General Information On Group Levels: Each of our group rides will be broken down into multiple ability groups to allow riders to choose the best group for their level. The group rides start at 6 p.m. and typically end around 8 p.m., however this is not all ride time. The ride time will vary depending on the trails chosen and the abilities of the riders in that group. Each trail and venue has its own unique features and levels of difficulty, with some trails being flatter and faster while other trails will be hillier and slower. It is always ok to walk sections that are too difficult for you. If you find yourself at the front of the pack of your ride group, try moving up to the next level at the next group ride; it will challenge you more and you may be pleasantly surprised by how well you do. Please feel free to ask the WMBA ride leaders if you are undecided or unclear on which group to ride with for that particular trail and we will help guide you to the appropriate group.
Beginner: This group is ideal for a rider who has little experience mountain biking on trails. The beginner group will ride at a slower pace and cover less mileage than the other groups. The trails chosen will be less-technical; however there may be some sections that the rider chooses to walk due to the grade, width or rockiness of that section.
Intermediate: This group is ideal for a rider who feels comfortable riding a mountain bike on easier trails and wants to be challenged with a higher level. The intermediate group will ride at a faster pace than the beginner group and cover more mileage, with some trail sections that may be technically-challenging. This is a good place to start for road cyclists or others with decent fitness but little technical skills that want to experience mountain biking.
Advanced: This group is ideal for a rider with fitness and experience riding moderately-technical terrain. The advanced group is the fastest group and will cover the most mileage, while seeking out some technically challenging areas.
Still not sure about group rides? Check out board member, Jen Zink’s first group ride article in our April 2013 newsletter.
Skills Rides: A skills ride generally stays in one area to practice skills and complete drills that help with bike maneuvering WMBA offers four skill specific rides a year- two in May. These rides are led by our teammate, Lianna Miller, a USA Cycling Level 2 coach. Lianna will hone in on techniques that will help you feel more confident on mountain bike trails. You’ll have the opportunity to practice in a grassy area doing drills that everyone from the most beginner rider to the most seasoned expert will have heaps of fun at (and get better at riding their bikes at the same time). We especially want to encourage beginners not to be intimidated; we’ll be doing all these drills in a flat grassy field. We hope that learning and practicing skills and drills will make you more confident on the bike trails!