The 10th Annual Jam De La Source
It's not every day that you get to be part of an International Trails Jam.
24 Sep 2014
Photos by Vince Perraud Words by Dan Closser Top 10 La Source Facts by Jems Muller
It's not every day that you get to be part of an International Trails Jam. The setting was like most trails around the world, but with a few upgrades. Like a 2'x6' BBQ, full bar top with a covered area larger than most roll-ins, generator, lights, and 14 kegs. Add 200 BMXers, a live band, and the hospitality of the French, and you have the 10th Annual Jam De La Source.
I knew what to expect from the Frenchies having been there before, but this was next level. Everyone was in high spirits and the vibe was all love. Trail riders from New Zealand, Australia, the US, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Poland, Germany, and Spain came together to celebrate what it means to live the TraiLife. It was great to see so many friends in one place and to meet many more. Non-stop runs through Lombric line with 50 or more guys in a train, cars lining both sides of the street, and tents posted up everywhere from the neighboring corn field through the woods along the street and into the park.
Jems Muller is the man behind this trail party. If you were there, you know he is the best host. It was unfortunate that he crashed and tore some ligaments in his ankle, but when he returned from the hospital, the woods erupted with applause. Just a sign of the brotherhood and respect that was in the woods that day.
Big Thanks to all the La Source locals Pil, Will, Tanchon, Janot, Stephane, Franck, Ouioui, and Jems for having us. Ride on fellas...
10 Things You Probably Didn't Know About La Source Trails
01: Contrary to some misconceptions the name of the trails doesn't actually come from the tiny river running alongside the spot. Back in the day there was an old ploughed racetrack close by. When the first diggers came over and started to shape dirt jumps, they said they were going “back to the source”. Now I don't know if this makes much sense in English but it’s a famous French expression, as a loop metaphor no less. The actual stream's name is the Riou.
02: Most of La Source's trees are hazelnut.
03: The trails aren't actually that big. We run seven lines and they're all super compacted in one small area. Nothing anywhere near as big as the likes of Catty Woods.
04: The name of the most ridden line is ‘Lombric’, which means earthworm in French. This was chosen by my brother Nounours and also used for my signature frame at Simple bikes. We designed it together with my friends Pompom and JB, both solid diggers at the trails.
05: At most trails people usually tarp the jumps to keep the water off during the storms and rainfalls. At La Source we mostly tarp them up to keep the water inside, protecting from the Sun. When kept a little wet, the jumps hold stronger on the inside and never crack outside. So we always water the take-offs and landings before, during and after any session… and then we cover them up to trap the moisture in.
06: There were at least 200 legitimate trail diggers from all over the World in attendance for this latest jam celebrating the 10th anniversary of this spot. I’m not sure if this has ever happened anywhere else in the world before now.
07: Every single jump has always been fully handmade at La Source. We've never used a digger, or a mechanical device of any sort, to carry even one gram of dirt.
08: From 2006 to 2009, we used to run permanent lights above the ‘donut’ line which could be ridden all night long with a generator.
09: The land the trails are on belongs to the Monks of the Abbey ‘Sainte Marie Du Desert’. They were stoked on lending us the place when they found out what we were actually doing with it.
10: We have around sixty jumps all over the trails but only one has a left sided hip.
Just a good old fashioned BMX road trip
"I would consider myself creative, an artist, and I’ve had to learn some shitty lessons the hard way to get to this point."