The Mountain Bike Life

Last weekend I was invited up to Mount snow to help coach the riders from Danny’s Cycle Racing. It’s been over a year since I’ve had a chance to ride Mount Snow, and that was for an Eastern States Cup race last year meaning I didn’t ride anything but the race trail. Between injuries and traveling, I haven’t had time to make there to freeride despite being within a hour from where I live.

Top of the Jump Trail

Mount Snow used to be one of the most notorious stops on the NORBA downhill national race circuit. Late 2000’s it’s luster had disappeared. Between a slowly deteriorating trail system, and new mountain bike resorts throwing their hat in the ring, Mount Snow had started vanished from the radar of most mountain bike riders.

Recently however with help to new guidance and budget increases, things have been changing for the better. Around 2011, the construction of a top to bottom easy run was built, snaking it’s way down the entire mountain. If you’ve ever built a small single track you’d comprehend that the undertaking was absolutely massive. All the erosion control, planning, and excavating that had to be done is really hard to wrap your head around.

The rock slabs from the race course

Their efforts are paying off, currently Mount Snow now has one of the longest beginner friendly mountain bike trails around New England. Riders of all ages, and skills sets will find something to like about it.

My Evil Undead clean and ready to rock

Another trail that was built around the same time was trail number 9, aka the jump trail. This is by far the most interesting trail on the mountain. It’s a windy trail with the right amount of jumps and berms to keep the flow just right. There’s no need to pedal the entire length, and the jumps require minimal effort to clear. Four years ago, it would have been impossible to convince me that Mount snow would have a freeride jump trail.

Some of the old favorite trails still exist but were understandably not open due to the ludicrous amounts of rain storms we’ve endured over the past several weeks. Officially opened for the last Eastern States Cup race, they introduced the trail number #99 to their network. Some might better know “Yard Sale”, the legendary rock garden that claimed so many bones, bikes, and riders. It’s not quite the full rock garden, the new version sits directly to the right of where it used to run, but it’s still gnarly nonetheless.

Blurry cam shot of Yardsale – It’s steep and hard to go slow

Overall, I think Mount Snow is on the right track if they’re looking to make a comeback, but the definitely have their work cut out. Hopefully we’ll be seeing more #9 style trails popping up in the near future as they’ve proven they know how to build a fun trail. With a bit more infrastructure and marketing, they could have a world class bike park on their hands. More mountains offering quality trails can only be a good thing for the sport, I look forward to what the futures holds for them.

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