Situated just a stone's throw from the city of Chelmsford, the village of Danbury is far enough out to feel countrified, yet be within easy reach of the A12 and the urban sprawl. The common itself is large, and features the kind of geography that air-junkies dream of being able to get creative on with a spade. Through careful planning with the National Trust, this dream has been realised by a group of local trail builders, who have managed to legalise mounain biking on a portion of the common.
What is so special about this place? Despite being a small area with a shallow overall gradient, it is packed with extreme undulations - bombholes of all dimensions, meaning trails of all levels are really creative. You never really notice the descent being shallow because there is always another feature flying at you. Even the warm-up line is a blast and will have you returning for another go. The sandy base sees Danbury running well in all seasons too, a definite plus given our changable climate.
And then when you get to the end of the trail, that shallow gradient is a wonderful thing - there is little work needed to get back up for another go! You can fit in multiple runs in a short session, which makes it a perfect post-work stop-off if you live in the area.
The jumps are all well considered and the community seems friendly and welcoming. Of course the usual use of common sense is required here - don't drop litter, be polite and courteous to other forest users. This sort of thing all helps to keep the place open. If you are in the area, pop CM3 4NJ into your sat-nav and give the trails a look (the trails start from the nearby road; Copt Hill). If you like getting some air under your wheels, this place will not disappoint.