Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day at Fish Creek Park

After our last, less than successful, attempt at mountain biking at Canyon Creek, I wasn't sure what to do. I knew Mack enjoyed mountain biking and that Michael would too, but I wanted to set Michael up for a guaranteed fun experience. Then I saw the posting for Take A Kid Mountain Biking at Calgary's Fish Creek Park. Hosted by the Calgary Mountain Bike Alliance, a real mountain biker would introduce kids to mountain biking on the trails that criss-cross the park. It sounded perfect.

And it was. A volunteer took us to an easy section of single track where the kids could do practice loops and get experience on a flat trail. Michael took one spill making a sharp turn, but got right back up on his bike and kept pedaling. From there, we played follow the leader through widely spaced trees in a picnic area. We finished on a section of single track with some roots sticking up and...both boys loved it. The trail didn't look like much to me, but as far as the kids were concerned it was an authentic, extreme mountain biking experience. Instead of following the paved pathway to the car, we wound our way back on single track through the trees, over routes and around blind corners.

Mission accomplished. Michael gained valuable confidence, and I now know where to take the boys next time. The network of trails running through Fish Creek is the perfect challenge for kids, and they hold enough adventure to keep the attention of adults. Regardless, mountain biking in Fish Creek with the boys beats mountain biking on more difficult trails without them.

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