Newman and Bangor Hills, Orono
The singletrack on Newman and Bangor hills is technical, narrow, and twisty. And steep. In one ride, you may travel less than five to 10 miles, but I guarantee you will enjoy every minute of it and be exhausted at the end of the ride.
Now, the trails are designed for the advanced intermediate to expert rider. Of the various uphill sections, riders have been heard to say that the trails are 'impossible to ride.' Especially during wet conditions. And you will find these trails slick more often than not. The rocks and roots tend to sweat on hot humid summer days, and the fields of moss are always sloshy. These are also the days when the deer flies and mosquitoes swarm. So bug repellant is recommended.
The trails wind through a dense softwood forest. Hemlocks, spruce, and cedar dominate the area. Don't get me wrong; the trails are not muddy. The water all goes downhill. There are very few mud holes. But fat tires are highly recommended. A four-season Omniterra bike by Surly or Salsa rides like a charm out there. Those large wheels gobble up rocks and roots. A narrow handlebar width also makes sense.
The singletrack weaves into a gully between the two hills. This exposed ledgy terrain is the steepest, and the fastest. These trails are among the few in the Penobscot Region that provide a ride with significant elevation gain. These trails also parallel an abandoned railroad bed that is actively being pursued to be turned into a Rail Trail. Eventually, this will be a place where riders of all levels can enjoy the terrain.
This area also contains a vast network of cross-country ski trails. With the continued construction and maintenance of the singletrack mountain bike trails on Newman and Bangor hills, this area is becoming a four season, family-friendly recreational area.
Just off the Taylor Road in Orono, you'll find information, maps, and parking at the trailhead. For more information, contact www.oronolandtrust.org.
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