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Plain and simple: This trail has developed into the best trail in the Metro. MORC has taken the initiative in working with Dakota County to turn a really marginal doubletrack XC ski loop into the best riding in the Metro.
In 2002 we added a new beginner (warm-up) loop directly out of the parking lot. It heads off from the southwest corner of the parking lot and wanders through the pine trees and grass fields of the north end of the park. Look for a new double expert loop to open up sometime early 2003!
The rest of the trail loop starts at the same place, but heads up the gravel doubletrack. After a good climb and some rolling descents there is new singletrack heading off to the left. This dives into existing trail removing a few hundred yards of wide open field riding.
This singletrack is really fun. It's fast, it's smooth, and it's winding. There's a good mix of everything... trees, rocks, roots.
Where the old 'new' singletrack used to end and rejoin the XC ski trail, there is brand new singletrack that heads out straight across the doubletrack. This is one of the best areas of the entire park. It's wide open rolling singletrack. Once you get an idea of what the corners are like, you can really fly. This is a great intermediate singletrack section that would be fun for people of varied abilities.
At the end of this new singletrack section you hop back onto the gravel doubletrack and start immediately into a new bypass climb. This climb last about a quarter of a mile. This bypass replaced the real steep gravel climbs that are now closed and being re-claimed due to erosion.
The next section you come to is the expert/advanced singletrack. The trail is still really fun, but not nearly as insane as it used to be. There's still one log crossing in there that's steep enough that it gouges your big chainring despite lifting your wheels as you ride over it.
The advanced singletrack section is much tighter than the rest of the singletrack at Lebanon, and has quite a few rock sections. The rocks are a ton of fun, and really well situated.
Where the advanced singletrack section ends, you hang a right on some dirt doubletrack and head for the tree line. Just before you go into the trees, there's a new section heading off to the left. This new section replaces some older eroding XC ski trail. We did a lot of work to seed old trails back into nature last year and hope everyone enjoys the new routes that have been created. This last section is really a ton of fun as it has some fast winding descents.
When you finish this, you're on the home stretch. Head back to the parking lot on double track, and start another lap.
added by Guest
on December 31, 2002
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