When I put together our Backcountry Pyrenees mountain bike holiday it was never meant to be fixed in stone. The idea was always to develop it, change the route some years and generally keep it interesting for us and fresh for all the people who return year after year. Yeah, we will keep some trails as a core but we don´t want to be doing the same thing year after year, no matter how good it is! And, let me be honest here but please don´t tell Amaia, it´s great to load up the van and head into the mountains to ride bikes, eat good food and drink nice local wine all in the name of trail scouting. Read the post »
How many brake pads do you think we get through out during our mountain bike holiday season? For me it´s usually a set or two a month, more if we get bad weather. It adds up, meaning around 15-20 sets of brake pads a year and if you are buying them in the shops, even with a friendly price, it is a few hundred euros. I have tried various online shops with mixed success, some of them have been excellent and others variable. Recently I was contacted by Rahox to test some of their mountain bike brake pads. Read on to see how I got on. Read the post »
It was a comfortable 13 degrees in the Basque Country, with pretty blue skies and dry trails. Why then did we drive an hour south, deep into the frozen tundra of Navarra, where there were cloudy skies and cold winds forecast? Why were we pulling on thermals and filling flasks of coffee when we could be donning t-shirts and finishing our ride with beer on the beach? The answer can only be because we are a special kind of stupid. Sometimes though, the good adventures follow stupidity.
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It has been a very long time since I had to make an effort to fit cycling into my life. I have always had the “it´s my job”, top trump to play as I grab my kit and head out of the door. That all changed. It changed suddenly and it changed dramatically as the end of my 2013 guiding season arrived along with a new baby. Suddenly it wasn´t quite so simple to head out the door and escape on my mountain bike, suddenly I had to justify my rides, fit them in with other people, shorten them, thin them out and miss them all together. At first it wasn´t hard, the new baby kept me pretty busy and life filled the space where my mountain bike had been. That didn´t last though and soon I was getting twitchy and longing for the hills, the adrenaline and the dopamines. I needed to get out in the mountains, and soon it was obvious to my family as well.
The 2013 mountain bike season has drawn to a close and now is the time for me to look over the season´s photos and comments from guests and hope that is enough to keep me warm over the cold winter season! Read the post »