Inspiration & Humour

10 (More) Things Every Mountain Biker Should Do Before They Die

December 18, 2013

My friend Tom Malecha (Filme Von Draussen on Vimeo, and edi­tor of our Why We Ride and Life is Bet­ter on a Moun­tain Bike videos) released an amaz­ing video yes­ter­day, enti­tled ‘10 Things Every Moun­tain Bik­er Should Have Done’. It’s a beau­ti­ful video, and you can check it out at the end of this blog post.

The video sparked a few of my own ideas about what moun­tain bik­ers ‘should’ do, so here is my own take on the list, enti­tled 10 Things Every Moun­tain Bik­er Should Do Before They Die.

Let us know what you think, and send us your addi­tions and/or sug­ges­tions in the com­ments below!

- Mike Brcic, founder Sacred Rides

1. Introduce someone to mountain biking…

Share the joy of moun­tain bik­ing with some­one else this year. Bet­ter yet, shell out the $30-$40 and treat them to a free moun­tain bike rental and your patient guid­ing for the day.

2. …And teach a kid to mountain bike

Bet­ter yet, make that 1st-time moun­tain bik­er a kid and intro­duce him/her to a life­time of awesomeness.

3. Build or help maintain a trail

This one’s not a ‘should’, more of a ‘must’: if you moun­tain bike, you have to give back by either build­ing some trail or help­ing to main­tain exist­ing trail. Find your local trail advo­ca­cy or club (IMBA is a good place to start) and find out when their next trail main­te­nance day is.

4. Join IMBA

Speak­ing of IMBA (Inter­na­tion­al Moun­tain Bike Asso­ci­a­tion), why aren’t you a mem­ber yet? Your mem­ber­ship helps keep moun­tain bike trails open!

5. Join a Mountain Bike Club

Moun­tain bike clubs offer so much: they’re a great place to meet oth­er moun­tain bik­ers; they’re often advo­cates for keep­ing trails open; they’re a lia­son with local landown­ers. Most clubs charge under $50/year to join. has a great list of North Amer­i­can clubs

6. Ride an ‘epic’

(or sev­er­al). An epic is one of those trails that takes you any­where from 6 hours to all day to ride, and often takes you to remote places. You have to pack lots of water, lots of food, lots of tools, and even safe­ty equip­ment like a satel­lite phone in case of emer­gen­cies. You fin­ish the day total­ly and utter­ly spent and usu­al­ly need at least a day to recov­er. Along the way you thought you might col­lapse, and maybe even ques­tioned the nature of your exis­tence, what the hell you’re doing, and why you’re on the plan­et. But after the pain is over, you’ll remem­ber that day for­ev­er and look back on it with noth­ing but fond mem­o­ries (isn’t it great how pain usu­al­ly fades away in our memories?)

IMBA has a great list of epics, of which Sev­en Sum­mits is one of our favourites. 

7. Ride one of the world’s mountain bike ‘meccas’

WhistlerMoab, Frui­ta, Les Gets, 7StanesRotoruaMorzine, Crest­ed Butte, etc… Go to one of those places that are famous for moun­tain bik­ing to see what moun­tain bike cul­ture looks like when it takes over! (this list is high­ly sub­jec­tive, so feel free to sug­gest your own ‘mec­cas’ below).

8. Rescue someone else’s ride

Next time you see some­one pulled over on the side of the trail, take the time to stop and ask how they’re doing and if they need any help. Your tube or chain break­er could save some­one’s day. Most of us are gra­cious enough to yell ‘every­thing OK?’ as we pass by in a blur, but a lot of peo­ple are too polite to ask for help! So stop and offer your help.

9. Ride in a developing country

Tom’s #4, ‘Ride in anoth­er coun­try’ is a great addi­tion to the list, but we’d like to take it a step fur­ther and sug­gest you check out moun­tain bik­ing in a devel­op­ing coun­try. I’ve had the plea­sure of bring­ing moun­tain bike trips to places like PeruGuatemala, Mex­i­co, Chile and Nepal, and I can tell you that rid­ing in a place where moun­tain bik­ing is still rel­a­tive­ly unknown is a spe­cial joy. Every­thing feels new and unchart­ed, the adven­ture quo­tient is high, and every­where you go peo­ple stop and want to know more about you, what you’re rid­ing, and what you’re doing. Just remem­ber to be an ambas­sador for the sport!

10. Sell One of Your Mountain Bikes

Seri­ous­ly, do you need 7 moun­tain bikes? Sell one of them and do items #1 and #2 twen­ty times!

So… what do you think every mountain biker should do? Let us know in the comments below! 

And with­out fur­ther ado, here’s Tom’s awe­some video: