Heart Healthy: Devil

My Thursday blogs are all about being Heart Healthy. It’s a new year, after all, and I’m sure many of us made a resolution to get fit – to make a change.

Mountain Biking Devil's Den State Park

Jill M. Rohrbach
Test your biking skills as you pedal along on guided mountain bike rides April 3 and 4 at the annual Mountain Bike Festival at Devil’s Den State Park in West Fork. Along with scheduled bike rides, the popular festival includes many other fun events, including an evening social.

Riders of all experience levels are welcome, and all must wear a helmet. Rides vary in length and difficulty so all riders can find something geared toward their ability. Some of the bike trails at Devil’s Den are tight, single tracks, while others are wide, double tracks. Some are flat with a relief change not more than 100 feet. Depending on how adventurous you want to be, some trails have descents anywhere from 400 feet to 500 feet.

Bike vendors selling supplies or making bike repairs are also usually available. Participants in the festival usually include beginners looking for help in learning about the sport or people that have just moved to the area and want to become familiar with the trails before striking out on their own. More advance riders attend to meet other mountain bikers and converse with them about other places to ride. The experienced bikers also enjoy the opportunity to ride with peers that are just as fast. Expect some of these folks to be hammering down to see who can come up with the bragging rights.

Devil’s Den also has hiking and backpacking trails that lead to caves, crevices and bluff overlooks.

For more information, call (479) 761-3325. To reach the park, travel eight miles south of Fayetteville on Interstate 540 to exit 53 at West Fork, then go 17 miles southwest on Ark. 170; or exit I-540 at exit 45 at Winslow and go seven miles west on Ark. 74. Note, trailers longer than 26 feet should use exit 53.

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