Have you ever realized that there are 57 hours between Friday 3 p.m. and Sunday midnight? How do you use that time? Do you just duck into the nearest cocktail bar, hoping to find solace in a Frose? What about an actual outdoor adventure that will refresh, energize and make you a little more forgiving of the next Monday’s subway commute?
I know, it’s easier said than done. Just to research and plan a weekend trip can take a lot of time and hustle. Luckily 57hours, a new startup based out of Williamsburg, takes the headache out of the planning, and makes booking adventures easy as pie.
57hours has been called the Airbnb for outdoor adventures, and that’s exactly how it works. To make sure the experiences are top-notch, they take as many of the trips or lessons as they can, and fully vet guides to make sure they’re experienced or properly certified.
57 Hours aggregates various outdoor adventures in the city and in the surrounding area, and makes it really easy for you to discover and book them. That’s how I ended up mountain biking in Queens’ Cunningham Park.
I was born and raised near mountains, and to be honest, I might have had a little bit of an attitude about how much of mountain biking you can actually do within the confines of New York City. But boy, was I up for a surprise. Cunningham Park is a home to a massive mountain bike trail, which resembles a rainforest jungle with a number of trails marked for various levels of skill, and offers a perfect escape from the city without actually ever leaving it.
The mountain bike lesson lasted three hours and was intended for beginners. We drove to the trailhead but you can easily take public transportation and your guides will pick you up at a subway station. Or you can bike there if you’re a hardcore bike enthusiast.
At the trailhead we met up with our group as well as with our guides, both passionate and experienced mountain bikers. What’s really convenient about 57hours’ mountain biking lesson is that rental of an awesome mountain bike and a helmet are included in the price of the adventure, and you can simply arrive and begin.
First we’ve learned some basics about mountain biking such as braking, turning, and jumping, because it is a lot different than your regular city biking, and soon we were off, riding first at easy and later at more technical trails.
The trails offer “features,” which, as I’ve learned, are various obstacles in your way ranging from stones to tree trunks, which make mountain biking fun. There are even occasional jumps as well as downhills. I very quickly found out that I’m not a big jumper or a downhill rider, but I enjoyed the crooked forest roads with a mild feature here and there. Luckily, the class is beginner-focused and the level at which you’ll bike will depend on how comfortable you and your group is with the trails.
Three hours of mountain biking goes by maybe too quickly as you’re focused on the trails and biking through them. It is a great workout, not only for your legs but also for your arms and abs, and I could definitely feel it the next day. Moreover, at the end of the trip, we were completely drenched in sweat and dirt–just like you’re supposed to be after an outdoor adventure!
57hours offers a lot more than just mountain biking. Peruse their website for surf lessons at The Rockaways; rock climbing in the city; survival skills in Hudson Valley, or kayaking in New Jersey. All easily accessible from the city and perfectly packaged to be easily enjoyed without the logistical hustle!
To get started 57Hours will give Bushwick Daily readers 10 percent off their first outdoor adventure. Just use code BD57 at the checkout!