3 Things To Do Before Your Mountain Bike Adventure

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October 5th, 2017

Chances are, your first memories of riding a bike was with friends as a fun pastime. Back then, your greatest adventures would have been to the nearest off-road area in your neighborhood and no doubt those were the happiest moments of your childhood and your teenage years.   You can relive those days today ⎯ but with a long list of mountain bike destinations to choose from. In fact, you can take your mountain bike around the world, with the massive development of singletrack trails in the past ten years, opportunities are endless - all you need is a sense of adventure (and a bike!). 


However, before you start planning, you should know a few things before starting your mountain bike adventure. The last thing you want is to head into it blind. If you do, then you might end up regretting it instead of having the trip of a lifetime. 


1. research destinations.

Choosing an appropriate destination suited to your interests, skill level, and fitness level is key to a successful journey.   Once you start researching potential destinations, you'll also realize that you'll also have to consider the level of adventure you'd like to partake in.   After all, mountain biking in Utah and getting shuttled to the trailhead requires less preparation than a  hut-to-hut fatbiking trip along the Arctic  Circle in Greenland.   Singletracks.com is an amazing resource for mountain biker's to research trails, and read reviews of mountain bike destinations. 

A few recommendations: 

• Everyone is familiar with the reputation of New Zealand's landscape. It's literally out of this world⎯perhaps even mind-blowing. Best of all, the weather is favorable for mountain biking. What's even better about New Zealand is you have four main trails to choose from. You can take the Old Ghost Road, the Whakarewarewa Forest, the Moerangi Track, or Craigieburn to Arthurs Pass.


• If you're looking for an alternative destination, then take your pick from Nepal or Guatemala. Nepal's Lubra Trail is one of the most popular⎯it's also one of the most challenging. Cielo Grande in Guatemala, also known as Big Sky, is the best trail in the country. It offers a one-of-a-kind experience for mountain bikers.

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2. create a packing list, then slim it down. 

The key to a successful journey is preparation. You want to make sure your gear has everything you need for a multi-day adventure. Remember, you'll be on the trail for hours. The last thing you want is to be caught in the middle of nowhere without the necessary gear to protect yourself from the elements or the tools to keep your bike in tip-top shape. 

• Be sure to pack the right clothes. You'll need to take along riding jerseys and shorts.

• At the same time, bring along a couple of cotton shirts and trousers for hiking. Remember, you want to be comfortable and prepared for anything.

• Likewise, bring a jacket and sweater in case you run into inclement weather.

• Safety is paramount, so you'll need a helmet as well as goggles.

• Take along a hydration pack with a minimum capacity of 3 liters.

• In case of a bike emergency, bring along a puncture repair kit and spare tubes.

Want to pack like a pro? 

Check out   Mandil's recommendation HERE - he's our Lead Guide in Nepal. 

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3. prepare mentally, and physically. 

Before you even think of booking your mountain bike journey, you should know it'll test your physical and mental ability. Even so, it promises to give you a once-in-a-lifetime adventure.  However, can you handle the physical and mental challenges? The following suggestions can help you prepare your mind for it so you'll have a good ride:

 • You should be aware of the challenge ahead of you. If your exercise regime only consists of betting on tennis online, you need to remember that mountain biking is challenging. The distance alone can be overwhelming so you must be able to physically handle it.   Understand how many kilometres you'll be biking each day, as well as elevation gain and lost throughout each ride. 


• It's in your best interest to study the trail you plan to take beforehand. In doing so, you can assess your flow and plan.


• Think about how lucky you are to be able to go on each and every mountain biking journey⎯it's best to maintain a positive attitude.

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Many people often overlook the physical aspect of mountain biking. Some feel overconfident they can handle it, but it's often the reason why they end up being miserable afterward. That said, you need to prepare for it ⎯ even if you're just doing it for leisure. You'll be thankful in the end and end up having more fun on the trail. 


• Plan ahead of your trip. Be sure to train at least two or three times a week. Begin with squatting exercises, afterward move on to jump squats. These are great for strengthening your legs. Create a pre-ride  training program . 


• Remember to work on your upper body and core. 


• Keep up your nutrition to guarantee your endurance.

Keep these tips in mind to avoid disappointment. Proper preparation and a positive attitude will make your mountain bike journey more enjoyable and memorable.

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About the Author:   Peter is an avid sports writer and keen fan of football, cricket, tennis, and rugby. He has contributed this post on behalf of Sun Bets and when he's not writing about the sports he loves he's placing bets on them!