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The Wheel Mill Indoor Mountain Bike Park in Pittsburgh

The Wheel Mill Indoor Mountain Bike Park in Pittsburgh


when the topic of mountain bike destinations come up, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania probably isn’t the first place that comes to mind, but that’s exactly where I’m headed. You see, right now in the Northeast it’s what we call wicked cold. So we have a few options: you can either hibernate, bundle up, or go indoors. Today I’m choosing the latter. Which is why i’m headed to the Wheel Mill. It’s an old industrial building converted into a bike park. It’s somewhat hard to describe what this place really is. It’s somewhere in between skatepark, and mountain-bike trails. The 80,000 square foot building has two levels and is divided up into eight rooms, but when you first got a bike it’s kind of overwhelming. It’s easy to get lost in a network of trails that weave through the building to connect the various rooms. Each of these rooms has a unique theme to it. Some of these rooms have a mountain bike theme to them, And others have more of a skate park theme. But often you’ll notice that both of these themes merge to create a truly unique experience. And every single one of these areas as a plethora of the line options, so it’s pretty easy to spend a lot of time in one area without getting bored. Though most of our time was spent in one of a few rooms the first being the pumptrack room. The pumptrack is located towards the back of the building. Every time i’ve been to the wheel mill, the pump track has never been very crowded. So a lot of riders find this to be an ideal place to get warmed up. The builders did an incredible job making a small pump track so fun. And you can definitely tell it was built by BMXers. On the surface it looks like there’s one single line option, but after you spend a little time there you’ll notice there’s actually quite a few transfers and different line options. I did find the rollers here to be a little tight, it would probably work a little bit better on a BMX bike. But after a few laps it started to flow a lot better once we got the hang of things. Right beside the pumptrack is well is another pumptrack. This one of those just a series of big rollers, however that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with them and catch a little air. In the center of that pump track is a little skills section. I didn’t spend much time here but this would be a good place to go practice some of your basic bike handling skills from balancing drops to technical trailer features there were a lot of little features that beginner riders can find to enjoy. But for the veteran riders, this section probably won’t be holding their attention for very long. Down the hall, there is another room which featured well the more advanced features. on a dirt jumper with a single gear in this room is kind of awkward. “i’m totally not skating” but this room was built with the intention of trying to mimic a mountain bike trail. This is a room where I saw a lot more riders with full suspension bikes spending their time. One of the cool things about this area was a skinny above a foam. For riders like me who are absolutely terrified of skinnies, it was a good place to practice. Oh yeah did i mention this place is wheel chair accessible? That dude was hitting some of the features in the big room which I’ll feature later. It was definitely the most mind-blowing and inspiring thing is all day. Unfortunately I didn’t get any video of him shredding but it was pretty badass. The second floor of the wheel mill, I believe used to be an old bike polo court and has since been turned into begin a skills area. It’s tucked away out of sight so if you’re uncomfortable trying to learn new skills in front of people, well this is a good place to go where you won’t be judged. Around the outside of the bike polo court was the cross country loop which has a bunch of berms rollers and tabletops. And this loop will eventually bring you back downstairs to where you started “this could be really interesting” One of the other places I spent a lot of time at the wheel mill was a resi ramp. If you’re a mountain biker who’s never spent much time in a skatepark, you’re probably scratching your head wondering what the heck is a resi ramp. A resi ramp is a jump with a soft landing a piece of foam covered with a sheet of very slippery plastic, it’s about as slippery as wet roots. The resi ramps are ideal for learning new tricks. The foam covered with plastic makes for a more comfortable landing compared to say concrete or wood. This gives you a little more confidence and inspires you to try tricks you might not try otherwise. In the same room you also have foam pit, it’s essentially a box filled with foam. This is where riders go to learn new tricks that have high consequences, such as back flips front flips. Tucked away in the far back of the wheel mill is a little skate park. It has a few quarters, box jumps and some spines. When the Wheel Mill gets super busy this place is a good place to go hang out because a lot of visitors kind of forget it’s there or don’t even know about it. There’s also a mini-ramp hidden in plain sight, it’s the first room you come to but I often forget its their. The place we spent the most time however, was the rhythm room. This is where most veteran riders will be spending their time. It’s a room filled with a bunch of jumps that vary in size and length. I spent about seventy percent of my time at The Wheel Mill in this particular room. There are so many different transfers and line options that even the guys who ride this everyday are still coming up with new lines to ride. Luckily for us the locals here more than happy to show us some of the lines and give us the grand tour. Because the takeoffs and landings were so steep, it took me a solid hour of riding to figure out flow of the room. It was only after I got comfortable with a room and start getting a little bit more daring and riding the room to its full potential. I could spend hours in this room and not get bored, which is exactly what we did because before we knew it it was already ten o’clock. Going to the Wheel Mill is always a good time, i highly recommend checking it out if you happen to be in the area or are looking for a new place to go ride and stay warm. I should add it’s not the only bike park of its kind, but what they’re doing is really cool everybody there is super friendly. Chances are you’ll leave with some new friends and even better stories. So if you like this video, be sure to let me know in the comment section below and smash that like button while you’re at it. Ss always my name is Phil Kmetz thanks for playing bikes to me today and I’ll see you next time

