Spring in the Wasatch is the perfect time to explore the backcountry by bike. With an endless expanse of blooming flowers and trees, there’s no better way to see and experience Utah’s natural splendor. If you’re taking to the trails for the first time this spring, you’ll want to get started on the right foot. Or wheel, rather. So stick to these guidelines for the best mountain biking experience possible.
Get the Right Bike
The first thing you’ll need, as you’d might expect, is a mountain bike. There are three types to choose from: a rigid mountain bike, hardtail and full suspension. Each are designed for specific conditions. Fat bikes are of the rigid variety and hugely popular in the Wasatch. Hardtails are designed for most mountain trails and ideal for beginners. Lastly, full suspension bikes are for the seasoned pros at Summit Creek. These are built to endure large trail bumps and reduce the impact on the rider. Check out Noble Cycling in Spanish Fork or Hangar 15 in Provo to find the best bike for you.
Check Your Wheels & Tires
Even if you’re purchasing your first bike, it’s always smart to check your wheels and tires before hitting the tracks. Make sure the wheels are secured to the frame and fork, then examine the tires to see if they’re at all damaged or inflated. Then, spin the wheels to see if you hear the brake pads rubbing together. If so, you’re in need of a tuning.
Dress for Success
No ride is complete without the right attire. The first thing you’ll want is a helmet—of course—and a comfortable, breathable pair of shorts. Next up, you’ll want a lightweight shirt or jersey, as well as a backup shell just in case the weather changes. And, if you don’t have biking shoes, go for a pair of sneakers with good traction. Lastly, you may want a pair of gloves in the event that you fall on the trail. Your hands will thank you.
Before you hit the trails, it’s a good idea to get some practice in. If you’re sure of what to do but feel a little rusty, refresh on the tips outlined in this video. Or, if you’re getting on a bike for the first time, follow this tutorial that offers six easy skills and drills to learn anywhere. Head out to your driveway and get started.
Pick Your Trail
Now that you’re ready to go, choose from Summit Creek’s endless number of incredible trails. Some are rockier and steeper than others, so be sure that whichever one you choose fits your skill level. Then, once you feel prepared, go discover the seemingly infinite tracks beyond Summit Creek. Some of the favorites amongst locals include Three Forks Loop in Spanish Fork, as well as Slate Canyon Loop Trail, Rock Canyon Trail and Big Springs Hollow Trail in Provo. And, if you check out Provo Canyon, be sure to take a hiking detour to discover the most jaw-dropping views of Cascade Mountain.