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  1. #1
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    From singletrack to doubletrack

    When I first took up mountain biking at the beginning of the year I started off riding doubletrack (10 foot wide dirt paths based on xcountry ski trails) that meandered through some nice forests...and I was hooked. I decided to take the next step and try singletrack (where I bike, these are very tight trails with lots of twists, rocks/roots, and plenty of steep climbs/decents). Though the singletrack is more challenging, I have to say that I prefer (for now anyway) the doubletrack. I've also took the mountain bike to the road more lately so I can ride more often (don't have to drive to trails and weather is less of an issue).

    I find I go faster on doubletrack because there are fewer obstacles and less attention required. I like this because I get a better aerobic workout and get to look around more at nature. There are still climbs and decents, just more gradual. I'd say I have a 1% chance of falling when riding doubletrack and like a 10-25% chance on singletrack...I don't like falling so the odds are better with doubletrack.

    Anyway, I know there are some hardcore, thrillseekers here who probably crave the challenge of the singletrack I mentioned (or even more extreme conditions), but I was wondering if anyone is in the same boat as me and actually prefers what I call "doubletrack".

  2. #2
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    As you continue to ride......

    Your skills will develop (bike handling and fitness). You may find yourself venturing back into the single track. In fact, you may start seeking it out. Feel free to stop whenever to view the scenery. No reason to let it pass you by.

    As far as fitness requirements, a stiff techy single track climb will work me way more than a firelane climb.

    It is, however, all about fun. If you are enjoying it, then you are on the right trail.

    'nuff said...
    Tim

  3. #3
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    When I first started riding, I was all about the doubletrack. I'm still not very good on tech stuff, but now my preference depends on my mood. I like to tackle singletracks when I want to challenge myself, but sometimes I just want to cruise so I'll go back to doubletrack or even paved bike paths. Not all singletracks are created equal, though. I've found one or two that are fairly level and smooth..

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldschool
    As you continue to ride......

    Your skills will develop (bike handling and fitness). You may find yourself venturing back into the single track. In fact, you may start seeking it out. Feel free to stop whenever to view the scenery. No reason to let it pass you by.

    As far as fitness requirements, a stiff techy single track climb will work me way more than a firelane climb.

    It is, however, all about fun. If you are enjoying it, then you are on the right trail.

    'nuff said...
    Tim
    Fun is definitely what you should focus on. I try to mix up a combo of both to keep skill levels up. when I don't want to ride, but know I should (cause I'm an old bastard that flys a desk all day) I stick with the fire roads and bike paths. That way I can burn some time in the saddle without really paying too much attention. I still have to agree that a few hours on good singletrack is about the most rewarding time in the saddle. Especially since I upgraded to an FS bike.
    TGIF
    Cheers
    grover

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonievut
    When I first took up mountain biking at the beginning of the year I started off riding doubletrack (10 foot wide dirt paths based on xcountry ski trails) that meandered through some nice forests...and I was hooked. I decided to take the next step and try singletrack (where I bike, these are very tight trails with lots of twists, rocks/roots, and plenty of steep climbs/decents). Though the singletrack is more challenging, I have to say that I prefer (for now anyway) the doubletrack. I've also took the mountain bike to the road more lately so I can ride more often (don't have to drive to trails and weather is less of an issue).

    I find I go faster on doubletrack because there are fewer obstacles and less attention required. I like this because I get a better aerobic workout and get to look around more at nature. There are still climbs and decents, just more gradual. I'd say I have a 1% chance of falling when riding doubletrack and like a 10-25% chance on singletrack...I don't like falling so the odds are better with doubletrack.

    Anyway, I know there are some hardcore, thrillseekers here who probably crave the challenge of the singletrack I mentioned (or even more extreme conditions), but I was wondering if anyone is in the same boat as me and actually prefers what I call "doubletrack".
    I started out quite a few years ago riding much like you describe.....mostly fire roads, some paved. I didn't know any better and I wasn't familiar with singletrack riding. THe few single tracks that I did ride were because I was following someone. These were usually very flat and not very long. I felt much as you do. I enjoyed the view and I rode primarily for the aerobic conditioning and the fantastic views.

    Fast forward a bunch of years.....I now try to ride only singletrack. The more technical the better I love the challenge of trying to clean 1 and 2 foot ledges, rocks and roots on the way up. Then you get the drops on the way down. I still get great workouts, it's just that they're a mix of aerobic and anaerobic riding. I still do long climbs, but try to use singletracks whenever possible.

    It's all good as long as you're riding. The only negative side to going more technical, for me anyways, is that I no longer ride with many of my friends. They, for the most part, still prefer the longer, more aerobic but less technical riding style. I ride with them occasionally, but it's not the same.

    Keep riding. It's all good!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by grover
    Fun is definitely what you should focus on.
    That nails it right there. I love singletrack, but it's not for everyone. I would never dream of doing North Shore, but somepeople love it. I think the main thing is you are out there having fun, and things like getting a great workout are added bonuses

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by NumbNutz
    That nails it right there. I love singletrack, but it's not for everyone. I would never dream of doing North Shore, but somepeople love it. I think the main thing is you are out there having fun, and things like getting a great workout are added bonuses
    And it allows you to continue to consume beer when you are old and not turn into a complete couch potatoe. I love it when people find out you like to get muddy and fall down for a hobbie! Gotta ride this afternoon cause I'm going to a concert in Petaluma tonight and I'm afraid that I'll be having.......................more beer! If I seem focussed on the beer it's because I don't drink during the week. Thus allowing me to drink twice as much on the weekends. Damn, I'm irresponsible

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