This Sunday, Marcus and I took the boys out the Pine Nuts for a father son ride. This was my son's 2nd ride on his mountain bike, and Marcus's son has been on his mountain bike for about a year. I was glad that my son had a buddy, because kids always do better when they have someone they can relate to.
The trail was an intermediate level kid trail. There were soft patches of silt, rocks, whoop de doos, tight single track, and a moderate hill climb. Since this was my son's 2nd ride on the bike, he was wondering just what the heck I had gotten him into. He said, "Dad...you should've picked a better trail! Next time let's just go hiking.". I could see his point...we'd been climbing for about a mile. We took frequent snack and water breaks. My son just got a new Camel Bak, and it worked out really good. He loves wearing it, and could get a drink anytime he wanted. He drank all the water I had given him by the end of the ride, so it's good to know he's staying hydrated.
We finally decided to turn around. It was time for my son to learn about the payoff of climbing for an hour. His composure really changed when we got to the first fast downhill section. As seen in the picture here, there was a turn around a tree with a jump at the end. The kids got real excited for this section, so we did it over and over again. After we got our fill on the jump, we did the long downhill to the car. It was crazy to see the little guys flying down the trail over all the whoop de doos. The short wheel base and little wheels made the bikes pretty twitchy, but both boys showed superb bike handling skills. I'd yell out to my son to slow down a bit, and his back wheel would lock up as he grabbed a fistful of back brake. The back end would come around, but he'd always come out of it. It was a great way to end the ride. Both boys were excited about the big downhill, and had pretty much forgotten the pain of the uphill.
More photos of the ride HERE.