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  1. #1
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    Recommended Beginner XC Trails in MA

    Dear Everyone,

    I am getting back into MTB after a five year absence. I am 35 years old. Can anyone recommend easy XC MTB Trails in MA where I can brush up on my skills? I don't want courses with greater than 1' drops, and frankly would prefer some nice singletrack to get started on.

    Any recommendations would be welcomed. Thank you.

    Cheers,

    John

  2. #2
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    new england riding is very technical. there are easier and less rough trails though, mainly fire roads. what is your location?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by reptilezs
    new england riding is very technical. there are easier and less rough trails though, mainly fire roads. what is your location?
    I am located in Boston MA so anywhere near (30 miles) Boston is okay with me.

  4. #4
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    Cutler Park is good - flat, small, and not very technical. It's not the most scenic place, but it's great for beginners.

    Great Brook Farm when you're ready for a slightly greater challenge (a few short climbs and some technical sections). Plus GBF sells their own ice cream, which is a great after ride treat.
    Last edited by antonio; 02-20-2010 at 06:18 PM.

  5. #5
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    Second Cutler Park, great place to get your legs back. Make sure you bring bug spray if it's that time of year when you go.

  6. #6
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    Thanks

    Thank you for the advice. My legs are in pretty good shape. I used to do crew in college and over the past year I have logged on 1.5 million meters on my Concept 2 rowing machine. I am more concerned just with my overall MTB skills being a bit rusty.

  7. #7
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    Cutler Park

    Quote Originally Posted by john1970
    Thank you for the advice. My legs are in pretty good shape. I used to do crew in college and over the past year I have logged on 1.5 million meters on my Concept 2 rowing machine. I am more concerned just with my overall MTB skills being a bit rusty.
    I like Cutler as well- my preferred route is start in the parking lot on Kendrick st in Needham, follow the street west over the bridge, take the first left, then head left into the woods. Hug the singletrack along the highway south, which dumps out on Valley Road. Follow Valley Rd, take right on Peacedale Rd, left on Great Plain Ave, east across I-95. Turn left into the park again, and hug the east side of I95 as best you can all the way back north up to the parking lot. takes under an hour for me now that i'm familiar with the route. have fun! here's a map of the trails: http://www.gnik.com/maps/cutler_park/

  8. #8
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    state park walking trails may be good, and i know theirs some one on the forum that rides the blue hills in jp. but i don't remember there user name, and i dont know how hard the riding is there.
    Quote Originally Posted by craftworks750
    Riding a mtb is like a reset button, 10 mins in and there is nothing else in the world that matters.
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  9. #9
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    Callahan State Park in Framingham. If your legs are good, the bike skills will come back fairly quickly. There are some nice climbs and an obstacle or two but certainly not technical. Its probably a small step above Cutler.
    If a little is good...a lot must be great!- B.J. McVane
    '08 Highline;'06(?) 5-Pack;'04 Specialized Enduro; '94 GF Tassajara

  10. #10
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    Willowdale in Ipswich MA has some nice non-tech singletrack and may suit your needs when things dry out or firm up.

  11. #11
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    Thank you for all the recommendations

    Dear everyone,

    Thank you for replying to my post. There are a lot of choices that I will try out once things dry out and firm up in the spring (early April). I am really looking forward to getting out on my new bike that I purchased in the middle of winter during a year end closeout.

    Cheers,

    John

  12. #12
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    I live in Boston too, and could show you a beginner loop at Harold Parker (45 minutes north on 93). Shoot me a PM if interested in April.

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    +1 for Cutler - you can get lost in cutler and still find your way back to the parking lot without too much trouble. Its a good place to ride at night too. Great map phipsi102. I've been doing the same with my android phone and My Tracks...works like a charm. For a shorter loop, you can cut across 128/95 on the RR tracks near the "motocross" loop on phipsi's map and ride the west side of the highway back to the overpass on Kendrick St.

    Phipsi, there are a couple of trails that parallel the east highway ridge line that aren't on your map. Just an FYI,

    +1 for Harold Parker - If youre going for the first time, go with a friend and take extra tubes and water/food. Print out one of the maps from the wicked ride of the east (around halloween every year) and plan to spend 3-4 hours. Some of the more rocky trails are awesome but require a bit of mental focus.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtforester
    +1 for Cutler - you can get lost in cutler and still find your way back to the parking lot without too much trouble. Its a good place to ride at night too. Great map phipsi102. I've been doing the same with my android phone and My Tracks...works like a charm. For a shorter loop, you can cut across 128/95 on the RR tracks near the "motocross" loop on phipsi's map and ride the west side of the highway back to the overpass on Kendrick St.

    Phipsi, there are a couple of trails that parallel the east highway ridge line that aren't on your map. Just an FYI,

    +1 for Harold Parker - If youre going for the first time, go with a friend and take extra tubes and water/food. Print out one of the maps from the wicked ride of the east (around halloween every year) and plan to spend 3-4 hours. Some of the more rocky trails are awesome but require a bit of mental focus.
    Just thought I should clarify, I did not create that map nor the site it is located on- I just found it useful, and therefore reposted the link. Enjoy!

  15. #15
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    If you want to venture out my way (central MA) here are a few options for you.

    Singletary: 15 miles super tight twisty singletrack. There are a few techy spots you might have to walk over but most of it is pretty smooth.

    Ribbon Candy: Super fun trail with zero climbing. Its pretty short (2.5mi) but can be linked to neighboring trail systems (Badlands, Goat Hill, Wolf Hill, West Hill Dam) but those systems are more techy and require steep climbs. Would make a great trip to take the wife and kids to walk the tow path along the river while you ride. Riverbend Farm is a nice place for a picnic and has live jazz on summer weekends.

    Upton State Forest: Loads of forest roads, double track, and fun single track. The singletrack is a little techy for a true beginner but easy by NE standards.

  16. #16
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    -- Cutler park - Needham
    -- Caryl Park/Naonet woodlands - Dover
    -- Blackstone canal/Ribon Candy - Uxebridge
    -- Calahan State Park - the Frammingham side
    -- Hopedale Pond - Hopedale really really really easy
    -- Great Brook farm - Carlisle
    -- Blue Hills - Milton
    -- Weston Woods - Weston
    I'm Better known as Splat

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