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No Brains and No Brains Ext
Rotorua RedwoodsLast Update: 15/11/2015
Some trail names are made up, if there is a different name please let us know.
Difficulty - Intermediate - Advanced - A & B Lines
Slope - Undulating - Steep - Near vertical
Space - Open - Tight - Extreme Caution
Surface - Dirt - Eternal Puddles - Heavy leaf and branch litter - Roots - Rutted
Trail type - Single track
No Brains is one of those trails that I had on my to do list but saw no reason to head all the way out there until they opened Kung Fu Walrus. It made for an interesting loop starting with a walk up Tawa Rd to Tuhoto Ariki, up Moerangi Rd on to Kung Fu Walrus. A big climb up to Lookout Rd, down No Brains and No Brains Extension then a climb up Spring Rd (mostly walking) to Pondy DH (pops out at the stairs) where I made my way back via Pondy New and Roller Coaster. It was a 5 hour adventure (3:17 moving) of over 26km and 795m of climbing which doesn't include getting to the top of the shuttle drop off.
Other trail video's I'd watched didn't prepare me for how difficult this ride would be. Typically No Brains doesn't get much traffic, it's usually got a decent cover of pine needles over it however 2 days earlier on a very wet day the Whaka 100 race came through No Brains and really chopped up the trail leaving some deep ruts in the wet ground. The descents were particularly slippery and I found very difficult to stay on line however the flatter sections were even tougher as without momentum I found myself constantly fighting the ruts.
I suggest riding No Brains & No Brains Ext in dry weather not so close after a big event.
No Brains Ext is now the main lower section when riding No Brains, in fact unless you are paying attention you will probably miss where the trail forks on a fairly steep section, No Brains Extension continuing down the fall line while the rest of No Brains disappears off to the left. No Brains Ext is the recommended way out so as long as you keep right you will be fine.
The climb up Lookout Rd is long and steep, it took me over 35 mins just to climb Lookout Rd alone. There are a number of ways back but I chose to ride - well walk - up String Rd to Pondy DH. On the new release of the Trail Map App (Oct 2015) they have mapped out a new XC Grade 3 trail - Taura - which will run from Tikitapu Rd, across String Rd and back to Sandy Skid Rd at the end of Yellow Brick Rd.