Getting Started   

 Tips n' Tricks

    Water bars are simply little trenches built on grades to assist water drainage and prevent erosion of your trail. They are bandaids for improperly built trails (trails that go straight down the fall line). They are mandatory to keep your trail alive if water runs down your trail. Walk over your trail during a rainstorm. Anywhere water drains down your trail is where you should use a water bar. You don't need drainage where water flows across your trail. Puddles are okay but watch the don't spill off down your trail. If you have a lot of clay in your soil you might consider providing drainage for puddles. 
    After experience with all kinds of waterbars and visiting the IMBA site I have discovered that the rolling grade dip is the only way to go.
    Rolling Grade Dip
    Thanks to: Krisztina Holly of Mountain Bike Magazine that I copied this from. 
    If you don't want this posted here just e-mail me. 
    1. Start with a properly cut sidehill trail (one that hugs the side of the hill), with the outslope (outside) edge of the trail 3 degrees lower than the backslope. This won't work on a trail going staight up the fall line.
    2. Find out where to put your dips. Visit the trail when it's raining, put the dips right below the water entry points. Avoid rocks and roots if you can.
    3. Mark the center of each stucture with two stakes at either side of the trail. the line between the stakes should not be quite perpendicular to the trail, at about 60 degrees. When you're laying out the structure, imagine the dip having the cross section of a soup spoon. The dip is like the bowl of the soup spoon , with a small berm rising up below it like a curved spoon handle.
    4. Begin digging the dip into the trail surface about 5-6 feet above the stakes, and work your way down. The deepest point, about two feet from the stakes and near the outslope edge, need only be about 3-4 inches deep. Near the backslope edge, the dip should become short and shallow so that it blends in with the hill.
    5. Use the excavated dirt to build a 6-9 inch-high berm across the trail below the stakes. Build a ramp from the top of the berm to the trail surface 8 feet down the trail.(Note: These specifications are appropriate for a 12 % grade trail, for steeper trails make the stuctures deeper and and much longer)
    6. Smooth out the dip with a hoe or rake so that it's barely noticable. Compact the surface with the back of a shovel. remove the stakes and you're ready to ride.