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Ionia SRA

Average Rating:    (3.25 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 16

Two loops, the larger of the two with a cut off for an alternatively shorter run. Entirely single track, through woods and edge-type landscape. Weighted heavily toward technical with some stretches to open up in. Climbs tend to be challenging due to off camber, narrow trails and loose surface rather than slope. Really twisty, jumpy and bumpy. Advanced only because of lots of rocks, roots, off-camber, and dropoffs.
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Latitude
42.931667598646094
Longitude
-85.13614654541016
Trail Directions
From Lansing - West on I-96 about 45 min. From Grand Rapids - East on I-96 about 1 hour Exit at the Ionia exit, then North 1-2mi, then left or West (follow signs) to the Rec. Area enterance.
Trail Length
Brown Loop ~3mi. Green Loop 3.5mi for short loop, 5.8 mi for entire loop
Trail Level
Advanced
Trail Type
Singletrack
City/County
Ionia
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (16 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
January 8, 2007

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: Special Goodness ,  Racer

Summary:
Ionia has two loops. The short loop works out to be about 2.5 miles in length while the long loop is probably close to 8 miles. The short loop has very little vertical change and travels through some low areas that frequently are wet and muddy. You should avoid this section of the trail during the early Spring and late Fall. Riding it will only tear the trail up. The shorter loop is excellent for introducing a new rider to the sport or warming up before riding the main loop. The short loop basically starts out following along a stream and it weaves and cuts between trees for most of the trail. The only section to watch out for, especially with inexperienced riders, is a log crossing that looks like it used to be part of a bridge. Your front tire will drop over the log and stop against the front side of a rock that is only sticking up two or three inches. Then you’ll find yourself on the wrong side of your handlebars. If this happens and you, try not to fall on the stumps of saplings that someone cut off five inches or so above the ground. They’ll do a number on your ribs.

Recommended Route:
The first half mile or so of the longer loop is very similar to the short loop. It follows the same stream, but on the opposite bank. Soon you’ll come out of the trees to a fast straight and open single track, and immediately after is the first climb of the loop. It’s a short climb, but slightly off camber. It’s narrow and passes close to some trees. Then it’s more hardwood single track as you travel along the side of a hill overlooking the railroad bed and the river in the distance. You’ll cross three logs and climb a sand hill with a wooden anti-erosion ladder, and then you’ll come to the longest climb of the loop. It’s very similar to the first climb, just twice as long. Finish the climb and build some quick momentum on the backside of the hill and you can almost coast to the end of the hardwood single track. As you round the corner you will have traveled three miles.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
The next section is a slow and sandy ride under the shade of row-planted pines. A quick uphill sprint as you leave the pines and you’ll find yourself in the open gravelly section. The trail basically alternates between this abandoned gravel pit single track vibe, without a lot of vertical change, to single track under hardwood for the next few miles. Feel free to ride fast to get it over with. It’s much more enjoyable as a blur. Eventually you’ll cross a small wooden bridge and find yourself surrounded by thorn bushes and trying to ride over small, round, wet rocks, and wet roots. Survive this and you’ll make a quick and sandy descent that leads to a 2.5-3 foot drop over a big rock. The bypass trail is on the right. Ride in front of the Sheriff Posse’s shooting range and clubhouse and go all out in the last 300 yards of the trail. Be sure to downshift just before the blind corner as you approach the pine trees in front of the parking lot. I can’t remember why, but I know it’s a good idea…



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Review Date
June 5, 2005

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: guyb ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
I wanted to add to the initial, accurate description.

The trail head is actually miles from the main Sessions Lake Rec area entrance. This can be deceiving. The trail head is off Riverside Dr. I have talked to many who have gone to the main rec area entrance and tried to find it from there; needs to be marked much, much better.

I would consider it an intermediate level trail. It is scenic with much wildlife. I have yet to ride it without seeing wild turkey(s). I find it a great ride for someone who likes scenery as well as stomping a trail and conquering some hill. Also it does have some man-made technical areas e.g. stacked logs.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Yankee Springs, Cannonsburg



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Review Date
July 28, 2004

Overall Rating
 1 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 1 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: G.R.MTNBKR ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
Once is enough for me, this trail blows, very boring, flat, short, try yankee springs, or fort custer. This trail might be good to teach beginers. But thats it.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Yankee Springs, Fort Custer, Cannonsburg State Game, Bass River.....



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Review Date
May 18, 2003

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: Michael , from Portland

Summary:
I like the whole thing. Both loops are fun & scenic. It can be a great workout if you really push yourself. It's a challenge to me to do the whole thing without ever touching the ground with your feet. I've done it a few times. I was told the best time for the yellow loop was 21 minutes. That makes for an average speed of 17mph. I haven't beat it yet. Maybe this summer. I just started mountain biking last fall. It's great! :-)

Recommended Route:
The best place to start is at the little park off of Riverside. You'll need a state park sticker.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Fort Custer, Yankee Springs and Brighton



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Review Date
September 18, 2002

Overall Rating
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Every few months

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Reviewed by: Joel Geerlings , from Grand Rapids, MI

Summary:
Decent trail for the area. Some technical areas. Biggest drawback is lack of variety. Main loop goes up and down a hillside for 3 miles and then circles back through old gravel pits. I'd recommend it as a good ride if your in the area. If your coming from a ways away go to Yankee Springs instead.

Recommended Route:
Both loops

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Yankee Springs, Fort Custer, Cannonsburg, Robinettes



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Reviews 1 - 5 (16 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5
 


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