trail inventory

after 2 full weeks of trail building at Ketam Mountain Bike Park, Joey and me took a stroll with Andrew, Angela and Wayne, riding what we build, and marking some of the future todo and prepare for our work report.

2 big sections that need some further work include that bad turn at ‘Rock N Roll’ and China Bowl wall ride.

been an eventful 2 weeks, and Joey is leaving the next day, we are thankful to have IMBA working together to develop this beautiful bike park, and we hope to see Joey back in the future.


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The Grave drop complete

Another Saturday and to trail builders like us, more help coming.

After one nice lap of warm up ride, the trail crew gathered at Grave Drop again.

We split the work among the 15 volunteers, with William, Ellery, Joshua and Nik taking care of the entrance choke and rocks. Ken, Ling, Ming, Max and insect stunk me handled the ‘hole’ before ‘Ling’s step’.

55 and Kee join in halfway after completing some other task, and Soon added his meticulous touch to the rock garden.

the work continues through the long rainy afternoon, with the last hour powered by pure adrenaline of completion, pushing the biggest drop rocks into place for the bottom.

Gravedrop ended up as a sweet north-shore like ride, lots of stale rock and good technical riding needed.

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The biggest and last rock section to be build and it simply got to be hand build (ouch!)

As the name suggest, the lines will not be easy and will be curvy and lack the flow of the previous stuff we build over the 2 weeks.

We started building the drop from the bottom midsection.

Doing as much small rock work as much as we can at ‘Ling’s step’, a rock garden mid section. while I concentrate the work with 55 and Kee to get bigger drop off rocks into place at the bottom.

The effort took the afternoon with Ling, William, Joey and me placing whatever we can before the day close.

A tiring mosquito infested day.

We will try again tomorrow.

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The Blue Ridges

A short day indeed.

Fatigue set into the whole bunch of trail builders.  I am nursing the daily weightlifting and the 40km round trip daily on my MTB to test the trail, eventually sinking into carbohydrate debt aka ‘the body simply can’t recover fast enough for the next day’

The work force is tired from the rocks moving and even our experience trail guru, Joey is getting a some flu-ish symptom from the rain and hardwork.

We persist on and kept the morale high.

We let the machinery do whatever needed.

While Hwa continue on the tricky blue corner. digging whenever the slope is dryer (the rain soak mud is dangerous for digging) , I guide Kee and 55 with 2 dumper truck loads of aggregrate so to armor up the blue ridge with a top coat riding surface.  There’s still bunch of manual work involved. The dumper can only bring stuff as far as the wide blue lines, and wheel barrow kicks in shuttling the granites uphill in the narrow mountain bike trail.

A rock choke is installed after the cobra garden and 2 dips to drain water going down the slopes are added. TO spice things up, 2 flat slabs of launch rock are placed on the fast line before ‘Tidak apa-apa’ slope so to allow option for people to take some small air.

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Cobra Garden redux and touchy blue down

Another rainy day.

This doesn’t stop William and Ling from joining me in building what we eventually become the start of cobra garden.

With almost unlimited supply of granite rocks lying around cobra garden, we placed our effort so to make it longer and better, with interesting drops in mind.

A workforce of five got things moving pretty fast. Big slabs are moved into place with the help of Kee and 55. While William gather rocks for the in between and Ling moves rocks 2 times heavier than herself around like just another pebble.

By tightening up the rocky trail and placing a ‘must pass’ dropoff at the tip of it, the end product rides better than it looks. A sick drop to nowhere for the first timer.

The day ‘must mention’ incident is actually pretty much not very trail related.

Do check out Ming’s nice commentary of the ‘William Boar incident

While we were working on Cobra Garden, Joey separately supervise Hwa and his excavator in fixing the touchy blue corner, a tight corner that doesn’t have much platform to start with, we placed a rolling crown turn onto the corner with an inside drain taking the water off the slope.

definitely one interesting day!

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Tidak Apa-apa – the long way down

With the cobra garden half done in a ridable state. We shifted our work to the Black Cobra exit, the steep slope that we always wanted to armor and to serve as a show piece on how a rock downhill should look like.

We coined this section ‘tidak apa-apa’ means ‘no problem’ in Malay. Joey is definitely optimistic that this ride might looks scary but is definitely not a problem sooner or later. and we kinda agree is time to place some of these feature into trails around the region.

With Hwa excavator harvesting rocks for the past 3 days so we can start off this section, we work our way down by doing anchoring steps each time so to hold each subsection independently.

This ride contains nice filters all the way from 50metres back, where a rock choke will be placed to shoot question into the uncertain mountain bikers mind

‘am I really ready for this?”

Filter edge rocks is place and we work our way down against the weather. Is really pouring halfway and we are forced to scramble for shades in the site office.

The post rain rocks and mud slug ain’t the best place to be around. I skidded a few times too and rocks placement are roll into place instead of carried into.

with each step taking the ride steeper, and rock drops is strategically placed at the foot of the hill so you can hit it at the correct speed.

A piece of art indeed, suggest to hike the section before riding, and take your first ride on a dry day

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Trail School – the making of cobra garden

We figured that playing with rocks and building trails is a fun thing and got invited our fellow trail builders and friends along.

We took the opportunity to ride the Ketam Mountain Bike Park as a whole once. Testing out every single lines and re test it again and again for the fun of it.

With the afternoon looming, we stop our ride at the ‘Black Cobra’ section.

What we are to build today is the cobra garden, a series of serious black diamond rock features one after another.

With the entrance into cobra garden being a steep difficult to climb slope, the traffic will be limited to the real deal adventure mountain bikers and hopefully the slope can serve as a qualifier too to stop the ride before any of them hitting the rock features.

Ling, William, Max, Karim, Me, Ming, Jason and camera man Joey

the rain came down just as we started and it certainly ain’t the best condition to move rocks.

it took William, Ming and Max 3 rock bars and a whole load of effort to get one of those big rocks moved 10metres, and they needed super Ling to placed the extra few ounce to roll the rocks almost every turn.

Jason and William collected rocks with their bonked stomach, slogging in the mud and displacing whatever they can find, while we left the rock paving to Ming.

The afternoon pass by quickly with the cobra garden forming a nice 5metres of easy rock ride, nicely paved and sunken in.

and everyone is glad that the work is sweet to ride through.



40 manhours today!

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Rock N Roll garden

This messy section at the ‘rock N roll’ portion of the ride doesn’t offer much flow after some great promising downhills and tree rides. The rocks are badly placed, shifted and trapping 90% of the riders except a the select few who do trail trials ride.

What we are here to fix is a black diamond section singletrack rock garden, and to place some interesting rock feature, ‘high skills low risk’ stuff, so to make it flow for the better half of the riders and endless funs and tries for those who are still trying to.

This section is design with a straight cut at the edge of the slope, placing around 20 big boulders to secure and anchor the smaller one.

We choose to collect and move most of the 50kg rocks by hand, some by pure manual lugging and hugging. and is definitely challenging for 4 of us (Joey, Kee, ’55’ and me) with Hwa operating the excavator in support with pushing those 200kg and above stuff.

The line is straight forward, with jagged lines all over so to displaced even the most experience rider, emphasizing on the correct torque and gear ratio and braking to get through.

So guys have fun trying, we certainly tried and cleared it once at least on the day of the build.

tally for 16th Nov

Sleepers – 6 man hour and a great excavator

Rock Garden – 30 manhours and alot more back massage session.

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