In Rotorua, most of our riding is done in a ‘working forest’. It is a very complex scenario - the land is owned by its original occupants, iwi of Te Arawa. They generously allow all the development for recreational activity, including mountain biking, to take place in their forest. The trees are managed by a local timber company. The way they have decided to harvest is quite different to how it would be done if the trees were not interlaced with several hundred kilometres of trails. The foresters understand how valuable the recreational aspect of the forest is to the city - many of them ride - and so they are taking down fairly small areas dotted around the forest each year.
Trails that thread through those felled areas are rebuilt, and in a fairly short time are sheltered by new trees - but still, it is always a shock to see a beloved trail disappear.
What is sometimes even more of a surprise is what the land looks like when the trees are gone.
Because the view of the terrain is governed by the route of the trail, and the perception of that view is impacted by stuff like heavy breathing, euphoria, and short periods of panic, the shape of the land is often not what it seems.
A couple of decent chunks are being uncloaked right now.
Who knew that Billy T skirted down the side of a pretty decent sized canyon? It occurs at about the spot where heavy breathing due to the previous 8 minutes intersects with the euphoria of several sweeping turns, and a few seconds of panic
Can’t wait to see what the trail pixies do with that canyon now it is visible.