The Mountain Bike Life

Mountain bikers are diverse.

We come in all shapes, sizes and ages.  We ride a wide variety of bikes, and we leave our tracks on some of the most beautiful places on the planet.

Here are some of the extra-ordinary things that some ordinary mountain bikers have been doing over the last month…

Coeg Llangdela Forest Trail Centre, North Wales (Adi Smith)

1. Coed Llangdela Forest Trail Centre, North Wales, UK.  By Adi Smith.

Coeg Llangdela Forest Trail Centre, North Wales (Adi Smith)

Adi designs sports cars for a living.  But that’s nothing compared to the fun he has riding with his young sons…

“My two boys Daniel 7 and Charlie 6, have always been little adrenaline junkies, and have been riding bikes since before they could walk. They have progressed from green, to blue trails, and even 6 feet high kicker ramps into a lake! However in their brief riding career they have never ridden a red (difficult) graded run.

My birthday was to be a “Boys day out” and their first trip to a full on MTB trail. So the three of us traveled to Coed Llandegla forest Trail Centre in North Wales for our big day out.

Despite the daunting 3 mile climb at the start the kids loved it, and rode the whole 11 miles of the Red route, including the boardwalks and even the Gravity Park! Taking on 60cm high drop offs – my heart was in my mouth, but needn’t have been as they aced it all.

An amazing day was had by all of us, Daddy was proud, and one thing is now a certainty… I’ve got 2 new riding buddies.”

2. Surat Airport, Gujarat, India. By Yogesh Patel.

 

Surat Airport, Gujarat, India. (Yogesh Patel)

Yogesh Patel lives in Surat on the north-west coast of India.

Each week Yogesh and up to 60 friends from Life Cycle Green explore amazing places on their bikes including one of the highest roads in the world – Ladakh in the Himalayas, about 5,400 mtres (almost 18,000 feet) above sea level.

This week, they rode much lower altitudes – exploring the wide-open flat country around Surat Airport.  An obstacle course of muddy ditches and ricketty wooden bridges, these plains will eventually be closed to riders and developed into a Prawn (shrimp) Farm.

Yogesh lamented the frustrations of many mountain bikers:

“We have not enough place for off-road riding.

This was our first ride in that area.

We were three cyclists on that day and only rode eight kilometres. Because of the poor condition of the wooden bridge we had to pass over it by walking instead of riding.”

As well as his mountain bike, Yogesh is the proud owner of a cyclocross bike which he rides on the road.  It’s a tough bike, but for the mud, dirt and hazards of Surat Airport, he took the safe option and rode his mountain bike!

3. Fifty Year Trail, Tucson AZ, USA.  By Scott Morris

Fifty Year Trail, Tucson AZ, USA. (Scott Morris)

Scott Morris has ridden mountain bikes since he was 14.  He’s a bike packer and software developer, responsible for Topofusion GPS Mapping software.

He and a few buddies tried their skills out on some of the boulders on the “Fifty Year Trail” in Tucson Ariozona.

One of the most impressive stunts was by Rob Bauer on his single-speed, rigid, coaster-braking Klunker.  This man is amazing!

“Here’s the deal… bring biking back to affordable and achievable. Not to squash the enthusiasts on the far end but to leave an open door, or entry point for those wanting in. Be the change you wish to see… right? For one year, 2014, I’m going to ride one bike (Transition Bikes Klunker) with one speed and one brake for under one thousand dollars. Married, father of two, show it can be done and have just as much fun.”

“The Fifty”, as he affectionately calls it, is one of Scott’s favourite trails. You could easily apply his thoughts about it to the Mountain Bike Life in general:

“Good for the mental health.
Good for the body.
Good for the adrenal system!
Good for reminding that things you may not think possible, are.
In summary, a regular dose is just plain good for the soul.”

Thanks Doctor Morris.  One day I think I might try this medicine!

How About You?

 

Where have you been riding lately?

Share some pictures of your favourite places and tell us your story!

Surat Airport, Gujarat, India (Yogesh Patel)
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