What can I say about this event? It was bigger, better and more fun than I had expected. That pretty much sums it up. I was glad that I didn’t pass up the opportunity to take part in something like this so close to home.
I started seeing a lot of cars coming through Lyndonville with bike racks by mid-day Friday. Actually, I had gone out for a ride in East Burke on Thursday and it was already a little bit busier than normal. When I went out to E. Burke on Friday for a brief trip, it looked as busy as any weekend only with a few RVs added to the mix. That was the case until I went up to the mid-mountain lodge to check things out. I would be helping with the registration on Saturday morning and wanted to see what I was getting into. The lodge was busy. Busy.
On Saturday, my wife, kids and I were helping out with the registration. Since I am a member of NEMBA and part of their racing team, it only made sense to contribute something. Most people had arrived on Friday so it was relatively quiet. Still, it was enjoyable to help out with things. We got to talk with quite a few people and find out more of what was going on. There were tons of group rides, the mountain bike park was open with lift service to everyone, tons of vendors, demos, contests, kids games, even trail rides at night. I didn’t get to take part in even a small portion of what was available and still had a great time. I heard that the campground was quite a lot of fun too.
I was able to lead a group ride with the NEMBA racing team on Saturday. We had a blast hitting the trails for the afternoon. After the trials show on Sunday afternoon, my daughter and I also got to do some riding at the mountain park and the Darling Hill trails. The weather even cooperated for most of the weekend. The whole event had a great feel to it, and just hanging out was really cool.
The trail system really seemed to be able to handle the influx of riders for the weekend. On Saturday, we had no problems at all with the crowds. The village of East Burke seemed busy but not unmanageable. From what I had heard, there were over 900 preregistered and a few hundred more that registered in person. Impressive. Thanks to everyone who made the event happen this year. It was really well organized and tons of fun. Hopefully, they will return next year so we can do this again.
Final note: I want to give a HUGE “Thank You!” to whoever found my helmet, gloves and glasses at the base lodge and left them on the table for me. It is appreciated very much.
- Cyclesnack (with more here, here, and here.)
- Plenty of NEMBAfest photos at Singlespeed Photography
- Take With Food (sure, food and mountain biking go together)
- Photos at Gravity Fed Media: Friday, Saturday
- Shaun Pinney’s recap of the weekend.
- MTBVT photos.