There's a Brand New Mile-Long Flow Trail in California

Mar 14, 2018
by Ryan Schuppert  
Views: 22,879    Faves: 45    Comments: 7


Rider: Ryan Schuppert
Video & Editing by Jaret Brantley // Drone & 2nd camera by Mike Ruffell
Words by Nathan Knudsen


It used to be that a trip to the trail system at Swasey Recreation Area was like a trip your aunt's house when you were young. Although not as fun as Grandma's, it sure was better than being at the odd smelling daycare place. It had a sense of familiarity, it was nearby and while the toy selection wasn't great, you knew some other kids hadn't been putting them in their mouth. The trails at Swasey were similar. They've been around long enough that they feel like family. Your tires have rolled across them so many times that any excitement they might have once had starts to feel commonplace. You didn't go ride Swasey in seek of adventure or thrills. You went there because of its convenience. A five-minute drive from downtown Redding, you're able to get 20 plus miles on the dirt and one or two thousand feet of elevation without touching pavement once.

Photo by Mike Ruffell
Trail work in progress!

That all changed last year with the addition of the Enticer. What is now the Enticer trail has filled many roles over the years. It started out as an access road for old mining operations. When the Swasey trail system was put in in the early 2000s, the road was used to complete a loop called the Wintu Loop. This section of trail proved to be a maintenance and managerial nightmare. Erosion was so bad that large rolling dips would fill with sediment and quickly become ineffective. To the land managers unease, trail users started to build unsanctioned jumps of various sizes and quality down the old road.

Enter Redding Trail Alliance, a 501c3 non-profit trail building/advocacy organization. Working with BLM we developed a plan that would turn the old road into a world-class, bike park style trail. Our goal with this project was to provide the mountain bike community with a trail they could feel good about progressing their jumping skills on. A trail unlike any other in Redding where riders of all skill levels can grow by pushing their limits, trying something new and feel comfortable while doing it. All the while, the road to trail conversion would also do wonders to remedy the current sustainability issues of the old road. Constant grade reversals, out slopes and drains help get the water off the trail at every opportunity.


Photo by Mike Ruffell
Some days there was a lot of finger pointing and visualizing to get the next feature just right. Photo: Mike Ruffell

Photo by Mike Ruffell
Other days it was all hands on deck and keep your head down and work!! it took a big group to make this project become a reality. Photo: Mike Ruffell

Enticer was finished in the spring of 2017, it took 2 months of work and over 1000 man hours to complete. The final product is incredible! The entire line is 1 mile long with 24 jumps of various sizes and difficulty, 21 berms and dozens of rollers.

photo by Jaret Brantley
The final product! Photo: Jaret Brantley

Following the momentum of this build Redding Trail Alliance has refurbished 2 other trails at Swasey and has flagged several miles of new trail to be developed in 2019!
None of this would be possible without the support of BLM and The McConnell Foundation.

Now that the Enticer exists, a visit to Swasey has become like a visit to your favorite grandma's house. You know, the one that lets you stay up past your bedtime playing with that brand new toy and eating WAY too much dessert.

Photo by Jaret Brantley
Andrew Pellkofer is the brainchild/lead operator behind the Enticer build! Photo: Jaret Brantley

Photo by Jaret Brantley
Some of the trail crew enjoying the fruits of their labor! Mike Eastman up top, Andrew Pellkofer below, followed by Kyle Adams. Photo: Jaret Brantley




