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Downtown Temple,NH

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Grater Woods Revisited

Last night I went for any easy ride in the Grater Woods Town Forest in Merrimack,NH. My legs were sore from Sundays race so I figured I'd ride for 45 minutes or so to loosen up the legs. I had planned on riding the more familiar trails of Horse Hill but Grater Woods was a mile closer (2 miles from my house as opposed to the daunting 3 mile ride to Horse Hill) and I was feeling lazy even before I started.
It's been a couple of years since the last time I rode there. It was mostly ATV trails, a bit overgrown and buggy as heck. I recalled a short section of single track over on the Amherst side of the forest but that was about it. At the time I was fairly familiar with the confusing network of trails and felt confident I could still find my way around.
Um, not so much apparently. Right from the start the trails looked different. There had been quite a bit of logging and I was confused within 10 minutes. Assuming my incredible sense of direction would get me where I was going I pedaled on. Amazingly I managed to find my way over to the single track on the Amherst side, a nice trail called Salamander. That was the last time I knew where I was for nearly 2 1/2hrs. Turns out there are quite a few new single track trails now (Red Eft, Millipede, Red Maple) and for the next hour I was having a blast. But then I got lost trying to find my way back to the Middle School trail head. Nothing looked familiar as I wandered around a maze of ATV trails looking for a way out. I did manage to get out a few times but didn't recognize the road so went back in for more. After 2hrs I ended up in someones back yard and casually walked my bike out to the road. I was tired and hungry and figured the road would be safer. It took a few minutes to figure out where I was (about 2 miles up the road from the trail head), and eventually made it home....tired. So much for an easy ride to loosen up the legs. The good news is I now have a map. Can't wait to give it another try!