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DON’T MYND IF I DO

It’s the Long Mynd Jim, but not as we know it. Tom Hutton proves there are still real classics out there just waiting to be discovered.

Mountain bikers are creatures of habit. Even the more pioneering among us, those of us who are still happy to grab a map and a compass (Google it if you’re not sure) and head out into the mountains and moors, still return again and again to the same trails.

Why? Because we know they work. They’re fun; they’re the right level of challenge for our limited ability. And most of all, they pay back. Those of us with limited spare time (probably all of us) want to ride, not push. We want flow, not gates. We want smiles, not grimaces. In short, we’re looking for maximum downhill bang for our hard-earned uphill buck. Some dashes on a map or a second-hand GPX we haven’t tried before could lead to our one chance to get out being wasted. So when someone suggests we spend Sunday on the Long Mynd, my first reaction is to smile – this is a great area with some awesome riding and it’s definitely somewhere we don’t get to often enough. Next up though, my mind migrates to those same old trails. Yup, the ones everyone rides and the ones we’ve ridden so many times before. After all, they really are fun. And we don’t come here often enough to gamble on something that just won’t ‘go’.

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About Singletrack

Editorial: There Is No Right Or Wrong. Choose a bike, any bike, and enjoy it. International Adventure: Panning For Trail Gold In Arizona. Huw Oliver finds gold in the ghost towns of Arizona. Classic Ride: Don’t Mynd If I Do. Tom Hutton rides the Long Mynd in search of forgotten corners and new trails. Behind the Scenes: Colour Wheels. Sim Mainey finds out how the next bike fashions are decided. UK Adventure: Cornish Fasties Barney Marsh goes to the edge of the UK and finds a world of overlooked trails. UK Adventure: How To Lose Friends And Alienate People. Sanny reduces the nicest man in mountain biking to rude words. Hope’s Helping Hand. Chipps checks out a bit of innovative thinking from Hope Technology. Bike Test: Overlooked Awesome. Daz Hall checks out three smaller wheeled, shorter travel bikes that you probably should be riding, from Bird, Cotic and Santa Cruz. Column: Jason steps out of his comfort zone. Pete’s Pros: Rock[et] Science Manon Carpenter may not be racing much, but Pete Scullion finds she’s still aiming high. A Day In The Life: Fort William Saskia Dugon goes behind the scenes at this noisiest of World Cup races. MTB Culture: The Quiet Revolution Rich Rothwell argues that GPS technology has opened up a whole new world of mountain biking joy. Last Word Hannah gets to ride somewhere she thought might only be a far-flung fantasy.