While some bike races consist of packet pickup, the race, the awards, followed by everyone clearing out of the area, the Wilmington Whiteface Bike Fest serves up a weekend of family friendly bike themed entertainment that Jon Lundin, the event’s press coordinator describes as a “party on two wheels.”
The fun starts with a beginners’ mountain clinic on Thursday afternoon. Friday brings a trials demonstration followed by live music while Saturday has a costumed “Brainless not Chainless Downhill Race,” an uphill mountain bike race, and a dual slalom race.
With over a 3,000 foot vertical drop from the top of Whiteface Mountain, New York’s fifth highest peak, the area has embraced mountain bikers of all abilities and disciplines.
They have built a world class downhill park on Whiteface Mountain with nearly a 2,500 vertical drop on intermediate and advanced trails directly from the lift. A shuttle can deliver riders from the top of the lift to mellower trails as well. In addition to the downhill park, there are a series of cross country trails in the area. The Flume and Hardy trails tend to be the crowd favorites.
After a weekend of riding bikes, there’s one more activity not to miss in the nearby Lake Placid. Most winter Olympic sports are held on courses inaccessible to the general public, but Lake Placid has opened the 1980 Olympic bobsled course for summer runs by the public. Much of the historic Olympic facility is open for tours in the summer and the recreational options, bike related or not, are seemingly endless in the area.
Eszter Horanyi lives and mountain bikes in Crested Butte, CO. She has dabbled in road racing, cyclocross racing, and cross country mountain bike racing, but has gravitated towards ultra endurance and multi day self supported racing in the more recent past. She firmly believes that nothing tops a good ride with good friends on good trails, thus she spends her life in search of all of the above. You can follow her adventures on her blog. All articles by Eszter.