Exploring with a mountain bike

One of the ways that I’ve been exploring lately is with a mountain bike. I think it is a great way to see your surroundings at a steady pace, whilst enjoying the outdoors.

The reason I like the mountain bike is because it gives you the option to go offroad, as well as to cycle on the road, footpaths, and cycleways.

In theory, you can head to one destination with your bike and then you will be able to travel from there. (This also falls into bikepacking, which is an activity that you can do.)

However, it’s more likely that you will need to travel with your bike to a location so that you have energy to enjoy the trail.

What made me decide to get a mountain bike?

At the moment, I’m based in the city of Brisbane. With the pandemic happening, vast travel is limited. So instead, I want to make the most of the travel experiences that I can experience locally. There are so many more things that you can discover if you go at a slower pace. Walking is an option, but cycling is the ideal option for me because it is quicker to get around, and it allows me to do moderate exercise.

How much was the mountain bike that I purchased?

I got a brand new mountain bike, which is a Merida Big Nine Hardtail. I was going to purchase one that was at the $700AUD price range, but I was recommended by the salesperson to upgrade to the $1300AUD version due to the better design with the derailleur, smoother gear changes, and just overall a better entry-level mountain bike.

I bought the bike just over 1 year ago. And I usually use the bike a few times a week. It’s cost me the equivalent of $25AUD per week over 52 weeks. All being well, I will continue to use this bike for another 2-4 years.

What are some of the nice experiences that you can enjoy with a mountain bike?

Cycle trails

Some of the trails that I’m planning to ride include:

Mountain bike trails

If you want to experience an adrenaline rush, then you can cycle on some MTB trails in your area. I’m enjoying more of the downward flow trails that aren’t too technical. There are others that are more challenging and that will test your concentration levels. And due to the inclines, you may need to exert alot more energy.

One of my preferences when exploring a mountain bike trail is to go on one that also has interesting surroundings to look at.

Night rides.

Cycling in the evening or by night is also interesting, especially if you have the chance to cycle close to a well-lit area and by waterways. You’ll need sufficient lighting. Currently, I’m sticking to bike cycling trails and roads. Although there is the option to do offroad cycling at night. There is more danger with doing offroad cycling at night and my preference is to only do offroad cycling when it is well lit.

What app should you use to find interesting trails?

You should use the Trailforks app, which will share the different trails in an area and also by rating and reviews.

Before you go mountain biking, please make sure you carry the right gear so that you have a safe and enjoyable journey.

Is it safe to travel with your mountain bike?

I do think that some places are safer than others. If you head to a location where it’s frequented by cyclists, and bikes are common, then I think the place will be cyclist-friendly and the risk of your bike getting stolen is lower.

If you were travelling through an area where bikes aren’t common, then there might be a higher chance of your bike getting stolen.

Is it easy to travel with a mountain bike?

If you have your own vehicle, then it is. You could opt for a campervan or motorhome, ute, 4WD, or car that allows you to transport the bikes to your desired location.

Alternatively, you can transport your bikes on buses or trains where it’s allowed.

What are some of the things that you can enjoy when opting for mountain biking?

  • Picnics
  • Visiting cafes and restaurants
  • Scenic landcapes and skylines
  • Exercise

Give it a go. And share your experiences in the comments below.

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