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What makes a good trail?

Beerj

Sonzabitches!
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Amish Country
So a video was recently released showing (local to me) AOAA's new "unnamed" trail. When it was originally announced that they would build it, it was touted as "The Rubicon of the East". With a budget of 10.5 million, there was definitely potential. However, it appears to me to just be a very very long trail of random boulders, with 2 water holes in the middle. I've discussed it with people, some of which had a hand in building it, and as soon as I mention that it just looks like a long pile of boulders, they just say how big they are and good luck making it through.

That said, in my opinion, a great trail will have variety. Especially when you invest that much of tax payers money, it should be accessible to most rigs. It should be doable in a mildly built jeep but also have obstacles that would challenge high end trail rigs/bouncers.

Maybe it's just me, but driving over refrigerator size jagged boulders all stacked against eachother doesn't sound like fun. It might be difficult in the sense of not overheating a transmission or avoiding a cut sidewall, but that still doesn't make it any fun.

So what attributes would y'all say a "great" trail has?
 

TBItoy

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I commented something similarly when watching videos of some trails in the PNW. Apparently in that ohv area (Tayhua I think) they build a lot of the obstacles because the rest of the area is just a big muddy ditches in the rainforest.


Tellico was the best trail riding I've ever done. You felt like you were actually "Out There" in the mountains. There weren't any giant rig swallowing mudholes. The big obstacles were spread far enough apart that you could actually enjoy just "riding" and there were small ledges/switchbacks/water crossings scattered along the trails. None of the trails were just "access roads" to obstacles, but they also weren't just constant-relentless rock gardens (the worst is when it's just nuisance rocks, like driving down a path of knee high ledges and bowling ball size rocks that is just annoying and not challenging)

Fordyce or Dusy Ershim looks to be pretty "perfect"
 

ridered3

Not Rigless
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Jun 24, 2010
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Rockvale, TN
I agree with both of y’all that having variety in a trail is a nice thing. Some spots to pay attention to, spots to relax on, spots to enjoy a view, spots to play on if you dare, spots to bypass if needed, and spots to hang out together to rib each other on what you did or didn’t do on that trail.

So is AOAA state/county funded? Seems like having a trail/boulder field that most can’t/won’t get through is misguided use of funds either way.
 

bgredjeep

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Jul 1, 2011
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Ok, hear me out. Let's make the lower rock garden at Harlan, but twice as many rocks, and like a mile long. Lol
 

Zjman

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Oct 22, 2014
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Pennsylvania has some of the greatest Offroad potential, it’s sad that’s the best they could do. And that video sucks. Drone footage from way too high with no real reference. And I didn’t get why the focus on a high wall ? I watched it on my phone so maybe I’m off but it sucked
 

Jduck

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Jan 11, 2011
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Athens, GA
This pic was on FB for boulder size reference
1652116432083
 

clutchee

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Jan 2, 2012
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Glad folks are trying… but you can goto Clayton OK, Green acres or Rugged Mountain have same sizing of rocks.
That being said… bolders that size limit participants.
 

jeeptj99

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Sep 5, 2013
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Cleveland Tn
Ok, hear me out. Let's make the lower rock garden at Harlan, but twice as many rocks, and like a mile long. Lol


Rausch creek has that. It's amazing. I'll have to dig through my old computer and see if i can find some. @Beerj probably has pictures of it. I'd love to make it back to RC in the buggy. I did it in the TJ on 35's last time. Just some of their rules are ****ing stupid.
 

matth_85

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Jul 31, 2011
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1,206
I like a trail that forces you to do the obstacle in some form. Probably one of my favorite trails i've ran was Holy Cross. Once you're in there you're pretty commited. It isn't that hard of a trail for a decently built rig, but once you're past the turn out, you either do it or turn around... It sort of forces you to do some trail riding rather than say go to a typical east coast park and drive to an obstacle...
 

TBItoy

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Dodson Branch, TN
I like a trail that forces you to do the obstacle in some form. Probably one of my favorite trails i've ran was Holy Cross. Once you're in there you're pretty commited. It isn't that hard of a trail for a decently built rig, but once you're past the turn out, you either do it or turn around... It sort of forces you to do some trail riding rather than say go to a typical east coast park and drive to an obstacle...
That was the best part about the trails at Tellico too.

And that rock ditch looks horrible.
 

Beerj

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I like a trail that forces you to do the obstacle in some form. Probably one of my favorite trails i've ran was Holy Cross. Once you're in there you're pretty commited. It isn't that hard of a trail for a decently built rig, but once you're past the turn out, you either do it or turn around... It sort of forces you to do some trail riding rather than say go to a typical east coast park and drive to an obstacle...
That's how a few of the trails were for my first couple of times at Harlan. Just follow the pack and realize that the exit for Your Turn is how it was and that was your only way out.
 

Beerj

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Dec 7, 2014
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Amish Country
Rausch creek has that. It's amazing. I'll have to dig through my old computer and see if i can find some. @Beerj probably has pictures of it. I'd love to make it back to RC in the buggy. I did it in the TJ on 35's last time. Just some of their rules are ****ing stupid.
Maybe Rock Creek? I think it's just a glacial deposit. But at least the rocks aren't jagged enough to be an issue for sidewalls.
20170520 125931
 

Bebop

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Jan 27, 2013
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2,002
That's how a few of the trails were for my first couple of times at Harlan. Just follow the pack and realize that the exit for Your Turn is how it was and that was your only way out.
Let's go back to Your Turn this year !
 
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