Monthly Archives: May 2017

Downhill Mountain Biking

From its rather ordinary beginnings on the sporting scene, mountain biking been transformed into an activity so challenging that it has been classed by some as an extreme sport. And each category of mountain biking, because it requires a specific set of skills, has developed its own group of enthusiasts. The one thing that all the categories of mountain biking have in common is that their adrenaline-buzz-producing maneuvers are bringing people into the sport in unprecedented numbers.

The form of mountain biking most likely to appeal to fans of the Mega Roller Coasters is downhill mountain biking. If you can picture a downhill skier, and replace the skis with a bike plunging down a mountain, its wheels airborne almost as much as they are in contact with the ground, you’ll have the basic idea. And if the mere idea of downhill mountain biking gets you jazzed, what do you think the actual experience will do?

DH, as downhill mountain biking is known in mountain biking circles, is in no way the same as riding a standard bicycle up and down the gently rolling hills in your neighborhood park. Neither is it the same as cross country mountain biking, which may involve some downhill riding but is more akin to bike racing.

Downhill Mountaing Biking Bikes

Downhill mountain biking demands a mountain bike with front and rear suspensions especially engineered to handle the extreme stresses of the terrain over which they are ridden. The downhill bikes also have heavier, stronger frame tubing than other varieties of mountain bikes, and normally weigh in at between forty and fifty pounds.

Don’t bother trying to pedal a downhill mountain bike uphill; it’s an exercise in futility. Downhill mountain biking requires that a bikers and their bikes be transported to the top of the hill they are to descend by a ski lift. The trail on which they will be coming back down will be both physically demanding and dangerous. Downhill mountain biking should never be attempted until all possible safety measures are in place.

Downhill mountain biking courses are both steep and treacherous throughout, and can contain jumps of up to forty feet with a ten foot drop. The bikers who are attracted to downhill mountain biking, however, are those who thrive on challenges; the harder the better. The risk involved is not their biggest concern. But even the most experienced downhill mountain biking enthusiasts never begin a descent without being fully protected with a helmet, elbow and knee pads, a body suit, and goggles.

Girls Mountain Biking

One of the greatest appeals of mountain biking is that it is a unisex sport. Mountain biking does not discriminate on the basis of gender. Nor does it eliminate participants due to their ages or ethnicities; in its early years it was largely the domain of men and boys, but now women and girl mountain bikers are joining the fun in record numbers.

Girls mountain biking has begun to achieve prominence in the sport, thanks to the teams of girls mountain bikers fielded by many US high schools. High school mountain biking programs allow female students to master the techniques necessary to succeed in girls mountain biking competitions, and many of them are the equal of the male bikers in their schools.

NorCal

The NorCal High School Mountain Bike League, founded in 2001, opened up the world of girls mountain biking to Elena Spittler, who was the league’s girls mountain biking champion in 2005. She joined the Berkeley High School Mountain Biking Team as its single female member, simply to prove that girls could succeed in the sport. She struggled to keep up with the boys during her first year on the team, but by the time she was a senior, Elena was trouncing some of her younger male teammates.

Two years after she struck a blow for girls mountain biking at her high school, there are now seven girls on the team, and the total number of participants in girls mountain biking for the entire NorCal High School Mountain Bike League has doubled.

The league now has a summer girls mountain biking camp and intends to host a girls mountain biking mini-camp in the first part of the high school racing season to help the girls competing improver their techniques and build their confidence. The league has made a commitment to these girl-specific activities, and is also training its team coaches in methods of recruiting and working with girls mountain biking candidates.

These girls mountain biking [http://www.mountainbikingreviews.com/Mountain_Biking_Dirt_Jumps/] clinics and camps cover a variety of topics. The girls are required to maneuver their bikes over natural obstacles and down steep descents, learning the balance, dexterity, and bike control necessary for competing in cross country, endurance, and short course racing events. They are also schooled in bike maintenance and repair.

Girls Mountain Biking Clinics

The clinics stress the importance of preserving mountain biking trails, finding team sponsorship, educating the public in the positive benefits of girls mountain biking, and improving one’s biking skills. They encourage their students to develop self-reliance and challenge them in the same way that their male counterparts are challenged.

Mountain Biking Trips

No matter which part of the globe you call home, you won’t have to look very far to find a large number of mountain biking enthusiasts. And travel agencies, recognizing the enormous popularity of mountain biking the world over, have added the mountain biking trips to their offerings as a way to capitalize on it.

Mountain Biking Trips Down Under

Among the most requested mountain biking trips are those to Australia and New Zealand. Mountain biking trips to the Auckland are very much in demand, because they take mountain bikers over terrain from which all of Auckland is visible; the views along are worth the entire cost of the trip.

You can expect to spend a week to ten days on mountain biking trips to Australia; you’ll be treated to trails passing by, and even beneath, waterfalls, and through rainforests. You’ll recuperate between each stage of mountain biking trip at five-star luxury hotels, in some of the most scenic areas to be found Down Under. Accommodations are included in the price of the mountain biking trips.

Mountain Biking Trips In Alaska and california

For those who prefer the northern climes to those of the Southern Hemisphere, mountain biking trips to Alaska might prove ideal. Haunting blue-white glaciers, serene mountain meadows, forgotten lakes, pure air and icy, crystal-clear streams will be waiting for mountain bikers wherever they turn in Alaska.

