Posted on 28th March 2017 Blog
“Enduro” has become a well-used buzzword in mountain biking over the past few years since we first started operating in 2010. It is supposed to a be great, expressive phrase that really gives a better refection of what certain aspects of the sport are really about – but it’s been overused inappropriately…I mean, what makes a mudguard “enduro” exactly?! However, it does also perfectly explain our approach to the riding on our holidays!
We’re old enough to remember when Mountain Biking was Mountain Biking, and that was all there was to be said about it! However, over the last 20 years the sport has diversified and developed to such an extent that “Mountain Biking” means a lot of different things to different people. If you think of “Cross Country” you tend to think of racy whippets in lycra riding themselves to exhaustion on aggressive hardtails. If you think of “Downhill” you may immediately have an image of your mind of full-face helmets, body armour and people hucking down mountains at high speed with no discernable awareness of their own mortality! Some people recoil in horror when they read the letters “XC”, or break out in a mild sweaty panic at the prospect of “DH” But think about your own riding for a minute…what do you do?
Well, the answer is probably – just like 99% of people – a bit of everything! However, we’ve noticed that, quite simply, the ever increasing majority of riders who book MTB holidays like to focus on fantastic, long singletrack descents more than going uphill. And whilst they don’t mind doing some climbing, they’d rather gain at least some of the height via lifts when possible to maximise the amount of time spent descending – it is a holiday after all! Oh, and if they are going to pedal up the mountain they’d rather do it gently, at their own pace and without any pressure… Well, that’s mountain biking, Enduro-style!
Most people these days ride 140-160mm travel bikes, which combine climbing ability with the type of geometry that allows you to ride with a big grin plastered across your face when the trail turns downhill! The chances are that you ride a bike with a stiff, accurate frame and fork, designed to give you confidence on technical sections…and these bikes will cope with all types of trails – the very definition of “All-Mountain” riding.
Our holidays are definitely focussed on giving you the very best singletrack descents you will ever ride – and let’s be honest, how often do you sit in the pub after a ride with your mates and talk about how you were buzzing with adrenalin after that last climb? Well, okay, maybe some people do that! But we are very, very aware that it’s more likely to be the downhill sections that you enjoy – so that is how we focus our holidays. Wherever possible we’ll get you most of the way up the biggest mountains by using the lift networks or our vehicles. However, we always say that the very best descents are almost never located handily next to the top of a chairlift, so sometimes some climbing has to be done to reach the finest natural singletrack…
When we do climb, we do it gradually, and let you go at your own pace – if you want to spin up gently and really take your time, with plenty of breaks, then we’ll be right there with you! Likewise, if you are a member of that 1% we alluded to earlier, who DO want to cough up a lung as they punish themselves whilst climbing…well, that’s fine too. Please stop at the top, eat a cereal bar, admire the view & take some photos and wait for the rest of us though!
So there you go – that’s why we we describe our holidays the way we do – we’ll get you up gently and try to maximise the amount of time you spend having fun on the descents!
"...the most perfect sun-dappled loamy singletrack any of us had ever ridden."
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