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Page last updated at 11:38 GMT, Thursday, 10 June 2010 12:38 UK
Something dirty for the weekend
Mountain bikers
Mountain biking is a very physically demanding sport

Hamsterley Forest, in County Durham, will host the first Durham Dirty Big Ride at the end of June.

Work to complete a new demanding track has been stepped up to ensure its first outing will be a part of this special mountain biking event.

This new forest track will really test the metal of the riders on the "tough" route with new grades of ride.

This "red route" has been added to a black route, challenging the more experienced mountain bikers.

Alex MacLennan from the Forestry Commission says: "Mountain bikers like to boast that they have been the first to try out a new route and I am sure this will be no different."

Work has been going on with the new route for around seven months and the timing of its completion has been crucial for the organisers of this dirty weekend event.

"We want the whole family to get involved in a great day in the forest," says one of the organisers, Colin Wilkes.

Colin Wilkes, Durham Big Ride, Alex MacLennan, Forestry Commission, Andrew Johnston, British Cycling and Dave Wafer, Durham County Council
The organisers are expecting a good turnout in the saddles

"No matter what level your riding is," he insists, "you are sure to enjoy the day."

Routes for all

For the families who would prefer a more leisurely ride through the forest, there is also the 10k ride that is not as testing as the new 20k route.

Hamsterley Forest's 2,000 hectares of mixed woodland lies between the Wear and Tees valleys on the edge of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

It's an oasis of broadleaved and coniferous woodland, sprawling along the sides of a sheltered valley.

Anyone who would like to take part in the first ever Durham Dirty Big Ride, go to the website here...

The charges are: £17 for adults and £5 for child with a family group (2 adults and 2 children) at £40.

For details of the annual Durham Big Ride, visit the website here...

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