Review Detail

Short but with some real bite.
(Updated: October 11, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
3.8
Grin Factor 
 
3.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.5
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
3.5
Facilities 
 
4.0
I visited Hadleigh Park the day after it had opened. The car park is big so they are planning for busy which I sense It will be. The small pump track at the entrance is confidence building and the skills area consisting of rocky sections, jumps and three progressive large drops is really spot on. I spent a good 20 to 30 minutes warming up here and didn't bore.

Then we headed off to the find the trail head. This is impossible to find and leads a bit to chaos as you ended up joining the trail randomly not sure which direction to ride in. This is just teething errors. Once on the trail the signage is good but fails at the first post unfortunately. A good 20 mins was wasted here searching. My recommendation is if not obvious when you arrive just join the trail at the first opportunity even if mid trail.

We did a lap of the blue first. The lap is short but fun. The best feature is the dual slalom so out can race your mates. NB most of the blue is also part of the red so if you did the red you will still do the dual slalom. Some of the descents on the blue are quite tight (feel like tight switchbacks) and lack a little flow. I think to make these more confidence inspiring for novices theses should have the corners built and banked up a bit. You feel like you are descending on flat corners. Still saying that there are still really good other fun sections with flow.

The red is also short but fun. It's technicals in nature and more tricky than fast and flowing. With rocky descents, north shore sections, and technical up hills and some steep descent sections. The black sections (there are 6 as offshoots of the red trail) are quite severe but then again this is the Olympic track.

The great thing about this trail centre is the blue, red and black really form the same trail they are just predominately different options on that same trail. This is great as you could go with three mates of differing abilities and each have a blast.

Recommend a minimum of two sessions and probably three if the third doesn't start to bore. It's great for skills progression, is technical (mostly has easier options alongside making it progressive in nature) and so has some bite. Given the height limitations (still a puff to get up) and length though and why it was originally built they have packed a great amount in. I think it is a brilliant addition to the south east of England MTB community of trails and will add to one of my regular choices to alternate on in the weekend.

User Review

Good Points
- skills park
- facilities
- technical and progressive
- ability to session lots throughout
Bad Points
- short
- can't find trail start
- cafe food is not mtb friendly
- blue could be more flowing.
Would you recommend?
Yes
S
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