This Sunday I was poised to join a group of friends for a mountain bike ride at Grand Ridge in Issaquah. But the thought of spinning my wheels in traction-less mud (like a Hanna-Barbara cartoon character running in place to the sound of a bongo drum-roll) did not particularly excite me.
As you can see from my previous post on Grand Ridge, the trail still turns to quicksand when it rains, despite the Herculean (or Sisyphean) efforts of persevering WTA trail workers.
However, one area that drains remarkably well is Black Diamond, a nebulous system of trails located just south of Auburn. The trails maintained on the property owned by the Real Life Church provide an excellent stomping ground for XC riders and dirt jumpers alike.
Black Diamond continues to improve as a local riding destination, with visible signage, good drainage and new trails designed for more flow.
Tribulation Trail, for example, is a fun little singletrack hacked out about a year ago, which has become quite flowy under the impact of dedicated hands and able wheels .
With its low, wide (1-2 foot) bridges, it’s also a great place for new riders who want an introduction to rampwork.
Most bridges are low, roll-able and have ride-arounds, and all maintain traction well when wet (or when covered in snow).
If you’re looking for interval training, fun flow, big jumps at the Summit Ridge Freeride Park (if you want them) or practice dodging trees, you can find all of that here. For directions to and trail beta on Black Diamond, check out my earlier post, Diamonds in the Rough Get Smoother Every Day.
See you on the trail!
Angela Sucich, writer