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R.I.P. --

The following Trail Guide was originally written in 2000, shortly after the openning of "Dan's New Trail" -- as it was excitedly called then, and revised in 2004. Dan's Trail really doesn't exist any more -- except as a ruined relic -- and it is NOT SAFE to ride the stunts pictured here any more. Dan's Trail was important in the development of Galbraith, though, helping define the kind of gnarly technical trail riding that has come to typify Galbraith. So return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear...

-- Mongo

Dan Waters Strikes Again
On Semi-Secret Dan's Trail

The high catwalk on Dan's Trail, whose creator -- Dan Waters -- also co-authored Chutes and Ladders and The Scorpion.

mb2_042000.jpg (77269 bytes)
Trail name: Dan's Trail
Difficulty rating: Sweet trail with a couple really memorable technical trail riding moments, e.g., the catwalk / old growth log crossing, and the Bad Boy
Elevation gain/loss: 50 feet
Best riding direction: Best ridden down from the 300 Rd. near the Yellow Rock
Best seasons: Gets moderate use all year long

See trail map at right. Click here for Map Set Index.

Click here for Driving Directions from Interstate 5 to Galbraith, plus MapQuest maps and live WebCam shots of Galbraith and the main freeway exits for Galbraith.

DAN WATER'S New Trail -- AKA Dan's Trail or Dan's Secret Trail -- is probably the worst kept secret on Galbraith Mt.

Great Galbraith Mt. Riders: Dan Waters on Evolution by MongoDespite the fact that the entrance from the Tower Rd. is blocked by a goodly sized slash pile and unmarked in any way, this gem has been getting a lot of attention.

This is partly due to its spicy gumbo of steep pitches and deep log drops, but the centerpiece of the trail -- and the thing that has given it notoriety -- is its high catwalk / old growth cedar log crossing.

Some nifty log drops set up a plunge down a very steep pitch covered with soft red cedar -- wham -- onto the beginning of the catwalk, which you climb to its narrowing apex, before falling away and power s-ing around a hug old grow stump and out across an old growth cedar to the other side of the ravine.

PLEASE NOTE, however, as of the fall of 2004, many experienced Galbraith riders no longer trust the catwalk pictured above. They usually choose the detour on the right. The catwalk's still there, though. So you can check it out and decide for yourself.

Either way, Dan's is a lot of technical fun. The log rollovers in the last section, which have a sort of crescendo effect leading up to the Bad Boy, who is still being fairly bad. Mongo once broke his helmet endo'ing here.

Another nice thing about Dan's Trail is that it easily connects with the Flying Squirrel, which allows you to connect with the bottom two of the Three Pigs, making for a nifty mid-mountain to Galbraith Lane single track descent.

In fact, you can rip Galbraith almost entirely on singletrack by climbing the Tower Rd. to just short of the top where you pick up the Woopsie Woodle. Then you descend the Woodle to mid-point (sweet!), climb the 301 Rd. to the Yellow Superman Rock, and link that to descend Dan's Trail to The Flying Squirrel and the Three Little Pigs.

If you don't want to go down to the bottom of the mountain just then, Dan's Trail also connects to another Dan Waters's creation, the Jaws of Death, AKA Jaws, which begins with another of Dan's stunts, the Jaw Walk.

Jaws is very short and very extreme, with a really heinous drop into the creek and yet another narrow slatted rampway to deliver you to the seriously steep climb out (that's so Galbraith). You may notice the cave-like lower end of it on the right as you climb the road to the Towers, but it's best ridden the other way, starting at the Jaw Walk

The following are some of the scenes as you descend the high catwalk / old growth log crossing combo. Click on the thumbnail images to view a larger version...

ramp1_042400.jpg (44172 bytes) Here's what you see below you when you get to the top of the steep pitch...
ramp2_042400.jpg (84862 bytes) The same scene, looking the other way, up the steep drop into the high catwalk...
mb1a_042500.jpg (57742 bytes) Dropping down the pitch...
mb2_042000xxx.jpg (29285 bytes) Powering to the top of the catwalk...
mb1_042100.jpg (68479 bytes) Another view...
ramp3_042400.jpg (47686 bytes) Don't do this: don't look down. It's about a 15 foot fall into a pile of jagged wood debris...
ma2_042100.jpg (59554 bytes) Gotta keep your momentum up as you climb to the apex...
bb1_crop_091300.jpg (28418 bytes) At the end of the high catwalk you circle around the huge old root ball of a toppled old growth cedar...
jamie1_042500.jpg (34236 bytes) And then -- as in two seconds later -- you cross the ravine again on that same old growth cedar log...
sh1a_042500.jpg (40164 bytes) The log has a pounded, slightly off camber path along the top...
ma1_042100.jpg (35417 bytes) And again you're forced to climb, to have enough power and cool to ride a steady line across to the other side...
mb_dans_400pix_091500.jpg (99010 bytes) Where a couple nifty log roll overs and log drops await...
mb1_110700.jpg (57738 bytes) The gnarliest rollover is the Bad Boy, which is the next to the last one, and often has a hole somewhere on the blind backside.

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Vert Quest -- excerpts from Mongo's World Record Journal by Bruce Brown
Days: 365 Rides: 220 Total vertical feet climbed: 404,900

Click here for Map Set Index.

Click here for Driving Directions from Interstate 5 to Galbraith, plus MapQuest maps and live WebCam shots of Galbraith and the main freeway exits for Galbraith.