|March 9, 2014|
|Cool, CA [large map] 38.888, -121.016|
The First Annual Cool Mountain Bike Race needed 200 participants to break even. We had rain, heavy rain, for several days before the event. However race day brought clear, sunny, 70 degree weather, and 700 people coming out to participate in the mud. Dan’s vision of mud!!!!!! There was plenty then and there has been ever since! Greg Wells, a State Parks Ranger that worked hand in hand with Dan on the race, dedicated The Knickerbocker Trail to Dan. It is now known as The Olmstead Loop Trail with a great dedication plaque at the head of the trail. This trail is known mostly as ‘Cool’, but it’s official name is ‘The Olmstead Loop’. Once known as ‘The Knickerbocker Trail’, it was renamed in memory of a local mountain bike advocate, Dan Olmstead, who succeeded in gaining access to what was previously a horse trail. This trail is well suited for all levels. Beginners will have to be careful, in a couple of spots, but should be able to ride all of the trail except for several slippery rock up-hills. This trail is very popular with equestrians, so always be on the lookout and remember that they have the ‘right-of-way’. The trail has several stream crossings, a couple of challenging climbs and of course… ‘Cool’ down-hills. One other thing that you may really appreciate, at the end of the ride… There’s a hose in the parking lot, which allows you to wash the mud off of your bike and equipment. All ‘n all, a ‘Cool’ ride! Description: The trail is ridden by most, as a counter clockwise loop. The trail-head is to the right of the parking lot, across the road that you came in on. At the left end of the parking lot is the other end of the loop… This goes to the infamous stream crossing that attracts spectators, during the Cool MTB Race. There are several ways to take the loop, with plenty of signage… Enjoy your ride! Note: You will encounter several cattle gates, along the trail… Please be sure to close them, after you pass through. Site Of The Cool MTB Race: Our area’s biggest and most infamous MTB race… Since this race is held in mid-February, it’s a muddy one! Trail Facts: Location: Southeast of Auburn (Hwy. 49), in Cool, CA Distance: 9 miles Difficulty: Moderately strenuous, technical sections Skill Level: Intermediate Elevation: 900′ gain / loss Ride Type: Loop Trail Type: Single track, double track & fire roads How To Get There: From eastbound I-80 (Auburn, CA), take the Elm Street exit, turning to the left, at the end of the freeway ramp. Go one block and turn left, at the stoplight, onto Hwy. 49. Continue traveling southeast, for approximately 6.5 miles, until you arrive in Cool, CA. From US-50 (Placerville, CA), exit onto Hwy. 49 North. Travel northwest, for approximately 19.5 miles, until you arrive in Cool, CA. Cool is a small town, so don’t blink… Or, you might miss the trail-head which is right behind the Cool Fire Station. That’s it, a real easy trail to find!
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