Youth Mountain Biking Group
The 2022 season will be the third year of riding for the Trail Blasters since Coach Craig approached the Northampton Cycling Club about starting a youth mountain biking team (thanks Craig!). We offer weekly rides for kids in grades 3-12 beginning in April and ending in October. Depending on who shows up to a given ride, we will typically break the whole group into elementary (grades 5 and under), middle (6-8), and highschool (9-12) groups. We also offer a girls group. Each group will have 4-6 kids riding with 2-3 adults, minimum. This provides for a lot of opportunity for one-on-one instruction during the rides. Adults (parents, caregivers, family members, family friends) are welcome to ride with the group.
The only requirements are that kids have a trail-ready bike with gears, at least 24″ wheels, and a helmet. We also require that all participants be a current NCC member with either an individual junior ($10 per child under 18/year) or family membership ($55/year) to participate (that’s a pretty sweet deal!). Kids are usually ready to ride trails starting in third grade, give or take a year. If you’re at all unsure whether your child is ready, please feel free to reach out to us. We would be happy to chat with you.
Weekly Ride Schedule
We’re changing from a Tu/Th schedule to a Fr/Su schedule for the rest of September and then a Sunday-only schedule for October. There isn’t enough light to start rides at 6pm anymore, so we’re going to start the Friday ride at 5pm. We will meet at the Armory entrance for the remaining Friday rides in September.
If you’re new to riding with us, the Friday Sawmill and Sunday Earl’s trails rides are a good starting point. We can do routes of varying difficulty in both locations depending on who shows up and according to their interest/skill level.
We will finish off the season with a Halloween (Sun. 10/30) ride from Coach Craig’s house. Wear your best costumes!
Fridays in September from 5-6:30pm: 9/16, 9/23, and 9/30
Sawmill Hills in from the Armory entrance at end of Col. Lavellee Ln. off Spring St. in Florence.
Sundays in September and October from 3-5pm:
9/18: Eaglebrook, Deerfield. Meet at the trail head at the top of Pine Nook Rd. (201–215 Pine Nook Rd, Deerfield, MA 01342) – please don’t park on the side of the road (there are no parking signs).
Lots of Trail Blasters will be racing at the inaugural Tree House CX race in South Deerfield earlier in the day on 9/18. Check out the who’s registered section for the event on BikeReg to see who’s racing and when. Come on out and race and/or cheer on the NCC juniors!
9/25: B-street, Granby. Meet in the dirt lot on Batchelor St. (43–47 Batchelor St., Granby, MA 01033)
10/2: Earl’s trails. Meet at the end of Chmura Rd. (100 Chmura Rd, Hadley, MA 01035)
Lots of Trail Blasters will be racing at the UMass Cycling Ghosts CX race in Amherst earlier in the day on 10/2. Check out the who’s registered section for the event on BikeReg to see who’s racing and when. Come on out and race and/or cheer on the NCC juniors!
10/9: DAR State Forest. Meet just inside the entrance in the parking lot (Moore Hill Rd, Goshen, MA 01032)
10/16: Hawley State Forest. Meet in the parking lot to the left of the Hawley Fire Department on Plainfield Rd (16 Plainfield Rd, Charlemont, MA 01339)
10/23: Earl’s trails. Meet at the end of Chmura Rd. (100 Chmura Rd, Hadley, MA 01035)
10/30: Coach Craig’s trails. Meet at Coach Craig’s house–wear your best costume (61 West St, West Hatfield, MA 01088)
Our coaches are Safesport certified and have years of experience running youth cycling programs. Please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions.
NCC Youth Programs Coordinator
Trail Blasters Assistant Coach
Trail Blasters Head Coach