Mountain bikers in Scotland will be delighted to hear news of two new MBT trails.
Scotland is already a world leader in mountain biking â€“ and now the number of trails is set to grow. Two new trails are being built at Nevis Range Trail Centre, near Fort William, which is famous as the home of the UCI World Cup Downhill track.
The new trails will both be classed as downhill routes although they will be graded as green (beginner) and blue (intermediate), rather than the expert-graded UCI World Cup Downhill track.
The green and blue routes will be accessed via a forest road and will remain in keeping with cross-country trail standards although they will include mini features and obstacles to encourage the skills of budding downhillers.
The future of Nevis Range for mountain bikers
Established as a superb centre for more experienced mountain bikers, Nevis Range is keen to welcome younger and less expert riders. The centre boastsÂ the UCI World Cup Downhill track, the Nevis Red and 48km of cross country trails, including a World Championships loop, but the majority of the current tracks are more suited to the committed mountain biker.
The green and blue trails will help to bridge the gap, with the downhill routes allowing less experienced riders to build their skill set before moving on to harder routes.
There are also plans to build two more jump lines (graded orange) alongside the World Cup Downhill dirt jumps and an easy “up” trail to allow mountain bikers a more exciting ascent to the beginning of the new trails.
Managing director at Nevis Range, Marian Austin, says: “Nevis Range is known for the UCI Downhill Mountain Bike World Cup, which has won the Best Event award on many occasions since 2002, but what many people donâ€™t realise is that there are fantastic cross-country trails here, too, including the mini skills loops at theÂ car park.
“Over the last few years funding has been concentrated on retaining the World Cup events and building our unique red cross-country trail.
“It is now recognised that we need to encourage more people to develop the skills to be able to ride these World Class trails and they have to start on easier trails with achievable challenges.”
The Â£229,363 new trails project is being funded by SportScotland, Highland and Islands Enterprise, Nevis Range and West Highland Wheelers.
Sportscotland has invested Â£111,629. Louise Martin CBE, chair of the organisation, says: â€œThe new trails will offer opportunities to people of all ages and abilities to take part in mountain biking.Â It is exciting that work is now under way at the Nevis Range, and once the tracks are completed the world-class site will help to inspire future generations to be the best they can be.”
Keep an eye on the Nevis Range site for updates.