LONG OVERDUE: Whitefish Montana, Spencer Mountain – Free ride

Warning:  mountain biking jargon ahead, if you do not know that “free ride” is, then you might want to skip to the video since the rest won’t make sense.

Spencer Mountain in Whitefish Montana, has some huge gravity set type riding. There are about 3 currently used big mountain trails and many old ones in various states of disrepair. I rode a couple of the ones that are survivable on a short travel soft tail, while wearing a non full faced helmet.

One of the trails was marked with a wooden placard nailed to a tree bearing the title Malice in Plunderland. I would say it’s a fitting name for a trail with such huge technical features. Any old trail has a skinny bridge drop of a few feet with a transition, but this one put the transition far enough away that you would have to be going fast to reach it. Fast enough that staying on its 6″ width at the end would be tough.

Video below of a crazy stretch of the Malice in Plunderland trail.

On to the simpler trail which might have a name, but I don’t know it. This thing has a lot of berms. First thing off the bat you have a choice of a lam speed sucking ride around or a 5 or so foot drop with a large, steep transition. The first time through I went for the ride around, second time I nailed it. This leads to a few wooden ladder bridge structures, nothing huge and terrifying, just good clean fun. From here there are a few more berms and then some jumps. You could just treat them as rollers if you were going slow. I hit them at speed and had a blast. Only one was menacing, as there was a large root ball from a toppled tree in the middle requiring you to really send it high. I made it on one run and back cased on the transition on the other. Front casing the root ball would be a hideous crash. On the whole, this trail rode like a four cross course, fast fun and not a moment to break your concentration. The only down side is that in true free ride fashion the only way up is a crappy fire road. I wished I had my dirt jumping bike, but on the whole I did fine.

I have no idea if these trails are legally constructed but they are certainly well known and no secret. Other riders I encountered were helpful in giving me the lay of the land and generally pointing me in the right direction. There are also tons of other trails in the area but I only had a few hours and this one was recommended by the bike shop in Whitefish.


One response to “LONG OVERDUE: Whitefish Montana, Spencer Mountain – Free ride

  1. I liked your last word after evaluating the run: Cool!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s