The first thing that struck me about Sälen is the sheer number of kids.
We arrived bright and early at the mountain and the adults were few and far between, but there were kids on bikes everywhere. Coincidence? Think again. Sälen is the largest ski resort in Sweden with over 100 chairlifts across their multiple mountains. In the winter time, this town swells to over 50,000, made up primarily of families. The slope of the mountain is mellow and there are little cabins scattered at the bottom of every lift which makes for a very family friendly environment. The mountain is safe and friendly and the kids roam free. Restaurants and shops are abundant. And pools, waterslide, spa and indoor wave make up a family center for rainy days or winter evenings.
The bike park itself was designed by Gravity Logic so you know it is going to be good. The trails are well thought out and the grade makes it the perfect place to learn. There are lots of little obstacles to play on and hone skills with little consequence. We met up with local phenom, Lucas Soderberg who showed us around the park and impressed us with his sneaky lines and style. This kid is one to watch out for…bike, skis, indoor wave, tramp…skillllls.
The Soderberg family invited us over for a wonderful meal at their house on our final day in town. And some Wii. :)