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Predator First Impressions

15 | Sep | '15

Decided to see what all the hype was about on the new Predator DH trail.  Seemed like a great day - midweek, been dry for a couple days, clear weather - and just before it gets mugged by the Enduro this upcoming Saturday.

Warmed up from Summit through OTG, where we found the trail conditions to be stellar - I rarely ever use the term "hero dirt", but I'd use it today.  Really fast, really grippy, and clean.

Now for the Predator part: I heard this trail was legit - billed as a double-diamond DH trail, experts-only - so I had some high expectations, and a few reservations, about what I would find.  Went with the FF today - first time ever for Tiger - and riding my usual 6x6 26er Enduro bike.

Made our way to the upper TH via the Quick Link connector, which is an unexpectedly nice and well-built little piece of climbing singletrack.  Well done, builders.

The Predator trail begins with a surprisingly punchy climb that will make you feel like you're going the wrong way.  Actually knocked a bit of the wind out of me before reaching the actual descent part, where we took a breather.

The trail itself is truly a DH-worthy trail.  Very serious - fast, rough in places, steep, some options for respectable air (gaps, stepdowns, and tables), and lots of gravity bowls.  Had my eyes open wide the entire way.  There are plenty of committing sections that you just need to own - there's no stopping or places for second-guessing.  The pucker factor is punctuated at the bottom by the rock face drop.  But even after the high-5s and smiles here, don't underestimate the lower section: the intensity continues, albeit in a bit of a cool-down, all the way to the parking lot.

Very stoked on this build, and extremely impressed with the intensity and focus that went into legitimizing this trail as a local DH option.  I'd place it on a level more challenging than Slingshot Wookie at Stevens.  Big high-5 to the builders!

Submitted by r1de on 09/16/2015