This past Sunday was AMAZING! We had over 20 women out riding the Thunder Mountain Bike Park in Charlemont Massachusetts. This was our 4th time having a Downhill Mountain biking day at the bike park. We had the perfect weather for riding, and because the park was only open one day before the trails were perfect!
This time we had the perfect mix of groups from women who have not mountain biked before to women who are downhill riders. Our coaches for the day were Paula Barton, Meridith Mcfarland (VT Ambassador), Kelly Dolan and Amy Ricci (Maine Ambassador). Paula, Kelly and Meridith have all coached at these events before and we were so lucky to have them back again! Amy has come to all the past events and we were excited to have her be a coach this time.
The day started by everyone getting geared up and then splitting into three different groups. Once focused on beginner downhill mountain biking skills, one on jumping skills and the other on all mountain skills. We all met for lunch before we continued back out for the afternoon. At the end of the day everyone was excited about progress they made, skills they gained, confidence they got and the new friends they walked away with. Our New York Regional Coordinator Alex Norton was in the Jump group and said “The first time I did Downhill Day, I was petrified of going down hills of any kind on a bike and I did it to get over my fear. Well 2 years later, I’m defiantly over that fear and I now have another activity that I love”
This has become one of my favorite events to have. I see women who have never downhill mountain biked, say they can’t wait to come back. I see seasoned downhill mountain bikers gains skills and confidence. I see friends who I have not seen since high school and be able to reconnect. SheJumps not only has given me more skills and confidence in many outdoor activities but it has re- connected me to amazing friends, and connected me to new friends.