Mountain biking skills courses are set to take place in England’s largest forest this summer.
Starting this weekend, bikers who want to ride faster, smoother and safer can sign up for a series of tuition events deep in the heart of Kielder Water & Forest Park.
Ruth Griffin, from Purple Mountain bike hire, said: “Mountain biking is one of the most fun and exhilarating things you can do but it’s vital people have the right training before hitting the trails.
“Mountain biking injuries peak in 20 to 39 year old riders and are usually caused by striking an obstacle and losing control of the bicycle, often while riding downhill at excessive speeds over unfamiliar terrain.”
The carefully structured courses aim to equip riders with the skills to tackle the trails at Kielder – some of the best singletrack trails in the UK. Ruth added: “By the end of these courses you will be riding like a pro.”
From developing the confidence to accelerate out of corners to bunny hops, jumps and drop offs, highly experienced instructors will be on hand for beginners and accomplished riders alike.
The courses are for all ages (children and adults) and vary in cost and duration. For more information go to www.purplemountain.co.uk or call 01434 250 532. All courses include instruction, lunch and refreshments, one to one feedback and 10% discount from future courses. Mountain bike hire is available if pre-booked. Courses start from Purple Mountain hire centre next to Kielder Castle Visitor Centre.
Saturday 13 August, Mountain biking skills level 1
Learn: mountain bike preparation, riding position, correct use of gears, braking, introduction to cornering, climbing and descending techniques, small drop offs and singletrack techniques. Cost: £79. Age 16+.
Sunday 14 August, Jumps and drops mountain biking
The session will cover basics to advanced bunny hops, pre jumps, table tops, double jumps and drop offs. Cost: £89. Age 16+.
Saturday 20 August, Mountain biking skills level 2
Learn: mountain bike preparation, more active riding position, climbing and descending on steep terrain, drop offs and step ups, cornering, front wheel lifting and riding singletracks at speed. Cost: £79. Age 16+.
Sunday 21 August, Steep and rocky mountain biking
Gain the technical skills and confidence to tackle steep and rocks descents and climbs. Learn to tackle the Deadwater Trail and other areas of natural steep trail in the Kielder area. Cost: £99. Age 16+.
Saturday 27 August, No fear mountain biking night ride
Plunge into darkness for a completely new and exhilarating experience – riding in the dead of the night. Cost: £15. Age 16+.
Sunday 28 August, Fast and flowing mountain biking
Learn how to carry speed through corners, take fast sweeping loose bends, tight technical turns and switchbacks. Develop the knowledge when to brake smoothly to make the ride flow. Cost: £89. Age 16+.
Wednesday 29 August, Junior mountain biking skills level 1
Have fun learning new skills to make mountain bike riding safer while exploring the forest. Cost: £29. Age 9+.
Thursday 30 August, Junior mountain biking skills level 2
For more advanced, regular riders - have fun developing existing skills to make mountain bike riding safer while exploring the forest. Cost: £29. Age 9+.
Kielder Water & Forest Park, which spans 250 square miles, is home to the largest forest in England and the largest man-made lake in northern Europe. It was voted the most tranquil place in England by the Campaign to Protect Rural England. For more information go to www.visitkielder.com.
For more information contact Philippa Clark, communications advisor (Kielder Water & Forest Park), on 0191 301 5538, 07970 897 756 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Kielder Water & Forest Park Development Trust is a registered charity working to develop the Park as an inspirational place for leisure, exploration and fun.
Members, who have appointed directors/trustees to serve on the board, are Northumbrian Water, Forestry Commission, Calvert Trust Kielder and Northumberland County Council. Affiliate organisations that are not members but have a close working relationship with KWFPDT include Arts Council England, Northumberland Wildlife Trust, Environment Agency, The Scout Association and local decision making bodies such as the parish councils.