Approximately 40 million people in the U.S. have taken up mountain biking, and you might be surprised that they aren’t all 20-somethings. Lately, their parents and grandparents have been gearing up and hitting the trails as well.
The Northwest, with its roller-coaster, forested landscape is the perfect terrain for this sport. Trail crews have blazed their way through the Northwest, creating mountain biking parks close to home that enthusiasts in the rest of the country are envious of. In Washington alone, there are hundreds of mountain bike trails. And they don’t just magically appear, but are the result of grassroots advocacy organizations and volunteers who are toiling to create and maintain the trails.
Build a mountain bike trail and they will come. Take the Maple Valley area as an example. Rick Heinz, mountain biking advocate and Maple Valley resident, says crews have worked tirelessly to develop four mountain biking trails in this area of rural and suburban King County—Summit Ridge, Lake Sawyer, Black Diamond Open Space and Henry’s Ridge—and it hasn’t taken long for enthusiasts from near and far to discover them. According to Heinz, who rides these trails frequently, the trails have earned a reputation among mountain bikers as some of the best in the Puget Sound region.
Mountain biking parks not only give riders a place to play, but they also conserve the land from commercial and residential development, ensuring that future generations can enjoy these open spaces as well.
For information about the four mountain biking trails in the Maple Valley area, go to the following websites: Summit Ridge, evergreenmtb.org/trails/summit-ridge; Lake Sawyer, evergreenmtb.org/trails/lake-sawyer; Black Diamond Open Space, evergreenmtb.org/trails/bdos; Henry’s Ridge, evergreenmtb.org/trails/henrys-ridge.