Erwin Park is our go-to after work trail. We were riding it four times a week for a few weeks straight. Our favorite part of the trail is the first 3 miles, we repeat it about 4-6 times each time we ride here. We feel that this part of the trail is an intermediate level. The second part of the trail seems to us to be more technical and challenging.
Erwin Park is heavily wooded with a fair amount of roots and the soil is clay/dirt. The trail can be narrow in parts but generally is spacious enough to ride comfortably. There are some tree gates, steep climbs, a couple of big "whoops" (dips), and a few small bridges.
Bring your bug spray with DEET as there are tons of mosquitoes and chiggers. Tuck your pant legs into your socks, try wearing lighter colored pants, and sleeves if you can. Erwin Park does have a rougher terrain so we ride "full squish." We have found that when the front fork is fully open it helps to absorb the impact of hitting the roots and allows you to keep most of your momentum to continue climbing. The back shock being fully open just saves your spine.
We really enjoy this trail. There are many parts that we had to walk on our first time through which we've since mastered. It feels really good to be able to measure your growth on the same trail and start to be able to get through things that you couldn't before. We've conquered the biggest dip (not the most dangerous but, the largest one), the tight switchbacks with the tree in the middle, the tight tree gate just before the giant hill, the fast left turn with the bridge then the uphill climb, and the long gauntlet of tree gates with large roots through the whole thing. It really is a fun and technical trail.
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