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  1. #26
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    Also confidence is everything... Most of my crashes can be traced to some kind of hesitation.

    What kind of king is in your area? Any good sized hills or mountains? Any steep trails on it?

    Can you ride those trails without riding the brakes? If not, ride it until you can.

  2. #27
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    That's a silly question. Doesn't all mountain-biking involve going downhill? Anyone ever hear of uphilling?

    Seriously, though, whatever downhilling means just means going faster and bigger. I'd say, armor up including a full-faced helmet and hitting a resort like Northstar or Mammoth on whatever bike you currently own, just ride and see how you like it. I'd check out trails like Live Wire or Flame Out and if you're enjoying yourself, step up to trails like Gypsy, Pho Dogg, Big/Little Trees. You don't need a "downhill" bike to enjoy yourself, but eventually, may want to upgrade if you keep doing it.

    Main thing about downhillling the resorts is you need durable tires, tubes, and ultimately, durable wheels. Weight isn't typically an issue.

    Generally, it's not the ride, it's the rider, but the equipment will certainly help if you get into it.

  3. #28
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    Single most important item (way more important than the bike) that you can purchase is a Dakine pick up pad.

    Racks are for spandex wearing grape smugglers.

    In all seriousness, buy a North Star season pass and get up there as much as you can this summer. There are very few trails in the greater bay area that warrant a true DH bike.

  4. #29
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    One more thing - Besides the full-face helmet, I know it's not cheap, but I would highly recommend getting a neck brace, like a Leatt. I think they go new for as little as $200. I'd almost recommend one over arm and leg armor, if cost is an issue. Broken arms/legs heal. Broken necks, not so much. I would get a full set of armor before a new bike for sure.

    Not to scare you, but there have been a couple episodes of first timers at the DH park (and a couple pros) who crashed bad and were rendered cripples for life. I'd do everything I could to avoid that, so imho, it is a minor investment relatively speaking.

  5. #30
    I just wanna go fast...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swell Guy View Post
    That's a silly question. Doesn't all mountain-biking involve going downhill? Anyone ever hear of uphilling?
    I think when a lot of people say "downhilling" they mean doing DH races or getting to ride some gnarly trails that require a bike which is no fun to pedal up. Either way, when I go ride some dh, I try to avoid doing as much "uphilling" as possible. That ****'s dangerous and you could pull a hammie or get dehydrated.


    Otherwise, I'm just out on a "ride", which is also fun.

  6. #31
    rox
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    i realize most people think theyre too good for this but dont overlook the value of a riding clinic. there are a number of good organizations and individuals in the area that can teach you new skills such as bikeskills or betterride. I have seen ian massey and graeme pitts offering individual coaching as well. you can also look for instructional videos on youtube to help with specific skills.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzkil View Post
    You don't that's why your seat is lowered... not for the looks more for the clearance. Those suckers need room to swing.
    True, no sitting in downhilling even if you could.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swell Guy View Post
    One more thing - Besides the full-face helmet, I know it's not cheap, but I would highly recommend getting a neck brace, like a Leatt. I think they go new for as little as $200. I'd almost recommend one over arm and leg armor, if cost is an issue. Broken arms/legs heal. Broken necks, not so much. I would get a full set of armor before a new bike for sure.

    Not to scare you, but there have been a couple episodes of first timers at the DH park (and a couple pros) who crashed bad and were rendered cripples for life. I'd do everything I could to avoid that, so imho, it is a minor investment relatively speaking.
    Well said.
    Abandoned the 26" wheel in May '03

  9. #34
    locked - time out
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdamschen View Post
    I think when a lot of people say "downhilling" they mean doing DH races or getting to ride some gnarly trails that require a bike which is no fun to pedal up. Either way, when I go ride some dh, I try to avoid doing as much "uphilling" as possible. That ****'s dangerous and you could pull a hammie or get dehydrated.


    Otherwise, I'm just out on a "ride", which is also fun.
    Yah, it's not clear what the OP is looking to do. DH races? or just go fast downhill? is he going to shuttle all the time, or ride uphill?

    I think the goal is somewhat obtuse.

    Just get out there and ride. You'll become better and both up AND down hill.

  10. #35
    Wēk Ss
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    what if he's stuck on a mountaintop and can't get down?

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by IAmHolland View Post
    what if he's stuck on a mountaintop and can't get down?
    perma-shuttle driver.

    And just to cut through all the sarcasm in the xcnorcal forums, the biggest points about DH are where to ride and where to learn. Trails that are cut purely for DH in the Bay Area do not exist. Everything requires you to pedal, which in turn, bringing a dh bike to these trails both sucks to pedal and overkill because most trails are catered to the lowest common denominator of rider: fireroads, or 1' tall jumps with no landings.

    If you do happen upon any trails that require talent (aka willingness to huck) in the bay there's a 99% chance it's illegal. I can't justify owning a full on DH rig when my band-aided, overly slack 6" wanna-be-DH bike does well enough.
    Last edited by JoeBMX; 04-25-2012 at 05:00 PM.
    YouTube | #1 Rule for California mtb: If you're having fun, it's illegal.

  12. #37
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    If your on FB and in the northern california area I can help. I have a group called NorCal Gravity that is all about meeting for shuttles and exploring BLM land that is accessible to us via communication with the Ukiah, Ca office. If your interested check us out on Facebook.

  13. #38
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    kool well i was told that pacifica has good downhill.

  14. #39
    Flyin Canine
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    Do yourself a favor and get this book
    Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition: Brian Lopes, Lee McCormack: Amazon.com: Kindle Store
    Great info and pretty damn cheap compared to learning by broken collar bones and ripped jeans.

  15. #40
    I just wanna go fast...
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    Quote Originally Posted by youngTrider View Post
    kool well i was told that pacifica has good downhill.
    Be prepared to push or pedal. Don't be a ****** to hikers and horses. There are places there you can get ALOT of poison oak real fast. Wear long sleeves and bring a change of clothes if you get it easily. Ride with a friend and don't ride over your head.

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