So, you’ve purchased a mountain bike and, since you live in the Green Bay area, you’re not sure what trails are nearby. Or, maybe, you’re a seasoned trail rider, who happens to be visiting or has just moved into Packerland, and need to blow off some steam. Rest assured, there are some excellent trails right next door, which suit the unconfident novice to the technical trail riding junky. If you’re like me, a bit in between, and looking for good exercise on an intermediate trail, or just want to experience a simple ride set along a rugged wilderness path, the Reforestation Camp may be for you.
A long time ago, about two years back, I wrote a bit on the reforestation camp’s mountain bike trails. There have been some minor changes to the trail system since I’ve posted that blog. So, considering the trail alterations, along with the fact that I’ve gained a ton of experience riding these trails, I’ve decided I’ll trash my first post and write a better one.
The trail system sports two different stacked loops . One stacked loop is a double track trail, the second is a single track, although two of the single track paths do feature a few double track portions.
If you’re wondering what the difference between double track and single track trails are, it’s quite self explanatory. Single track trails are much narrower, meaning, if you’re in a group, all riders would have to travel single file. The difficulty level is also scaled up on the narrower paths, though the double tracks do play host to a few substantial hill climbs.
Yet, the twists and turns, plus the the root laden hills, are constant on the more slender passages. In contrast, they’re practically absent on their broader counterparts. So, if you have a family with kids fresh on two wheels, the double tracks, being broader and easier, may serve as a fun family outing.
Also, seeing how the three single track trails add up to ten miles, you can select some of your favorite parts and, via a double track trail, hook up with some single track segments. This ensures that, if you find a portion of the narrower paths an absolute blast, you can venture them without a difficult and lengthy ride.
The longest, and main single track trail, is known as the Balsam. It’s denoted with green markers and, minus a few brief interruptions, is a continuous single track trail, which intersects broader trails fairly frequently, and adds up to 6.1 miles.
Conversely, if you’re a novice interested in a leisurely scenic outing, you can choose the Willow Trail, which you can approach next to the trailhead by the lodge. This wide double track, being only 2.2 miles long, is basically the main artery through the park. I’m saying this because the double tracks branch off from this one. And you can also hop on some single track portions, including the start and finish of the Balsam, along the Willow as well.
As for the scenery, It’s a rugged woodland. Well, much of it is at least. There are some wide gravel trails, but, for the most part, the double tracks are grassy woodland paths and, being much the same, the single tracks serpentine through dense green – boasting both towering trees and thick emerald foliage. Not to mention, while you course through the single tracks, the constantly rustling leaves assure you that this forest is packed with critters-including plenty of whitetail deer.
The terrain, especially on the single track paths, include sand, roots, and a few spots with rocks, but mainly it’s a dirt path. The Balsam and Hickory trails also feature a few jumps, I catch a bit of air on a couple.
The double tracks sport dirt, grass, sand and a matting of browned pine needles. I should mention, and I’m not totally sure, but the full double track loop would probably be around six or seven miles long.
Finally, these trails are well maintained, hence there are trail fees required. There are annual passes for thirty dollars, daily passes for five bucks and family passes available. All of these can be purchased electronically, with your debit or credit card, at the trail head.
When I’m finished, my emotions teeter between a sense of significant accomplishment and inner peace. The single track trails are challenging enough to beg effort and grit. But the scenery, while riding these fun intermediate trails, calms and soothes. If you’re interested in a great way to excercise in an adventurous way, join me at the Reforestation Camp.