Tuesday, 24 January 2012
I can only comment on the riding based on my current ability and I have to say that I really wished I had more skills (and riding fitness ) so I could enjoy it more and worry less. The trails didn't have many obstacles as such (like logs or rocks to go over) but they were all about fast and sharp corners, drop-offs, steep pinches and lots of flow. The track surface generally beautifully smooth yet soft (if you fell) at the same time - 'Hero Dirt' apparently. I found that I was comfortable on the tracks rated 'easy' but on the intermediate ones I had the odd moment where I felt out of my depth so I couldn't hoon through them the first time round as I didn't know if was going to find myself at the top of a 1/2 metre drop off, or attempting an impossible corner or something.. - obviously as I rode a track for the second time I got more confidence but there were still tricky bits for me such as tight steep turns with tree-roots creating drop-offs right before them. There's no doubt that the scenery was great, and I only rode 1/3 or less of the trails I recon.
Jonno went out every day for as long as we let him (generally 2-3 hours) and he loved it. Paul declared it the best area ever after about 2 minutes of riding and each day they discovered new 'favourite' tracks. The only thing I recon they could improve on the tracks would be to do what Woodhill have done and create some linked routes so that if you are new to the area you can just follow one set of signs to get out for a great ride and not have to stop every few minutes to work out where the heck you are and what trail to take next.. Luckily though we did have 4 days of riding to get an idea of the lay of the land. There is lot of linking one trail to the next by 4wd tracks and logging roads which were often quite nice to ride on anyway. Next time though I might take advantage of the shuttle service to get out to the trails which were further away or more importantly, higher up, as I often spent the first 30 minutes of my rides slogging away just getting to where I wanted to start from and as I normally only had 2 hours or less to spend riding, whilst it was great for my fitness, it might have been more fun to spend more of that time on the single tracks.
Hopefully we'll get back to have more of a go some other time - it was great and I know I'm going to dream about the trails despite the scary bits.