It’s finally spring time, at least in AZ. After 3 months of cold weather riding I headed down to Fountain Hills, AZ for a week of MTB. McDowell Mountain Park is a great local trail system, and former home of the Cactus Cup. In fact, the last time I had ridden there was the 1998 Cactus Cup. Ride you bike to the park from Rio Verde or Fountain Hills and pay $1 to get into the park. Drive and pay $6 for a car.
I vividly remember my buddy Will making monkey sounds at Gert-Jan Theunisse during the crit. We all use to think that Gert hit the sauce a little too hard in his career and ended up with a Neanderthal forehead. At the time Gert was coaching Bart Brentjens and Filip Meirhaeghe. Filip was later popped for epo.
I rode a new Giant 2007 Anthem 0, stock OTB with mavic crossmax wheelset XTR pedals and Ron Andrews custom Titanium King Cages.
McDowell has a sweet trail system, directional and clearly marked. The “competitive track” area is composed of three main loops, the long loop ,sport loop and technical loop. All are fairly wide open and fast. The sandy, gravelly trail surface is slippery at high speeds. Drifting corners while navigating cactus is a necessary skill. I ran about 160lb in my Fox front and rp23 rear shox. A little high but ok due to high speed, rocky conditions.
Corners can be very slippery.