Words and Photos by Aaron Rohde
The Kingdom Trails have a new friend to help spread the Love of Mountain Biking, the Village Sports Trailside bike shop atop of Darling Hill. With ample parking, bike rentals, bike sales and servicing, their new shop seems like a logical place to begin your journey through the magical Kingdom Trails.
The new shop is located next to the Wildflower Inn, just beneath Heavens Bench, a must for visitors to the Kingdom Trails. Miles of single track is located a pedal stroke away, getting you right into the flow instead of starting with the dreaded climb up East Darling Hill Road.
| Carrie with her husband “Chief” and new shop manager Collin, with one of the new Giant Trance Trail bikes available for rent. |
“Location, location, location. We are so excited about extending into the heart of the Kingdom Trails traffic flow. This shop is convenient for our rental customers as well as Kingdom Trails riders who may have forgotten something or require bike service. And, our customers who are shopping for a bike can now test ride on actual mountain bike trails, what’s better than that? Ok, the view,” states Carrie Tomczyk, Village Sport Shop Trailside co-owner.
Both Village Sport Shop locations are owned and operated by brother/sister team Chris Hibshman and Carrie Tomczyk. The business was started in 1978 by their father, John Hibshman and has been a staple of the Northeast Kingdom
Carrie Tomczyk, shares a special bond with the Kingdom trails. She was born in the Morgan Horse barn at the Inn at Mountain View Farm on Darling Hill. A local landmark nearly all visitors to the trails pedal by at some point in their journey.
| Carrie pedals by the barn she was born in at the Inn at Mountain View Farm. |
Her grandfather from Philadelphia bought what is now Inn at Mountain View Farm in the 1960s when it was still a dairy farm and renovated it into an Inn which he ran with the help of his wife and 3 children. Shortly after, Carrie and Chris’s Dad got out of the army and moved to the area to work for Burke Mountain. Their Dad cut a network of trails on the property and started a xc ski touring center and small rental shop.
“I am obsessed with riding on some of those same trails he cut (loop, cupcake, river run) and would ski with me in a pack on his back” reminisces Carrie.
| Service Manager Collin Daulong sets up a full suspension Giant Anthem for a customer. The shop rents all the newest Giant and Scott trail bikes. |
| Carrie leads a group through Heavens Bench, join her on a Womans Ride every Tuesday. |
| Christine Bengtson goes up and over |
| Trail side kiosk keeps everyone informed of all things Kingdom trail related. |
| Carrie and Christine show off their sweet village sports shop jerseys. |
| Collin gets some time out of the shop to enjoy single track located seconds from the new store. |
The new store currently carries Giant and Scott bikes for rent and Demo. Including Giant’s Anthem, Trance Advanced, Lust and Intrigue. Need new bike clothing, helmet, gloves, tire tubes, or maybe a Go Pro, to capture all your Kingdom Trail adventure? They got you covered with that too.
**Please arrive early if you need your bike looked at, or to purchase nutrition or gear before the ride.