Trail obstacle causes dismay in East Malling, as youngster encounters nightmare scenario on family ride.
A nine-year old has become the latest victim of trail traps, in Kent.
Troy Baldock was out riding with his father Grant and brother, Blake, in the late afternoon, when he encountered a deliberate trail obstacle.
Unlike a manmade obstacle on the ground, this was much worse, as someone had strung some string across the trail. The intention was clearly to prevent riders from using this area of East Malling forest, in Kent.
For unfortunate Troy, he was unsighted and rode into the rope. What would have been a mid-torso impact for most adult riders, was a lot more traumatic for Troy.
Crushing a young rider’s confidence
The rope caught him right at throat level, leaving abrasion marks and forcing him off his bike, into a painful cluster of stinging nettles.
Grant Baldock was understandably livid about the situation and went to cut the rope, but the damage to Troy’s riding confidence has been done. He has no desire to go out into the woods anymore, on his BMX.
Those who string ropes across trails are aware of what they are doing, on purpose. Damaging the joy and sense of independence that a youngster gets from riding, is invaluable, especially in this age – where kids should be encouraged to embrace the golden era of cycling and avoid too much screen time.
Although Grant Baldock has removed the rope obstacles on the popular East Malling path, close to Hillberry farm, he might never know who the callous perpetrator was.