It is safe to bet that most of us first became hooked on bikes in a woodland nearby our childhood household. The first sense of freedom, the sketchy wooden jumps, skid competitions and endless exploring became what we use our bikes for. Then some of us found road bikes, some found cars and study eventually became full time work. But those who did not stop playing in the woods are now affectionately called 'mountain bikers'.
For them nothing has really changed... only the jumps have become bigger, the trail systems more extensive and the 'home before the street lights come on' rule has gone out the window (for some). The life of a trail is more than just when you ride it; it is hours spent by unknown volunteers who have raked, dug, cut, sawed, shaped and sculpted what some of us call our local trails.
Before our Aussie import and media communications guy, Hamish, returned home to Australia after recently visiting us here in Partridge green, we took him out to discover the life of our trail in Steyning Woods. A local networks of trails which noddles itself around a fall line on the South Downs Way. It's no Whistler, Morzine or even Bike Park Wales... but its ours and could not have happened without the dedication of the trial builders.
Liam is has been a life long friend of us here at Hunt. He has also played a heavy role in creating the Steyning trails. Living at the base of the trails right next to the trail head has given him the chance to shape the trails of Steyning Woods. But as we found out when we were walking around the hill, it has also helped him and his friends shapes themselves to be who they are today. It might sound like a bit of a cliche for the click bate, but when you spend the majority of your teens and early twenties digging in a forest next to your home... it can only do one thing.
The best thing it there are thousands, if not tens of thousands of trails, which are like our Steyning Woods. Next time you are riding a trail just think of who spent their time to make it what it is today... and DON'T SKID IN THE CORNERS!