Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pine Hill Park

Two words.  Holy crap.  Four more words.  Find of the year.  I could probably go on like this for awhile.  Pine Hill Park in Rutland, VT is ridiculous.  I am completely dumbfounded as to how this place has cruised under my radar until now.  Imagine a 300 acre playground with trails built by a cross between renaissance masters and civil engineers and you have Pine Hill Park.

Shaun needed to escape Cambridge to avoid estrogen fest '10 and the original plan was to meet Dbone at Millstone.  Turns out the drive from 'Toga to Barre was a bit longer than anticipated so we began scouring the internet to find a place that would work a bit better.  Hit VMBA's site and discovered a video for some trails in Rutland.  Surprisingly the trails looked really good in the vid and upon checking their site and seeing the map there looked to be a decent amount of mileage on site so we decided to check it out.  Best decision we've made in a long time.

New England IS Fall

The park was maxed out and trail density was high with a lot of intersections but luckily all the intersections were numbered so I went about plotting a route and making us a cue sheet with all the turns we would need to make and taped it to my top tube.

Wasn't sure if it was going to work, all it would take is one wrong turn or missed or unmarked intersection and the whole thing would go to hell.  But we lucked out and it actually worked out really well.  Saved us a ton of time making decisions at trail heads and kept us moving more consistently.  I ended up plotting out about a 10 mile ride and we did some extra stuff twice that was too fun not too as well as some exploring around Rocky Pond.

I don't even know where to start about explaining how awesome these trails are.  Berms EVERYWHERE.  Think about a location you ride frequently...I'm sure there are lots of places where you might think to yourself 'man I wish that turn was bermed, that could be so sweet.'  You will never have to think that at Pine Hill.  Absolutely amazing bridge work.  Easily the most impressive bridges I have ever seen riding anywhere.  Definitely be sure to check out the pics at their website...incredible.

you kidding me? Playoffs?!

Much more vert than I was expecting but it was a pleasant surprise.  You can get a pretty good amount of work in but still be able to rip and have a blast.  We basically did two laps around the park and there was still plenty to do or opportunities to ride things backwards, etc.  It would take a pretty long time to get bored.

All around it was a perfect day.  Tons of amazing singletrack.  We got to see a dad ditch his son and yell "Now I get to do some REAL riding!" as he very slowly spun up a climb wearing some awesome sweatpants.  AND we got to meet the mastermind behind it all in the parking lot after the ride.  Michael Smith has dedicated a TON of time to the park and we chatted a bit about a new banked bridge he is building as well as a 12 hour race planned for next Fall called the Lunar 12 that sounds far too good to miss.  More than likely going to be in attendance for that next year.

Dustin surveying the future location of the Lunar 12 from on high

So yeah if it is not apparent already if you live in New England and you have not ridden Pine Hill Park, you need to, case closed.  As soon as Shaun uploads his pics I will steal some and post a few here.


  1. yea man...there is no way to say too many awesome things about this place....our ride was epic thanks to your cue sheet and the apres was epic due to michael's tip on "table 24"....switchback ale and fondue!! too good of a day to be true....we definitely have to do the "lunar quarry 12"....i freak out every time i read the description....unreal.

  2. dude, amazing that you literally plotted out a map of when to take each turn and taped it to your bike. you are the king of organization