100 comments on “The Wheel Mill Indoor Mountain Bike Park in Pittsburgh

  1. Lots of you are wondering what kind of bike I'm riding in this video so here you are!
    Bike Check -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxM8jlieg2A

  2. You won't find one anywhere near where I live… There's not even any trails here. The closest one is 3 hours away. This is one main reason I want to move to an urban city. There is nothing in rural towns. I plan on transferring to GSU next year(it's in Atlanta)

  3. You should definitely hit up Ray's Indoor MTB Park in Cleveland. It's absolutely incredible, and they shut down every Summer to rebuild and overhaul the park, so it's a different experience every year!

  4. Um, might wanna change the title. That's "Pittsburgh." Or "Picksburgh" if yer a yinzer, n'at. 😉
    Great video. Didn't know this place existed. I gotta go!!! Thanks, man.

  5. I would go there multiple times a week if only I lived there. But living in the US… No, just no. But this is definately one of the places I want to visit. I would love non-downhill trails near me but yeah where I live there is no mtb scene at all, just a few riders. And there are propably a lot more trails than I know of because it's better to not post them on websites etc because here (West Germany) are people putting nails facing up on trails and rarely even spanning hardly visible steel ropes on neck height to stop mountainbikers. Let alone the lack of mountains in immediate facility. But at least there is a skatepark and awful pumptrack in town.

  6. Luckily, I live about 20 min away from this place! It's an amazing bike park and definitely worth checking out!

  7. I live in Pittsburgh, ride mountain bikes and have never been here cause I've always been worried about getting made fun of by the bmxers

  8. I´m a 50+ year old,just started road bikes (done 800 miles since July) and this video makes me wanna go there and start those jumps.
    Great video Phil.

  9. Well I saw this video 9 month's later but I live about 20 minutes from the wheel mill. I'm in my mid 30s and ride a hard tail trek so I figured there was no point in going here. Looks like an old guy like me might be able too have a good time here! Great Vid Phil

  10. Would love to see parks like this in places like Brooklyn and The Bronx in NYC. Plenty of empty buildings just waiting for someone to create something like this. I'm an older rider that's dying to get back into BMX.

  11. When I was in middle school me and my friends got board and Decided it would be a good idea to make the ultimate skinny. We took a 2 by 4 and placed it side ways across a many 4 foot wide creek for farm irrigation. Long story short we fell in more than we actually made it across.

  12. Have you ever heard of rays indoor mtb park in Cleveland Ohio? If so have you ever thought of giving the place a visit?

  13. I've been wanting to go here for a while. I wish we had something like this in New England. Thanks for the tour. Thinking of getting a group to go for couple day trip.

  14. We need one of those in minnesota as its the "great arctic tundera" and we have loads of warehouses unused in the cities. Thanks for sharing… 😀

  15. Hey u should check out Ray's indoor mtb park when u get the chance, its like the wheel mill but bigger

  16. The Wheel Mill is my local park and it is always so fun! If your in Pittsburgh definitely fit in some time to go here!

  17. Hey phil, you should check out B-Line bike park in calgary alberta canada. Its one of the best indoor bike parks ever.

  18. Phil, next time you're in PA you should check out Rothrock State Forest in Central Pennsylvania. Lots of technical trails but lots of fun. And then you can check out Allegrippis Trail System, which is our "flow tracks" here in the hills of PA.

  19. Born and raised in the Burgh and didn’t know about this until this video. Went today and had a blast. Highly recommend the wheel mill!

  20. Living near Pittsburgh, I never knew this was there. I'm definitely going to have to check it out and hone my skills there.

  21. Always good to see indoor parks. I see lots of videos of Ray's. I've seen only this video of The Wheel Mill. Now I want to go to there and do the shred..

  22. Really sucks Rays in cleveland is only open in the winter. It's a really good trip to take. I suggest you all go.

  23. You should go to Mikes Bike Park in Dayton Ohio. It is indoors primarily for BMX but there are a plethora of mtb trails.

  24. Cool vid! Would have been cool to run into you while you were in town. There are some good mountain bike trail systems in Western PA as well.

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