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Mountain biker suffers major injuries in Annadel State Park crash

A mountain biker crashed face first into a rock in Annadel State Park on Tuesday suffering major head injuries and requiring a helicopter evacuation, the CHP said.

The 22-year-old male was riding on the South Burma trail when the accident occurred around 6:30 p.m.

Bennett Valley Fire personnel arrived first on scene, about one mile up the trail, and called in a CHP air-unit rescue.

"It was not terribly steep," said Rene Torres, a Bennett Valley Fire company officer who responded to the call. "Speed was a factor."

Torres said the man was riding a brand-new mountain bike with shocks. He was wearing a helmet, which had a small crack in it, Torres said. Most of the injuries were to the rider's face, he said.

A H-30 helicopter could not land on the rocky, wooded terrain and hovered 75 feet in the air while an officer was lowered on a rope to the injured biker, CHP officer Tom Lipsey said.

After securing the biker, he was flown to a nearby meadow, where he was loaded into the helicopter. He was flown to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, where he was treated for "major non-life-threatening injuries," the CHP said.

Annadel State Park's varied terrain is popular with mountain bikers of all skill levels. A mountain biking website describes the South Burma trail as a moderately technical single track through mixed forest and open meadows with some rocky sections.

Mountain biking injuries are common in the park, Torres said. Bennett Valley Fire recently treated a mountain biker with a broken neck, he said.

You can reach Staff Writer Matt Brown at 521-5206 or matt.brown@pressdemocrat.com.


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