Practicing rooty climbs in Central NJ

#1
Hi everyone

I tried a climb on east side of Baldpate this weekend. This is the copper hill trail hooking around to the east heading northwards to the high voltage lines leading up to the parking lot. The trail has been washed by the rain and took the better of my skills making me walk up a few sections...
sections...

Are there any trails leading up to the picnic area with similar elevation gain that I can use to get comfortable with climbing roots but that are slightly easier to leave my ego intact?

How do sourland or clayton compare with Baldpate?

Thank you
 

qclabrat

Well-Known Member
#2
don't know Baldpate, but Sourlands and Clayton are polar opposites.
Neither if I recall have much in roots, Sourlands is rocks and more rocks. If you want rooty climbs, try Chimney Rock in Martinsville
 

fidodie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#6
How would you describe the skill level for climbing at sourlands? Thank you
Sourlands throws a ton of different stuff at ya. Rocks, climbs, some step-ups, nice switch-backs, some steep/not long stuff, logs/boardwalks, rocks, strange transitions.
There are many, somewhat hidden, alternate lines. Recommend a guide for the first time through.

Challenges and rewards are everywhere.

if it ever dries out, we'll try to coordinate a group ride. total disaster right now.
 

rick81721

Well-Known Member
#7
How would you describe the skill level for climbing at sourlands? Thank you
Depends which trail. Climbing the pipeline trail is non-tech but very steep. The other climbing trails (there are 2 C connector trails and white counter-clockwise) are pretty ridiculous.
 

pooriggy

Well-Known Member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
#9
Carry more momentum going uphill over roots(go faster) by increasing your fitness level. You don't necessarily need to practice riding roots, you need to have better aerobic capacity and charge up hills. Ride your bike, a lot and go fast at times ;)
 

sptimmy43

Well-Known Member
#12
Huber has a couple rooty climbs that are a little less challenging than Hartshorne. If you can clear everyting at Huber then ride over to Hartshorne and tackle the nasty rooty climbs.
 

michael.su

JORBA co-VP
JORBA.ORG
#13
Hi everyone

I tried a climb on east side of Baldpate this weekend. This is the copper hill trail hooking around to the east heading northwards to the high voltage lines leading up to the parking lot. The trail has been washed by the rain and took the better of my skills making me walk up a few sections...
sections...

Are there any trails leading up to the picnic area with similar elevation gain that I can use to get comfortable with climbing roots but that are slightly easier to leave my ego intact?

How do sourland or clayton compare with Baldpate?

Thank you
That's a tough climb in either direction. Very steep and very washed out. Counter clockwise is more doable.
How do you do at the rest of Baldpate? Can you climb the northwest red loop without stopping?
As Iggy says, fitness is the main ingredient. The skill will come with time.
Baldpate will def make you a goat if you keep at it.

Sourlands is another level with tech. A super fun and humbling experience ;)

Clayton is a good spot to work on your fitness. It's small but a good bang for your buck. No really long climbs but you can rack up a lot of elevation change in a hurry. There really isn't any flat there, it's all up or down.
Just keep looping around. Probably about 10-12 miles of trail if you do everything in both directions.
 
#14
That's a tough climb in either direction. Very steep and very washed out. Counter clockwise is more doable.
How do you do at the rest of Baldpate? Can you climb the northwest red loop without stopping?
As Iggy says, fitness is the main ingredient. The skill will come with time.
Baldpate will def make you a goat if you keep at it.

Sourlands is another level with tech. A super fun and humbling experience ;)

Clayton is a good spot to work on your fitness. It's small but a good bang for your buck. No really long climbs but you can rack up a lot of elevation change in a hurry. There really isn't any flat there, it's all up or down.
Just keep looping around. Probably about 10-12 miles of trail if you do everything in both directions.
Thanks for this. This was my second time to Baldpate and my goal was precisely to climb the red trail clockwise without stopping..except I got lost and never made it there. Instead I took a right fork heading west from the parking and that took me north of the red loop along power lines to the road..I had to come back on the road with a quarry on my left. Since I cycled in from West Windsor and didnt take any power bars with me (stupid) I gave up on the red trail but I will be back. The first time I had to stop but it was very wet and muddy (didnt know about the poor drainage). So now I am on a mission to do the red trail...

Good to know about Clayton!
 

michael.su

JORBA co-VP
JORBA.ORG
#15
Thanks for this. This was my second time to Baldpate and my goal was precisely to climb the red trail clockwise without stopping..except I got lost and never made it there. Instead I took a right fork heading west from the parking and that took me north of the red loop along power lines to the road..I had to come back on the road with a quarry on my left. Since I cycled in from West Windsor and didnt take any power bars with me (stupid) I gave up on the red trail but I will be back. The first time I had to stop but it was very wet and muddy (didnt know about the poor drainage). So now I am on a mission to do the red trail...

Good to know about Clayton!
Yeah, Baldpate is one of the last parks to dry out...
That power line trail is an out and back.
Btw, Counter clockwise on red makes the climb much longer if your goal is to work on climbing.
I have a pretty good loop to get most everything. Let me know if you want a tour sometime. (I'm not riding there from A-town tho! :D)
 
#16
Cool. Will message you before I head out there again. Looking forward to the tour! I thought clockwise was the steeper climb which is what I want to practice + roots but not on very washed out trails...