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Thread: Looking for a leader/ride - North Andover - Saturday

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    822

    Default Looking for a leader/ride - North Andover - Saturday

    Looking for a leader. Dropping my son for a class on Osgood St in North Andover this Saturday. Gives me from about 8:15 to noon, to ride. 2 hours is fine, more is better.
    Never been to Russell Mill and would really like to see it, but anywhere in the area is fine.
    Thanks! Steve
    413.786.3744
    If you didn't build the trail, don't mess with it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    616

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    Can't help on sat, down load a map of ward hill, right next to harold parker in North Andover.
    SS rule the dirt!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    194

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    Hi. Sorry I can't help you out with a ride guide. I'm new to North Andover, and still trying to get an idea of all the best places to ride. A previous post of mine on here fell on deaf ears. I won't let that happen to you, though. Here's where I ride:


    Boxford State Forest's main entrance is just within a corner of North Andover. It's my favorite riding area here, that I've found so far. Caveat: I'm not sure the numbered intersections are perfectly aligned with what's on the state map. But, otherwise, there's some really nice riding here. Challenges, without being crazy technical. There's also other preserved land around BSF, and my last ride there I found a dream-like strip of singletrack, fern-lined, pine-needle-covered, swoopy and smooth. It was somewhere in the central northern section, and I couldn't find it on the BSF map. May have been a Boxford Trails Assoc. trail. Marked on the road with a white diamond, green arrow blaze.


    Also, just in West Boxford is a small place with good terrain called Wildcat Forest. All singletrack, technically similar to the terrain of BSF (my favored level of difficulty). Small, quiet area, without many folks. Easy to make a couple loops. Find a PDF map by searching for the Boxford Trails Assoc. Site.


    Harold Parker is well-known, and I've ridden there many times. For me, much of the singletrack is too rocky/technical to maintain enough speed to be as enjoyable as these other places. Others love the challenge.


    The previous commenter is right about Ward Hill. I've never been there, but it's on my to-do list. My take on the place (anyone please correct me) is that it's not super technical, but very pretty. The highlight is an overlook on which you can see to Boston, and there's some sort of stone structure. Can someone chime in on how the place is from a riding perspective?


    So my big question is… I've seen posts on here about Russell Mill, but never figured out where that is… is it near North Andover?


    Also, hey, North Andover folks! Say hello! I'd love to meet a few of you! (If you see someone on a black Cannondale RZ with white decals and a Lefty, it might be me)


    Thanks. Let me know if I can answer anything else about riding in the area.
    [ briandigital.com | @briandigital ]

    Take your bike rack off your car when not in use, save 10-20% on gas. And have a forest left to ride in.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    60

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    I agree with Noreaster, it's going to depend on the type of riding you want to do. Harold Parker is great and my primary riding area, but he is right about it being rocky and tough to carry a lot of speed. You have to be very technically sound in there. I'm not but I love the challenge. Russel Mill is in Chelmsford and is within 2 miles of Great Brook Farms. Both are great trail networks and are maintained by MV NEMBA and what a job they do! Russel Mill is a bit more technical then Great Brook, but they are both great ride. More flowy singletrack and tight switchbacks. They are not really that close to North Andover though. One place you might like to try is Willowdale in Ipswich. Great flowy singletrack not very technical, and you can fly! It is a lot of fun! I would take you out on a ride however my tennis season has started and I play on Saturdays. Hope you can find someone to lead you around. If you want poke into the North Shore NEMBA facebook page and post about a ride leader there. I'm sure someone will chime in. Good luck!
    Kona Satori

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    194

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    Willowdale is really awesome, I agree. But it'll take you at least 20 minutes of backroads driving to get there from North Andover. I left it out since I figured you'd like to maximize ride time. But, Willowdale is one of my favorite places to ride.
    [ briandigital.com | @briandigital ]

    Take your bike rack off your car when not in use, save 10-20% on gas. And have a forest left to ride in.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    501

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    Ward Reservation and HP are close and worth an exploration. Routefinding is not too bad at either (sorry not able to guide you). Both have decent maps with numbered intersections. You can also connect them with either the Bay Circuit Trail or by a short road ride.
    http://www.thetrustees.org/places-to...servation.html
    http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/northeast/harp.htm
    http://www.baycircuit.org/Map3.pdf

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    822

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    Thanks very much. I will check out the maps tomorrow and see. Been to HP for the wicked ride and it is great, but would like to see something new. Tech of HP is great. Fast and flowy is great too. A mix of the two is the best choice by me. I will check in with the NS fb page. Thanks for the info!
    If you didn't build the trail, don't mess with it.

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