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Thread: Bentonville, Arkansas - trails review and video

  1. #1
    Mojo Bike Part Terminator Seths Pool's Avatar
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    Bentonville, Arkansas - trails review and video

    Hey everyone,

    I just got back from my birthday/mountain biking trip in Bentonville, Arkansas 7/7-7/10 on Monday, and I thought I would give a quick review and I just finished slapping together a quick edit posted below.

    This was my first time ever to Arkansas, and there has been so much hype around the trails there lately that I had to check them out and see for myself.

    We arrived Friday afternoon to ride Coler Bike Park Saturday morning, as I heard these trails had the most features and jumps over the other trails in the area. It rained hard for about 1-2 hours around 3:00 - 4:00am Friday night, and we arrived at coler trails at about 9:30am.

    DAY 1 -

    HUMID AND SLIPPERY - the trails are covered in rocks that turn into ice when wet just like the ones here and the forestry/tree canopies really do a great job at keeping things wet and the humidity from evaporating

    Coler bike park is basically the Cat Mtn of Bentonville. A loop/trail that goes up to the top, and then there's about 4-5 trails of varying difficulty that you ride down to the bottom. The "hardest/black" trails were Drop the Hammer, Rock Solid, and Copperhead Road.

    Drop the Hammer - a series of wooden 6-8' drops into big smooth transition landings all the way to the bottom

    Rock Solid - some jumps with rock slab lips, some rock gardens, and a big all-rock berm towards the bottom

    Copperhead Road - chunky rocky trail with a good mix of characteristics.

    it was my first time riding these trails, and it was super humid and extremely slippery. I was riding very conservatively due to the mix of unfamiliarity of the trails and the slippery conditions but I still had a lot of fun!


    Day 2 -

    The Back 40 Trails -

    The ground was starting to dry out much better but the humidity was still super high, I was soaking wet about 30 mins into the ride, maybe less....

    We parked at the elementary school and entered the back 40 via the Blowing Springs trails which I really really liked. But as fate would have it, I had a rare (for me) rear sidewall tear that was unfixable about 8 miles in and had to cut the ride short.

    I always bring at least one extra tire with me amongst other spare parts on any bike trip I go on. I was glad to have the extra tire with me even though it was a schwalbe hans dampf (excellent front tire but not the best rear tire), having it saved me $60-$80. I stopped by the phat tire bike shop to use their compressor to seat the tubeless tire. was a really nice bike shop with very friendly staff.

    Day 3 -

    I returned at 7:00am to the exact spot/trailhead where I had bailed on the ride with the flat the day before, wanting to complete the Back 40 loop before we headed back to Austin later that day. My girlfriend decided to just relax and let me ride solo, so I was alone to ride at whatever pace I wanted for the rest of the loop which was nice.

    SPIDER WEBS OMFG! I felt like I was living a mountain biking version of that No Doubt song "spiderwebs". I must've been the very first person riding the trails that day because I literally probably rode face first through over 50 spiderwebs with spiders in them. at one point (in the video) I stopped at a road crossing and had about 4-5 spiders crawling around the top of my helmet, and a little bit later I got a pretty freakin big spider in between my sunglasses and my eye! luckily I'm not scared of spiders and bugs or whatever, but still don't like being covered in them or having them on my face either

    The Back 40 trails were my favorite of the trip. Basically the Barton Creek Greenbelt with zero cedar trees, nice lush green forestry, a lot more flow and a little less chunk.

    But, as fate would have it again, I got a rock puncture in the open area of the tread on the brand new hans dampf tire about 13 miles in didn't have time to stop and fix it and keep going to finish the loop, so I called it quits and took the closest bail out to a neighborhood street and called my girlfriend to come pick me up. Which is something else id like to mention about the back 40 trails - its a large trail network that makes you feel like you're in the middle of real wild back country, but really you're just riding in the awesome wooded areas that maze through a shit loads of neighborhoods. Bailouts are everywhere and you're almost always right by a neighborhood street if something were to happen or something

    The trails are all built extremely well and the switchbacks, berms, etc are very dialed. We could all take a lesson from the trail builders there! I actually did meet one of the main trail builders named Chuck out on the trail on the 3rd day. he was cutting down fallen trees as a was riding, I stopped and we talked for a bit, he was a cool guy. He has a trail named after him on the back 40 called "what the chuck". Nice to meet a fellow trail builder from a different place

    SUMMARY -

    IMO - Bentonville, Arkansas trails are basically Austin, TX trails with zero cedar trees, great greenery, a tiny bit more elevation, and a lot more flow. I generally like trails that are a bit chunkier/gnarlier but I would definitely recommend anyone go there and cross it off the bucket list. We had a great time, and I'm sure these trails would be even funner as you got more familiar with them and could really open it up and shred them harder!


