Life is about the journey - some roads are not always what they seem but you sure learn a great deal from them!
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Published August 16th 2013
You can basically ride a mountain bike anywhere, however thanks to the Western Australian Mountain Bike Association (WAMBA), there are 9 designated tracks that can be ridden. WAMBA is the association behind creating and building these tracks so that the tracks can be enjoyed by both the social and the more competitive mountain biker.
The White Dot tracks are designed for the casual rider who has no experience in mountain biking. These tracks have very little skill area, and are flat on the most half. Lake Leshenaultia mountain bike track is the only white dot track in Perth.
Different Level Trails for Different Skilled Riders
The Green Dot tracks can also be ridden by the casual riders. There are some areas that will require some skill, such as riding over a small log or riding an area that is a little narrow, however there are, generally, no areas that require a more advance skill such as jumping over a big log. The Kep Trail, Munda Biddi Trail, Heritage Trail, and Carinyah Track are designated green dot tracks. Of course, some areas may require some fitness where you need to climb up a hill, but unlike road cycling, if you are struggling with a section on a mountain bike trail, it is acceptable to climb off your bike and walk that section.
The Blue Square is for the more skilled rider. You can be guaranteed to experience some more technical sections on this course from sharp hair pin bends to down hill rides with jumps. The Forsyths Mill, Kalamunda Circuit, the Goat Farm, and Langford Park are all blue square courses.
The single Black Diamond is very technical and is classed as very difficult. These tracks are designed for riders who are very skilled and these trails will have areas where you will not only be travelling fast, but you will also need to execute a skill while travelling at a high speed. The goat farm is the only track that has a black diamond course.
Marius Maasewerd riding a double black diamond course in the World Cup Championships. (photo courtesy of redbull.com)
The double Black Diamond is classed as extremely difficult. It will have areas where tracks are very uneven, there will be some extremely fast areas, and a rider will need to execute skills within seconds of each other. The only double black diamond trail can be found in Dwellingup and has been classed as a world class course.
Mountain biking is notorious for injuries which riders can experience. However, these falls generally come from courses that are ranked from blue to double black. The harder the course the higher the chance of a fall! As you have learnt, these courses require some skill.
The Goat Farm was designed especially to teach new riders skill.
The Goat Farm is a great place to practice skills before tackling more challenging courses
There is a skill course that has obstacles where you can learn how to control the bike, how to balance and how to ride some more challenging areas. The Goat Farm has about 3 different trails you can ride from the down hill course to an endurance course. Their world class down hill course will require you to have the right equipment from protection gear to the bike. The endurance course will have some skill areas you will need to tackle and fitness will be required. However, there is nothing wrong with getting off the bike and walking the challenging areas until your confidence in a skill increases.
For more information on all trails you can visit the WAMBA site. They will supply you with all the information need about the trails and about events you can enter if you feel you enjoy mountain biking as a sport!