AMA - Fire Road
When I created the StepUp 2 plugin. I needed a test track to test all of the level 3 and 4 track pieces. One of the things that I do is test every track piece in every direction. No small task in StepUp 2 which had 54 track pieces.
As I laid out the Level 3 and Level 4 pieces I saw a pattern develop. When I first rode it, my first thought was that it reminded me of riding on the fire roads back in California. When I lived in San Bernardino I used to ride up the fire roads to Big Bear and back. That's about 50 miles of unbelievable dirt roads in both directions. I then set about making the track with that flavor in mind and the testing of the track pieces was just a side benefit.
After completing Baatk's Backyard I was trying to decide what other track had I built (I had done about 50 by then) that was begging to be given the National treatment. It didn't take me too long to decide on Fire Road. The track converted well and looked much nicer with the additional terrain that you can add in the National environment. I was able to add washed out areas and some more natural terrain.
This track begs for you to be smooth and use the brake. You need to learn the track and be careful of the switchbacks. Many of the uphills are followed by a sharp turn with a dropoff. This track keeps you on your toes. I especially like the section on top of the first half where you have to cross a gnarly washed out area and then immediately get up to speed for a quad. This quad has to be made very carefully because it is followed by a tight 180 to another quad. If your too slow you will bounce of the last jump and off the side of the hill and if your too fast you will overjump and bounce of the side of the hill. Just right and you sweep around the turn and clear the next quad. I also like the two gap jumps, especially when you are going bar to bar with someone. The washed out areas are especially tough when run in reverse, but I like that. The long lap time. Plenty of track to learn. Not a track that you can just hop on your bike and rail around at full throttle.
I didn't have enough room on the grid to do the water the way that I wanted. I ended up having to paint it up the sides a little otherwise it was just too skinny. This is on the side of the track after the waterfall and up on top of the hill where the pool of water is. The lap time is too long. It's a deterence from people wanting to race it. I suggest that you just race it for one or two laps on the zone. You can have an excellent race on this track even with just 1 lap. I wish I had had enough room to blend the edges better with the surrounding terrain. It's a compromise that you have to make. I went with the sharper edges and more room over the smooth edges and narrower track.
This track came out almost exactly as I visualized it. It captures the feeling that I wanted it to have. It is not a track that everyone will like. Few of mine are. I like them technical and challenging and not WFO all the time.