147 Comments

  • + 104
 If you pay close attention to the background at the 58 second mark you can see a DJI Phantom got some shrubbery.
  • + 5
 I thought that was a rabbit for a second!
  • + 5
 I just happened to be in Redding with my bike when this trail opened up-- it was a BLAST! Those little booters were fun! Good work guys!
  • + 1
 haha too good, exactly my thought straight away
  • + 1
 Awesome work to the build crew. That looks like great dirt and fun top to bottom. Wish I lived within 3000 miles of there.
  • + 4
 What did we JUST say about flow trails, goddamnit! Just kidding, it looks awesome
  • + 5
 Now, a red hairing
  • + 7
 Ni!
  • + 4
 @Mooka: We want a schruberyy
  • + 4
 @cbro7092: with sort of a bi-level effect with a path down the middle.
  • + 1
 Dr.Toboggan says " this is still a multi use and direction trail so look at for horses, dogs and people
  • + 66
 I've been riding Redding for 10 years. I personally know some of the government employees that cleared the way for this area. The behind the scenes goverment employees that made this build possible should be honored for working with us instead of against. ????
  • + 31
 Props were fully given to BLM. We are beyond thankful for how wonderful they have been to work with!
  • + 12
 Too bad its a big deal when a .gov worker a actually does they're job...doing what the local people want them to do and pay them for.
  • + 9
 To all that build with us I say huck yes Those against huck you
  • + 1
 Where is a good place on the web to check trail condtions for this area?
  • + 1
 @brncr6: They're for an extended wet spring this year, but starting in early to mid May they probably won't get any real rain again until September/October. Ideally I would recommend going in May or early June before the potential summer temperatures of 100-115 kick in. Or go in the summer and start the day early
  • + 2
 @brncr6: The best bet would be to contact Redding Trail Alliance directly. But the trails are clear year round and because of the soil type you can ride them right after a rain. If we are having a freeze thaw cycle, which doesn't happen often, some trails can get a little soupy. Any trails that run through old water ditches tend to get a bit of standing water if its been raining a bunch, so I would recommend avoiding those, i.e. Princess Ditch or Canal trail. Other than that you are good to go!
  • + 1
 @showmethemountains: i lived in redding in the late 80s and remeber the heat. Mid may sounds good seeing as how ill be riding with my 12 yr old son.
@ReddingRider
Thanks for the advice guys!
  • + 1
 @ReddingRider: How do you think conditions will be this weekend? Weather looks good for the weekend but I know it has been raining.
  • + 1
 @MtbPanda: There will be puddles on a few of the flat land trails, other than that you will be good to go.
  • + 1
 @brncr6: there is another bermed trail up the mountain that has better drainage if you want to see the soil/area, snail trail, it's a fun place with a lot tucked away here and there
  • + 0
 @brncr6: not to be a d*ck but weather.com. Just give at least 1 to 2 days of dry weather for every inch it rains. Pretty typical in the sierra foothills.
  • + 2
 @brncr6:
BTW: I just found out that Specialized will be doing free bike demos on April 14th and 15th at the Swasey trails!
  • + 1
 @showmethemountains: unfortunately just heard that was canceled.
  • + 1
 @ReddingRider:
Aww, bummer! I was already making plans to visit Redding that weekend. Thanks for letting me know
  • + 2
 @ReddingRider: Just got back! Managed 5 laps today. Huge props to all involved, ready to go back already.
  • + 1
 @jrocksdh: Meanwhile in Caliente...
  • + 28
 I like flow trails and natural trails, but it's New trails that bring the most smiles!
  • + 23
 Needs more rocks. Maybe a root.
  • + 7
 "Keep the mountain in mountain biking" someone once said........
  • + 5
 They kicked it root down.
  • - 1
 @Mfro: BMXtian biking?
  • + 18
 Is it called Enticer because it's a jump trail and you're gonna send it? www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSuLFvalhnQ
  • + 12
 Exactly. Homage to the legend himself!
  • + 5
 Gotta get me some denim riding gear.
  • + 1
 I thought it was an homage to Entertainer.
  • + 0
 Just gonna send it #69
  • + 2
 @codypup: as much as we love the Entertainer, this trail name was influenced in part Larry Enticer who inspires people everywhere to send it and the hope that the trail would "entice" people to Redding.
  • + 15
 Poor californians, getting excited for their mile-long trail, it even gets a PB headline. I knew they had a trail access problem but this is ridiculous.
  • + 16
 Stephen,you don’t know Jack
  • + 4
 I live in California, yup trail access sucks and seeing more e-bikes on trails in Santa Cruz! LBS have them on demo!
  • + 11
 California is a huge state and trail access varies greatly by region. Some areas have next to nothing that is legal, others have many miles of trails right near town But a trail built with help from the gov't and a local charity foundation is worth a good press release regardless of the trail type or length. This is a cool accomplishment and encouraging story
  • + 5
 @showmethemountains: The Chico scene seems pretty rad. San Diego is getting much better and in a couple years we should see a slight transformation if all goes as planned. CA is indeed huge. I went to school at Humboldt State and the riding scene there was pretty awesome. Lots of "social" trails, many where you could be the only one out there riding them for hours and hours, but some other very legit, sanctioned trails that have enduro racing on them a few times a season as well.
  • + 12
 You wreck that drone at 0.57?
  • + 1
 I saw that too lol
  • + 4
 Not me, but yes it was wrecked.
  • + 7
 We could use a 100 meter jump trail Let alone a mile of jumps. Perfect solution to covert boring dirt roads into flowy jump trails. Just make all the jumps tables and it's all good.
  • + 8
 Respect to the builders ✊! Can’t wait to check out the trail scene in Redding!
  • + 7
 All that time and effort and they could t make an extra 21m of trail to actually make it a mile.
  • + 5
 Looks amazing....
also worrying that talentless trail hacks will try doing this flow trail treatment to existing, perfectly good trails which they had no part of building & thus, shouldn't touch with tools.
  • + 3
 Swasey is fun - I was lucky enough to catch a couple days there with temps in the mid 70's last month. Article did not even mention the two mile (jumpless, but very fun) flow trail that is 80% done next door..

