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Thread: February 2021 Road and Trail Conditions

  1. #11
    Steve O's Avatar
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    This is a terrific video about cycling in the winter.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    This is a terrific video about cycling in the winter.

    Worth watching. I enjoyed seeing the ice crushing machine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    The MVT from the airport to 4MR and the trail towards Shirlington are completely rideable and almost entirely clear pavement. I suspect most of the trail network is the same.

    Except for bridges. Bridges may require walking, depending on your level of comfort.
    MVT from 4MR to Old Town is mostly clear except for the bridges which are iced. Not too slippery to walk on but I wouldn’t personally ride it without my fat mountain bike tires.


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    Did an Arlington loop this morning starting pre-dawn, so still below freezing, with 4MRT instead of W&OD for most of the way where they "parallel" each other. As the temperatures increase today, many areas will be wet rather than icy. Larger rutty areas will likely become slushy, but still an issue.

    Custis: Clear except for melt-refreezing in a few spots. Spout run had a bit of refreeze, but oddly the yellow line was mostly clear. Longer access trails typically not in good shape.

    MVT From Roosevelt Island to 4MRT: Mostly extremely clear other than refreezes (standard ice sheets present). Trollheim is well, as expected. Clear in the patched under I-66, but otherwise snowy-icy-crunchy, but passable (I was on 38s). Bridge just south of that passable, with care. Bridges at airport have a “lane” (~1ft wide) in each direction that are clear, except for refreezes, but passable with care. [I think there was less snow in this area - far more still around north of Custis]

    4MRT: Clear until just south of Glen Carlyn Park – where the access from S. Arlington Mill Rd enters above the ford. At that point it is a icy, rutty mess. Recommend walking (tried otherwise and failed). Had to walk until it flattened out again on the other side of the ford – then escaped up to W&OD. Did go back to 4MRT just before Carlin Springs Rd (trail just north of Rt 50 and up hill was not cleared) and past the frisbee golf - that area was fine.

    W&OD: small regions I was on it were just fine, including bridges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrP View Post
    Did an Arlington loop this morning starting pre-dawn, so still below freezing, with 4MRT instead of W&OD for most of the way where they "parallel" each other. As the temperatures increase today, many areas will be wet rather than icy. Larger rutty areas will likely become slushy, but still an issue.

    Custis: Clear except for melt-refreezing in a few spots. Spout run had a bit of refreeze, but oddly the yellow line was mostly clear. Longer access trails typically not in good shape.

    MVT From Roosevelt Island to 4MRT: Mostly extremely clear other than refreezes (standard ice sheets present). Trollheim is well, as expected. Clear in the patched under I-66, but otherwise snowy-icy-crunchy, but passable (I was on 38s). Bridge just south of that passable, with care. Bridges at airport have a “lane” (~1ft wide) in each direction that are clear, except for refreezes, but passable with care. [I think there was less snow in this area - far more still around north of Custis]

    4MRT: Clear until just south of Glen Carlyn Park – where the access from S. Arlington Mill Rd enters above the ford. At that point it is a icy, rutty mess. Recommend walking (tried otherwise and failed). Had to walk until it flattened out again on the other side of the ford – then escaped up to W&OD. Did go back to 4MRT just before Carlin Springs Rd (trail just north of Rt 50 and up hill was not cleared) and past the frisbee golf - that area was fine.

    W&OD: small regions I was on it were just fine, including bridges.
    Surprisingly not much different after a sunny day touching 50 degrees. Trollheim was maybe a little better, with a foot-wide single track in each direction clear except for a few 10-20' stretches of slush + packed ice. Made it through on 40c road tires without feeling too squirrely. The airport bridges are starting to melt off, but still single-track for long stretches. Everywhere else is pretty much clear edge-to-edge. Melt still flowing over the trails all over, so beware morning ice (though it's supposed to stay above freezing Thursday night).
    Last edited by Alcova cyclist; 02-04-2021 at 05:38 PM. Reason: spell-check does not believe "squirrely" is a word

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alcova cyclist View Post
    Surprisingly not much different after a sunny day touching 50 degrees. Trollheim was maybe a little better, with a foot-wide single track in each direction clear except for a few 10-20' stretches of slush + packed ice. Made it through on 40c road tires without feeling too squirrely. The airport bridges are starting to melt off, but still single-track for long stretches. Everywhere else is pretty much clear edge-to-edge. Melt still flowing over the trails all over, so beware morning ice (though it's supposed to stay above freezing Thursday night).
    Another 12 hours of above freezing may have helped since your ride.

    Less snow and ice than yesterday, but not all gone.
    Different route today: Custis – MVT – LBJ Grove – around S side of Pentagon – Columbia Pike – Washington Blvd Trail – trails through Lyon Park – Ballston – Ballston Connector

    Differences from yesterday (or new):
    Custis: Bridge over spout run wet with melt, but essentially clear. Rest of trail clear, including many access trails
    MVT: Trollheim is MUCH better, but not clear. Areas about 1ft wide in each direction clear to wood in most places, but some slush and some hard icy bits still present. Bridge after that (over boundary channel) completely clear. A tiny bit of the ice sheets left, but mostly melt.
    LBJ Grove area: bridge clear on side not in shadow from the railing – that side patchy snow/ice/slush. The landing on the Pentagon side is only clear where cyclists would go from the bridge to the ramp.
    Wash Blvd Trail: clear except wooden bridge, which is patchy icy-slushy, and half the trail north of the 2nd st overpass (in the shadow).
    trails through Lyon Park: mostly clear, a few small patches that are icy-slushy and two very large areas that are bumpy-icy and walking recommended/only option (rear tire slipped several times as I tried to pedal and chose to walk before I fell).
    Ballston connecter: Mostly clear, a few areas in shade were bad, but only on half the trail, so can easily avoid.

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    Default W&OD clear in Arlington, slushy in Falls Church

    Riding Thursday afternoon on W&OD, it was pretty much dry pavement in both directions between Shirlington and Benjamin Banneker Park, with some wet spots here and there in Bluemont and Banneker parks. I used the connector trail from Banneker Park to ride to Van Buren Street and 19th Road in East Falls Church, which were both dry pavement.

    However, W&OD was snow-covered starting where the W&OD meets the 19th Road connector, alongside the unfinished bike trail bridge over Lee Highway. Cyclists coming from the west said the W&OD was snow covered through Falls Church City.

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    W&OD West, Thursday afternoon from Vienna to Reston: Clear pavement in sunny areas, car tire wide single track in few shaded areas. Had to walk my bike 3 to 4 times. West of Hunter Mill intersection was fully covered for 50 Yards or so. No snow on the east side of the hill(Buckthorn LN), but there was snow fully covering the downhill west side, which probably a single track or cleared by now. Clear pavement or single tracking afterward until the two blocks east and west of Wiehle AVE. They were fully covered with snow.

    It took me twice as long as normal.

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    The bike lanes on Potomac Avenue were being cleaned this morning.

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  12. #20
    Steve O's Avatar
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    The bike lanes in and around Pentagon City / Crystal City (if only there were a single name...) look like this:

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    Meanwhile, in Alexandria, the Potomac Yard trail looks like this:
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