Posts Tagged ‘mountain biking’

I have long been a cyclist. More importantly a road cyclist. Forever trying to reduce weight and drag to increase speed. Roadies are the ones who prefer to walk around in tight lycra cycling pants with slightly to small cycling shirts with any brand under the sun on them. They also wear shoes with no grip on them that have cleats on the bottom that lift the toes above the heel. This makes walking very challenging. They are often seen hanging at coffee shops sharing war stories early in the morning on the weekends when most sane people are asleep. Well maybe I am not as hardcore as some but you get the idea.

Over the years, I have come into contact and even worked with a few “cyclists”. They call themselves mountain bikers. These guys (and girls) decided that putting knobbly tyres on a heavy frame and getting dirty was a good idea. Doing it repeatedly was an even better idea and doing stage races (some as long as 8 days) was the best idea.

After much persuasion and constant nagging, I finally decided to borrow a mountain bike and move off my beloved asphalt onto loose, dirty roads full of bumps and holes. I took it as a bit off fun and a different experience which I thought was worth the try. I said “Who knows – I may even enjoy it”. That is the right attitude to have when trying new experiences. Well in my opinion it is.

We were staying in the Drakensberg mountains at the time and the house was quite high up so everywhere you went was down first. This means one thing – UP and the way back! So off I went, cruising down a dirt road at speeds that I would not even do in the car. Given that I did not go “off road” as true mountain bikers would. I will say this – I did not really enjoy the experience I gained on the 4 rides. I went at different times of the day and over 4 different routes and still the enjoyment and thrill or rush did not wash over me as it does some people.

What was the overall result of this experiment with the other side of cycling? Quite simple, actually. It was fun to try it but not enough fun for me to start it on a more regular basis or rush out and buy a mountain bike. It was worth a try but not for me. This goes for most things in life – I am happy I tried it but am also happy to accept that there is a growing number of people who enjoy it.

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