www.trailforks.com/trails/snail-trail-37181
  • + 3
 This trail is 5 min from my house. I ride it with my 8 year old son and we have a blast. The builders did an incredible job transforming an old rutted road with sketchy jumps into a trail with a lot of variety for different skill levels. We would not have the many high quality trails up here without the hard work and passion of a handful of people. Thanks RTA, MConnell foundation, BLM...!
  • + 1
 This is so awesome to hear. I might have to come up with my 8 year old son and join you!
  • + 2
 Congrats and cant believe the build was only two months!
Also glad to see the progress, support & cooperation with BLM, grants and locals - props!

Also I think many people miss that this was an old road transformed so why is there so much hate....hopefully these are the 1% that will soon go back to their armchair riding. The good news is the negative crew wont come and ride.
  • + 3
 Love this trail as well as snail. Hopefully Redding can be a decent little stop between santa cruz and ashland Oregon. A few brewerys, good fishing, pretty awesome place except for lots of tweakers.
  • + 5
 Bow down for the trail worker
  • + 3
 Love to see people putting their money (also time and effort) where their mouth is and making something happen. Props to all involved.
  • + 4
 Its good to finally see oak trees on the trails. we need more trails likethis in cali...love it!
  • + 1
 I applaud the effort but I can't believe how much money, man power, meetings, proposals go into these flow trails seem to be only partially fun to ride. I've seen numerous flow trails be built and after riding only a handfull of times turn out to be quite boring. Next thing you know they are not ridden much or maintained then fall apart and are neglected because of lack of interest. If you have the equipment in the woods build something that will keep riders of all abilities stoked for years of riding.
  • + 3
 With over 200 miles of trails, our goal is to add variety. We did not have a legal jump trail that would allow intermediate and experts alike to have fun getting in the air. We feel this trail was a good addition, but no, we don't plan on building another anytime soon. As for popularity, it has been there for a year now and is the most used mountain bike trial in our local trail system and I don't see that changing anytime soon.
  • + 2
 Well done Nathan, Angelo and I hope to make it up from San Diego soon and give it a spin. The trail looks awesome, you guys put in a ton of work congratulations!!
  • + 1
 Thanks Jon! I hope to see you up hear sometime soon.
  • + 3
 Awesome! We should have some new flow trails here in San Diego in 2019. Can't wait!
  • + 4
 This is news to me. Where/what trails are you referring to ( fellow San diegan)
  • + 2
 @Jcmonty: Curious as well, as a former San Diegan. Where do folks ride down there? Mt. Wilson? Iron Mountain?
  • + 1
 @Jcmonty: Black Widow on Black Mountain and the Orosco Ridge trails in Ramona. Both do not exist yet, but should by early 2019. Follow me on facebook for more info and future developments. We get info early and often directly from SDMBA and support them in trail design/mapping. www.Facebook.com/RideAlongside
  • + 2
 @forgivenick: Ah, cool. I grew up in Poway, and spent a good amount of time in or riding through Ramona.
  • + 2
 @Poulsbojohnny: Awesome! I love all the horse trails in Poway that connect to open space areas! I connected a bunch of them to do 60 miles in the dirt with 16 of my bike friends for my 40th birthday. It took all day, but was so awesome. Here is a quick vid I threw together of that captured some of the best parts of it:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDZwTJyxVTI
  • + 2
 Rad! I now know of exactly one reason to stop in Redding next time I'm blasting down I5...
  • + 3
 Looks fantastic.....great work!
  • + 2
 Nice! Thank you BLM and all the build crew! Bring that thinking to Santa Cruz! Please!! I'll be up to ride that ASAP!
  • + 2
 It's a miracle...gonna have to plan a road trip there. No trails like this one on the south.
  • + 0
 In the light of the latest poll: blah awful, ahh awful, I would rather die than ride this thing, it is killing the sport, there is no way any good rider has any fun on this thing. They just die inside looking at it. Big Grin
  • + 14
 That does appear to be consensus, but you have to wait in line for these trails, so maybe everyone who would have commented in the positive was just too busy riding their bikes.
  • + 3
 Great, another flow trail. If this continues to allow access for bikes on trails, than I guess, I support this. Those who love trails on the opposite end of the spectrum should do everything in our power to retain access to the "old school" steep, deep, and rugged.... I ride full suspension for a reason.
  • + 2
 @insanemntbiker: I agree the whole spectrum is needed. Flow trails are probably easier to get approved since they seem safer and more family friendly, but if a 100,000,000 kids start on flow maybe it will be a gateway to madder stuff for everyone.
  • + 4
 @taletotell: wait? what?! People wait in line to ride a trail? .... sounds like a nightmare.
  • + 0
 @cmcrawfo: Yeah, is that for real? Sounds like absolute shit, I don't care how good the trail is.
  • + 2
 @cmcrawfo: You get to the trail head and a dozen people are just setting off and you ask yourself: "If these folks are slower than me do I really want to mess up my flow?" and then you wait a few minutes to give them a lead. If you know you can pass them fine, but frequently on flow trails the best line is pretty narrow, and in the event of bench cut stuff you may be either threading the needle between a rider and a fall to your death, or forcing some nervous rider to let you between them and the wall.
It is best to leave a gap so that you can hit the trail at the right speed to make the transitions on all the jumps.

