Is Tatum worth a visit? (I'm local)

#1
Reading around in the cyclocross forum just reminded me that we have our very own World Cup Course at Tatum. I can't remember ever riding there. How much riding is there really? Does it drain well? Worth the trip, if only for a bit of variation from Allaire and Hartshorne?
 

ellbiddy

Active Member
#2
I give it a big MEH. It's good for a cross bike, but if you're looking for a good place to MTB I'd really look elsewhere. There's a sliver of singletrack, mostly fire roads and overall not the most interesting. If you've never been I'd go at least once to know for yourself. But I haven't bothered returning for some time now.
 

wonderturtle

Well-Known Member
#4
there's some fire roads but most of the trails are actually mowed edges of fields (so youre riding over mowed field grass). two very small sections of what one might consider "single-track" and there are only two or three short hills to speak of.

you might want to check it out if other places are wet. but otherwise dont bother. I go there on a rare occasion when I just dont want to bother with hills at Hartshorne and am too lazy to drive to Allaire.

the place is definitely SS friendly. actually it is a bit TOO friendly. you'll tend to spin out rather quickly on the flat sections (which are plentiful).
 
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#5
agree with all above ...but as second thought -for the coming winter - this place can be a fun when it is frozen and you can't afford going to Allair ...
 

MSH

New Member
#6
Just went to Tatum this past weekend, it's in pretty poor condition, fallen trees still cover some of the meadowed trail, while the dirt trail is either covered in an ocean leaves or excavated from the large amount of rain over the last weekend.

Did see another cyclist there though, so not all hope is lost!
 

wonderturtle

Well-Known Member
#7
"fallen trees still cover some of the meadowed trail, while the dirt trail is either covered in an ocean leaves or excavated from the large amount of rain over the last weekend"

sounds like an improvement.
 

MSH

New Member
#8
"fallen trees still cover some of the meadowed trail, while the dirt trail is either covered in an ocean leaves or excavated from the large amount of rain over the last weekend"

sounds like an improvement.
touché

I was thinking about Hartshorne/Huber since it's closer than allaire, how is technically compared to tatum? more sandy?
 
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wonderturtle

Well-Known Member
#9
Hartshorne is considerably more technical and hilly than Tatum. In fact, I dont consider Tatum a mountain bike park at all. Good to get some miles in your legs but that's about it.

think of Hartshorne like this - you know that one steep hill in Tatum (narrow singletrack up and long trail down) - that's basically all of Hartshorne. Hartshorne is not hardcore by any means but keeps most riders honest.

if you live in Matawan you gotta give Hartshorne a try. If you find its too much for you at this point just keep riding and get stronger! Cheesequake and Huber (right near Hartshorne) are near you as well and might be worth a try.

If you consider yourself a "mountain biker" Tatum needs to be the exception, not the norm :)
 
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MSH

New Member
#10
Are you speaking of that one steep hill that has a long set of steps right next to it? It's right near the entrance of the park? Yea, can't it make it up that beast, nor want to eat it on the way down.

Allaire seems like the best choice, but it's a drive, and both times I went I came back with either chiggers or ticks. I'm looking for a park where I can improve technical skill, and not have to check myself for microscopic bugs afterwards.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0pFMwq-K8s -- doesn't seem too bad lol.. I'm sure there are probably crazier parts if people go there as much as they say.
 
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pooriggy

Well-Known Member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
#12
Allaire seems like the best choice, but it's a drive, and both times I went I came back with either chiggers or ticks. I'm looking for a park where I can improve technical skill, and not have to check myself for microscopic bugs afterwards.
There is probably a nicer way to say this but...
You should take up road biking, or man up.:popcorn:
 

wonderturtle

Well-Known Member
#14
Are you speaking of that one steep hill that has a long set of steps right next to it? It's right near the entrance of the park? Yea, can't it make it up that beast, nor want to eat it on the way down.
no. the one "hill" at Tatum is not near the entrance.

re: Hartshorne (the youtube video), if you consider any hill at Tatum to be a "beast", then you might not like Hartshorne yet.

Allaire is far less hilly than Hartshorne but passes for "mountain biking" unlike Tatum.
 

wonderturtle

Well-Known Member
#16
Huber is like Hartshorne's tamer, smaller little-brother. similar terrain, less hilly.

Huber is not a bad place for beginners. nor is Cheesequake.
 
#18
I rode Tatum yesterday. Put 10 miles on the odometer. Much of it was just aimlessly riding spots twice because in the meadows much of it looks alike and signs are minimal.

I started at Red Hill Acitivity center because my son is in camp for 2 hrs a day there this week.

If anyone wants to ride with me here tomorrow (Thursday) let me know. I get here at 10 AM till 12 PM

I found the entrance to the trail across a grassy field from the more obvious green pedestrian only trail.

These trails (Dogwood Hollow and Indian Springs) also appear to be pedestrian only but you really have to ride them to get down to the Meadows. On the weekday there was not many people on these trails at all and I rode slowly till I got to the main trails.

I found some good uphill riding to get the blood flowing on the Tatum Ramble and running up the east side along Red Hill Road was the best part.

It's not Hartshorne but if you are in the area, it's worth a 2 hour ride.
 
#19
I rode Tatum again this morning. I really like it for a spot that's 20 mins from my house. I spend most of my time on the back woods portion of the Meadow Run (not in the meadows), and the Tatum Ramble and get a good workout and have fun.
 

MSH

New Member
#20
I rode Tatum again this morning. I really like it for a spot that's 20 mins from my house. I spend most of my time on the back woods portion of the Meadow Run (not in the meadows), and the Tatum Ramble and get a good workout and have fun.
Looks like we're from the same area! Have you tried riding at Allaire? I started out at Tatum, but Allaire is so much more fun for only being an extra 10-15 minutes away.