This past weekend, we traveled to Snowshoe West Virginia to the Snowshoe Resort and Bike Park. We had a great time and I would highly recommend this resort to any families looking for a fun weekend get-away.
My wife, my daughter (6 yrs old), and I enrolled in Snowshoe's Family Clinic. It was a five-hour private lesson, which included the bikes, body armor, lift tickets, and lunch. We brought our own bikes, and we had some protective armor already, but Snowshoe supplied the rest. The clinic began with the instructor inspecting our bikes. He adjusted all of our controls (brakes & shifters) to a position that was more suitable for downhill riding and being in the proper "Ready Position". We then learned about proper body positions, braking, bike-body separation, etc., and performed various drills for each skill. After that, we did some more braking drills and downhill braking races (slowest wins).
Once the instructor was comfortable, we all went on our first downhill ride (on their easy trails). Early into the ride, my daughter lost control (and was not covering her brake levers). She picked up speed, panicked, and could not stop until she crashed. She sustained several bruises in her pelvic region and cried for about 15 minutes. About 30 minutes later, on her own accord, she got back on the bike and continued. Needless to say, I was very proud of her. From that point on, the instructor stayed right with my daughter and actually walked/ran beside her over every bridge, over every drop-off, and through every challenging section. He did more running than he did riding during that 5 hours! He earned his money that day, and we were very appreciative. Although I hated to see my daughter in pain, she did learn a valuable lesson about covering her brakes. It was a lesson that apparently words could not convey, because both the instructor and I had been telling her over and over again to cover her brakes. Well, after the crash, she covered her brakes without having to be told. At the end of the lesson, the instructor took us down an intermediate trail which actually seemed a bit easier that some of the “easy” technical trails. It was a “smoothie” and had lots of high-bank turns and jumps. We all enjoyed these trails the most (Lucid and Raging Bull). The instructor was Kevin Wu and we highly recommend him.
All in all, we enjoyed Snowshoe. It’s nice being able to ride down the mountain and then catch the ski lift back up to the top. The lodging and accommodations were pretty good (not the best, but not the worst). There are plenty of restaurants to choose from and many other non-mountain bike activities (zip line, mountain climbing wall for kids, swimming pools, beach at the lake, swimming in the lake, paddle boat rental, shopping,etc.).
If you are a family with kids and are looking for a fun mountain biking destination, you can’t go wrong with Snowshoe Resort.
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