Secret trails are something of a currency in the bike world and about the only thing that makes our sport remotely punk rock. We trade them for cool points or hold on to them, dropping subtle hints in conversations to elevate our perceived social status. “If you don’t know about it, you shouldn’t ride it.” Mountain biking is not sexy, so secret trails cascading down our mountains like the phantom octopi tentacles is about all we’ve got. People go hunting for them like treasure. And develop feelings of ownership, much like Gollum and his precious. Joeys shouldn’t ride them, but they always do. So who tells them where they are and why shouldn’t they? Who actually owns a secret trail? With hands raised, there is the trail builder who doesn’t own the land, the landowner who didn’t build the trail, the inner circle of the first riders to know about it (who didn’t build the trail nor do they own the land) and the community as a whole.
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