LMBC Storms The Castle 

By Samantha Jones

The weekend promised good weather, lots of adventure, and a great roster of attendees. LMBC’s 2023 NWA Trip did not disappoint. Most of the group arrived Friday evening to either the base camp at Bella Vista campground or to their AirBnB/VRBOs.  Those that arrived in time celebrated the start of the event with a ride on the Blowing Springs Trails and Mexican food at a local establishment.

Saturday morning brought the group together again at base camp for breakfast burritos,

Breakfast Burritos

cinnamon rolls, and planning the day. It was decided that the first adventure would take place at Coler. The group split up into a few small groups to cover more ground and conquer different objectives, but most of the group headed up to the hub for laps on Fireline, a crowd favorite. After a few hours at Coler, the group moved the fun to Slaughter Pen, grabbing tacos or sandwiches to refuel on the way.

At Slaughter Pen, most of the activity was based around The Castle with the group dividing up on different runs, but all testing their mettle and their nerves on steep drops, fast downhills, and hard climbs. After some time of ignoring the looming clouds, the riders finally all split for their cars amid rolling thunder and fat raindrops. Some made it to their cars before the hail hit, others took refuge from the pelting hail in a public restroom.

After the storm passed, the temperatures had dropped significantly. Nonetheless, the group met up for feast of grilled burgers and hot dogs with a potluck of sides that evening.  The campfire fended off the worst of the cold, though some chose to eat snuggled in their blankets out of the wind. With the cold snap, it was an early night for most.

Sunday morning was chilly, but once one got moving on the bike, the temps were near perfect for outdoor fun. Folks split up between Little Sugar, the Back 40, and Blowing Springs while others opted for warm breakfast and an early start home. The trip was hugely successful for those attendees who were veterans to the trails as well as those new to NWA. It was a trip to remember, but also to entice us all to go back. Thanks, LMBC and NWA, for another great trip!