The travel agencies can arrange Alaskan mountain biking trips with stopovers to include whale watching and wildlife spotting excursions, or hiking through terrain where mountain bikes are not allowed. There is no better way to experience the Great Outdoors than by participating in mountain biking trips to the great big state of Alaska.

Californians have some of the most sought-after mountain biking trips available right along the northern coast of their own state. Northern California’s flawless climate, spectacular coastline, forests of unspoiled redwoods, pristine waterways, and vineyards are all great reasons to schedule a weekend mountain biking trip there. California weather, even during its “winter months” from January to March, is mild during the day, and California mountain biking trips make terrific family vacations no matter the time of year!

With the enormous increase of mountain biking, there are more mountain biking trips available now than ever. You can probably find one within driving distance of your home, or you can head for a travel agency and make arrangements to see some of the world’s most renowned scenery from the saddle of a mountain bike.

If mountain biking trios cost a little more than you are accustomed to spending on your vacations, just remember that you’ll be getting a far more intimate look at parts of the world than traditional tourists ever see on guided tours with daily itineraries. And best of all, you’ll spend most of your waking hours doing the thing you most love to do: mountain biking!

A Mountain Biking Primer

The first requirement for a would be mountain biker is to obtain a bicycle. Some mountain bicycles are traditional in that they feature thick rugged tires. These bikes are ideal for off road rough terrain biking. There are also mountain bikes that feature thinner less rugged tires. These bikes are really hybrids between mountain bikes and touring bikes. The advantage these bikes offer is they weigh less than traditional mountain bikes. If you are planning on biking on paved roads or paved bike trails or even on trails with light obstacles such as roots or rocks these bikes (hybrids) may be ideal for you.

For the technical mountain biker who enjoys riding over rocks, tree roots, and other natural hazards the thicker tired mountain bike will offer a safer more satisfying riding experience. As a fledgling mountain biker you should not as a general rule choose the most expensive mountain bike available. As a general rule what you are paying for is either an enhanced ride through the use of front and rear shock absorbers mounted over the front wheel and under the seat of the bicycle or a bike frame constructed of the very latest space age medals and so lighter than traditional mountain bikes. The only times I can see spending extra for an more expensive mountain bike is if you suffer from arthritis, have had a carpal tunnel or other operation such that an enhanced shock absorbing system will benefit you. Also if you enter mountain biking races than a more lightweight mountain biking frame will benefit you.

Right after selecting a mountain bicycle, I suggest you select a bicycle helmet. No one should engage in the sport of mountain biking without a helmet. Many states have passed laws requiring that both children and adults wear helmets when they ride bicycles. The natural hazards inherent in the sport of mountain biking make proper headgear a necessity. Most bike helmets today are made at least in part of hardened Styrofoam with plastic outsides and are very light in weight. Inside the biking helmet there is usually stamped the safety results that independent testing organizations have obtained in testing the helmet. These should be examined carefully.

In addition to needing a mountain bike and a helmet you will need to transport your bike to where you wish to ride. To do this, you will need a bike rack. There are 3 major types of bike racks available. These are roof racks, trunk racks, and bicycle hitches. A roof rack fits tightly on your car’s roof. The bikes are clamped tightly to the rack. A roof rack has the advantage of allowing the trunk of your vehicle to be readily accessible. This can be an important advantage on vacation trips. The two most prevalent manufacturers of roof racks seem to be Thule and Yakima. I have also seen racks with Sears Roebuck and Volvo trademarks attached to cars also. One major disadvantages of a roof rack is that carrying your bikes on top of your vehicle adds height to the vehicle. You need to be very conscious of this when you are using your vehicle with bikes attached on top and about to pass through a tunnel, park your car in a parking facility with a low roof, or even park your car in your own garage. I am ashamed to admit that I have forgotten that my bikes were attached to my roof rack as I entered my own garage on more than one occasion with expensive consequences of my absent mindedness!

Some other possible disadvantages of using roof racks are that lifting your bikes up to fasten them to the roof rack puts extra strain on your back and may cause back injuries. Another disadvantage of roof racks, is especially with today’s sport utility vehicles, you may need to carry a step stool in your vehicle when you are cycling in order to lift the bikes high enough to fasten them to your vehicle. A trunk rack as the name implies, has clamps which fasten tightly to the trunk of your car. Trunk racks are clamped to the trunk of your car before you begin your biking trip and are removed after its completion.

Trunk racks may be ideal when you are carrying bicycles for young children that are not heavy or large. As the size and weight of the bikes increases. the added size and weight may bend or dent your trunk and impede accessibility to it with a trunk rack. A hitch rack is attached to the rear of your vehicle on a more or less permanent basis. The bikes are fastened using heavy rubber clamps. A hitch rack offers the advantage of not increasing the height of your vehicle or denting your trunk. Hitch racks do increase the length of your vehicle and restrict visibility in back of your vehicle. Furthermore, a hitch rack with bikes attached makes the motion detector on my Ford Explorer useless. With all of that said, I myself use a hitch rack.

Another piece of equipment that is a necessity for mountain biking are water bottle racks. Regardless of the season, it is important to have an ample supply of water with you when you are mountain biking. Water bottle racks come in a few styles and can be easily attached to your bicycle. If you will be cycling for more than a few hours, you should take food with you as well. Food for lunch or snacks can be carried safely in many types of bike bags which can be fastened by means of velcro straps or bungies (single or double width elastic straps). If taking food in a bike bag is likely to be a part of your mountain biking experience, you should ask your bike store to attach a sturdy rack to your bike to which you can attach a thermal bag to carry your food in.