Tips To Improve Trail Riding Skills

During a recent 2019 ride I was stunned to see Sequoia trails that were pristine only a year ago now have braking stutter bumps and whoops. Sadly many riders don't understand how to trail ride. They rely on throttle instead of learning more advanced techniques for better trail riding. I want to share some simple techniques that enable me to ride all day with less fatigue and greater control on more difficult trails. At 62 years old I can ride trails better and ride longer than many so called racers and here's why......... 
  • It's all about Traction- If you're fish tailing then air down for traction. If you're widening the trails or going around rock sections or blowing turns then air down. Sequoia trail riding is all about momentum, not hard braking and full throttle. You go faster with less effort by keeping momentum. Then you can ride more and keep the trails pristine for future rides.
    See the below short video about the Most Overlooked Performance Gain.
    You may want to invest in Tubeliss or Tube Saddle or Mousse tubes to get even more traction with even lower pressure like the pros do.
  • Ride like you Care- Sequoia trails are irreplaceable. Single track trails cannot be groomed like a motocross track after they get shredded. We are not getting new trails once they are ripped.
  • Ruts Wreck Trails- The power to not rut trails is in your wrist. If you find yourself rutting the trail try the most overlooked performance gain and air down your tires. It takes hundreds of hours to fix just a few hundred feet of rut caused by one rider in five minutes. Don't ride on steep trails when wet. You can choose not to rut your trails.
  • Try a Trials Tire- Once you have you will see they hook up far better than a knobby on trails. You can accelerate without spinning. They make rocks, ruts, roots and technical sections easy, and they don't make braking bumps or whoops if they are properly aired down. Click here for more information about the Ultimate Trail Tire
  • Why change tires- Riders change from a knobby to a paddle tire for proper traction to ride sand dunes. Same idea with changing from knobby to a trials tire for trail traction. You spent more than ten thousand on a state of the art performance bike, but it hardly matters if you are not getting maximum traction.
  • Suspension is adjustable for a reason- Trail riding is much better when you soften your suspension settings .Leaving settings for fast desert riding will make the bike hard to handle on trails and tire you out. Mark down your settings and then soften them as needed for trails. No one suspension setting is good for all types of riding. Air down your tires for traction while you are at it.
  • Choose your riding buddies with care- Sure it is nice to bring new riders with you on the trails, but some riders are just not ready for Sequoia trails. Some would say they are not worthy unless they know how to treat trails with respect. Would you lend your brand new bike to someone who does not know how to ride? So why invite someone who does not know how to ride single track trails so they can rip them up?
  • Ride the trails, don't race your buddy- Save that for the track. Racing will rip up the trails and once whoops and braking bumps are formed the trails just deteriorates more from there. Besides racing increases the likely hood of being seriously injured and the emergency room is a long way out.
  • There is no trophy for tearing up your trails- Why destroy what you came here for. Treat your trails with respect and we can enjoy great single track trails for decades to come.

I hope these tips will help riders improve their riding skills and keep our Sequoia single track trails pristine and twisty.

Chris Horgan- Executive Director Stewards of the Sequoia