And yeah, it gets crowded at flow trails. I never have that problem in the east. I can pass easily in the forest and the lines are all natural so there is no ideal approach unless it is to a feature.
  • + 1
 I am not sure why I am getting down voted for these comments.... Waiting to ride a bike trial would suck. Downvote it all you like, but its not normal, or good or right... you guys need more trails and less trail publicity.
  • + 2
 @cmcrawfo: so it’s a bad thing that a trail that many people sweated their balls off to build, is used to the fullest? Self centered much?
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Yes. How can you not see that? Why would you want so much traffic on a trail that it creates a line? not only is bad for flow, riding rhythm and sustained efforts, but to put that much traffic on a tail is going to result in the need for massive and regular maintenance... its not a f*cking interstate, its bike trail.
  • - 1
 @cmcrawfo: nevermind...
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: Everything in California is an interstate. And no thanks. I've ridden in Bend numerous times. That place is PACKED with riders. Well, in town anyway. Out on the trails you find a rider here and there, but there is no waiting. And no flow.
  • + 1
 @insanemntbiker: it's a great area for rough and natural too, personally I haven't ran out of places to shuttle old trails in the mountains in NorCal, just can't go too deep in the woods or you'll start hearing shot guns and banjos around every corner. For instance, I know where there is 6500+ ft of descent linking up old trails . 6500+ ft of descent in less than three miles of distance. Thank you SPI.
  • + 1
 @Poulsbojohnny: Your analogy to California and Bend is sadly unsurprising.
  • + 2
 @slashandburn: You mean because Bend is full of.....wait for it.......a bunch of transplanted Californians?
  • + 2
 @slashandburn: I don't think any Oregonians live in bend
  • + 3
 That trail is rad. Last double is super fun. Go fast and don't hesitate
  • + 1
 thank jesus im two hours from redding!!!! ashlands not half bad either, schuppert helped us up here on a trail work day in January
  • + 2
 Not half bad! Ashland is probably one of THE best places in the states to ride. We aspire to be half as good as up there. But alas, we don't have the ability to shuttle long ass trails..... yet. As for Schuppert, I am glad he came up and helped, that guy is a wizard with a shovel.
  • + 1
 @ReddingRider: LOL, i know right? hoped i was kidding but i dont get around much. its hard for me to get out of ashland honestly, i can ride straight from my door, up as far as i want, or do shuttles with friends! i was born and raised in ashland, so the trails are home to me, n its the number one reason i still live here!
  • + 2
 Anyone else spot that odd looking swan (0:57) in the background?
  • + 1
 Super cool to see a trail literally less that a mile from my house on Pinkbike, ride it all the time
  • - 1
 I bet you don’t even live close to this trail. Poser.
  • + 2
 Sweet! A new climb trail for me and my ebike to ride
  • + 1
 Please don't
  • + 3
 @treekilla: Pretty sure your sarcasm detector is broke. Better get it looked at.
  • + 2
 Fun but to far to visit grandmas house.
  • + 1
 Wonder what the Carr fire left of it. More than a little anxious right now.
  • + 2
 Mike BEASTMAN throwing down!
  • + 3
 Oh noes! Moar floes!
  • + 2
 Bring the trails to SOCAL! This place is wack for MTB.
  • + 1
 Exactly! There is absolutely no good riding in all of SoCal. Don't bother coming here. Nothing to see. Book your next CA trip to Redding!
  • + 1
 agreed man un-maintained and rocky as hell! we sure could use some professionally built trails for bikes only!
  • + 1
 wow!, very nice!... could use a trail like this in Bromont,Quebec!!!!!.....Hope your listening bromont!
  • + 2
 looks like a more fun version of Endor in Fairfax.
  • + 2
 Perfect Music choice for this Video.
  • + 2
 a BIG THANKS to the trail crew on this one! Epic.
  • + 2
 Wow another flow trail that’s exactly the same as every other flow trail
  • + 3
 Whoa so sick!
  • + 1
 Hey sorta local trails made it. Thats awesome. Snail trail is pretty great flow as well but not done yet.
  • + 1
 Can’t wait to ride my mini BMX on this track!
  • + 2
 I'm on my way!!
  • + 1
 Looks like a blast, semi flat landings tho!
  • + 1
 Kudos to everyone involved, looks mint!
  • + 1
 When normal trails start to look like bike park!
  • + 1
 Would be rad to get some trails like these down south in San Diego...
  • + 1
 dang, looks like fun.
  • + 1
 Anywhere
  • + 0
 Obviously, just watched the video loll
  • - 3
 Who could possibly care about a mile long flow trail?
  • + 16
 We do! True, the length is not impressive at all, but it was what we where given to work with. The label flow trail is pretty misleading. It's more a jump trail, with tables, step ups, step downs, on offs, and multiple large gap jumps. And the other newsworthy fact is that this was all done legally on government land which is a HUGE step in our area. The idea behind the trail was to get people comfortable getting air. We had nothing like it in the area. You could go to North Star and feel like you started to get the hang of jumping, but by the time you made it back, you had lost all confidence and skill. So it's not the length of the trail thats impressive, it's what you can do with it!
  • + 1
 I would. If they built one within a n hours drive of Torrance, CA...Smile
  • + 4
 2 whole minutes of the type of biking nobody likes because it is for beginners (according to Pinkbike polls).

