So it turns out that I'm pretty scared of descents. The first time I tried one a couple months ago, I crashed and sprained my thumb so bad that I can no longer snap my fingers on that hand. I can do very short ones now, but I generally try to slow down a lot while doing it because I'm afraid of building up too much speed.
With that background in mind, a few days ago I went down a different trail for the first time, and came across a descent that curves around a cliff... which, if I take it wrong, could either send me tumbling down the cliffside or launch me into the lake below. I might have tried it that day, except the trail is also littered with small rocks (mostly embedded, but some are loose, grapefruit-to-football size). Other than the rock thing, it's fairly wide (maybe around 6-8 feet wide), and almost looks doable, but I'm wondering if anyone has any advice for navigating a descending rocky section. I'd be doing this on a full suspension bike, and I use flat, not clipless pedals. Here's what I've culled so far from asking others and Internet browsing:
Lean the bike, not my body, into the turn.
Get behind the saddle for descents; keep my center of gravity over cranks, feet level.
Lightly modulate the rear brake only if I need to slow down.
Don't stare at the ground immediately in front of the wheel; look a little further down the trail where I want to go.
I guess what I'm mostly concerned about is getting thrown off course by hitting a rock the wrong way, but as I understand it, the rocks won't matter too much as long as I keep the front wheel pointed in the general right direction and avoid looking down directly at them. Any other words of advice? Also, sorry if I'm repeating a topic that gets brought up too much... I just really, really want to conquer this fear.