Held the weekend before the massive annual Sea Otter Classic in nearby Monterey, CA, the Santa Cruz Mountainbike Festival took place under warm and sunny skies. Demo bikes from industry leading brands like Trek, Specialized, Santa Cruz, Pivot, Niner and many others had many people trying bikes ranging from dirt jumpers to hard tails to gravity oriented mountainbikes. Lots of food trucks and shady places to sit attracted some folks away from the demo area, and dirt jump jams kept riders young and old busy and others entertained.
The SCMBF has very much become THE place to take your family for the weekend. And while they offer shuttles for experienced riders to check out the nearby Soquel Demo Forest, lots of peeps just stay down at the festival village, relaxing and enjoying the day. With a couple of different pump tracks and dirt jump areas as a background for the village and demo area, there didn’t seem to be any down time for anyone.
Because Sea Otter is close, the festival demo area is chock full of industry vets. Try a new Smith helmet, or Santa Cruz Bronson. But there area also a ton of local vendors trying to get the word out about how cool they are. Massages, locally made ice cream and mountain bike tour companies are a few that come to mind.
After looking back, it’s the grassroots events like these, with just as many attendees under the age of 10, as adults, that’s really what keeps mountain biking the amazing sport that it is. You might not have seen the current World Cup downhill or Enduro World Series at the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival, but I bet you may have gotten a glimpse of someone that will be racing in those events in the future. Great stuff, think about attending next year. Not to mention the nearby communities are awesome place to take the family on vacation. So whether you’re local to the area or not, think about checking it out. Especially if you have young ones, or are a youngster at heart.
Words & Photos: Daniel Dunn
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