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“I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike” – Queen
Sunny days are an opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities after a few months of sandbags, rain, and people riding canoes on Clovis streets. As exciting as the rain has been, I’m ready to go outside and get my Vitamin D fix, and I bet you are, too.
In that spirit, I thought I’d share a great resource for anyone who wants to enjoy the outdoors on two wheels—bike trails in Fresno! But not just any bike trails. Did you know Woodward Park has a mountain bike trail and BMX track?
Mountain Bike Trails for Adults & Kids
Designed by the Hilride company, the Woodward Park Mountain Bike Trail is a one-mile loop with a half mile of progression-based riding. So whether you’re a kid just beginning to ride or a seasoned professional, there’s an area of the course that’s perfect for you. There’s also a time trial course and about 40 table-top jumps, so you can race and jump to your heart’s content (or until your legs give out—whichever comes first).
My kids have been asking to go every weekend. It’s a little overgrown because the bike season is just beginning, but no one has minded the weeds. In fact, I personally think it adds to the feeling of being out in nature (but I also own a beach cruiser, so who cares what I think.)
Now that the rain has subsided, volunteers are working to clear the weeds and groom the trail. In fact, over 2,000 volunteer hours were logged by local Fresnans to build the trail in the first place. This trail really is a labor of love by our community’s bike enthusiasts.
If you’re wondering where to start (or where to even find this amazing bike trail), check out the map below. The Mountain Bike Trail is located behind the BMX track and runs parallel to Highway 41. It’s free, but you’ll need to pay five dollars in order to park within Woodward Park. Perhaps it goes without saying that you’ll need a bike and helmet with a chin strap buckle, but here I am saying it.
BMX Tracks, Camps and Races
If you’re interested in the BMX track, it’s a bit more involved. The BMX track is home to races and camps, and isn’t always open for rides. Right now is the time to sign up for BMX summer camps, and they sell out fast.
Each of the four camps caps out at 30 participants. The first camp is in June and there are three levels of skill, from beginner to intermediate. Both adults and kids (5 years and up) are welcome to sign up and develop a new skill. As a bonus, parking is free for camp participants during the week of camp.
Local mom Katie Valorosi has been enrolling her son in BMX camp for several years. She likes that a special bike and gear isn’t required, and she feels the price for the week-long camp is extremely reasonable compared to other kids’ camps in town. Plus, she says the staff is “knowledgeable and personable.” Her son especially loves that on the last day of camp, they set up an emcee and have a race.
Even if you’re like me and own a gold beach cruiser that’s one basket short of being a tricycle, it’s still a great time to get out there and try new trails. New memories and adventures await! Are you ready for bicycle season?
Info, Resources and Details
Of course, it’s always fun to check things out before jumping (or riding) head first into an activity. If you want to see the BMX course in action, take note:
May 20-21 is a Special Event Race.
May 27 is the State Race.
According to Ryan Garcia, the Action Sports Specialist for the City of Fresno, these would be excellent weekends to see local BMX biking in person to decide if it’s something you want to pursue. Of course, you can also check out the Fresno Action Sports YouTube channel or the Woodward Park BMX Facebook page. However, it’s more fun to go outside this time of year—trust me.
• For a detailed map of the mountain bike course click here.
• If you want to sign up for a BMX summer camp click here (and enter activity number 434000).
• To volunteer to help get the trails groomed and weed-free, click here.
• For free bike repair help, check out Fresno Ideaworks classes at local library branches here.