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Introduction to Mountain Biking

By Samantha Kase Mon Aug 10 2015 Mt. Biking, Snowbasin Report, Upcoming Events

Mountain biking is an exhilarating sport, but many people are reluctant to try it out because riding a bicycle on a trail is more challenging than riding a bike on pavement.  With this in mind, Snowbasin presents the Introduction to Mountain Biking Guided Tour.  In this tour, you will learn bike handling skills and trial etiquette, and ride Snowbasin’s easiest trails with a guide.  The program takes place on August 22, 29, September 5 and 12, from 10:30 to 1:30.

The first half of the guided tour takes place on the grass and sidewalks in Snowbasin’s base area.  You will begin with an introduction to shifting and stopping so you can be ready for terrain changes ahead of you on a trail.  Riders then navigate around cones to get a sense of how to turn around obstacles.  Next, you will learn how to roll over small obstacles.  Your bike will take on larger bumps than you think, as long as you keep moving!  The most challenging part of the skills clinic is learning how to mount your bike with a running start.  Although this maneuver is rarely necessary on a trail, it can help you get started in the middle of a hill without having to hike your bike all the way to the top.  Lastly, riders are challenged with wooden features to ride over.  We end the skill-building portion of the guided tour with this challenge because it is actually more difficult than anything we encounter on the trails in the tour.

The second half of the Introduction to Mountain Biking program will take you on a tour of Snowbasin’s easiest trails.  We will explore the Inner-Moose Loop, a brand-new, half-mile beginner trail that cruises through the woods.  You will then ride the Needles Gondola to ride the Cirque Loop, another relatively flat trail that winds through the beautiful alpine meadow at the base of the Middle Cirque.  Other beginner trails you may explore in the tour, or you can explore on your own afterwards, are the Moose Loop and Maples trails.

This program is designed for riders who are able to ride several miles on pavement, and are familiar with shifting and stopping.  But this tour can also be enjoyed by more experienced riders who want to improve their skills.  The tour costs $15, and includes a snack and a souvenir draw-string bag.  Lift tickets are just $5 when you sign up for the tour and good all day long.  Bike and helmet rentals are also available, at an additional cost.  After the tour, we recommend enjoying lunch at Needles Lodge and then hiking up the Ridge Trail for spectacular views of the Salt Lake and Ogden Valleys.

Samantha Kase