    And sorry the language! Ha




    enjoy the video edit I slapped together today!
    Last edited by Seths Pool; 07-12-2017 at 11:35 PM.

  2. #2
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    Glad you got to check it out. July has a satanic amount of humidity that makes the climbs back up coler brutal. Ate shit there my second run.

    Have gone twice now in the summer, id only go back in the fall
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    MoJo Mother Superior Cafeend's Avatar
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    That was sweet. I was headed back to Austin abiut 3 weeks back and stopped there. I had no bikes and both kids and couldnt ride but cool vibe. That Phat tire shop was cool. The girl there told me I could not ride a single speed there especially HT.
    She said coming from Austin Id would get crushed.
    Judging by your video though, Id say I could.

    I was hoping for more GF drama like yalls one trip. That was funny


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    Mojo Bike Part Terminator Seths Pool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cafeend View Post
    That was sweet. I was headed back to Austin abiut 3 weeks back and stopped there. I had no bikes and both kids and couldnt ride but cool vibe. That Phat tire shop was cool. The girl there told me I could not ride a single speed there especially HT.
    She said coming from Austin Id would get crushed.
    Judging by your video though, Id say I could.

    I was hoping for more GF drama like yalls one trip. That was funny


    Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk
    That girl didn't know what she was talking about. If you can ride central Texas terrain you can ride anywhere. maybe not kick ass at elevation but as far as actual terrain, us locals can ride anywhere.

    Haha did you catch that first part when she was like "you're going to make me do the whole 20 miles aren't you? I'm gonna be mad, and you're gonna get mad that I'm
    Mad" LOL
    EMV likes this.
    "Less yap more braap"

    "Strava is like Tinder for bros"

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    MoJo Mother Superior Cafeend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seths Pool View Post
    That girl didn't know what she was talking about. If you can ride central Texas terrain you can ride anywhere. maybe not kick ass at elevation but as far as actual terrain, us locals can ride anywhere.

    Haha did you catch that first part when she was like "you're going to make me do the whole 20 miles aren't you? I'm gonna be mad, and you're gonna get mad that I'm
    Mad" LOL
    Yea that was funny.
    I was sitting in my truck with the windows down watching while I waited for my kid's swim practice to wrap up.

    So full volume. There was this dude parking next to me and he got out the moment you dropped the Effin Faggot

    Dude looked at me like I said it.
    Funny.



    Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk

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    MoJo Pope endo_'s Avatar
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    I think we met chuck on our trip last year! Guy is everywhere


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    We ride, then we drink!

    A lot!


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    Mojo Prickly Tire brianjo's Avatar
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    Nice edit. I was there at the end of May. It was the same scenario for me too- lots of rain the night we arrived. The Back 40 got like 6 inches, so didnt get to ride it at all. I ended up doing all the stuff closer in to town- Slaughter Pen, etc as it only got a couple inches and was good to ride 1.5 days later. I definitely want to get back there again to do Back 40 and Blowing Springs. I was told Devil's Den is good as well.

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    Live Medium Bamwa's Avatar
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    Dude those spiders were feeling the stoke. Can't really blame them. Who's Kansas?....

    ARR Kansas!

    Glad you went analog on the bars. Nothing worse than a vid with a big dumb cell phone strapped to the bars.

    "Derf, where am I going?"

    To Hell. Cuz you cant disconnect and be with the natures yo.
    Last edited by Bamwa; 07-13-2017 at 01:19 AM.
    Grab life by the timbales.

    Ever since we were monkeys trails were sweet.

  9. #9
    MoJo Mother Superior TheSarge's Avatar
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    Sounds like a fun trip. Hoping to get out there for Labor Day.