*disclaimer this comment may/may not reflect ragetron's opinion.
  • + 1
 @muletron:

Everyone was a Beginner at some point..
  • + 5
 @ReddingRider: Good on you guys for getting it organized, permitted, and built. Legal trails on public land in No. California - that's indeed a BFD.
  • + 2
 @ReddingRider e-bikes ok on this trail?
  • + 3
 @drivereight: no, but I see a few of them out there. It's BLM land and from what I understand ebikes aren't allowed on any trails that are not approved for OHV use. I believe the only trails nearby that are open to them are the ones out at Shasta-Chappie OHV area. There are some really fun trails out there, and BIG climbs.
  • - 3
 I´m fine with the flow and the jumps and all but do you really have to do it motorway wide?!
  • + 4
 The original trail was actually an old mining road that over the years opened up to be wide enough to drive a truck up. So in the scheme of things, this has been considerably narrowed up in many places. In addition, it was also designed to have multiple lines side by side, with advanced lines along side an intermediate line, allowing for progression where the rider feels comfortable.
  • - 2
 Redding , the Meth capital of the West..
  • - 1
 Pretty sure that is Santa Cruz....
  • + 11
 @parallaxid: Flow trail in Santa Cruz - four miles long, over 6000hrs of labor, numurous massive financial contributions, over 500 volunteers. Building these trails is nothing short of amazing!! The Enticer trail is looking so sweet. Definitely on my short list. Big fist bump to the Redding Trail Alliance. And - a huge thank you to BLM as well!!
  • + 0
 @Shreddywhip: uhhhhh, we were talking about meth, bud.
  • + 7
 @jflb: my bad, meth just doesn't entice me
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