Saturday, August 16, 2008

New England Singletrack: Bennett's Pond

Bennetts Pond: One of my favorite places to ride in Fairfield County and riding the 'Horse here makes it even better. The last time I rode here was on the Qball, SS and with some new squish, when I did a whopping 9.5 mile ride. Pete and his brother Mike showed up, along with the Bennett's Pond usual suspects, Lee and Alex around 8 AM. Alex said the green trail north of the old mansion used to be was getting choked with grass from the field and overgrown with thicket before that, so we headed down the Nursery trail first.

Our intention was to get to the overlook on Pine Mountain and it was pretty good riding the ueber technical singletrack of the ridge trail. The 'Horse was definitely in it's element and all the bike commuting I did the past week helped me immensely with my climbing, and of course I never had help from Granny. I don't know why I don't just go 1x9.

At the 2.5 mile mark, we hit the hike-a-bike from hell. A quarter mile almost straight up for a 300 foot climb. Need to try the back jeep trail sometime and see how the 'Horse does on it. While I haven't called on Granny yet since getting the 'Horse, that might be a worthy cause to require her assistance. I think I might have to give in to the Granny at Little Vomit at Huntington, too.

Here is the view at the look out on Pine Mountain. This is 1000 feet above sea level and I read somewhere, maybe the Ridgefield Walk Book, that Pine Mountain was the highest point on the east coast within 20 miles of the shore. In Trumbull, it's Tashua Mountain within 10 miles of the shore.

Rest stop at the look out. Pete (left), Lee in the middle, and a Alex's back on the right.
Shot of me with my NEMBA jersey that I got at the Happening at Huntington but haven't had a good opportunity to wear it.

Down along the Ives Trail, Alex decided to do a little TM. This tree just wasn't close enough to the ground for an up and over.

When Lee showed up, it reminded me of that Bear paint commercial where everybody gathers around to watch the paint dry.

A little more maneuvering and cutting ...

... finally yielded a nice cut and no longer a rest stop. Of course, a hundred yards further down the trail is another, fatter tree across the trail. Still, it was a good team effort!

Here is picturesque view of Bennett's Pond from the east end of the valley. This part of the trail (Green) is really nice now that all the blow downs have been removed.

Close up of the valley. I think it was worth every ounce of effort that Ridgefield Open Space Association and the Town did to preserve this area.


Mark said...

Sorry, the map and a few pix didn't load. Will try to fix tonight.

Mark said...

Well, it works from home, so I have to think it's the firewall at work, which is pretty strict. Probably thinks it porn.

29ner said...

great coverage of a great ride. Thats are park.

Mark said...

Glad you liked it. I want to go back and explore the other side of Pine Mountain some more.