After a rainy start to the summer we finally had a beautiful, sunny day. My friends and I were feeling adventurous and wanted to do some mountain biking. We searched for different options and decided Fern Park in Inlet had what we were looking for.
Fern Park is a free recreation park located on Loomis Road in Inlet, just off of South Shore Road. It has a mountain bike trail system (and in the winter, cross-country ski trails) that can go on for miles. There are different trails labeled beginner, intermediate, and difficult, and you can pick up a trail map that shows you the layout of the trail system. Fern Park has a great location, right around the corner from Pedals & Petals, a bike, flower, and gift shop. This was perfect because some of us needed to rent bikes before we could begin our adventure.
We parked the car and began our adventure at Pedals & Petals, the most unique bike shop I have ever been in. It was my first time there, and I am disappointed that it took me all this time to visit. I could have spent a lot more time looking around and shopping, but we wanted to get biking. Ted, of Pedals & Petals, is very friendly and informative about the Inlet and Fern Park trails. He took out a map and outlined where we should go and what trails would fit our level of experience. I can't say that we have much experience.
Renting bikes from the store is quick and easy. Ted will fit you and he charges a very reasonable price. I needed a new bike helmet so I found one I liked. He fitted me and I left with a great deal on it. He has everything you need, from bike replacement parts, backpacks, other outdoor gear to a gift for mom or dad. After we were all set, he pointed us in the right direction to Fern Park, which was only a quarter of a mile bike ride from the bike shop, and we took off.
As we turned into Fern Park, I was pleasantly surprised to see much more than just the start to the mountain biking trails. There are basketball courts that become an ice rink with a heated shack in winter, public restrooms, a playground, and mountain bike trails that are transformed into groomed cross-country ski or snowshoe trails in winter. My friends and I chatted about how we needed to come back and visit Fern Park in different seasons to experience all it had to offer as we started on our bikes.
Going biking on the first nice day after two weeks of rain wasn't the brightest idea. We did a lot of walking and hiking with our bikes through mud holes and large puddles. Note to self: Always pack an extra pair of socks and shoes! Not even ten minutes into our ride, my feet were completely soaked.
Once we got to a higher elevation the trails seemed to be drier and the riding was much more enjoyable. The ride to the bottom was fun because the sharp turns in the trails and downhill speed really got our adrenaline pumping. Carrying our bikes over trees, getting covered in mud, and having Skylar, my friend, fall completely off her bike only added to the laughs and memories that we made on our adventure.
When we reached the bottom of the trail, we rode the quarter mile back into town. We went right down the road to Arrowhead Park, on Fourth Lake, then rode down to the water and enjoyed the view. Bonus: The park is a WiFi hotspot! It's a great spot to check your phone when you may not have great service in Inlet. We took a break and spent some time on the benches taking pictures and relaxing. Eventually hunger struck and it was time to move on to our next stop.
After we dropped our bikes off at Petals & Pedals, we walked next door to Screamen Eagle for pizza and a post-ride drink. I had heard from multiple people how great their food is, and they have fifty beers on tap! We decided we couldn't go wrong with this pick. We devoured some delicious pizza and wings as we laughed about our day and how we ended up here. We mostly laughed about Skylar falling off her bike. We all decided that one of the beauties of living in the Adirondacks is you never know where each day will take you if you are looking for adventure. We were certainly glad our day took us to explore Fern Park and Inlet.