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  1. #1
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    Ringwood 7/29.. FIRST TIME RIDER PLEASE HELP!!

    hey whats up guys.. me and a friend decided to start mountain biking and we are purchasing bikes in a few days and going ot ringowod on sunday.. i understand you go to parking lot C but any advice for us.. should we go on a weekday so we would be out of the way for the more advanced riders? we will prob be there around 9am .. anything we should know what color trails to take that are for begginers ?? any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!!

  2. #2
    Come on winter!
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    Personally I would go somewhere easier for your very first mountain bike ride. I would not have been happy at Ringwood for my first ride as it can be technical and hilly. It's also a pretty big place and could get confusing if you don't know where you're going.
    You might have more fun at a place like Kittatinny Valley State Park:

    http://www.mtbnj.com/directory.php?f=show&id=24

    Pretty hard to get lost here and there are many nice trails without too many climbs or rock gardens to deal with.

    Buy a helmet. Bring an extra tube, pump and water/energy drink. An energy bar or snack for during or after the ride is a good idea too.
    zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  3. #3
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    Agreed, Ringwood will be tough your first time out. First time I went mountain biking was by myself on some ka-razy trail in Pennsylvania somewhere. It was technical as hell and I had a pretty miserable time.

    Lewis Morris and Stewart (Newburgh, NY) both have lots of singletrack and are fun without being so technical.

    Get yourself a camelback backpack with a decent-sized reservoir. Throw all those things ytc mentioned plus a tire tool in there. Oh, it's a good idea to learn how to change a tube. Maybe not this week, but sometime soon.

    If you're set on Ringwood, go to Lot C and wait for someone to pull in and see if you can go out with them. I've gotten lost in Ringwood and its no fun.

  4. #4
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    check out www.mtbnj.com and find another trail. where do you live exactly? better recommendations can be given. choosing a place that is too tough can do a number on your enthusiasm for riding. Wawayanda, Ringwood, and Allamuchy are the hardest of North NJ.

    Don't worry about more advanced riders, you rarely run into other riders in a park, they don't get as crowded as you think. even with the lot full people are spread all over. if you do run into other riders the general rule is yield to the climbers (people going uphill). or if you are the climber and don't think you can make it you can be even more polite and just yield to the advanced rider.

  5. #5
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    I would say one of the better things you could do is find an experienced rider to go with you. 1) They'll more likely know where they are going on the trails. 2) They probably know how to work the tools should you need to fix your bike out on the trail. 3) Most importantly, they can help you out with advice on (or just by watching them clear) any harder parts of the trail you encounter. It's been a big help to me. You might also look for a regular beginner's ride at one of the parks near you.
    I love my mtb. It helps me see the world in beautiful colors. Like brown, blue, brown, blue, brown, blue...

  6. #6
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    thanks for the good replys guys.. but my friends are pretty set on ringwood even after i warned them.. we def. will just take it easy and def. bringing all those things mentioned plus a map .. also i just bought a mongoose xr-75 but its for young adults so the tires are 24" .. i wanted a small bike but i read reviews and saw it was a kids bike.. should i return ir or is it a good first bike.. it was cheap and i wont be doing anything crazy with it

  7. #7
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    I'm beginning to think this is a joke.

    But since i have nothing better to do at work....

    If you're not joking, no, that isn't a good bike for technical mountain biking. Ringwood is technical. I guess you can stay on the carriage roads and hope that the person who built your bike knows what they were doing. A decent starter mountain bike is about $500 for hardtail and $1.2K for full suspension (brand new).

  8. #8
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    I would not trust a department store bike on any trails in Northern NJ. I recommend going to a local bike shop.

  9. #9
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    Check out these pics of the Cannonball trail at Ringwood/Ramapo Mtn posted in the past:

    Rocky Zilla Picture Show

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcamp82
    thanks for the good replys guys.. but my friends are pretty set on ringwood even after i warned them.. we def. will just take it easy and def. bringing all those things mentioned plus a map .. also i just bought a mongoose xr-75 but its for young adults so the tires are 24" .. i wanted a small bike but i read reviews and saw it was a kids bike.. should i return ir or is it a good first bike.. it was cheap and i wont be doing anything crazy with it
    I would return the bike if only because buying from a local bike shop is always a good idea. They'll advise you on what to buy, fit you for size, and make repairs and suggestions down the road. Be up front with your budget and you'll get far, far more for your money. You don't need to "do anything crazy" to warrant getting a good bike from a local shop.

  11. #11
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    Let them hit the trails- We must appease the singletrack gods with sacrifice!
    It's ALWAYS funny when it happens to somebody else
    Lookie at what I found- http://www.f88me.com check it out, now

  12. #12
    it's just baby phat..
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcamp82
    hey whats up guys.. me and a friend decided to start mountain biking and we are purchasing bikes in a few days and going ot ringowod on sunday.. i understand you go to parking lot C but any advice for us.. should we go on a weekday so we would be out of the way for the more advanced riders? we will prob be there around 9am .. anything we should know what color trails to take that are for begginers ?? any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!!
    after reading all of the replies it's amazing that you haven't decided to return your bikes and take up bird watching! the photo link that was posted is not what the bulk of this park is like. ringwood can be fierce or tame depending on where you venture. seriously, you should be fine. bring a tube, a multi tool, a pump and water. stick to the fire roads and you'll have a blast.

    regarding your department store bikes; i wouldn't worry too much. just get out there and pedal. if/when things start breaking you may want to consider upgrading but for now it's great that you're motivated to mountain bike. if you need a guide i can meet you and put together a nice beginer loop.

    nelson

  13. #13
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    warnings shouldn't be misunderstood for discouragement.

