A few years back the visit to the central plateau by some Australian mountain bikers was immortalised in the movie “Be Rude Not To”. In the best traditions of the movie business, there is now a sequel, called “Mad If You Don’t”. New locations, some new faces, and a similar plot to the first movie: go somewhere really good, ride bikes, go somewhere else really good, ride bikes, etc.
The movies get their titles from a pair of trails in Whakarewarewa Forest, lovingly crafted and tended by various people over years and years of changing treescapes and increasingly heavy traffic. The Rude has been discussed before now, Mad If You Don’t takes up where the Rude leaves you grinning like a fool. It ducks and dives along the side of a forestry road and while it isn’t very long, it is a lot of laughs. It is one of those trails that is in a constant state of flux, it seems like every time it is sampled it has a new feature, the track is under somebody’s close attention, every time a problem spot appears it is quickly modified to a more sustainable shape.
I had not heard about the Mad being massaged by the club’s workaholics, so it must be one of those extra-special places that is maintained by a volunteer who “adopts” a trail, an act of selfless benevolence right up there with sainthood in my humble opinion.
I was blundering along Mad in the twilight a few weeks back, trying to milk another few turns out of a rapidly vanishing day, when a guy with a shovel appeared out of the gloom. I stopped to thank him for his efforts, and found out his name is Toby. He claimed that most of his motivation for what must be hours of spadework is that his girlfriend doesn’t like puddles.