It was a fine and fresh day in Wellington today, and we were up on North Face 350m above sea level to apply some TLC.
Our initial aim was to keep cleaning up the track from where we left off 2 weeks back. This is mostly just clearing the vegetation from the embankments and track edges - which suddenly makes the current track so much wider.
This also cuts back on the track surface wear consiiderably, which is a great thing to do especially before Winter.
Some of the new work had a very slimy surface (heaps of rain does that) so some time was spent hardening the surface with rocks. Although slightly rough to ride right now, this will all pack down nicely.
A decent chunk of the track after the ridge corner was cleaned up and it now looks super fast and a lot different.
Hopefully with one or two more days work most of North face can be to this standard.
A round of applause please for the following people who helped out today:
Mark, Martin, Luke, Simon, Luca, Stefan, James and Rob… track maintenance is essential and these dig days made a huge difference.
For Simon, Luca and James this was their first track digging session, and Luke came along in spite of doing paid track work elsewhere the day before. Well done all, your work is very valuable and much appreciated !!
A picture is apparently worth a thousand words, so here are a few thousand of them - starting with photos of the work done 2 weeks back:
here is the clearing done on the way to the first corner..
And in to the second corner.
And then past the Cabbage tree plunging through the Manukas:
Here the track was widened considerably, as it was becomig rutted and nasty:
This part of the track is now also wider and better able to withstand the huge number of riders:
And the following part of the track was widened two weeks back, (and a tasty berm with jumpable roller added) and today it recieved a fresh layer of hard rock to help it pack down:
Next up is a straightish levelish bit where most people rush past the tall Cabbage Tree which was cleaned up last time also. Zoom zoom.
And then we have more of the nice wide smooth track work done 2 weeks back:
And from there , where the track drops downwards in a potentially very speedy way..once again much wider, more usable and smoother.
And now leaping ahead 50 metres to the ridge corner. As the hard rock weathers we just keep chipping away at the bank, and then adding the rock to the edge. This is gradually creating a bermed corner of mostly solid rock.
The exit was also worked on, so now it is far better at saving people who do not get it quite right...or simply ride very quickly !!
The run out of that corner received the widening treatment today. The difference is hard to see here, but is obvious when there on foot or bike:
And then a litte further along:
The track then pops out of the vegetation and heads towards the corner at the top of the "roller coaster". This does get some hard use, as it is quite steep and was smoothed out last time. It also has a typical Wellington view in the background:
And the corner itself is looking pretty good these days. Once again the berm is being built up, and the bank cut back as the rocks weather.
There were plenty of other details worked on, and a good example is this one where a berm was built up with a small jump off the top edge for those who like to get air time. This launches them over the gap needed to drain this bend. So now the track in this spot is wider, drains better and caters to the thrillseekers .
There is also some interesting stuff just around that bend..
Why so many photos?
To show how much half a dozen volunteers can do over two days.
If we had had twice the number of people, well we could have improved this track twice as much :-)
Please do not run over the track workers by the way, they are doing things to make your ride better.
And if digging is not your thing, please help out by dropping a coin or two into our collection post by the shelter in the car park. Makara Peak is free but it does cost money to keep in good ridable condition.
Your cash would help pay for volunteer lunches and any contract work that we can afford to have done.
Makara Peak Tracks !!