    Glad to hear y'all had a good experience at Phat Tire too. I stopped in there a couple of weeks ago like Cafeend - no, just cruising through and wanted to get an idea of the scene. Spoke to one young clerk, maybe 18, that said he wasn't riding because he broke his WalMart bike and can't afford a new bike. Then spoke to a guy more my age who said he didn't know anything about the mtn bike trails because he's a roadie with no interest in trails. I ended up buying a hat because I like the logo, but based on my experience I was going to look for another shop when I go back in the fall.

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    MoJo Priest Slow2Recover's Avatar
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    Great info! And your wife sounds just like mine F bomb and all! LOL
    I plan to go spend 3 or 4 days riding the trails in the fall.

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    Mojo Bike Part Terminator Seths Pool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheSarge View Post
    Sounds like a fun trip. Hoping to get out there for Labor Day.

    Glad to hear y'all had a good experience at Phat Tire too. I stopped in there a couple of weeks ago like Cafeend - no, just cruising through and wanted to get an idea of the scene. Spoke to one young clerk, maybe 18, that said he wasn't riding because he broke his WalMart bike and can't afford a new bike. Then spoke to a guy more my age who said he didn't know anything about the mtn bike trails because he's a roadie with no interest in trails. I ended up buying a hat because I like the logo, but based on my experience I was going to look for another shop when I go back in the fall.
    thats funny you say that! we started noticing through light conversations we had in passing with many of the locals that hardly any of the locals had any clue that bentonville was well known "famous" for mountain biking! it actually got to the point where I started going out of my way to ask the locals if they knew that their town was famous for mountain biking and probably 95% didn't.

    just like Angelfire, so many people working the chair lifts and stuff who said they had never ridden and trails or rode the mountain! unbelievable!
    "Less yap more braap"

    "Strava is like Tinder for bros"

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    MoJo Mother Superior fontarin's Avatar
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    Thanks for the review! We're planning a week there in March or April. Seems like the highs will be mid 60s/70s at that time of year.

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    MoJo Mother Superior fontarin's Avatar
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    Thanks for the review! We're planning a week there in March or April. Seems like the highs will be mid 60s/70s at that time of year.

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    Shop Owner/Frame Builder CBaron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slow2Recover View Post
    Great info! And your wife sounds just like mine F bomb and all! LOL
    Oh so you mean you wife wait til you're passed out asleep then uses you finger to unlock your phone and post bad stuff about you on Facebook?!?

    Just ribbing, Seth. Glad its been working out.

    Later,
    CJB
    Slow2Recover and Spicewookie like this.


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    My trip is booked 8/18-22 for my 65th birthday.

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    MoJo Pope csmceuen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fontarin View Post
    Thanks for the review! We're planning a week there in March or April. Seems like the highs will be mid 60s/70s at that time of year.
    I would aim for more in April. I went this year in early to mid March and was disappointed by how dead everything looked. The riding was amazing, but most of the foliage had not really recovered from the winter yet. Everything was a sad dull brown.

    It was such an amazing trip, I just wished it was lush and green. I will 100% be going back in early fall or spring of next year.
    Last edited by csmceuen; 07-13-2017 at 03:39 PM.

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    MoJo Mother Superior yosmithy's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing. I really want to make a run up there in the fall.

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    MoJo Mother Superior TheSarge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seths Pool View Post
    hardly any of the locals had any clue that bentonville was well known "famous" for mountain biking!
    Even the roadie I talked to - he told me about some of the new trails that are under construction - commented "You know, with everything going on, I wouldn't be surprised if in a couple of years people start coming here for the riding."

    So, the place has been discovered by everyone EXCEPT the locals.

  19. #19
    MoJo Mother Superior Morealice's Avatar
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    Nice report. It's on my list fo SHO, but never ever in the summer.

  20. #20
    MoJo Pope endo_'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seths Pool View Post
    thats funny you say that! we started noticing through light conversations we had in passing with many of the locals that hardly any of the locals had any clue that bentonville was well known "famous" for mountain biking! it actually got to the point where I started going out of my way to ask the locals if they knew that their town was famous for mountain biking and probably 95% didn't.

    just like Angelfire, so many people working the chair lifts and stuff who said they had never ridden and trails or rode the mountain! unbelievable!
    Seemed like everyone we talked to was all about bikes! Even the lady we rent the airbmb from gave us advice on trails!
    We ride, then we drink!

    A lot!


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