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Three Unmissable Mountain Bike Trails

Firepot's resident biking enthusiast, Jim Hart, has been racing since he was twelve. Based in Poole, on Dorset's south-west coast, he has scouted the local area over the years. Here, he talks us through a few of his favourite places to ride in the South of England.

Location: Puddletown Forest
Style of riding: Gravel riding, Cross-country, Enduro and downhill
Jim rides: A Whyte E-180 RSX
Near the market town of Dorchester, Puddletown Forest is a mountain biker’s paradise, with trails suitable to whet the appetite of any rider, from beginner right through to professional. It's a giant playground, with new lines popping up on a near weekly basis. The trails feature everything from fast, dry natural singletrack through to large jump lines, steep rooty downhill and even a large gully gap that is quietly famed by riders from across the country. The carpark is a regular hangout for like-minded bikers on the weekend, making it the ideal spot to meet new mates and enjoy some Firepot for lunch. 
Location: Basingstoke and beyond
Good for: BMX and Mountain Bike skills practice
Jim Rides: A GT Labomba
A pump track is a purpose-built circular track of rollers, banked turns (or 'berms') and jumps that the rider 'pumps' their bike around. They're the perfect place for any mountain biker or BMX rider to hone their skills, and tracks are popping up all over the country so you don’t have to travel far to find one. My favourite pump track is in Basingstoke, but there are plenty in the area, including at Portsmouth, Totton, Hordle, Christchurch, Alton, and Fleet. Given their proximity, it's possible to visit a few in a day, which makes a great road trip. 


Location: Moors Valley Country Park
Good for: Gravel, Cross-country, Skills practice
Jim Rides: A Santa Cruz Nomad

Moors Valley — a forest and country park near Ringwood — is well worth a visit if you're a keen cyclist. a Country Park and Forest. There's something on offer for all abilities, including family-friendly gravel paths and cross-country trails which range from 1 to 4.4 miles in length. The park also has a freeride area called Watchmoor for more experienced cyclists, which boasts a series of progressive table top jumps, a small pump track and a fast loamy single track that is littered with jumps, drops and fun, flowing descents.