- So your local trail is boring,
now that could be a big problem.
And what is scary is this could happen to the best of us
with the best of trails,
well most of us because that does look pretty good actually.
Trails can be boring for many reasons,
for example, not all of us can enjoy the hand-carved trails
of a famous bike park, in fact, dare I say it,
most of us ride trails that don't even resemble a bike park.
Most of our trails are quite tame, lacking berms and jumps,
they can be over-pedally,
long on climbs, short on downhill action
and in most serious of cases,
they don't even have a view, yuck.
Even if you do have that dream trail as your local,
even then there's no guarantee
that you can resist boredom from setting in.
Simply overdoing it, just riding the same spot too much,
can take the joy away, make it stale.
Imagine living so close to an incredible trail
and somehow it loses its mojo.
Oh, that sucks so bad,
but that can happen and once it does,
then you're in the same boat
as someone with no trail at all.
Big problem so let's try and solve it.
First up invite some friends
to come and ride your trail with you.
No one is going to spice up your local spot
than a gang of mates ripping it up.
Every line you've ever seen
will be suddenly put under scrutiny,
new gaps will be found.
A fresh set of eyes can breathe new life into old trails.
Riding with your friends is one sure way
to rejuvenate any trail, including your old faithful.
The level of excitement is bound to double
just because you have no idea
what your friends will make of the trail
that you've got so much to owe to in terms of your riding.
There's two eventualities here,
you'll either be booming with pride
as they gush about how they've enjoyed such a great spot.
With this outcome you'll be pretty chuffed.
Of course you may get the opposite result
but at least you'll know which bit of the trail sucked
and what needs some improvement.
It might be time to get the old spade out
and do some trail maintenance.
If your local has corners and berms,
then chances are there are some sick gaps to be had.
You're looking for the moments in the trail
where one corner can be connected to another
via jumping out of the trail
and then landing back in the trail,
essentially leapfrogging a section of the track.
So look for those gaps.
These little treats won't be on every corner
and if you discover one, you'll need a certain amount
of skill and technique to make it work
but that's what makes these gems so valuable, so precious.
They're like the points in the video game
where a new skill opens up a whole new element
of the game itself.
Once you can link those gaps,
the track itself will take on a whole new character.
Next level, push yourself to clock the very best time
on your local lap or trail.
This side of riding is not always for everyone
because the competitive mentality can be quite stressful
but if liven up your local trail is on the agenda,
then this is the perfect way to bring it to life.
Set that initial time
and you'll have a marker to ride against.
I'm confident that as soon as you've started racing
against yourself then you'll find new lines, new fitness,
and a fresh new attitude towards your riding spot.
Setting good times is all about line choice
and managing your pace, especially if this is a big loop.
in fact, trying to go quick will test you
and it doesn't stop with timing laps or runs.
After that you can dissect your trail to create mini stages
that are reliant on a more sprint-based attack.
Of course you can go the other way with it
by setting times for multiple loops.
Either way, timing your riding is a great strategy
for breathing life into your ride.
Trials is where I cut my teeth
so I've always got that side of my riding on my mind,
but even if trials isn't something you understand
or know about, you can still use the basic concept
to create a version of trials
that will essentially be a whole new discipline
to unleash on your trail or riding spot.
The idea in trials is riding to keep your feet up
and challenge yourself with that basic idea
is enough to test your riding ability
in a fantastic and fun way.
To get started, think about what you can ride
without putting your feet down or dismounting for.
Then start trying to find ways to conquer those points.
The feeling of achievement you experience
as you tick these challenges off will be awesome.
At the end of the day each section you conquer
will also be another level up in your ability.
Useful trials obstacles and challenges you can look out for
are logs, rocks, steps, and routes, all of those work.
Also look for things like picnic benches
and street furniture
that could bring your local loop to life.
In trials, anything goes really,
the only no-no is putting your feet down.
Can you ride the entire local loop completely clean,
not a dab in sight?
Go on, I challenge you.
Ride it backwards, this is almost so obvious
you could easily overlook this as an option at all
and if you're thinking that it won't be that different,
you're in for a surprise.
This negative version of your trail
is going to be completely different, riding so differently
that you've essentially just discovered
an entirely new trail hidden in plain sight.
Now one thing to remember, it's really important actually,
is whether your local can be ridden in both directions.
If you start riding towards oncoming traffic,
especially when that traffic isn't expecting you,
it's going to end badly.
The same goes for riding up an exclusively down trail,
As good as this idea is,
it isn't worth that danger if that's the case,
but if this is a multi-directional trail
then make sure you turn things on their head
and ride that new direction.
You'll have broadened the potential of your trail
in a massive way.
So there you have it, a few options to breathe new life
into that old faithful trail.
I really hope it helps
and let me know in the comment section down below
and also in this poll above my head,
did I solve the problem?
And if there's something I've missed
that could help a fellow rider,
then make sure you put it in the comments down there too.
Help that rider get some extra enjoyment
from their local trail using your knowledge.
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and I'll see you next time.