Mt. bikers can find fun, and pain, on Northfield’s Paine Mountain

Daniel Lupacchino finds a lot to fill his time in the winter here at Norwich. He enjoys going to the gym, hanging out with friends and sometimes going skiing.

Lupacchino does not mind the cold Vermont winters but “it is not my favorite season here,” said Lupacchino, 20, a political science major who hails from Maloney, Conn.

Lupacchino has a passion for mountain biking and waits all winter for the snow to melt so he can fly down Paine Mountain.

“It is just something about going as fast as you can down a hill with the spring air keeping you cool,” said Lupacchino, of his delight at the sport.

Daniel Lupacchino finds a lot to fill his time in the winter here at Norwich. He enjoys going to the gym, hanging out with friends and sometimes going skiing.

Lupacchino does not mind the cold Vermont winters but “it is not my favorite season here,” said Lupacchino, 20, a political science major who hails from Maloney, Conn.

Lupacchino has a passion for mountain biking and waits all winter for the snow to melt so he can fly down Paine Mountain.

“It is just something about going as fast as you can down a hill with the spring air keeping you cool,” said Lupacchino, of his delight at the sport.

All students at Norwich can go over to the Shaw Center and rent mountain bikes; also many other winter and summer activities are available and all gear is free to rent.

“It was something I had never done before, but it was free and the mountain is basically on campus,” said Spencer Guerschuny, 19, an engineering management major from Quincy, Ma.

“I was a rook last year and to get away a few rook buddies and I went up to Paine,” said Guerschuny. “I look back then at how intense it was at first and the ride up is no joke.”

The climb up is the hardest part for most people; some chose to just walk the bike up or carry it.

While coming down is fun, watching how fast you are going and staying in control are very important.

“Sharp turn! Miss tree! Oh no, big rock! I think I’m in the air!” is how Saetyre McDowell, 18, a computer security and information assurance major from Fayettville, N.C. explained riding down Paine.

“It was scary, but I’m glad I can say I did it one time,” said McDowell who has no intention of trying to ride a bike down a mountain again.

Some people mountain bike here and there, some people never try it, but others find they just cannot get enough.

If a person wants to get into mountain biking it is not that hard to find a used bike or even a nice bike for a few hundred dollars. But a top-end bike can move into the thousands.

“To me it is an investment,” said Lupacchino, “I know this is something I love to do and continue to enjoy so the money is not really something I have a problem with.”

“I just wish it was less expensive so more people could get into it,” said Lupacchino.

Norwich students have a great chance to try this adventurous sport out for free and it is only a five-minute walk away.

Now the snow is almost gone, that means it is almost time to hit the switchbacks and kick up some mud.

“The climb up was terrible, but it made me feel accomplished and the ride down that much more enjoy able,” said Hannah Mesh, 19, a psychology major from Chelsea, Vt.

“I have done a lot of hiking and normal bike riding in my life and it did not get me ready for this,” said Mesh. “It is an experience that you just have to go for and not give up.”

It is not easy, but then again nothing here at Norwich is.

“No pain, no gain,” said Lupacchino, who looks to improve himself everyday.

“If it was easy everyone would do it and that is why I came to Norwich and that is why I mountain bike,” said Lupacchino.

All students at Norwich can go over to the Shaw Center and rent mountain bikes; also many other winter and summer activities are available and all gear is free to rent.

“It was something I had never done before, but it was free and the mountain is basically on campus,” said Spencer Guerschuny, 19, an engineering management major from Quincy, Ma.

“I was a rook last year and to get away a few rook buddies and I went up to Paine,” said Guerschuny. “I look back then at how intense it was at first and the ride up is no joke.”

The climb up is the hardest part for most people; some chose to just walk the bike up or carry it.

While coming down is fun, watching how fast you are going and staying in control are very important.

“Sharp turn! Miss tree! Oh no, big rock! I think I’m in the air!” is how Saetyre McDowell, 18, a computer security and information assurance major from Fayettville, N.C. explained riding down Paine.

“It was scary, but I’m glad I can say I did it one time,” said McDowell who has no intention of trying to ride a bike down a mountain again.

Some people mountain bike here and there, some people never try it, but others find they just cannot get enough.

If a person wants to get into mountain biking it is not that hard to find a used bike or even a nice bike for a few hundred dollars. But a top-end bike can move into the thousands.

“To me it is an investment,” said Lupacchino, “I know this is something I love to do and continue to enjoy so the money is not really something I have a problem with.”

“I just wish it was less expensive so more people could get into it,” said Lupacchino.

Norwich students have a great chance to try this adventurous sport out for free and it is only a five-minute walk away.

Now the snow is almost gone, that means it is almost time to hit the switchbacks and kick up some mud.

“The climb up was terrible, but it made me feel accomplished and the ride down that much more enjoy able,” said Hannah Mesh, 19, a psychology major from Chelsea, Vt.

“I have done a lot of hiking and normal bike riding in my life and it did not get me ready for this,” said Mesh. “It is an experience that you just have to go for and not give up.”

It is not easy, but then again nothing here at Norwich is.

“No pain, no gain,” said Lupacchino, who looks to improve himself everyday.

“If it was easy everyone would do it and that is why I came to Norwich and that is why I mountain bike,” said Lupacchino.

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