach trails might be enough to solve the problem.

At the time the gates were installed, we had run into large rock at the bottom of many of the holes. The gates had already been assembled. Knowing now what we wished we knew then, we will be moving the boards down on quite a few of them to make them more difficult for horseback riders to pass under.

During our next trail maintenance events, we plan to install additional gates, and hope to have enough volunteers to help. We didn't have enough help turn out one of the other days we'd planned to do them.

Tech Bench / Re: GPS 'maps' instead of 'tracks'
« on: September 14, 2015, 03:42:58 PM »
I might post this on mtbr or garmin forums but thought I'd ask here first in hopes that people I know won't flame me for my ignorance on the topic.

I finally broke down and picked up a Garmin 1000, thinking it would be a good way to manage rides, and more importantly to use for mapping - although this part isn't quite what I had in mind.  Note - I got the bundle with the spinning speed sensor you slap on the hub so my distance will actually be accurate.

1. What would be the best place to download maps?  Singletracks looks good, and I get that it costs money to run a service.  But I was looking for alternatives before paying an annual fee.  I came across mtbproject recently and this seems to be the best source I can find.  Which brings me to #2.

2. Sometimes the tracks on mtbproject or other sources are broken into loops rather than an entire 'park'.  The Garmin seems to only load one 'track' at a time.  Any ways around this? 
-I have tried loading several tracks into map editors and combining them, which requires (a.) lots of manual editing otherwise (b.) crazy lines all over the place connecting the (previously) individual tracks.

3. When loading a track into the Garmin it seems like this function is set more to follow the direction / points that are already IN the track, rather than just using it as a map to know where you're at.  Is there a better way to go about this if you're say....going to pisgah? 
For instance, Garmin has a 'Birdseye' paid imagery that can be downloaded and overlaid with your maps. 
Would there be a way to make your own type of 'birdseye' imagery lining the trails, and overlay that on your maps (rather than using a TRACK)?

4. The new Garmin uses OpenStreetMaps which has free upgrades (nice).  Has anyone tinkered with adding a type of free topo map to their memory stick to use alongside the included maps?  Again, Garmin offers paid topo, or subscription based topo maps with their 'birdseye' function.  But I'm trying to avoid annual memberships.

5. HOW to get tracks from the web TO THE DEVICE.
The Garminconnect function on mobile phone (bluetooth) turns out to be pretty much non-functional for sending gps tracks straight to the device without a PC.  Rather than using a web browser to import a gpx file as an 'activity' (not included in the mobile app), THEN convert the activity to a 'Course', THEN use either a pc or mobile phone bluetooth to send the 'course' to the device, you can do this:
Place the .gpx file into the Garmin/new files  directory on the Garmin device or a memory card, and the device automatically turns it into a course.  This actually works, as the first method mentioned fails most of the time.  Since my phone doesn't have a memory slot, I found a 'USB OTG (on the go) device that will plug into a mobile phone's charging port and act as storage with the right app.  So I suppose I could use this device to place place a .gpx file from my phone onto the memory card, then put the memory card into the Garmin and Voila!  It's almost TOO EASY, right?

Based on my experience creating the map for O'Bannon Woods, the MTBProject website has a different way of loading the trail information. From what I recall, instead of loading up an entire map of a park, they asked for each trail to be entered as a separate item. Then you  "link" them together to create a "featured ride". (Or maybe it was vice-versa, first the "featured ride" and then the trails that made up the ride.)

My understanding is that the idea wasn't so much to create a map of the place, but to create a "ride" to share with others. That's why you've had to load up all the different segments. If you load up the .gpx of the "featured ride" it will show the trails that make up the "featured ride", but not necessarily every trail in the park. (At least that's how it worked for me when I tried it.)

I know the Garmin Connect phone app isn't anywhere near useful as the web-based program, and loading up information doesn't appear to be possible, but by going through the Garmin Connect website via Safari on my iPhone, I was able to download a course onto my Edge. 

For now, try this as a test. This is a map of the new "featured ride" at O'Bannon. The MTB Project information for O'Bannon has not been edited since we added the new trails. The new featured ride is about 17 miles long and covers everything we recently finished. Let's see who can view it. It may only work for Garmin Connect users.:


Nate may also be able to offer more insight. He seems to know his GPS stuff quite well.

This is a place where riders can report trail issues, such as trees down.

To make it possible for the chainsaw crew to hike in and get to any fallen trees more quickly and easily, please identify the trail, and any landmarks, intersections or features that may help locate the fallen tree. Sometimes chainsaw crews will know shortcuts to get to different locations, saving them a longer hike.

For instance--"On Rocky Ridge" is nice to know, but is incomplete information. Rocky Ridge is two miles long, with two ways to access it. "From the campground, head down Rocky Ridge past the intersection with Breeden Ridge, but before you get to the the big berm turn" is much more helpful.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Weather Conditions and Trail Maintenance
« on: August 24, 2015, 01:25:14 PM »
Hey there,

There's a tree down at the beginning of the first rocky area on the fire tower trail (as of Friday). I don't own a chainsaw of I would have taken care of it myself.

Sorry to post here, I'm not sure where to submit trail conditions at.

Thanks for the report. Apparently a couple of the guys removed it yesterday.

But you brought up a good idea. I am going to create a new "sticky" so that riders can report trees down, etc.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Weather Conditions and Trail Maintenance
« on: August 19, 2015, 01:46:53 PM »
It's no wonder the trails seem like they are always wet.

The National Weather Service in Louisville recently reported that from June 1st to August 15th, they'd recorded 18.35" of rain, making this the 5th wettest summer since the 1800's. (And since this was reported on August 15th, it doesn't include all the rain we've had so far today.)

The good news is that all the work we did on drainage earlier this year seems to be helping dry the trails out quicker, but more rain is forecast for later today.

O'Bannon Woods State Park / Re: Volunteers needed!
« on: August 19, 2015, 01:34:18 PM »

I'm new to mountain biking, but not new to Harrison-Crawford / Wyandotte Woods. I'm very close to the trails and I'll probably be over there a couple times a week.

What can I do to help?

Looking forward to this hobby; it's something I've wanted to do for some time now. Thanks,


Thanks for asking! A few simple things can sometimes go a long way, and can often be done if you just take a quick break from riding.
Some suggestions (Keep track of your time on the trail, as we record it as part of our volunteer contributions):

If you see fallen limbs, branches or larger loose rocks on trail, stop and toss them off to the side. The next rider would probably thank you, as you could be helping to prevent derailleur damage.

Carry a small set of pruners in your pack, and trim back raspberry and briers that may be overhanging the trails. They seem to grow quickly, and scratch arms and legs. Also, cleaning up overhanging branches that may slap riders in the face is appreciated.

Occasionally a "sight line" may grow in and need trimming back as well. Think about how fast someone could come up on another rider without being able to see them. A few branches here or there can make it much safer.

Join us for one of the future "trail maintenance" or "trail building" days, when a larger group of volunteers will address drainage, rock armoring or trail repair.

And have fun! The trails at O'Bannon are an awesome place to learn--not the easiest for beginners, but if you want to improve your riding skills, it's hard to find a better place in this neck of the woods...

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