For years I’ve talked about getting a mountain bike and never got any closer to owning one than talking and looking online. Generally this happened every winter and by spring I was happily riding on the road and mountain bikes had faded from my mind.
This time the talking led to shopping then test riding, and a good deal on two 2013 models – Jamis Nemesis. (Love the name). The bikes are hardtails with 650b size wheels.
Today was the first ride on an actual trail; yesterday evening we rode in the woods behind our house just to get a feel for the bikes. Neither of us have ever done any mountain biking. The closest thing has been riding on dirt/gravel roads and trails. After today’s ride I now know that those rides were nothing like mountain biking.
Arcadia is known as a good trail for beginners but for this beginner it had some difficult spots and I had to walk the bike up and down the first two steep hills/descents. The trail is very narrow in some places, (about a foot across) and deep so a couple of times the pedal would catch in the dirt on the side and I had to push off with my foot to regain balance and get going again. There was also a lot of sand that initially I had to push the bike through but before long I was able to ride through. The steep hills and descents I got up and down – were exhilarating – and negotiating the twists and turns throughout the trail was challenging and a blast.
The only time I nearly went down was when I was coming off a descent, heading up a short incline and hit a tree root at a bad angle causing the front wheel to slide out. I caught myself with my outside leg so no harm no foul. I got bounced around some, but that was just part of the fun. When it was all over I felt like I had been on a roller coaster at an amusement park. Giddy and smiling most of the ride and at times laughing out loud.
A very good first ride.