I had a chance to ride these trails a few times this season and I wanted to throw it out there to the greater Massachusetts Mountain biking community that these trails have gotten better and better, AND, that the whole region is becoming a place worth visiting.
1. There are a number of great new trails along the climbing side of Berkshire East (and across the Top). Rigorous XC still describes most of the trails, but they really meander and play nicely with the striking River valley terrain.
2. Improvements and sweat equity abound throughout the system:
a. On the Berkshire East Side: Dozens of corners have been reworked, Pulaskied and McCleoded. Many of the original trails have seen some back breaking benching
b. Zoar trails have probably seen the most striking hard work improvements (as these are carved into the most demanding terrain of the system, this makes sense). Ride the Zoar trails and, yes, you'll still find narrow and challenging ascents and descents, but also outrageously impressive bridges, rock work and general trail enhancements that celebrate both the truculent hard work of the local Zoar trail crew and the adventurous xc riding of the region
c. Warfield Trails have also gotten necessary, impressive bridges (especially on the Brook Trail), some needed benching and some reworked lines. Yep, Red Zone from the Top is still tricky old school single track experience (one I happen to appreciate and enjoy, but it is what it is), but There is Also the Sweet 16 trail. That is a trail I think embraces everything great about New England mountain bike riding and should appeal to a wide variety of game riders.
Finally I wanted to express the same sentiment I had when I first rode these trails 3.5 years ago. Gratitude! These trails are an amalgam of generously opened Private properties.
The owners of these properties have done more than merely 'allowed' biking, but along with some tireless volunteers, have put in real leadership, vision and work into making this a great region to Mountain bike.
So thanks to all, (Berkshire East Owners-Schaeffer Family, Zoar-Bruce Lessels, and The Other Owners of this Great Piece of the Valley).
OH-one more plug, Berkshire East and Zoar both run great and very different Zip-line operations, plus Zoar has rafting/ kayaking etc, AND Berkshire East will soon have it's very unique 'Mountain Coaster up and Running. All this, coupled with the extensive mountain biking at CTS and Hawley (or Nearby DAR) is turning this lovely little spot on rte 2 into one of the best multi-day destinations to visit for active travelers and their families. Road Biking is the best in Massachusetts as well as is the Hiking.
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