    "also i just bought a mongoose xr-75 but its for young adults so the tires are 24" .. i wanted a small bike but i read reviews and saw it was a kids bike.. should i return ir or is it a good first bike.."

    I don't care which way you slice it, for getting into mtb'ing this is not a good starter. Like i said before the carriage roads will be fine, but be warned that department store bikes aren't always built professionally.

  14. #14
    it's just baby phat..
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    Quote Originally Posted by idbrian
    warnings shouldn't be misunderstood for discouragement.

    "also i just bought a mongoose xr-75 but its for young adults so the tires are 24" .. i wanted a small bike but i read reviews and saw it was a kids bike.. should i return ir or is it a good first bike.."

    I don't care which way you slice it, for getting into mtb'ing this is not a good starter. Like i said before the carriage roads will be fine, but be warned that department store bikes aren't always built professionally.
    ok..you win. happy? so why don't we go for a ride? maybe i can learn a thing or two from ya?

    nelson

  15. #15
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    adios mtbr

    I'm definitely sure you are better than me, i haven't been riding for more than a year and half.

  16. #16
    it's just baby phat..
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    Quote Originally Posted by idbrian
    adios mtbr

    I'm definitely sure you are better than me, i haven't been riding for more than a year and half.
    brian, it really has nothing to do with me being better than you or vice versa. please understand that my post has more to do with motivating our newbie more than attacking you personally. if the 24" bike that he bought fits him then i'm still of the opinion that he should ride it! you don't have to agree with me but it's just my opinion. that's why this is a public forum!

    now, you're quick to point out my departure post. yes, i said good bye and then i said i was back. is this against the law? seriously, we should get together for a ride and maybe even a BIG HUG?

    nelson

  17. #17
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    Ok, sounds good.

  18. #18
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    lol thanks alot phatbiker!! im going to my local bike shop and purchase a decent begginer bike.. im 20yrs old lol so no way am i going to buy a "decent 500$ bike, with 1.2k$ worth of full suspension" lol like you said this is a public forum and i understand you are going to get the no good answers or ppl being smart but i appreciate it phatbiker and the other good posts and you guys see that we just wanna start up something new cause we all go to college and this is a good way for all of us to get together during the summer and leave the GF's behind since we all go to different colleges ... those pictures were amazing by the way i really cant wait to go!!

  19. #19
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    No, the $500 is for a entry level bike that only has a front shock (aka, a hardtail), and the $1.2K was for a bike that has front and rear suspension.

    I would advise scouring craigslist for a used entry level hardtail. Keep researching the product reveiews on this site for hardtail mountain bikes. Read the review before getting the bike. For the money you want to spend you will get more out of a used bike in decent shape.

  20. #20
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    anyone have any suggestions for a good starter bike.. i was looking at the schwinn frontier GS

    http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/...ail.php?id=765

  21. #21
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    I suggest getting an entry lever bike from Trek Specialized or Cannondale ?
    Trek 4300 or 4500 - Specialized Hardrock or Cannondale F300 or 400 ?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcamp82
    anyone have any suggestions for a good starter bike.. i was looking at the schwinn frontier GS

    http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/...ail.php?id=765
    If you are serious about spending that kind of money you should look into either Trek or Jamis. You can get a pretty decent entry level hardtail with entry level components. The Trek 4300-4500 and The Jamis Durango or Cross Country 3.0.
    "hit hard, hit fast, hit often HOOAH!!!!"

    Blog of mine: http://mtnsprts.blogspot.com

  23. #23
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    shameless plug...if you're interested, i have a 2004 specialized hardrock SS that i'm looking to get rid of. it needs some attention (seat post and a rennen chain tensioner) but its a good bike.

    other than that, to stay on topic, you can get a decent aluminum hardtail for about what you're looking to spend from pretty much any of the big companies. visit your LBS and talk to them. hopefully they'll listen.

  24. #24
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    With you 100%

    Quote Originally Posted by phatbiker
    brian, it really has nothing to do with me being better than you or vice versa. please understand that my post has more to do with motivating our newbie more than attacking you personally. if the 24" bike that he bought fits him then i'm still of the opinion that he should ride it! you don't have to agree with me but it's just my opinion. that's why this is a public forum!

    now, you're quick to point out my departure post. yes, i said good bye and then i said i was back. is this against the law? seriously, we should get together for a ride and maybe even a BIG HUG?

    nelson
    My first mtb was a Murry and I took it to Plattekill. That was about 10 years (and several bikes) ago. But it served it purpose and got me completely hooked on the sport.

    About the return of Phat, it is one of the best things to happen to the forums in a long time. A lot of people can learn a lot of things from him. Take him up on his ride offer.

  25. #25
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    Ride a bunch and see what you like. You might also check out the reviews and some of the other forums. I have an '06 Giant Yukon. It's a hard-tail and I got it for less than $470. I think after I added a helmet and a small repair tool I ended up spending mid $500's. It's been great for me. Definitely check out the other forums (beginner's and what bike to buy) and reviews to get an idea of what bikes you want to look at, and get out there and ride them. Good luck!
    I love my mtb. It helps me see the world in beautiful colors. Like brown, blue, brown, blue, brown, blue...

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