The answer to that question is easy.
Answer: The one you’re riding.
But seriously, if you ask 5 people that question, you will get 5 different answers. Each trail system has it’s own characteristics.
In the span of just 1 day, yesterday, I heard Pinnacle Creek referred to as the most difficult of the southern three, and as the easiest of the southern three. What, what?
I’ve heard people say one system is their favorite, only to hear someone else say it was their least favorite.
Sounds crazy, huh?
There are a lot of reasons, and we’ll touch on a few.
Around here, you can ride a trail in one direction that seems pretty easy, and then ride it in the opposite direction and have a totally different experience. There are certain trails that are pretty tough going up, and pretty tame going down, and vice versa. We even advise a certain direction only for a few specific trails. An alternate route or different combination of trails ridden can result in a totally different experience within the same trail system.
Additionally, everyone has their own riding style. Some riders like to ride fast and put on the miles. Others like a more leisurely pace. Some people like technical trails that take skill to navigate, and some want wide, smooth trails that anyone can navigate. Some riders come for mud, some like to stay as dry as possible. I’m in the dry-as-possible camp.
Skill level plays a factor. What makes one person’s glutes pucker will not phase the next rider. We’ve seen grown men that couldn’t navigate a 4×4 quad on a trail an 8 year old girl just blew through on a dirt bike.
What you are riding matters. A rough trail might not seem rough at all to the guy riding a brand new sxs, but will beat a man’s bones on a straight axle quad. The guy on a dirt bike might love a trail system with a lot of single track, whereas the guy in a sxs would have a completely different experience because he’s riding totally different trails on the same system.
Trail conditions can vary from one visit to the next. A trail with a moderate incline can be easy peasy today but slick as snot after a rain. Rain storms can wash out big ruts in a trail that was unremarkable yesterday. Your trip may not see the same trail conditions as the next guy.
In short, several factors play into a person’s perception of a trail or system. Fortunately, the trails are well mapped, color coded by level of difficulty, and they are maintained regularly. The system is designed so that you never have to take a difficult trail if you aren’t so inclined, but if you want the technical stuff, we can put you on it.
There’s a sweet spot at HMT for everyone, regardless of skill level, riding style, and experience.
Hope to see you soon!