Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in America, and when sports are rapidly expanding, there’s often a fair amount of pushback and a lack of understanding from communities involved. I remember in my home town, not too long ago, there was a push to build mountain biking trails on property that (I believe) was once owned by the United States Military. The push was a mess of miscommunication and just a general misunderstanding of what the trail builders were really trying to do, so, as far as I’m aware, the trails were never actually built.
In a country in which liability is so incredibly important, public mountain biking trails certainly have the ability to stress out town officials and land owners. Biketown, a short documentary from Freehub Magazine, discusses the stress surrounding liability and the lack of understanding that comes from mountain biking adjacent communities, but that’s not what the ~40 minute documentary is really about.
“It’s hard for somebody to say ‘well, we’re just building a trail!’ It’s not as simple as building a trail. The process to getting to the decision to build the trail takes us a long time.” – Bill Conroy, District Ranger of Hebo Ranger District
This documentary is about the communication, partnerships, and the paths taken to reach the necessary understandings required to actually build a trail, and it’s told beautifully. If you have an extra 40 minutes in your day, I strongly recommend you give this a watch. Even if you’re not a mountain biker yourself, it’s interesting, moving, and inspiring.
“Biketown is a story of mountain bikers, unlikely partnerships and the communities they create.” – Freehub Magazine on YouTube
Image Credit: Freehub Magazine on YouTube