FAQ's

General DFW Questions

Why are trails closed when it rains?

Trails close due to the damage done when tires and/or shoes travel over muddy soil. This causes advanced erosion that leads to an increased workload to sustain usable trail systems.

Who maintains and builds our trails?

Our trails operate under agreements by cities or private land owners that grant us access to build trails. This work is done by unpaid volunteers through hard work and sweat equity. Each trail also has an unpaid volunteer "trail steward" designated by DORBA that is responsible for the trail maintenance and communication with the land owner(s). Seasonal work-days are held to complete projects or catch up on trail overgrowth and maintenance as needed.

Here is a great video to explain the organization that brings riders the great trails in our area:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIU_qL3UIdU

Here’s a video to show what a trail work day looks like:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9I5c_ixGYYE&list=UUwtC-VNrZ2y2COH1uR5H5xQ

Which trails are best for beginners?

LB Houston, Harry Moss, Rowlett Creek Preserve, River Legacy, and Squabble Creek are all very beginner friendly trails although several others can accommodate new riders.

Which trails are more difficult?

Big Cedar and Sansom Park have the most climbing in DFW.

Northshore, Isle de Bois, Johnson Branch, and Big Cedar all have certain sections that are among the more technically challenging although these sections can be bypassed if desired.

What are the must-have trail work tools?

A good set of clippers/loppers, folding hand saw, bug spray, and work gloves are all mandatory tools to start taking care of our area trails.

What do poison ivy, poison oak, & poison sumac look like?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following article:

http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/poison-ivy-oak-and-sumac-leaves

I want to volunteer but I don't have much time. Who do I contact?

The best use of volunteering time is done by helping with trail work. This can be done by contacting your local trail steward via email. There is always work to be done and help is greatly appreciated. A list of trail steward emails can be found under each trail link here:

http://www.dorba.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=7606

Also, after helping with trail work, be sure to log your time as it helps track DORBA's annual volunteer hours which are used when communicating with cities and municipalities for potential projects.

This can be done here:

http://www.dorba.org/trailhours.php

General Riding Questions

When should I try clipless pedals?

“Clipping in” is something that the majority of cross country riders prefer due to the increased pedaling efficiency and stability. It is recommended that a rider has a decent amount of skills and experience (riding for 3-6 months) before switching from platform (non clipping) pedals due to increased risk of injury. While the majority of riders prefer clipless pedals, they are certainly not required or mandatory.

See the following article that expands this ongoing debate and conversation:

http://betterride.net/blog/2010/clipped-in-vs-flat-pedals/

 

How much should I spend on a "good" first bike?

The money people spend on bicycles is very relative and widely spread. A good starting budget is somewhere around 400-500$. This will avoid the bikes that will most likely fall apart after just a few rides. One will get better dependability and service buying a bike from a bicycle store rather than department store. Great deals on used bikes can be found on DORBA’s buy/sell forum section here:

http://www.dorba.org/forum/viewforum.php?f=11

The Facebook group Dallas Off Road Bike Classifieds is also a great place to look:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/366559786724975/

What is the best first upgrade to my bike?

This question does not have one answer and will vary greatly depending on who you ask. A great place to start is upgrading your contact points on the bike like the seat, pedals, or grips. Another good upgrade would be high quality tires and/or converting them to tubeless.  How to convert your wheels to tubeless is answered below.

What is the proper attire to go mountain biking?

A complete and thorough answer can be found in the following video and article:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJCAEHYCKhY

http://www.bikeradar.com/us/gear/article/beginners-guide-to-mountain-biking-part-1-23675/

What should my camelback/riding pack always have in it?

Every rider should pack everything needed to change a flat (inner tube, inflation device, and tire levers) regardless if tubeless or not. Allen wrenches and a chain tool are also very handy to have. Riders should also bring at least one liter of water and one high quality energy bar for each hour of riding.

 

Technical Mountain Biking Questions

 

How to set your wheels up tubeless?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following article:

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/tech-tuesday-tubeless-conversion-2010.html

How should I adjust my cockpit (handlebar, shifters, and levers)?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following articles:

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/technical-tuesday-bar-setup-2010.html

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/Tech-Tuesday-Handlebars-How-Wide-Affects-Your-Ride-2011.html

What are the best tires for DFW?

This answer will vary more than any other question in mountain biking. The only portion of this answer that will be overwhelmingly agreeable is the option of setting tires up tubeless. This will allow the rider to run lower tire pressures and extract the maximum performance out of the tire selected while also preventing punctures.

Selection process tips and beginning guide can be found in the following video and article:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwDETrTUI4c

http://www.mtbtips.com/beginner-mountain-biking-tips/how-to-choose-mountain-bike-tires/

What is the proper tire pressure setup?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following article:

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/Tech-Tuesday-tire-pressure-2011.html

What are the differences between 26", 27.5", & 29" wheels? Which one's better?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following article:

http://www.bikeradar.com/us/mtb/gear/article/mountain-bike-wheel-sizes-26in-650b-and-29in-explained-40785/

What are some mandatory tools to own when starting out?

The basic tools every rider should have are a set of metric Allen wrenches 2mm-10mm, floor pump, minipump that is portable and can fit in a camelback, chain tool, tire levers, a few basic screwdrivers,

If you plan on doing your own bike maintenance, the following tools are also recommended and will get through the most common repairs: spoke wrench, chain checker, a torx key set that includes at least a T-25, and cable cutters

What kind of light do I need to go night riding?

A complete and thorough answer can be found watching the following video:

http://youtu.be/nyuGz3ewTH4?list=UUwtC-VNrZ2y2COH1uR5H5xQ

A great review of the best lights for 2014 can be found here:

http://reviews.mtbr.com/2014-mtbr-bike-lights-shootout

 

How do I adjust my derailleur?

A complete and thorough answer can be found in the following video and articles:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2j1gSwhsVN8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLQk29enhRQ

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/rear-derailler-adjustments-derailleur

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/front-derailleur-adjustments

What are the suspension basics?

A complete and thorough answer can be found reading the following article:

http://www.pinkbike.com/news/technical-tuesday-suspension-basics-2010.html

 

 

 Traveling to Ride

 

What are the best single day riding trips from DFW?

DFW has several great trails and areas that can be explored in about a day such as Tyler State Park, Cameron Park, Dinosaur Valley State Park or Solavaca Ranch for starters. The Austin area also has several great trails to experience but most of these are a stretch to ride and come back in a single day.

 

What are the best places to ride and camp close to DFW?

Tyler State Park is one of north Texas best camping and riding places. The southern Ozark Mountain region of Arkansas also has several great places to camp and has multiple trail systems to ride like the Womble, Lovit, or Ouachita Trail. Solavaca Ranch and Reveille Peak Ranch are also good places to ride and camp.

Where are the “must ride” places around the continent?

No mountain biking career is complete without a trip to Whistler, British Columbia, Moab, Utah or the home of the mountain bike hall of fame Crested Butte, Colorado. North America has several other amazing riding areas like Lake Tahoe California, Sedona Arizona, Park City Utah, Fruita Colorado, Brevard North Carolina, or Banff in Alberta, Canada.